Best Foreign Film Oscar

The Shortlist For Best Foreign Film Oscar Is Announced

hero460_oscarsThe entire Academy Awards endeavour seems to expand every year, as more and more often, shortlists are announced during the behind-the-scenes nominations process, ahead of the final nominations announcement. While that tends to make the awards season feel even longer, it does much to raise the profile of films that might otherwise be little noticed by general audiences – including those submitted to the Academy for consideration as Best Foreign Film.

The Academy accepts one submission from each country, and the deadline for those submissions was October 1st this year. The selection process then has two phases. In the first phase, the Foreign Language Film Award Committee screens each submission, and selects six for shortlisting, with an additional three selected by the Foreign Language Film Award Executive Committee. This set of nine films is then announced as the shortlist, and this is the announcement we have seen today.

The shortlisted films are as follows:

The Brand New Testament (Belgium)
Directed by Jaco Van Dormael, and co-written by Van Dormael and Thomas Gunzig, this is a comedy that looks at what might happen if God was found to be alive, and living in Brussels with his daughter. The cast features Pili Groyne, Benoit Poelvoorde, Catherine Deneuve and Francois Damiens

Embrace of the Serpent (Colombia)
Directed by Ciro Guerra, with an adapted screenplay by Guerra and Jacque Toulemonde Vidal, this is a dramatic adventure based on the diaries of Richard Evan Schultes and Theodor Koch-Grunberg. The story follows two scientists who are engaged in a lengthy search for a sacred healing plant in the Amazon, and develop a relationship with a Shaman, who is the last of his people. Nilbio Torres, Jan Bijvoet, Brionne Davis and Antonio Bolivar star.

A War (Denmark)
Written and directed by Tobias Lindholm, this is a drama that focuses on a family of five having to deal with the ramifications of war, as a husband undertakes missions in Afghanistan, and his family struggles to cope at home. Pilou Asbaek, Tuva Novotny, Dar Salim and Soren Malling star.

The Fencer (Finland)
Directed by Klaus Härö, and written by Anna Heinamaa, this is a historical sport drama that sees an Estonian fencer flee the Russian secret police, and take a job teaching sport at a local school. His new life is disrupted when the past catches up with him, however. The cast features Joonas Koff, Mart Avandi, Kirill Karo and Ursula Ratasepp.

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