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Gay Drama ‘Checkers’ Selected by Thailand for Oscar Consideration

Thailand has named gay-themed “How To Win At Checkers (Every Time)” as its contender for the foreign-language Academy Awards race.

The selection was announced on Tuesday by a special selection committee of the Federation of National Film Associations of Thailand.

The film is a coming of age drama directed by Korean-American, Josh Kim. It had its world premiere in the Panorama section at the Berlin festival earlier this year.

Kim also scripted the film as an adaptation of two short stories from the best-selling book “Sightseeing” by Rattawut Lapcharoensap.

The story focuses on an orphaned 11-year-old boy who learns to play the game of life while his older brother faces the possibility of being drafted into the Thai military. As the draft approaches the boy must grow up and learn to take care of himself in Thailand’s sometimes mean streets.

The Thai-U.S.-Indonesian co-production is produced by Edward Gunawan, Chris Lee and Anocha Suwichakornpong, with executive producers Andrew Tiernan, Kup Loon Loh, Mark Chen, Paul Wong, Stea Lim, Michael Rogers, and support from Frameline Completion Fund and Creative Lab Hawaii. International sales are handled by Germany’s M-Appeal.

Thailand began submitting films in the foreign language category in 1984 and has sent films for consideration every year since 2000. To date none have been nominated.

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