HomeInternational CinemaInternational Gay Characters + Bosnian War + Rare Ganalbingu-Language Film: Oscar Hopefuls

International Gay Characters + Bosnian War + Rare Ganalbingu-Language Film: Oscar Hopefuls


Nuovomondo / Golden Door with Charlotte Gainsbourg.

International gay characters + Bosnian War: Best Foreign Language Film Oscar hopefuls

Fifty years after the creation of the Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award category, a record 61 countries have submitted films for consideration for the 79th Academy Awards. As per the Academy’s press release, Kazakhstan appears to be the sole newcomer.

(Update: It isn’t. As found at The Film Experience, Kazakhstan submitted Ardak Amirkulov’s The Fall of Otrar / Gibel Otrara in 1992. The Academy has confirmed the submission.)

Among the entries are Rolf de Heer’s Ten Canoes (Australia), filmed in the indigenous language of Ganalbingu, and the winner of the Special Jury Prize of the “Un Certain Regard” sidebar at this year’s Cannes Film Festival; Jasmila Zbanic’s Berlin Film Festival winner Grbavica (Bosnia and Herzegovina), the tale of a girl who discovers the truth about her father; and Rachid Bouchareb’s Indigènes / Days of Glory (Algeria), the story of North Africans fighting for France during World War II, and the winner of an ensemble Best Actor Award at the Cannes Film Festival. Algeria, by the way, has managed to submit – and get nominations for – films directed by non-Algerians and with strong Franco-Italian financial support (e.g., 1969 winner Z, 1982 nominee Le Bal). Bouchareb, who also directed Algeria’s 1995 Oscar nominee Les Poussières de vie / Dust of Life, is of Algerian ancestry, though born and raised in France.

Also, Marcelo Gomes’ low-key dramatic comedy Cinema, Aspirina e Urubus / Cinema, Aspirins and Vultures (Brazil), about the unlikely friendship that develops between a Brazilian hick and a German immigrant in the arid Brazilian Northeast; Deepa Mehta’s controversial Water (Canada), about the plight of women in the more devout regions of India, and the winner of three Genies; and Zhang Yimou’s costume epic Curse of the Golden Flower, starring Gong Li and Chow Yun-Fat.

Egypt’s submission, Omaret yakobean / The Yacoubian Building, ran into problems at home. Nationalists and radical Muslims wanted the film banned for its portrayal of human sexuality and corruption in Egyptian society. Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck’s Das Leben der Anderen / The Lives of Others (Germany), also stirred some controversy at home because of its depiction of East Germany’s insidious Stasi police (a timely issue, though not necessarily in Germany). A huge box office success at home, Das Leben der Anderen won seven Lola Awards, including Best Film.

Another political film to be submitted was Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s Rang De Basanti (India), about college students who, when not singing and dancing, become politicized. Iran’s entry, Kambozia Partovi’s Café Transit / Border Café, deals with the plight of a widow who must eke out a living in a society where women are supposed to bow to patriarchal authority.

At least two films center around gay characters: Lee Jun-ik’s Wang-ui namja / King and the Clown (Korea), a phenomenal box office hit in its native country, and Auraeus Solito’s Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros / The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros (The Philippines), winner of three awards at the Berlin Film Festival. (The Yacoubian Building also has important gay characters, and – rumor has it – Curse of the Golden Flower.)

The Israeli entry, Dror Shaul’s Adama Meshuga’at / Sweet Mud, the story of a boy growing up in a kibbutz in the 1970s, was a co-Best Film winner at Israel’s Ophir Awards, while Joachim Trier’s Reprise (Norway), won the Best Director Award at this year’s Karlovy Vary Film Festival. Emanuele Crialese’s Nuovomondo / Golden Door, about Italian emigrants leaving for the United States, won six awards at the 2006 Venice Film Festival, including a “Revelation” Silver Lion. (Since the Academy foreign-language film voters tend to like their films to deal with American topics or with little boys, both Sweet Mud and Nuovomondo have a good chance to be shortlisted.)

