×

134 Documentary Features To Vie for Oscar

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences announced Friday that 134 films have been submitted for the documentary feature category for the 87th Academy Awards.

A shortlist of 15 films will be announced in December.

Several of the 134 films have not yet had their required Los Angeles and New York qualifying releases. The Acad this year has stricter rules in this matter (Variety, June 27). Every year, AMPAS tweaks its rules and now requirements state that a docu must screen “a minimum of four times daily during their qualifying theatrical releases in both New York and Los Angeles. The screenings must begin between noon and 10 p.m., and at least one screening daily must begin between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.”

This clamps down on documakers whose films screened once a day at a non-prime hour (like 11 a.m.) so they would technically qualify, though those films often remained below the radar to voters — and to the public. Submitted features must fulfill the theatrical release requirements and comply with all of the category’s other qualifying rules in order to advance in the voting process.

The tally is down slightly from the 147 last year.

The highest-grossing docu so far is “America: Imagine the World Without Her,” which has earned $14 million. The list also includes works that address hot-button topics (“The Case Against 8,” “CitizenFour,” about Edward Snowden, and “Happy Valley” about Joe Paterno); showbiz/arts works (“Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me,” “Finding Vivian Meier,” “Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me,” “Life Itself,” “Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles”); and a wide range of other  subjects, including “The Internet’s Own Boy,” “James Cameron’s Deepsea Challenge,” “Last Days in Vietnam,” “Merchants of Doubt,” “Red Army” and “Tales of the Grim Sleeper”).

Films submitted in the docu category also may qualify for Academy Awards in other categories, including best picture, provided they meet the requirements for those categories.

The submitted features, in alphabetical order, are:

“Afternoon of a Faun: Tanaquil Le Clercq”
“Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case”
“Algorithms”
“Alive Inside”
“All You Need Is Love”
“Altina”
“America: Imagine the World without Her”
“American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs”
“Anita”
“Antarctica: A Year on Ice”
“Art and Craft”
“Awake: The Life of Yogananda”
“The Barefoot Artist”
“The Battered Bastards of Baseball”
“Before You Know It”
“Bitter Honey”
“Born to Fly: Elizabeth Streb vs. Gravity”
“Botso The Teacher from Tbilisi”
“Captivated The Trials of Pamela Smart”
“The Case against 8”
“Cesar’s Last Fast”
“Citizen Koch”
“CitizenFour”
“Code Black”
“Concerning Violence”
“The Culture High”
“Cyber-Seniors”
“DamNation”
“Dancing in Jaffa”
“Death Metal Angola”
“The Decent One”
“Dinosaur 13”
“Do You Know What My Name Is?”
“Documented”
“The Dog”
“E-Team”
“Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me”
“Elena”
“Evolution of a Criminal”
“Fed Up”
“Finding Fela”
“Finding Vivian Maier”
“Food Chains”
“The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden”
“Getting to the Nutcracker”
“Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me”
“Gore Vidal: The United States of Amnesia”
“The Great Flood”
“The Great Invisible”
“The Green Prince”
“The Hacker Wars”
“The Hadza: Last of the First”
“Hanna Ranch”
“Happy Valley”
“The Hornet’s Nest”
“I Am Ali”
“If You Build It”
“The Immortalists”
“The Internet’s Own Boy”
“Ivory Tower”
“James Cameron’s Deepsea Challenge”
“Jodorowsky’s Dune”
“Journey of a Female Comic”
“Keep On Keepin’ On”
“Kids for Cash”
“The Kill Team”
“Korengal”
“La Bare”
“Last Days in Vietnam”
“Last Hijack”
“The Last Patrol”
“Levitated Mass”
“Life Itself”
“Little White Lie”
“Llyn Foulkes One Man Band”
“Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles”
“Manakamana”
“Merchants of Doubt”
“Mission Blue”
“Mistaken for Strangers”
“Mitt”
“Monk with a Camera”
“Nas: Time Is Illmatic”
“National Gallery”
“Next Goal Wins”
“Next Year Jerusalem”
“Night Will Fall”
“No Cameras Allowed”
“Now: In the Wings on a World Stage”
“Occupy the Farm”
“The Only Real Game”
“The Overnighters”
“Particle Fever”
“Pay 2 Play: Democracy’s High Stakes”
“Pelican Dreams”
“The Pleasures of Being Out of Step”
“Plot for Peace”
“Point and Shoot”
“Poverty Inc.”
“Print the Legend”
“Private Violence”
“Pump”
“Rabindranath Tagore – The Poet of Eternity”
“Red Army”
“Remote Area Medical”
“Rich Hill”
“The Rule”
“The Salt of the Earth”
“Shadows from My Past”
“She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry”
“A Small Section of the World”
“Smiling through the Apocalypse – Esquire in the 60s”
“Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon”
“The Supreme Price”
“Tales of the Grim Sleeper”
“Tanzania: A Journey Within”
“This Is Not a Ball”
“Thomas Keating: A Rising Tide of Silence”
“Through a Lens Darkly: Black Photographers and the Emergence of a People”
“True Son”
“20,000 Days on Earth”
“Unclaimed”
“Under the Electric Sky”
“Underwater Dreams”
“Virunga”
“Waiting for August”
“Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago”
“Warsaw Uprising”
“Watchers of the Sky”
“Watermark”
“We Are the Giant”
“We Could Be King”
“Whitey: United States of America v. James J. Bulger”
“A World Not Ours”

