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Facing the Truth wins major US film award  
  • FREDDIES AWARDS photo gallery

  • Millan Lov with FREDDIES award after ceremony in Philadelphia, USA
    Friday 15 November 2008

      A KMF film, Facing the Truth, has won a prestigious US film award at the 2008 FREDDIES, the pre-eminent US-based International Health and Medical Media agency.

      The FREDDIES Awards competition - the medical world’s equivalent of the Oscars – is now in its 34th year. It encourages and celebrates film excellence by attracting entries in various medical categories from health organizations around the world.

      Facing the Truth is a powerful half-hour drama about the vital importance of HIV tests for pregnant women. Set in rural Cambodia, the emotional but positive story centers on the lives of two pregnant sisters and their husbands whose unexpected test results confound all their expectations.

    The film was entered in two of the 32 FREDDIES categories – “Prevention” and “Infectious Diseases”. Nominated as a finalist in both categories, itgained top award in “Prevention”, despite tough competition from three finalists - CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) and two major US cable channels.

    Facing the Truth was made in April 2008 as part of the current major HIV campaign run by Cambodia's NMCHC (National Maternal and Child Health Center) responsible for PMTCT (Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission) throughout the country.

    It was funded by the US CDC (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Global AIDS Program.

    Concept, outline and script were developed by KMF in consultation with Dr Vong Sathiarany, National PMTCT Program Coordinator at NMCHC; Dr Tom Heller, Coordinator of Care and Treatment for US CDC Global AIDS Program, Cambodia; and Dr. Anne Brink, WHO PMTCT advisor.

    The film, shot in and around Phnom Penh over 6 days, is to be shown at hospitals and health centers across Cambodia during the next two years.

    It was screened at peak-time on CTN (Cambodia’s main TV channel) in June viewed by between one and two million people.

    The concept, story outline and script were subject to a rigorous pre-testing exercise with groups of the target audience in three provinces. Comments and suggestions from the 100 participants were incorporated into later drafts of the script.

    Facing the Truth was produced and written by KMF’s Matthew Robinson (British), and directed by KMF’s Tom Som (Cambodian).

    Matthew Robinson said: “This award is a wonderful achievement, not only for KMF, but also for NMCHC, CDC and Cambodia too. I am very proud to be associated with this film, so important in helping the fight against HIV in Cambodia. The result is due to great teamwork. Everyone involved, from Vong Sathiarany, Tom Heller and Anne Brink to the talented actors and the KMF production team, combined their inputs to make sure the film was of the highest quality, delivering its vital messages clearly and effectively. I am delighted that so many people’s efforts have paid off with this great honour.”

    The glittering awards ceremony was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, on Thursday 14 and Friday 15 November. Millan Lov, KMF's Head of Production, flew from Phnom Penh to Philadelphia to receive the award, a bronze statue of Mercury the Winged Messenger, on behalf of the company.

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