September 4, 2007 / 4:38 AM / 10 years ago

"Ben X" honored at Montreal film festival

MONTREAL (Hollywood Reporter) - “Ben X,” Belgian director Nic Balthazar’s portrait of a mildly autistic boy bullied at school, took top honors at the 31st annual Montreal World Film Festival, which wrapped Monday.

Balthazar’s directorial debut earned the audience award and shared the juried Grand Prix of Americas prize as the top festival film with French director Claude Miller’s “A Secret,” the tale of Jewish family during and after World War II.

“Ben X,” which had Canadian and U.S. distributors swirling with buying interest Monday, also grabbed the festival’s Ecumenical Prize for combining artistic merit with the exploration of ethical, social and spiritual values.

In the acting categories, Filipe Duarte and Thomas Almeida, stars of the Portugal/Brazil co-production “The Other Side” by Luis Filipe Rocha, shared the best actor prize, while Andrea Sawatzki, who starred in German director Volker Einrauch’s “The Other Boy,” got the nod as best actress.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

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