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Filipino filmmaker Janice Yu wins US$10,000 grand prize in filmmaking contest using the Nokia N90 mobile phone

Singapore, 15 December, 2005 Discovery Networks Asia, the Asian-division of real-world entertainment company Discovery Communications, and Nokia, the world leader in mobile communications, today unveiled the winner of the inaugural First Time Mobile FilmMakers Awards: Janice Yu from the Philippines.

The quest to unearth talent in a brand new genre mobile filmmaking began in August this year, when Discovery Networks Asia and Nokia launched the First Time Mobile FilmMakers 2005 Awards throughout Asia-Pacific. The initiative, which takes mobile filmmaking to a whole new level, was open to individuals aged 18 and above who reside in Australia, Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Of the thousand plus entries that were received, fifteen short-listed contestants were selected and flown to Singapore for an intensive workshop in mobile filmmaking, organized by Discovery Networks Asia. They also received tips on how to use the wide range of settings, edit, and create mobifilms using the Nokia N90 by filmmaking experts such as Oscar-winning local director Tan Pin Pin and renowned director and producer Kelvin Tong, producer of the horror hit 'The Maid'. After another round of elimination, six finalists were left to compete for the title and grand prize Bob Calabritto (Indonesia), Janice Yu (Philippines), Noel Osting (Philippines), Ngoi Soon Ling (Singapore), Oman Dhas (Singapore), and Ndol Lerkwsirisuk (Thailand).

The final round of the competition yielded the overall winner Janice Yu, who won the grand prize of US$10,000 after receiving the highest overall score in areas of understanding the brief given to the contestants. This includes originality and quality of idea, visualization and technical excellence, and creativity and innovation.

Two other awards 'Best Editing' and 'Best Visualisation' were also presented. Noel Osting took home the 'Best Editing' award, which recognises the best use of editing techniques in the creation of the mobile film including the use of basic cuts and effects, visual composition, placement of audio and how these contribute to the overall look and structure of the mobile film. The 'Best Visualisation' award went to Ndol Lerkwsirisuk; this award recognises the best use of visuals in the creation of the mobile film, including style of filming, lighting, framing, dynamic movement, the choice of shots and the way the visuals contribute to the overall look and story structure that is finally achieved.

James Gibbons, senior vice president of programming and creative services, Discovery Networks Asia, said, "The First Time Mobile FilmMakers initiative gives consumers the ability to create their own films, with pioneering mobile phone technologies from manufacturers like Nokia. The response to the contest has been a real revelation and based on the quality of the entries, we believe that anyone with some knowledge and inspiration can shoot a mobile film and create personal documentaries. We believe this could be the catalyst to inspire a whole new generation of filmmakers to tell stories about the world around them."

Mauro Montanaro, vice president, Nokia Multimedia, Asia Pacific, said that camera phones are now able to meet even the expectations of the more demanding photographer and filmmaker, resulting in Nokia's expectation for the camera phone market to outnumber the digital camera market by four fold this year.

"That Discovery Networks Asia had decided to use the Nokia N90 the world's first mobile phone with superior Carl Zeiss optics to unearth new filmmaking talent in Asia is a milestone and a proud moment for Nokia. The technology that is packed into the Nokia N90 and other high performance Nseries multimedia devices enables consumers to do so much more today than we had ever imagined including making films, or simply capturing special moments in images and videos to share with friends and loved ones."

The First Time Mobile FilmMakers 2005 Awards is a collaboration between Discovery Networks Asia and Nokia which was announced in April this year. In June, Nokia kicked off the collaboration by sponsoring the premiere of Discovery Channel's First Time Film Makers: China 21 series, which showcased five documentaries directed by young and up-and-coming filmmakers from the People's Republic of China.

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