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Sundance-Winning ‘The Guilty’ Picked by Denmark for Foreign-Language Oscar Race

Gustav Möller’s thriller “The Guilty” which won Sundance’s Audience Award in World Cinema, has been selected as Denmark’s official Oscar entry for best foreign language film.

Möller’s feature debut, “The Guilty” takes place over the course of a single night and centers on police officer Asger Holm (Jakob Cedergren) who has just been demoted to desk work and answers a panicked phone call from a kidnapped woman. The film follows Asger’s race against time to save the woman with the phone as his only tool.

On top of Sundance, “The Guilty” played at New Directors/New Films, as well as Seattle where it won Best Director and the Audience Award, and Rotterdam where it won the Audience Award. Magnolia Pictures will release the film on Oct.19 in 25 markets, including New York and Los Angeles, with a national rollout to follow.

Represented in international markets by TrustNordisk, “The Guilty” has so far sold 139,000 admissions in Denmark and 260,000 admissions in France.

“The Guilty” was chosen by Denmark’s Oscar committee from a shortlist of three titles comprising Bille August’s “A Fortunate Man” and Hlynur Pálmason’s “WinterbBrothers.” The movie was produced by Lina Flint for Nordisk Film Spring with support from the Danish Film Institute’s talent scheme New Danish Screen.

With 12 nominations and three wins, Denmark is one of the most successful countries in the foreign-language Oscar category. Magnolia Pictures distributed recent Danish Oscar nominees, Nikolaj Arcel’s “A Royal Affair,”Thomas Vinterberg’s “The Hunt” and Tobias Lindholm’s “A War.”

Other recent foreign-language Oscar submissions include Nour Eddine Lakhmari’s “Burnout,” a portrayal of several people living in Casablanca, from Morocco; Kaouther Ben Hania’s “Beauty and the Dogs” which played at Cannes’s Un Certain Regard, from Tunisia; and Gjorce Stavreski’s drama-comedy “Iscelitel” (“Secret Ingredient”) from Macedonia.

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