BUSAN: Oscar Favorites Fill Festival’s Slate

Once again, the Busan festival is proving to be a good place for Oscar spotting.

Nearly half of the Asian films selected by their national committees to make a run at the foreign-language Academy Award play in different sections of the festival.

This year’s festival lineup gives house to Afghanistan’s “A Few Cubic Meters of Love,” Pakistan’s “Dukhtar” and Thailand’s “Teacher’s Diary” in its Window on Asian Cinema section.

Ann Hui’s “The Golden Era,” representing Hong Kong had a Busan gala earlier this week, while one of the favorites for Oscar nomination is Turkey’s “Winter Sleep.” Directed by Nuri Bilge Ceylan, the film plays in Busan’s World Cinema section, having played and won the main competition in Cannes earlier this year.

South Korea’s own national representative “Sea Fog,” (“Haemoo”) plays in the Korean Cinema Today section.

Two of this year’s Oscar contenders from Asia actually played in Busan last year: China’s “The Nightingale,” and the Philippines’ “Norte the End of History.”

2014 Foreign-Language Academy Award contenders fr0m Asia

Afghanistan: “A Few Cubic Meters of Love” (dir. Jamshid Mahmoudi)

Australia: “Charlie’s Country” (dir. Rolf de Heer)

Bangladesh: “Firefly” (dir. Khalid Mahmud Mithu)

China: “Nightingale” (dir. Philippe Muyl)

Hong Kong:  “The Golden Era” (dir. Ann Hui)

India: “Liar’s Dice”  (dir. Geetu Mohandas)

Japan: “The Light Shines Only There” (dir. Mipo Oh)

Korea:   “Haemoo”  (dir. Shim Sung Bo)

Kyrgyzstan: “Kurmanjan Datka Queen of the Mountains” (dir. Sadyk Sher-Niyaz)

Nepal:  “Jhola” (dir. Yadavkumar Bhattarai)

New Zealand:  “Dead Lands”  (dir. Toa Fraser)

Palestine: Eyes of a Thief (dir. Najwa Najjar)

Pakistan: “Dukhtar” (dir. Afia Nathaniel )

Philippines: “Norte: The End of History” (dir. Lav Diaz)

Singapore: “Sayang Disayang” (dir. Sanif Olek)

Taiwan:  “Ice Poison” (dir. Midi Z)

Thailand:   “Teacher’s Diary” (dir. Nithiwat Tharathorn)

Turkey: Winter Sleep (dir. Nuri Bilge Ceylan)

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