The nominations will be announced Jan. 15, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater. The Oscars will be held on Sunday, February 22, at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, and will be televised live by ABC.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • "Birds of Prey" egg sandwich

    'Birds of Prey' Actor Bruno Oliver Recreates Harley Quinn's Famous Sandwich

    When actor Bruno Oliver booked the role of short order cook Sal in “Birds of Prey: (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn),” he had no idea how significant Sal and his breakfast sandwich were to the story. “You couldn’t tell from the audition necessarily and as actors, we always worry about our scenes [...]

  • Minyan

    'Minyan': Film Review

    Best known for the unexpectedly soul-shattering San Francisco suicide doc “The Bridge,” indie filmmaker Eric Steel came out and came of age in 1980s New York at a moment just before AIDS devastated the city’s gay community. Such timing must have been surreal, to assume something so liberating about one’s own identity, only to watch [...]

  • Animated Movie 'The Queen's Corgi' Fetches

    Film New Roundup: Animated Movie 'The Queen's Corgi' Fetches North American Distribution

    In today’s film news roundup, “The Queen’s Corgi” finds a home, the Overlook Film Festival is postponed and the California Film Commission adjusts its tax credit rules due to the coronavirus. ACQUISITION Freestyle Digital Media has acquired North American rights to the animated family comedy feature “The Queen’s Corgi,” and plans to make it available on DVD and to [...]

  • APA Logo

    APA Sets Salary Cuts and Furloughs in Wake of Covid-19 Pandemic

    Following in the steps of several agencies dealing with the coronavirus, APA has informed all offices of upcoming salary cuts along with possible suspensions and furloughs for employees due to the pandemic’s economic effect on the industry. APA board of directors will make the largest financial sacrifice. The move has been made to avoid layoffs [...]

  • SAG-AFTRA HQ

    DGA, SAG-AFTRA, WGA Scramble to Keep Residuals Flowing During Coronavirus Pandemic

    Hollywood’s creative guilds have been working overtime to keep residual checks going out to members during the coronavirus crisis. Even though most of the staff members of the Directors Guild of America, SAG-AFTRA and the Writers Guild of America West have been working remotely, the guilds have stepped up efforts to maintain the flow of [...]

  • Hannah Marks, Dylan Sprouse. Hannah Marks,

    How a Bart Simpson T-Shirt Delayed Dylan Sprouse’s Movie ‘Banana Split’

    Long before the release of “Booksmart,” actress Hannah Marks set out to make a movie that would be the female bookend to “Superbad.” She started writing the script eight years ago, at 18, based on a real-life story about how, in high school, she befriended the girlfriend of her ex-boyfriend. Many drafts followed for “Banana [...]

  • Ryan Reynolds'6 Underground' film premiere, Arrivals,

    Ryan Reynolds in Talks to Star in 'Dragon's Lair' Film Adaptation for Netflix

    Ryan Reynolds is in talks to star in and produce a live-action feature adaptation of the ’80s arcade game “Dragon’s Lair” for Netflix. Roy Lee will produce through his Vertigo Entertainment with Trevor Engelson of Underground Films. Don Bluth, Gary Goldman and Jon Pomeroy are also producing. Reynolds will produce through his Maximum Effort production [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content