AFI keys in on best of 2006

Nods range from 'Borat' to 'Wire'

Selecting an eclectic list of films — ranging from the confrontational comedy of "Borat" to the animated dance moves of "Happy Feet" to such serious fare as "Babel" and "Letters From Iwo Jima" — the American Film Institute announced its choices for its AFI Awards 2006 on Sunday.

The 10 films selected as the most outstanding American motion pictures of the year include three comedies, "Borat," "The Devil Wears Prada" and "Little Miss Sunshine"; one live-action musical, "Dreamgirls"; one animated musical, "Happy Feet"; one thriller, "Inside Man"; one docu-drama, "United 93"; and three dramas, "Babel," "Half Nelson" and "Iwo Jima."

On the TV side, the 10 outstanding TV programs of the year are "Battlestar Galactica," "Dexter," "Elizabeth I," "Friday Night Lights," "Heroes," "The Office," "South Park," "24," "The West Wing" and "The Wire."

The AFI Awards, currently in their seventh year, recognize the creative ensembles, both in front of and behind the camera, for the film and TV titles chosen. They will be honored at a luncheon sponsored by Hewlett-Packard on Jan. 12 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Los Angeles. HP also has created 20 scholarships to the AFI Conservatory, one for each of the AFI honorees.

The titles were selected by two 13-person juries that deliberated over the weekend.

The film juries included producer Robert G. Rehme; DGA president Michael Apted; Spyglass Entertainment co-chairman and CEO Roger Birnbaum; Leo Braudy of USC; producer-director-writer James L. Brooks; Mary Corey of UCLA; Jane Gaines of Duke University; National Public Radio's Elvis Mitchell; writer-producer Diana Ossana; producer David V. Picker; producer Tom Pollock; The Hollywood Reporter deputy film editor Anne Thompson; and Los Angeles Times film critic Kenneth Turan.

The TV jury included: Richard Frank, vice chair, AFI Board of Trustees; Dick Askin, president and CEO, Academy of Television Arts and Sciences; producer-writer Steven Bochco; producer-director Kevin S. Bright; the Los Angeles Times' Paul Brownfield; director-producer-writer Michael Dinner; The Hollywood Reporter TV critic Barry Garron; Amanda D. Lotz of the University of Michigan; Variety's Brian Lowry; Tara McPherson of USC; TV Guide's Matt Roush; Vivian Sobchack of UCLA; and Kristal Brent Zook of Columbia University.
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