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Foreign-Language Oscars: Afghanistan Sends ‘Parting,’ Nepal Chooses ‘Black Hen’

Afghanistan has submitted Navid Mahmoudi’s “Parting” (“Raftan”) in the foreign-language category at the 89th Academy Awards. Nepal has chosen Min Bahadur Bham’s “The Black Hen” (“Kalo Pothi”).

“Parting” follows young Afghans in love and on the move. Years after the woman leaves the country with her parents to seek refuge in Iran, her admirer seeks her out for a journey to Turkey, Europe and a better life.

The film will have its world premiere at the Busan festival in October where it is in the New Currents competition strand. The Dari and Farsi language film is an Afghanistan-Iran co-production by Aseman Parvaz Film. DreamLab Films is handling international sales.

Set in 2001, Nepal’s “The Black Hen” follows two young friends from different sections of society who set off to find their missing hen during a ceasefire in Nepal’s civil war. The film is a co-production between Nepal’s Shooney Films, Mila Productions and Kaldhungi Films, France’s Catherine Dussart Productions and Germany’s Tandem Production.

The film enjoyed a long and successful international festival run and won the Feodora Award for best film at the 2015 Venice Film Festival’s Critics’ Week. Other festival stops include Singapore, Fribourg and the Taipei Film Festival.

Nepal’s first submission to the Oscar foreign language category, Eric Valli’s “Himalaya,” received a nomination in 1999. Subsequent entries have not been nominated.

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