“When We Leave,” the debut feature by Vienna-born actress-turned-helmer Feo Aladag, has been selected as Germany’s foreign-language Oscar entry.
The pic follows a German-Turkish woman seeking emancipation from her conservative Muslim family as she flees an abusive husband in Istanbul.
” ‘When We Leave’ is an extraordinarily well written, atmospherically precise and moving film with outstanding acting performances,” said the independent jury that selected the title.
Aladag said, “It is an incredibly great honor that our film has been chosen by the German selection committee. My goal had always been to make a universal film that can reach people and touch them across ethnic, cultural and linguistic barriers. I now await the next round with great anticipation and very much hope that ‘When We Leave’ will also convince the members of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences.”
Produced by Berlin-based Independent Artists Filmproduktion, in co-production with pubcasters WDR, RBB and Arte, “When We Leave” was released in Germany by Delphi Filmverleih.
Munich-based Telepool, which is repping the film internationally, has sold the pic to Olive Films and Mongrel Media for the U.S. and Canada, respectively.
“When We Leave” premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and went on to win top prizes at the German Film Awards, including actress kudos for Sibel Kekilli. It also won the narrative feature award and the actress prize at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival.
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 at the Kodak Theater on Feb. 27.