Murilo Salles' Nome Proprio, the story of an intense young woman who dedicates her life to writing, won the award for best Brazilian film at the 36th Gramado film festival.

Held in a small town in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul, the festival highlights Brazilian, Latin American and Iberian Films, in addition to encouraging co-productions between Portuguese- and Spanish-speaking countries.

The awards (called Kikitos) were handed out Aug 16 in two categories: Brazilian films and foreign films. Israel Cardenas and Laura Guzman's Cochochi (Mexico), the humble story of two boys who try to find a lost horse, took the prize for best foreign feature.

This year's programme also included panel discussions on co-productions, funds for Latin American films, distribution and international sales. 'We hope the best film award that Nome Proprio won in Gramado open doors for the film in other markets besides Brazil. Our goal is to reach theatres in other South American countries,'' says Deborah Osborn, the producer of Nome Proprio.

The language is still a barrier for Brazilian films to travel to its neighbours countries, from the Spanish-speaking world. The co-productions are still rare due to the same problem.

'Even between Brazil and Portugal, that speak the same language, there are very few co-productions,' says Portuguese filmmaker Jorge Paixão da Costa.

He directed one of such co-productions, presented in competition in Gramado. Misterio da Estrada de Sintra (Portugal-Brazil) is an adaptation of the Portuguese Eça de Queiroz novel. 'In reality, Brazilians and us have a lot in common and a lot of differences. That's why we should explore more these two elements that are our strength together.''

Brazilian competition

Best film: Nome Proprio, Murilo Salles
Best director, Domingos Oliveira, Juventude
Best actor: Daniel de Oliveira, A Festa DaMenina Morta
Best actress: Leandra Leal, Nome Proprio
Best screenplay: Domingos Oliveira, Juventude
Best cinematography: Lula Carvalho, A Festa DaMenina Morta
Special jury award: A Festa DaMenina Morta
Artistic quality award: actors Aderbal Freire Filho,
Domingos Oliveira and Paulo Jose, Juventude
Best art director: Pedro Paulo de Souza, Nome Proprio
Best music: Matheus Nachtergale, A Festa DaMenina Morta
Best editing: Natara Ney, Juventude
Critics award: A Festa DaMenina Morta
Audience award: A Festa DaMenina Morta

Foreign film competition

Best film: Cochochi, Israel Cardenas and Laura Guzman
Best director: Carlos Moreno, Perro Come Perro
Best actor: Marlon Moreno and Oscar Borda, Perro Come Perro
Best actriz: Ana Carabajal pelo filme Por Sus Propios Ojos
Best screenplay: Liliana Paolinelli, Por Sus Propios Ojos
Best cinematography: Juan Carlos Gil, Perro Come Perro
Special jury award: Por Sus Propios Ojos
Artistic quality award: Cochochi
Technical excellence: Cochochi
Critics award: Perro Come Perro
Audience award: Por Sus Propios Ojos