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Last Updated: Friday, 23 May, 2003, 12:34 GMT 13:34 UK
Chalk dog wins Cannes award
Moses (bottom left) in Dogville
Moses the dog (bottom left) is "vital to the film's impact"
The chalk outline of a dog that is heard barking in the background of Nicole Kidman's film Dogville has won one of the most bizarre awards at Cannes Film Festival.

Moses the dog, who is marked out on the floor of the film's set, won the Palme Dog award - a canine version of the festival's top prize, the Palme d'Or.

He makes a brief real-life appearance at the end of the film and his presence was so powerful that he deserved the award, the judges decided.

Dogville, which is one of the frontrunners for the Palme d'Or, uses chalk outlines to mark out many buildings and props.

The five American and five UK judges said Moses' contribution was "vital to the film's impact".

Dogville was premièred at the Cannes Film Festival
After seeing him drawn in chalk for the whole film, a real dog appears at the end after all the actors have gone.

Judges said Moses "tops the film... by heralding Nicole Kidman's arrival with loud barking, and tails the opus in great style".

Toby Rose, editor of UK magazine Dog Quarterly, invented the award three years ago.

"This has cut a swathe through the film community in Cannes. It was very tense for the film industry. But the decision of the judges was unanimous," he said.

Dogville producer Vibeke Windelov accepted the award - a black and gold-studded dog collar.

She said director Lars von Trier had been told about the award. "He is overjoyed at the news," she said.

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