British director Danny Boyle has won the People's Choice Award, the main prize at the Toronto Film Festival, for his work Slumdog Millionaire.

The Dev Patel-starring film, which charts a poor boy's rise to fortune from the Indian slums by going on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, is now being tipped for similar success at the Oscars after scooping the award.

Boyle originally hoped to employ an all-Bollywood cast for the production, but said such actors were too well-established or looked too glamorous to carry off the role of someone from a heavily impoverished background.

"It's a great underdog story," Boyle, 51, said.

"In Bollywood if you want to be a young actor breaking into the system, you have to go to the gym for six hours a day to bulk up. I needed a very average-looking guy."

Despite his comments, Boyle also cast Bollywood star Anil Kapoor, and emerging talent Freida Pinto.

Boyle has already directed several critically-acclaimed films in his career, including Shallow Grave and Trainspotting - both starring Hollywood favourite Ewan McGregor - and the gritty horror film 28 Days Later.

14/09/2008 12:45:49