Quebecois filmmaker DanielRoby has been awarded the Claude-Jutra Award for the direction of his firstfeature film, La peau blanche (White Skin).

The prize, sponsored by the National Film Board of Canada, will be presented at the 25thGenie Awards Gala to be held on March 21 in Toronto.

Based on the novel by Joel Champetier, theromantic thriller is also nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay, on which thedirector and the novelist collaborated. The story follows two lovers asdifferent as night and day and good and evil. Roby, who holds film degrees from Montreal'sConcordia University and the University of Southern California, has shot andproduced a number of short films.

Paul Gratton, chairman of the Academy of CanadianCinema & Television, said in a statement: "This film marks the emergence ofa talented filmmaker who has forged an original and creative signature. Of all the first-time feature films submitted thisyear to the Committee for consideration, this is the one that stood out and we eagerly lookforward to Daniel's future works."