×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Oscars: Nine Films Advance in Foreign Language Film Race

Nine films have advanced in the race for the Oscar for foreign-language film, moving on to the next phase of voting for the 88th Academy Awards.

The list has been narrowed down from the 80 that were originally considered eligible. See the films that have advanced below:

Belgium, “The Brand New Testament,” Jaco Van Dormael, director;
Colombia, “Embrace of the Serpent,” Ciro Guerra, director;
Denmark, “A War,” Tobias Lindholm, director;
Finland, “The Fencer,” Klaus Härö, director;
France, “Mustang,” Deniz Gamze Ergüven, director;
Germany, “Labyrinth of Lies,” Giulio Ricciarelli, director;
Hungary, “Son of Saul,” László Nemes, director (in photo);
Ireland, “Viva,” Paddy Breathnach, director;
Jordan, “Theeb,” Naji Abu Nowar, director.

Voting in the category is determined in two phases. The phase one committee, made up of several hundred Los Angeles-based Academy members, screened submissions between mid-October and Dec. 14. The shortlist consists of this group’s six choices with three additional selections voted by the Academy’s foreign-language executive committee.

The list will be narrowed down to the five official nominees, which will be announced, along with nominations for all other awards, on Thursday, Jan. 14, at 5:30 a.m. PST.

Popular on Variety

Seven of the nine films are from Europe. There is one from the Mideast and one from South America. Asia and Africa were shut out, as were Australia (which had submitted “Arrows of the Thunder Dragon”) and North America (including Canada’s “Felix and Meira” and Mexico’s “600 Miles”).

As in every year, there were some high-profile films that didn’t make the cut. The no-shows include Austria, “Goodnight Mommy”; Brazil, “The Second Mother”; Iceland, “Rams”; Iran, “Muhammad: The Messenger of God”; Israel, “Baba Joon”; Montenegro, “You Carry Me”; Palestine, “The Wanted 18”; Poland, “11 Minutes”; Portugal, “Arabian Nights – Volume 2, The Desolate One”; Sweden, “A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence”; and Taiwan, “The Assassin.”

Those films were high-profile, due to festival berths and/or big box-office. This year, as in every year, pundits were surprised at some lesser-known titles on the list, but the Acad’s foreign-language voters always counter that with “But when you see the films that made the cut, you will understand why they’re there.”

The 88th Oscars will be held Sunday, Feb. 28 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, and will air live on ABC.

More Film

  • Tesla

    'Tesla': Film Review

    Inventor Nikolai Tesla is more popular today than when he died penniless in a New York hotel in 1943. Back then, he was the futurist who swore he could summon unlimited, clean, wireless electromagnetic energy from the earth — a neat idea, but surely coal and oil were fine. In the 21st century, as temperatures [...]

  • Amulet

    'Amulet': Film Review

    Actress Romola Garai makes a distinctive feature directorial debut with “Amulet,” even if this upscale horror drama is ultimately more impressive in the realm of style than substance. It’s some style, though: She hasn’t just created a stylish potboiler, but a densely textured piece that makes for a truly arresting viewing experience to a point. [...]

  • Alison Brie appears in Horse Girl

    'Horse Girl': Film Review

    A funny thing happens about a third of the way into “Horse Girl,” Jeff Baena’s fourth Sundance feature after “Life After Beth,” “Joshy” and “The Little Hours.” Or rather, a funny thing stops happening: the familiar, steady-heartbeat rhythms of the low-budget social awkwardness comedy become erratic, tachycardiac, as the initially endearing foibles of the film’s [...]

  • Save Yourselves!

    'Save Yourselves!': Film Review

    Brooklyn couple Su (Sunita Mani) and Jack (John Reynolds) have several plans to salvage their lives. Go vegetarian, plant a garden, make sourdough bread, and above all, quit the internet addiction that’s become their relationship’s third wheel, distracting them from make-outs and barging into their fights until Su yells, “Alexa stop!” To detox, the couple [...]

  • Nine Days

    'Nine Days': Film Review

    At the risk of overselling Edson Oda’s ultra-original, meaning-of-life directorial debut, there’s a big difference between “Nine Days” and pretty much every other film ever made. You see, most movies are about characters, real or imagined, and the stuff that happens to them, whereas “Nine Days” is about character itself — as in, the moral dimension [...]

  • Chosen Ones Artwork

    The Yellow Affair Picks Up Swedish YA Sci-Fi/Thriller ‘Chosen Ones’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    GÖTEBORG, Sweden — Scandi sales shingle The Yellow Affair has added to its Göteborg lineup the Swedish series “The Chosen Ones” (“Det Utvalda”), currently playing on Swedish pubcaster SVT’s streaming service SVT Play. The short form sci-fi thriller stars a strong Swedish female cast of model-turned actress Frida Gustavsson (“Swoon”), singer/actress Amy Deasismont (“Gösta”, “My [...]

  • A still from LANCE by Marina

    'Lance': Film Review

    Late in the film “Lance,” a documentary that depicts the ascent and the crash of disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong, the subject recalls the disappearance of his lucrative sponsorships. These deals — with a massive market value and a perhaps more important intangible value of keeping him in the public eye as a figure of rectitude [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content