Also, Mexico’s entry, Guillermo del Toro’s horror political-fantasy El laberinto del fauno / Pan’s Labyrinth, has been getting excellent reviews.

And finally there’s the odds-on favorite to win in this category (and quite possibly to get a Best Picture nod), Volver, Pedro Almodóvar’s widely acclaimed latest film, and the winner of the Best Screenplay and (ensemble) Best Actress awards at the Cannes Film Festival.

At the last minute, Thailand replaced its original choice, Pen-ek Ratanaruang’s murder thriller Invisible Waves, with Kittikorn Liasirikun’s outlandish thriller Ahingsa-Jikko mee gam / Ahimsa: Stop to Run, reportedly because Invisible Waves has numerous scenes in languages other than Thai – English among them. If that is indeed true, the Thai film committee may have made an unnecessary change.

And how could the foreign-language submissions be announced without some sort of controversy? Finland submitted Aki Kaurismäki’s Laitakaupungin valot / Lights in the Dusk (above), apparently a sort of City Lights seen through a glass, darkly, but the director decided to withdraw it from the competition. According to Variety, Kaurismäki yanked his film because it had been submitted without his approval and “he doesn’t like film competitions.” The Academy’s press release states that “Foreign Language committee chair Mark Johnson has initiated a dialogue with Kaurismäki in an effort to persuade him to reverse that decision.” (Kaurismäki’s opted not to attend the 2003 Academy Awards ceremony – his quirky Mies vailla menneisyyttä / The Man Without a Past had been officially submitted and had surprisingly received a nomination – as a protest against the U.S. invasion of Iraq. In fact, the Agence France Presse reports that U.S. foreign policy is still the issue.)

In the weeks to come, the number of submissions will shrink as this film or that country gets booted out because of one technicality or other, though because of Academy rule changes effected earlier this year there should be fewer – if any – instances when a film is deemed ineligible because of language issues.

(Luxembourg’s submission, however, Franco de Pena’s sex-trade drama Masz na imie Justine / Your Name Is Justine, has apparently been disqualified because much of its dialogue is in English.)

In some cases, films disqualified because of ineligible release dates may try again the following year. Nepal submitted Subash Gajurel’s Basain last year, but the film apparently opened too late in 2005 to qualify for that year’s Academy Awards. (Foreign-language films must be released in their home country between Oct. 1 of the previous year and Sept. 31 of the current year in order to be eligible.) As a result, Basain is back in Oscar business in 2006.

One unfortunate Academy rule: “Films nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Award shall not be eligible for Academy Award consideration in any category in any subsequent awards year.” In the past, this nonsensical rule didn’t exist. Thus, for instance, Jan Troell’s Utvandrarna / The Emigrants could be nominated in the Best Foreign Language Film category in 1971, and, following the film’s release in Los Angeles, show up in other categories – including Best Film – in 1972.

Nominations for the 79th Academy Awards will be announced on Tuesday, January 23, 2007, at 5:30 a.m. PST in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.

The Academy Awards ceremony will be held on Sunday, Feb. 25, 2007, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®. In the United States, the ceremony will be televised live by ABC at 5 p.m. PST, beginning with a half-hour arrival segment.

‘Nuovomondo’ & ‘Curse of the Golden Flower’: Best Foreign Language Film Oscar submissions

Italy’s choice for the 2007 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award is Emanuele Crialese’s Golden Door / Nuovomondo, winner of several prizes at the 2006 Venice Film Festival, among them a Silver Lion Revelation Award. Nuovomondo, or “New World,” follows a group of Sicilians who decide to emigrate to the United States.

Starring Charlotte Gainsbourg and Vincenzo Amato, Nuovomondo has been chosen for obvious reasons. After all, Academy voters love stories that have elements in common with their own cultural experiences – or, even better, with their own movie narratives. And here’s wondering how many Italian movies have been made about the millions of Italians who emigrated to Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay.

