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What’s in the Suitcase?

One unique feature of the Prix Jeunesse International Children's Television Festival that wrapped last month in Munich is its travelling 'suitcase' of prize-winning and innovative programs. Suitcase screenings that take the Jeunesse programs on the road throughout the year give a...
July 1, 2000

One unique feature of the Prix Jeunesse International Children’s Television Festival that wrapped last month in Munich is its travelling ‘suitcase’ of prize-winning and innovative programs. Suitcase screenings that take the Jeunesse programs on the road throughout the year give a wider audience a chance to see the best work from all corners of the globe, and provide a creative spark for media professionals on every continent.

The American Center for Children’s Television, based in Chicago, will present the Prix Jeunesse Suitcase around the U.S. Here are a few of the programs that will be in the bag:

* Microsoap (BBC/England)

Prize-winner in the fiction for the 11 to 15 age range category, this innovative format combines drama and animation in a wild, sharp-witted soap opera about a blended family.

* The Scent of Rice

(Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting/Iran)

A stone in the rice causes a rift in the family, until the children show their parents the way back to peace. The story is innovative for its empowerment of children.

* The Secrets of Kineret (Keshet Television/Israel)

Winner of the children’s jury prize, this is a compelling and mysterious drama told from the perspective of a boy who records all the sounds in his village. When a girl who doesn’t speak moves to the village, his tapes are filled with the sound of her silence.

* On the Way Home (Once TV/Mexico)

Each story in this series begins with a child’s walk from school. In the competition episode, a young boy struggles to express his affection for an ‘older woman.’ The unique narration style both advances and comments on the story.

* Knyacki (NHK/Japan)

A charming mixture of clay animation and live action that’s rich in expression, this series follows the exploits of Knyacki, an intrepid caterpillar who is bounced about by forces of man and nature. When these nine-minute items hit it big worldwide, we’ll all be wearing Knyacki T-shirts!

* Tuli (Namibian Broadcasting Company/Namibia)

Winner of the BMW Prize for production with limited means, Tuli was made for Ragdoll Productions’ ‘Open a Door’ exchange. Tuli shows-without words-a girl’s journey to buy a clay pot to replace one she’s broken.

* Race Around the Corner (ABC/Australia)

A game show format in which young people produce videos about topics of their own choosing, and are awarded points by a trio of judges. Of all the ‘kid-made video’ programs, this feels the most authentic.

Prix Jeunesse Winners

Up to six * Fiction

-The First Snow of Winter: BBC/U.K.;

producer, Hibbert Ralph Entertainment/London (26 min.)

Up to six * Nonfiction-Blue’s Clues: producer/broadcaster Nickelodeon/U.S.

(continuing half-hour series)

Six to 11 * Fiction-The Daltons: NOS/VPRO/Netherlands;

producer, VPRO/Hilversum (10 x 18-minute series)

Six to 11 * Nonfiction-Spot Light: VRT/Belgium; producer, Bos Bros TV Productions/Hilversum (52 x 13-minute series)

11 to 15 * Fiction-Microsoap: BBC/U.K.;

producer, BBC/Disney Channel (series)

11 to 15 * Nonfiction-Sale: broadcaster/producer, SVT/Sweden (continuing half-hour series)

Light Entertainment-My Sister’s World:

broadcaster/producer, NRK/Norway (16 x 10-minute series)

Web Prize-ZOOM: WGBH and PBS/U.S.

Children’s Jury Prizes-Big Treasure Chest for Future Kids: Tibet (TCV Cable Network/India); The Secret of Kineret (Keshet Television/Israel)

UNICEF-Off Limits: Strong Language (Channel Four/UK)

UNESCO-White Cap (Television of Bosnia and Herzegovina)

BMW Prize-Tuli (Namibian Broadcasting Company)

David Kleeman is director of the American Center for Children’s Television. To bring the

Prix Jeunesse Suitcase to your city, contact Kleeman (dkleeman@mcs.com) or Ursula von Zallinger (uvz@prixjeunesse.de).

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