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Hurricane Wins La Géode Youth Prize


Written by: MacGillivray Freeman Films
Date: February 23, 2007

MacGillivray Freeman's Emotional Giant Screen Film About Louisiana's Coastal Wetlands And The Effects of Hurricane Katrina Is The Favorite Among School Children


Category: Press Releases

Laguna Beach, California, February 23, 2007—MacGillivray Freeman's giant screen film HURRICANE ON THE BAYOU was awarded the Youth Prize on February 4 at the 12th annual La Géode Film Festival in Paris. One of five large format films entered in the festival, Hurricane on the Bayou was voted to receive the prize by the festival's participating middle school students.

"We are absolutely delighted to accept this award from the students who voted Hurricane on the Bayou as their favorite film," said producer/director Greg MacGillivray. "Children are perhaps our most important and critical audience members, and it was always our mission that this film appeal to them as much as to anybody. The Louisiana bayou is such a fun and joyful environment with its abundant wildlife and vibrant music. It is easy to understand why kids respond so strongly to it."

"Not only are children mesmerized by the scenes of alligators swimming in the bayou and 14-year-old Amanda Shaw playing her fiddle, they are equally captivated by the drama of the approaching storm," said Nelly Duval at La Géode. "Kids today are such sophisticated, intelligent viewers, and this film has all the elements that appeal to their imaginations."

Adds Karyn Noles Bewley, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas at Audubon Nature Institute, the film's executive producer: "We're excited about this award because it shows that Hurricane on the Bayou has something for everyone. One reason we chose to work with MacGillivray Freeman Films is their ability to take a complex subject like the loss of Louisiana's wetlands and find a story that appeals to people across the spectrum, from children to adults to grandparents. This recognition from the students at La Géode Film Festival confirms it."

Produced by MacGillivray Freeman Films Educational Foundation, Hurricane on the Bayou was released on December 22, 2006 and is now playing or coming soon to more than 70 giant screen theatres. As part of its mission to create educational programming that promotes science, the environment and world cultures, the Foundation is funding 6,000 underserved Title I middle school students to see the film in New Orleans and Orange County.

Narrated by Academy Award®-winning actress Meryl Streep, Hurricane on the Bayou carries audiences behind today's news headlines on a journey deep into the heart of Louisiana. Unfolding against the poignant backdrop of Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane on the Bayou follows a group of four musicians, both legendary and rising, as they explore the beautiful, alligator-filled bayous on airboats; recount their personal stories of Katrina; and most of all, bring the focus to the rapidly disappearing wetlands that are New Orleans' first line of defense against deadly storms. Hurricane on the Bayou is both a haunting document of a Katrina's powerful effects, a profound musical celebration of the city that has been called the "soul of America," and a compelling call to restore New Orleans and protect the vital wetlands from which the city's unique identity first arose.

Hurricane on the Bayou is produced MacGillivray Freeman Films Educational Foundation with Executive Producer Audubon Nature Institute and presented by The Weather Channel. The film is directed by two-time Academy Award®-nominee, Greg MacGillivray.

Hurricane on the Bayou will be available for release to 8/70 theatres beginning this summer.

About Audubon Nature Institute
Audubon Nature Institute operates a family of museums and parks based in New Orleans and dedicated to celebrating the wonders of nature. Audubon Nature Institute's flagships include Audubon Park, Audubon Zoo, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, Entergy IMAX Theatre, Audubon Louisiana Nature Center, Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species, Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center, Woldenberg Riverfront Park and Audubon Wilderness Park. The Institute's mission includes preserving native Louisiana habitats, exhibiting the diversity of wildlife, educating a diverse audience about the natural world and enhancing the care and survival of wildlife through research and conservation.

About MacGillivray Freeman Films
MacGillivray Freeman Films is the largest, most experienced independent producer and distributor of giant screen 70mm films in the world. Throughout the company's 40-year history, its films have won numerous international awards including two Academy Award® nominations for Best Documentary Short Subject for Dolphins and The Living Sea. The company's hit film Everest achieved unprecedented acclaim and box office success for a large format film and is currently the highest grossing giant screen film of all time. MacGillivray Freeman's films are known for their artistry and successful blend of education and entertainment, as well as their celebration of science and the natural world. The company's next, The Alps, will be released on March 9, 2007.

About MacGillivray Freeman Films Educational Foundation
The MacGillivray Freeman Films Educational Foundation is a not-for-profit organization established to produce and fund educational giant screen films and companion programming that promote greater awareness and preservation of our planet's environmental and cultural heritage.

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