‘Curse of the Golden Flower’

China has picked Zhang Yimou’s Curse of the Golden Flower as its Best Foreign Language Film Oscar entry. Starring Chow Yun-Fat, Taiwanese pop singer Jay Chou, and Zhang’s old muse Gong Li, the martial arts costume drama revolves around assorted intrigues plaguing one of China’s highly dysfunctional imperial families.

There has been some talk regarding an alleged gay love affair between a prince and a bodyguard in Curse of the Golden Flower, but I haven’t been able to confirm these rumors. Sony Pictures’ Curse of the Golden Flower trailers are great to look at, but they offer no clues as to the film’s plot or characters. On the positive side, watching them we learn that Gong Li is the chick who was featured in Miami Vice.

Two other Zhang Yimou / Gong Li films have been shortlisted for in the Academy Awards’ Best Foreign Language Film category: Ju Dou in 1990 and Raise the Red Lantern in 1991. Additionally, Zhang’s Gong Li-less Hero was nominated in 2002.

More Best Foreign Language Film Oscar submissions: ‘The Banquet,’ ‘The 9th Company’

The Federation of Film Producers of Hong Kong – which, as far as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is concerned, is considered a territory apart from China – has selected Feng Xiaogang’s epic The Banquet as its potential Oscar contender. Inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet, which has already been translated to the screen numerous times (Laurence Olivier’s 1948 version won the Best Picture Oscar), The Banquet stars Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and Princess Raccoon‘s Zhang Ziyi, You Ge, and Daniel Wu.

Russia has selected Fyodor Bondarchuk’s The 9th Company / 9-ya rota, the story of an army unit sent to Afghanistan to fight mujahideen guerrillas. Made with a budget of US$9 million, The 9th Company became a major box office hit in its home country.

Sergei Bodrov’s Prisoner of the Mountains / Kavkazskiy plennik, another Russian film depicting another of Russia’s deadly war follies (the war against Chechens and other Muslim ethnic groups in the Caucasus region) was nominated for the 1996 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar.

Fyodor Bondarchuk, by the way, is the son of Sergei Bondarchuk, whose lengthy adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace (1965-67) is considered one of the masterworks of Russian cinema – and was the winner of the 1968 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar.

Oscar Entries: ‘Border Cafe’ & ‘Sweet Mud’

Kambuzia Partovi’s Café Transit / Border Café, the story of an Iranian widow who encounters a number of social and personal obstacles once she begins managing her late husband’s roadhouse (a practice forbidden in Iran), has been chosen as the Iranian entry for the 2006 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award. The film’s star, Fereshteh Sadr-Orafaii won the Best Actress Award at the 9th Iran Cinema Celebration last year.

According to Payvand, Border Café was selected from among three other films, Asghar Farhadi’s Chaharshanbeh-Suri, Bahman Farmanara’s A Little Kiss, and Maziar Miri’s Slowly.

The Israeli Academy of Film and Television has submitted Adama Meshuga’at / Sweet Mud, co-winner of Israel’s 2006 Ophir Awards, as the Israeli entry for the Oscars. The choice – much like the film’s Ophir (co-)win – came as a surprise.

Aviva Ahuvati / Aviva My Love was considered the film to beat at the Ophirs (and it did share the Best Film award), and seemed to be the most likely choice for the Oscars. But then again, Dror Shaul’s semi-autobiographical Sweet Mud is a coming-of-age tale involving a boy growing up in a kibbutz in the 1970s. Foreign-Language Film Academy voters – average age: 117, give or take a few months – tend to like movies that feature little boys’ growing pains (Les Choristes / The Chorus, La Vita è bella / Life Is Beautiful, Central do Brasil / Central Station, Kolya, Bacheha-Ye aseman / Children of Heaven). In other words, the Israeli Academy clearly knew on which film they should place their Oscar bets.

The Alt Film Guide would like to thank Aviad Shamir for letting us know about the Sweet Mud selection.

Photo of Charlotte Gainsbourg in Nuovomondo / Golden Door: Miramax.

