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Academy Narrows Foreign Language Oscar Race To Nine Films

Academy Narrows Foreign Language Oscar Race To Nine Films

The Academy delivered yet another controversial shortlist for the Foreign Language Film category this morning. Nine films will advance to the next round of voting in the category, many of them unexpected.

While Iran’s “A Separation,” Canada’s “Monsieur Lazhar,” Israel’s “Footnotes” and Poland’s “In Darkness” all found expected places on the list (though there’s really no such thing when it comes to this category), they were joined by a few films that had more shaky chances: Germany’s “Pina,” Belgium’s “Bullhead,” Morocco’s “Omar Killed Me” and Denmark’s “Superclasico.”

Though the most surprising inclusion is Taiwan’s 276-minute action epic “Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale,” which one suspects may have been one of the two films the committee bumped into the shortlist as per the same rule that likely got “Dogtooth” on the list last year (and led it to a nomination).

As for the major omissions, France’s “Declaration of War,” Finland’s “Le Havre,” Mexico’s “Miss Bala” and Lebanon’s “Where Do We Go Now?” were probably the ones that caught people the most off guard.

The films, listed in alphabetical order by country, are listed below. More commentary to come.

Belgium, “Bullhead,” Michael R. Roskam, director;
Canada, “Monsieur Lazhar,” Philippe Falardeau, director;
Denmark, “Superclásico,” Ole Christian Madsen, director;
Germany, “Pina,” Wim Wenders, director;
Iran, “A Separation,” Asghar Farhadi, director;
Israel, “Footnote,” Joseph Cedar, director;
Morocco, “Omar Killed Me,” Roschdy Zem, director;
Poland, “In Darkness,” Agnieszka Holland, director;
Taiwan, “Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale,” Wei Te-sheng, director.

Foreign Language Film nominations for 2011 are again being determined in two phases.

The Phase I committee, consisting of several hundred Los Angeles-based members, screened the 63 eligible films between mid-October and January 13. The group’s top six choices, augmented by three additional selections voted by the Academy’s Foreign Language Film Award Executive Committee, constitute the shortlist.

The shortlist will be winnowed down to the five nominees by specially invited committees in New York and Los Angeles. They will spend Friday, January 20, through Sunday, January 22, viewing three films each day and then casting their ballots.

The 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 24, at 5:30 a.m. PT.

This Article is related to: Awards


Kurt Vandemaele

It's never before been that difficult for Belgium to decide which film our country was going to send as our nominee for the Academy Awards. 'Hasta La Vista' won the Montreal Festival and Claude Lelouch thinks it has the potential to become a blockbuster in France, Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne won the Grand Prize of the Jury for 'The Kid with the Bike' and were nominated for the Golden Globe, and of course we had 'Rundskop' or 'Bullhead', which keeps on surprising viewers all over the world. The amazing film with an incredible performance by Matthias Schoenaerts, was finally chosen as the film to represent our country. After the Dardennes got beaten by Michael R. Roskam everyone in our country seemed to realize we had a very serious contender this year. And now the shortlist seems to confirm our presumption. 'Bullhead' is a stubborn film that stays in your head long after you've seen it. It would be a great film to win the Oscar for Best Foreign Film. (

Juha Tapani

Wim Wenders: "Pina 3d"…Without a doubt. "A Seperation" was just boring.


A Separation from Iran will be the winner. You should watch this amazing movie.


i'm turkish and i'm not really suprised about "Once Upon a Time In Anatolia".even in turkey noone watches nuri bilge ceylan. i wanted to watch the movie in cinema and i couldnt find any cinema near.i had to wait until when dvd releases.and i'm not living in a village.


Where is Ang Babae sa Septic Tank? A very good movie!!!


As an iranian, I'm so0oo00o0oo0o0o0o0o0o EXCITED and PROUD to see "A seperation" among this list… We keep our fingers crossed… we won the golden globe awards for the best foreign language film, I hope we'll be the winner of the oscar as well…yeayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy…


Academy does not know what cinema is. Where is "Once Upon a Time In Anatolia" ?

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