The direct-to-video animated feature, The Golden Blaze, took top toon honors over the weekend at the 35th Edition of the Griffoni Int’l Film Festival for Young People in the Italian village of Griffoni in Campagna. The superhero spoof won the Golden Gryphon during the closing awards ceremony on July 23, beating out second place finisher Valiant, Disney’s WWII pigeon adventure/comedy produced by Vanguard Animation.
Directed by Bryon E. Carson, The Golden Blaze tells the comical story of two African-American boys whose schoolyard rivalry spirals out of control when a freak lab accident endows their fathers with superpowers. Blair Underwood, star of Bill Cosby’s Nick at Nite animated series, Fatherhood, lends his voice to one of the dads. The cast also includes Michael Clarke Duncan (Sin City, Daredevil), Sanaa Lathan (Alien vs. Predator, Out of Time), Neil Patrick Harris (Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle, MTV’s Spider-Man) and Khleo Thomas (Walking Tall, Holes). The Golden Blaze is now available on DVD and VHS from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.
The film selections were judged by a jury of young people ages 6-19. Other animated films that screened include Stephen Hillenburg’s The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, Hayao Miyazaki’s Howl’s Moving Castle and Sejong Park’s multi-award-winning CG short, Birthday Boy. For more information on the Griffoni Int’l Film Festival, go to www.griffoni.it.