Serbia, Romania throw hats into Oscar ring

'Montevideo,' 'Morgen' in foreign film category

PRAGUE — Serbia and Romania have selected their entries for the foreign-language film Oscar.

Serbia has picked “Montevideo — Taste of a Dream,” which was given a special jury mention at Croatia’s Pula Film Festival and the audience award at the Moscow Film Festival.

The helming debut of Dragan Bjelogrlic, an established local thesp, the pic centers on the true story of the Yugoslavian soccer team at the first World Cup in Uruguay in 1930.

Scribes Srjdan Dragojevic and Ranko Bozic used the events, gleaned from the book “Montevideo, God Bless You” by sports reporter Vladimir Stankovic, as a platform from which to explore the innocence and hopes of pre-war Belgrade.

Pic has spawned a sequel, shot on location in Uruguay earlier this year, chronicling the struggles of the young team members.

Produced by Intermedia Network, international sales are being handled by Soul Food.

Romania has picked “Morgen,” Marian Crisan’s helming debut.

Crisan, who won the short film prize at Cannes in 2008 for “Megatron,” follows border-town supermarket security guard Nelu who catches a Turkish illegal alien on a fishing trip, and comes to befriend and protect him.

Its take on corruption and hypocrisy among border authorities, combined with understated perfs by Andras Hathazi and Yilmaz Yalcin, helped it score a special jury prize at Locarno last year, and three other awards.

It was produced by Slot Machine, Mandragora Movies and Katapult Film, and is repped by Les Films du Losange for international sales.

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