The Dark Horse has been recognised internationally and to add to its success the film won the Golden Space Needle Award at the Seattle International Film Festival for Best Film at the weekend.
Cliff Curtis was also named Best Actor at the awards for his portrayal of Genesis Potini a speed chess champion who suffered from bipolar disorder.
The film directed by James Napier Robertson told the story of Genesis who helped thousands of Māori children by teaching them the intricacies of chess.
The Seattle International Film Festival has been in operation for over 40 years and organisers say, “our mission is to create experiences that bring people together to discover extraordinary films from around the world. It is through the art of cinema that we foster a community that is more informed, aware, and alive.”
The film based in Gisborne was launched to rave reviews last year and also starred Kirk Torrance and young up and coming talent James Rolleston.