Korean & Egyptian ‘Gay’ Characters + Controversial ‘Water’: Best Foreign Language Film Oscar

Deepa Mehta’s Water, starring Lisa Ray, Seema Biswas, and John Abraham, has been chosen as Canada’s entry for the 2006 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award.

Set in the Indian holy city of Varanasi, the Hindi-language Water is now eligible as a Canadian entry for the foreign-language Oscar because of recent regulation changes enacted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences earlier this year. Prior to the changes, countries could only submit films containing a large chunk of dialogue in one of their official languages. Now, any language is acceptable as long as most of the dialogue is not in English.

Water, about the plight of a group of widows forced into poverty in Varanasi, was nominated for nine Genie Awards – the Canadian Oscars – winning three: Best Actress (Biswas), Best Cinematography (Giles Nuttgens), and Best Original Score (Mychael Danna). Water is the third segment of a film trilogy that began with Earth in 1996, followed by Fire in 1998.

The Indian-born Mehta had to leave India while filming Water because of street riots and death threats. Fundamentalist Hindus were angered by what they perceived as an attack against their religion and customs. Production was halted, but – much to the Indian government’s displeasure – was later resumed in Sri Lanka.

Amita Nijhawan places Water, Fundamentalist Hindus, and government and religious hypocrisy in a historical context in the Media/Culture Journal.

‘Volver’ & ‘Ten Canoes’: Best Foreign Film Oscar

Pedro Almodóvar’s Volver, winner of the Best Screenplay Award and of an ensemble Best Actress Award at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, has been chosen as Spain’s submission for the 2006 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award.

The family drama stars Penélope Cruz and Lola Dueñas as sisters whose mother’s ghost (played by Almodóvar veteran Carmen Maura) shows up so as to bury the (figuratively speaking) ghosts of the past.

Volver was up against Agustín Díaz Yanes’ swashbuckling historical drama Alatriste, starring Viggo Mortensen, and Manuel Huerga’s Salvador, the story of a young Catalonian anarchist and bank robber played by Daniel Brühl.

Almodóvar has already won two Oscars. Todo sobre mi madre / All About My Mother (in which Cruz co-starred) was chosen the Best Foreign Language Film of 1999, and Hable con ella / Talk to Her won him the Best Original Screenplay Award for 2002.

The director, however, has had trouble with Spain’s film selection committee. Hable con ella was passed over as Spain’s 2002 submission, and so was La Mala educación / Bad Education in 2004. (For the record: In 2002, Fernando León de Aranoa’s Los Lunes al sol / Mondays in the Sun, a labor-relations drama starring Javier Bardem, was Spain’s submission. It failed to make the cut. In 2004, however, Alejandro Amenábar’s Mar adentro /The Sea Inside, the story of a tetraplegic – also Bardem – who fights for his right to die, went on to win the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar.)

Volver, already the film to beat in the foreign-language category, a near sure bet for Best Actress (Cruz) and Best Director, and a likely possibility even in for Best Picture (a rarity for a non-English-language film), opens in the United States on November 3.

The Australian Film Commission (AFC) has announced that Rolf de Heer’ and Peter Djigirr’s Ten Canoes, filmed in the indigenous language of Ganalbingu, has been selected as Australia’s official entry for the 2006 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award.

Set in the distant past, Ten Canoes tells the story of a young man who is attracted to one of his older brother’s wives. The film, Australia’s first indigenous-language production, stars Jamie Gulpilil, Richard Birrinbirrin, Frances Djulibing, and it is narrated by David Gulpilil.

Ten Canoes won the Special Jury Prize of the “Un Certain Regard” sidebar at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, and will be screened at the upcoming Toronto International Film Festival.

Surprisingly, Jens Liens Den Brysomme mannen / The Bothersome Man, one of the best-received Norwegian films in recent years and the winner of the Best Director and Best Screenplay Amandas Norways top film awards was passed over as that country’s submission for the 2006 Best Foreign-Language Film Academy Award. Instead, Joachim Triers feature-film debut, Reprise, has been chosen as Norway’s entry. Reprise, the story of two writer wannabes only one of whom becomes successful won the Best Director Award at this year’s Karlovy Vary Film Festival. (More on Reprise.)

