Film-maker Andrew Mudge haswon a $1m production deal to develop his feature project The P T JohansenField Guide To North American Monstersas first prize in the 2003 Chrysler Million Dollar Film Festival.

Mudge beat off more than 700contestants in the competition, which began in January and progressed to amentored short film challenge involving the Chrysler brand that culminated in afeature pitch at the recent awards ceremony in Toronto.

Mudge will now set aboutdeveloping his project, which centres on the effects a questionable Sasquatchsighting has on an American family.

The award is sponsored byChrysler, Doug Liman's New York and Los Angeles-based production company Hypnoticand Universal Pictures.

"This past year has been aneducational and exhilarating experience for me, and I look forward to theopportunity to bring my vision to life," Mudge said in a statement in which healso thanked the sponsors and paid tribute to his fellow finalists.

The four other finalistswere Victor Buhler from Los Angeles for Two Harbours; Paul Cotter from Chicago for Caramel; Tanja Mairitsch from Los Angeles for MindCrime; and Stephen Marro from New York for ArrestedDevelopment.

The 2003 judges for thefeature film competition were Holly Barrio, senior vice president of productionat Universal Pictures; Liman; and Bonita Stewart, director of Chrysler BrandCommunications at Daimler Chrysler.