Steve Collins' high school comedy Gretchen won Film Independent's Target FilmmakerAward for best feature at the Los Angeles Film Festival's Spirit ofIndependence event tonight.

The Target Documentary Award went to Amy Berg for Deliver UsFrom Evil, whichexplores paedophilia in the Catholic Church. Virginia Madsen and Jimmy Smitspresented the awards, which each carry anunrestricted $50,000 prize..

The Los Angeles Film Festival, which opened on Jun 22 with David Frankel'scomedy The Devil Wears Prada and will close on Jul 2 with Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris'Sundance comedy Little Miss Sunshine, is enjoying a higher profile this year following the moveto Westwood.

Organisers said they received more than 4,300 worldwidesubmissions, an increase of more than 600 from 2005. All in all more than 265films and music videos are playing in 16 different sections.

"The Festival now has the location, the theatres, thetechnology, and the support to give audiences access to the kinds of films andevents that make Los Angeles the movie capital of the world," Film Independentexecutive director Dawn Hudson said. "Attendance is higher than ever andthe response to our move to Westwood has been overwhelmingly positive."

This year's Audience Award winners and the winners of the shortfilm competition will be announced at the closing night ceremony. For more informationabout the festival visit the official website at