'Counterfeiters' cashes in at Flanders fest


BRUSSELS -- "The Counterfeiters," the Austrian-German film fictionalizing the Nazi wartime plan to flood Britain with forged Bank of England currency, won the Grand Prize at the Flanders Film Festival in Ghent on Wednesday.

Written and directed by Stefan Ruzowitzky and based on a true story, it centers on a Jewish counterfeiter who is coerced into assisting the Nazi operation at the Sachenhausen concentration camp.

Other prizewinners included Italian filmmaker Saverio Costanzo, who won the Robert Wise Award for best director for "In Memory of Myself;" writer-director Tamara Jenkins, who won the SABAM Prize for best scenario for "The Savages," the forthcoming film with Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney; and Roy Andersson, who won the Georges Delerue Prize for best music for "You the Living."

A special jury mention went to the Sasson Gabai and Ronit Elkabetz, the two stars of "The Band's Visit," about an Egyptian band stranded in an Israeli desert town.

The head of the jury, Kathleen Turner, received a Joseph Plateau Award for lifetime achievement -- a prize that was also awarded earlier in the week to actor Danny Glover -- whose film "Bamako" was shown at the festival -- and director Walter Hill.

The Flanders Film Festival, which runs until Saturday, screens more than 200 films and spotlights film music with the World Soundtrack Awards on closing night.