Sweden’s entry is Jesper Ganslandt’s feature-film debut, Farväl Falkenberg / Falkenberg Farewell, a coming-of-age tale about five friends who spend their last summer together in the small town of Falkenberg.

Denmark will be represented by Susanne Bier’s Efter brylluppet / After the Wedding, a psychological drama about a dying man who believes he knows the right person to take his soon-to-be vacant place at home.


Aamir Khan in Rang De Basanti.

Bollywood blockbuster ‘Rang De Basanti’ & controversial Egyptian drama ‘The Yacoubian Building’

Rang De Basanti, a song-and-dance political epic about seven college students who go up in arms against the system, is India’s entry for the 2007 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award. Directed by Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and starring superstar Aamir Khan (the rebellious hero in the Oscar-nominated Lagaan), Rang De Basanti – which literally translates as “Color Me Yellow” – has become one of Bollywood’s biggest blockbusters of the year.

Egypt’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar 2007 entry is director Marwan Hamed and screenwriter Wahid Hamid’s The Yacoubian Building, a controversial adaptation of Alaa’ Al-Aswany’s equally controversial novel that created a stir upon its publication in that country. Egyptian nationalists and Fundamentalist Muslims were offended by both the film’s and the novel’s depiction of social and government corruption, and of different manifestations of human sexuality within the walls of an iconic Cairo building.

At least one Egyptian politician wanted The Yacoubian Building banned, while tenants at the real Yacoubian Building refused to allow shooting on the property, claiming the film portrayed them “as indecent people.” According to the newspaper Al Bawaba, The Yacoubian Building was selected as Egypt’s entry “because it truly reflects Egyptian life.”

The Netherlands’ ‘Black Book,’ South Korea’s ‘The King and the Clown,’ Poland’s ‘Retrieval’

Paul Verhoeven’s underground thriller Black Book / Zwartboek is the Netherlands’ Oscar 2007 submission. Set in the fall of 1944, Black Book portrays the relationship between a young Jewish woman (Carice van Houten) and a high-ranking Gestapo officer (The Lives of Others’ Sebastian Koch) while she seeks revenge for the murder of her family. Inspired by real-life events, the screenplay was written by Verhoeven and Gerard Soeteman.

South Korea’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar submission is The King and the Clown / Wang-ui namja, the story of a 16th-century (male) clown (Lee Jun-gi) caught between the affections of a despotic king (Jin-yeong Jeong) and a fellow performer (Kam Woo-seong), while arousing the jealousy of the king’s consort (Gang Seong-yeon). Directed by Jun-ik Lee and written by Seok-Hwan Choi (from Tae-woong Kim’s play), The King and the Clown was a phenomenal box office hit in its native country, becoming South Korea’s second biggest ticket-seller ever.

Writer-director Adolfo Alix Jr.’s drama Donsol has been chosen as the Philippines’ entry in the best foreign-language film category for the 80th Academy Awards. Veteran film director Eddie Romero headed the selection committee.

Set in the fishing town of Donsol, known as a good spot for whale shark-watching, the plot revolves around the relationship that develops between a disillusioned “whale shark interaction officer” (Sid Lucero) and an older woman (Angel Aquino) fighting breast cancer.

Donsol has won several awards in the festival circuit, including the Spirit of the Independent Award at the Ft. Lauderdale Film Festival and a best actress trophy for Angel Aquino at the Philippines’ Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival.

And finally, Slawomir Fabicki’s Retrieval / Z Odzysku, the story of an unemployed amateur boxer who becomes a gangster’s henchman, has been chosen as Poland’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar 2007 entry.

Aamir Khan Rang De Basanti photo: ROMP / UTV Motion Pictures.

