Foreign-language contenders emerge

With the 83rd Academy Awards pushed back to Feb. 27 from last year’s March 7 date, the selections for consideration in the foreign-language Oscar race are already starting to roll in.

On Thursday, the Netherlands unveiled “Tirza” as its candidate for a nomination.

But it’s not the first country to choose its pic. That honor went to Iraq, whose ministry of culture submitted director Mohamed Al-Daradji’s “Son of Babylon” in July.

Pic, about a Kurdish boy and his grandmother in search of their missing father/son who was a soldier in the Gulf War, has played at Sundance, Berlin and Karlovy Vary fests.

Writer-director Rudolf van den Berg’s “Tirza” tells the story of a Dutch man searching for his daughter in Namibia and is based on a novel by Arnon Grunberg.

Pic is produced by Jeroen Koolbergen of Cadenza Films and San Fu Maltha of Fu Works, in collaboration with Dutch broadcaster NTR and Belgium’s Prime Time.

“Tirza” preems at the Netherlands Film Festival on Sept. 22 ahead of its Dutch release Sept. 30.

Submissions for the foreign-language Oscar must reach the Academy by 5 p.m. Oct. 1. Nominations will be announced on Jan. 25. The 83rd Academy Awards will be held Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theater.

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