Polley earns Canadian Indie nod


TORONTO -- Canadian actress-turned-director Sarah Polley continued her winning ways Wednesday as she picked up the best film prize for her debut feature "Away From Her" at the inaugural Canadian Indie Awards in Ottawa.

Polley, whose film is up for best adapted screenplay at the Academy Awards while lead Julie Christie will challenge for best actress, was honored by fellow Canadian filmmakers as the Canadian Film and Television Producers Assn. conference got under way Wednesday night.

Polley's first film, adapted from a short story by Canadian writer Alice Munro, portrays an elderly couple, played by Christie and Gorden Pinsent, as they deal with the ravages of Alzheimer's disease.

Christie already has earned a Golden Globe and a Screen Actor's Guild trophy for her star-turn, as well as a BAFTA nomination.

Other award winners included the Hugh Dillon-starring drama "Durham County" from Back Alley Prods. (best primetime drama series) and Shaftesbury Films' "In God's Country" (best TV movie).

The Indie Award for best comedy went to "Moose TV" from Rezolution Pictures, while 2115 Film & Television's "Generation XXL" was named best kids and youth program. The documentary series award went to "Saving Luna" from Mountainside Films, while Westwind Pictures' "Designer Guys" won in the lifestyle or reality series category.

Rounding out the award winners in Ottawa was Smiley Guy Studios' Web site for the comedy series "Odd Job Jack" as it grabbed the trophy for best convergent new media, while Barna Alper Prods.' "October 1970" went home with the trophy for best miniseries.

The CFTPA's Prime Time conference and market gets underway Thursday with a keynote speech by Konrad von Finckenstein, Canada's TV watchdog, followed by a lunch address by Shelley Billik, vp of environmental initiatives at Warner Bros. Entertainment.