The 2006 submissions are:

Algeria, “Indigènes / Days of Glory,” Rachid Bouchareb, director;

Argentina, “Derecho de familia / Family Law,” Daniel Burman, director;

Australia, “Ten Canoes,” Rolf de Heer, director;

Austria, “Spiele Leben / You Bet Your Life,” Antonin Svoboda, director;

Bangladesh, “Nirontor / Forever Flows,” Abu Sayeed, director;

Belgium, “Een Ander zijn geluk / Someone Else’s Happiness,” Fien Troch, director;

Bolivia, “American Visa,” Juan Carlos Valdivia, director;

Bosnia and Herzegovina, “Grbavica,” Jasmila Zbanic, director;

Brazil, Cinema, Aspirina e Urubus / Cinema, Aspirins and Vultures, Marcelo Gomes, director;

Bulgaria, “Maimuni prez zimata / Monkeys in Winter,” Milena Andonova, director;

Canada, “Water,” Deepa Mehta, director;

Chile, “En la cama / In Bed,” Matias Bize, director;

China, “Curse of the Golden Flower,” Zhang Yimou, director;

Colombia, “Soñar no cuesta nada / A Ton of Luck,” Rodrigo Triana, director;

Croatia, “Libertas,” Veljko Bulajic, director;

Cuba, “El Benny,” Jorge Luis Sanchez, director;

Czech Republic, “Sílení / Lunacy,” Jan Svankmajer, director;

Denmark, “After the Wedding,” Susanne Bier, director;

Egypt, “Omaret yakobean / The Yacoubian Building,” Marwan Hamed, director;

France, “Fauteuils d’orchestre / Avenue Montaigne,” Danièle Thompson, director;

Germany, “Das Leben der Anderen / The Lives of Others,” Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, director;

Greece, “I Horodia tou haritona / Chariton’s Choir,” Grigoris Karantinakis, director;

Hong Kong, “Ye yan / The Banquet,” Feng Xiaogang, director;

Hungary, “Fehér tenyér / White Palms,” Szabólcs Hajdu, director;

Iceland, “Börn / Children,” Ragnar Bragason, director;

India, “Rang De Basanti,” Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, director;

Indonesia, “Berbagi suami / Love for Share,” Nia Di Nata, director;

Iran, “Café Transit / Border Café,” Kambozia Partovi, director;

Iraq, “Ahlaam / Dreams,” Mohamed Al-Daradji, director;

Israel, “Adama Meshuga’at / Sweet Mud,” Dror Shaul, director;

Italy, “Nuovomondo / Golden Door,” Emanuele Crialese, director;

Japan, “Hula Gâru / Hula Girls,” Sang-il Lee, director;

Kazakhstan, “Kochevnik / Nomad,” Sergei Bodrov, Talgat Temenov, Ivan Passer, directors;

Korea, “Wang-ui namja / King and the Clown,” Lee Jun-ik, director;

Kyrgyzstan, “Sunduk predkov / The Wedding Chest,” Nurbek Egen, director;

Lebanon, “Bosta,” Philippe Aractingi, director;

Lithuania, “Pries Parskrendant i Zeme / Before Flying Back to Earth,” Arunas Matelis, director;

Macedonia, “Kontakt,” Sergej Stanojkovski, director;

Mexico, “El laberinto del fauno /Pan’s Labyrinth,” Guillermo del Toro, director;

Morocco, “La Symphonie marocaine / The Moroccan Symphony,” Kamal Kamal, director;

Nepal, “Basain,” Subash Prasad Gajurel, director;

The Netherlands, “Zwartboek / Black Book,” Paul Verhoeven, director;

Norway, “Reprise,” Joachim Trier, director;

Peru, “Madeinusa,” Claudia Llosa, director;

The Philippines, “Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros / The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros,” Auraeus Solito, director;

Poland, “Z Odzysku / Retrieval,” Slawomir Fabicki, director;

Portugal, “Alice,” Marco Martins, director;

Puerto Rico, “Ladrones y mentirosos / Thieves and Liars,” Ricardo Mendez Matta, director;

Romania, “The Way I Spent the End of the World,” Catalin Mitulescu, director;

