The Gate Films director wins big in New York

The Gate Films is toasting the success of its young director Phil Hawkins, who has scooped the best director and best adaptation awards at The New York International Film Festival.

Hawkins, who joined The Gate at 18, took the acclaim following the festival release of his second feature film, 'The Butterfly Tattoo'. The story is an adaptation of a Phillip Pullman novel - the author behind The Golden Compass - and was shot over five weeks during the summer in Oxford.

The latest awards come on the back of previous recognition at the festival for Hawkins, who was earlier named best director for his film of the stage production of the Women of Troy.

“It's been an insanely busy couple of years but I wouldn't have it any other way," Hawkins said. "Off the back of The Butterfly Tattoo I've been signed up for two other features for late 2009/2010 which are both projects I’m really interested in."

Despite the accolades for his feature films though, Hawkins insists he is still keen to make ads.

"Working in commercials is obviously a different challenge but each campaign sharpens your skills in some way and I get a real buzz out of working with agency creatives," he assured.

Commenting on Hawkins’ rapid rise, Steve Byrne of the Gate Films, said “The awards and acclaim are obviously a fantastic achievement and it goes without saying that everyone at The Gate is immensely proud.

"On a purely selfish note though we’re really glad to have him back from his feature and available to look at commercial scripts for at least the next 6-12 months."

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