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Why This Year’s Oscar Shortlists Got So Much Right, from Mads Mikkelsen to ‘The Mole Agent’

From documentaries and international contenders to original songs, this year's shortlists reflect shrewd changes by the Academy to improve the process.

A still from The Mole Agent

This year’s Oscar season just got a little easier to predict. With the release of the shortlists for documentaries, international films, and a slew of other categories, the Academy’s refurbished approach to this crucial phase of the season reflects the potential of an expanded list and more engaged voters. In this week’s episode of Screen Talk, Eric Kohn and Anne Thompson talk through some of the more significant shortlist contenders, from frontrunners like the Mads Mikkelsen-starring “Another Round” to welcome surprises like “The Mole Agent,” which was one of several documentaries to end up on multiple lists. They also explore some of the more savvy ways that awards campaigns have been paying off in a most unusual year, then turn to the recent programming announcements for SXSW and Berlinale, both of which will be online in the coming weeks.

Watch the full episode above or listen to it below. 

Screen Talk is available on Apple PodcastsStitcher, and SoundcloudYou can subscribe here or via RSS. Share your feedback with Thompson and Kohn on Twitter or sound off in the comments. Browse previous installments here, review the show on Apple Podcasts and be sure to let us know if you’d like to hear the hosts address specific issues in upcoming editions of Screen Talk. Check out the rest of IndieWire’s podcasts on Apple Podcasts right here.

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