Russia, “9-ya rota / 9th Company,” Fyodor Bondarchuk, director;

Serbia, “Tomorrow Morning,” Oleg Novkovic, director;

Slovenia, “Odgrobadogroba / Gravehopping,” Jan Cvitkovic, director;

Spain, “Volver,” Pedro Almodóvar, director;

Sweden, “Farval Falkenberg / Falkenberg Farewell,” Jesper Ganslandt, director;

Switzerland, “Vitus,” Fredi M. Murer, director;

Taiwan, “Blue Cha Cha,” Cheng Wen-tang, director;

Thailand, “Ahingsa-Jikko mee gam / Ahimsa Stop to Run,” Leo Kittikorn, director;

Turkey, “Dondurmam gaymak / Ice Cream, I Scream,” Yüksel Aksu, director;

Ukraine, “Aurora,” Oxana Bayrak, director;

Venezuela, “Maroa,” Solveig Hoogesteijn, director;

Vietnam, “Chuyen Cua Pao / Story of Pao,” Ngo Quang Hai, director.

Potential Oscar contenders

Press Release: Beverly Hills, CA The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced that the field of Documentary Short Subject entries has narrowed to eight films, from which three to five will earn Academy Award® nominations.

The eight films are listed below in alphabetical order:
The Blood of Yingzhou District
Dear Talula
The Diary of Immaculée
Phoenix Dance
Recycled Life
Rehearsing a Dream
A Revolving Door
Two Hands

Nominations for the 79th Academy Awards will be announced on Tuesday, January 23, 2007, at 5:30 a.m. PST in the Academys Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2006 will be presented on Sunday, February 25, 2007, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and televised live by the ABC Television Network at 5 p.m. PST, beginning with a half-hour arrival segment.

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6 comments

talantikit amina -

j’ai regardé:earth et paradis sur terre,et j’ai aimé ces films.deepa mehta a montré cette violence que certaines femmes vivent,pas seuleument en Inde mais aussi dans d’autres pays.bravo pour ce courage!

Reply
diananda gusta -

love for share..stunning..yeah its the worth word for describes this film..nia di nata, the director broughts comedy, drama, and poligamy issues to audiences through unique triple plots simultanously..if u adored with “the hours”..then u will crazy with love for share..the assemble casts was great..they are really great! 1 nomination of best 79th academy award’s best foreign film for nia dinata’s LOVE FOR SHARE! clearly!

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Andre -

I haven’t seen “Love for Share” or “Curse of the Golden Flower,” but I believe that “Curse” — being a prestigious and well-publicized Zhang Yimou film — has a better chance at getting a nomination.

I’d say the other four will be, give or take one (or two or three): “Grbavica” (Bosnia and Herzegovina), “The Lives of Others” (Germany), “Days of Glory” (Algeria), and “Volver” (Spain). (I’ve seen all four — I believe they’ve got what it takes, whether it’s quality or sentiment and/or Social Importance.)

But it’s really a tough call. There are a number of foreign-language films that deserve a nomination (“The Yacoubian Building” from Egypt and “Pan’s Labyrinth” from Mexico come to mind), and others that I believe don’t deserve one (“The Lives of Others,” “Days of Glory”) but will probably be nominated anyhow because of the appropriate market push and because the submitting countries know what make the Foreign Language Film Academy voters tick.

And there are only five slots…

Reply
andi -

“Love for Share” won the Best Feature Film, Hawaii International Film Festival, 2006. The movie was great. The topic was controversial: poligamy. I hope this movie will receice a nomination.

Reply
annah -

I’m sure that “Curse of the Golden Flower” will receive a nomination. Several other Zhang Yimou films have been nominated before. Also, it’s supposed to be stunning, both visually and dramatically.

Reply
Jennifer -

Water, A very moving move to watch. I watch the movie with out subtitles and I was able to feel the passion, emotions and feel the story come alive. I was in tears from start to finish…which is vary rare for a movie to tough my heart in that way.

With much peace

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