MUNICH - The government of Bavaria, Germany's biggest and wealthiest state as well as a major media center, held its annual TV awards -- the "Blue Panthers" -- on Friday in Munich.
As usual, the extensive German pubcasting system picked up on most of the awards, wrapping up nine of the 13 Panthers on offer.
But there were a few surprises. Small-time commercial channel Vox won a special prize for an episode of its travel show Voxtours
about Ethiopia's Surma tribe called Journey to the Last Gladiators. And Friedemann Fromm
was named best director for two different episodes of two different shows.
This year's prizes were awarded for the first time in five categories: informational broadcasts, television films, series, entertainment programs and cultural/educational offerings.
A complete list of winners follows:
Best screenplay: Daniel Speck
for Meine verruckte turkische Hochzeit (My Crazy Turkish Wedding
) -- ProSieben
Best informational report: Ralf Benkoe for "Ein Deutscher im All (A German in Space) -- RTL
Best camera work: Holly Fink
for Die Flucht
(The Escape) -- ARD, Arte
Best direction: Friedemann Fromm
for Vom Ende der Eiszeit
(On the End of the Ice Age) / NDR, ARD, Arte and Tatort
(Crime Scene) -- BR, ARD
Best sports documentary: Manfred Oldenburg
for "Das verflixte dritte Tor - Wembley '66: Die wahre Geschichte" (The Cursed Third Goal -- Wembley '66: The True Story) - ZDF
Best documentary: Juliane Schuhler
for "Marcel - Ein Kampfchen, das war' schon" (Marcel - A Little Fight Would Be Nice) -- BR
Best performance in a comedy series: Cordula Stratmann
for "Schillerstrasse" (Schiller Street) -- Sat.1
Best actress in a TV film: Rosemarie Fendel
fur Das zweite Leben
(The Second Life) -- ARD/BR
Best actor in a TV film: Friedrich von Thun for Helen, Fred und Ted
Best actress in a series: Saskia Vester
for KDD - Kriminaldauerdienst
(Criminal Investigations) -- ZDF
Best actor in a series: Christian Ulmen
for Dr. Psycho
Best upcoming actor/actress: Rosalie Thomass
for her role in Polizeiruf 110
(Police Emergency 110) -- BR, ARD
Special prize: Richard Gress
, Producer, Author, Director, Cameraman and Editor for "Voxtours: Reise zu den letzten Gladiatoren" (Journey to the Last Gladiators) -- Vox"