A record-breaking total of 93 countries will be competing in the Oscar race for Best International Feature Film, the new name for what previously has been known as the Best Foreign-Language Film category.
The Academy announced the full list of eligible films and countries on Monday, with three countries — Ghana, Nigeria and Uzbekistan — competing in the category for the first time.
The previous high for submissions was 92 films, which was set in 2017. This year’s field also sets a new record for the number of women with films in the race, with 29 female directors responsible for 28 of the qualifying films.
One film, Algeria’s “Papicha,” needed a special ruling from the Academy to retain its eligibility. The film was scheduled to open in Algeria in late September, but the Algerian government cancelled the screenings without explanation just before they were scheduled to happen, presumably because it was uncomfortable with a film that showed the restrictions placed on women after the country’s civil war. The lack of an Algerian release technically disqualified the film, but the Academy’s International Feature Film Executive Committee ruled that because the cancellation was out of the filmmakers’ control, “Papicha” would not lose its eligibility.
An AMPAS-approved body or committee from each country is permitted to submit one film to represent that country in the category. The Academy then vets each film to make sure that the majority of dialogue is in a language other than English and that it has substantial creative input from the country making the submission.
If the race has any front-runners at this point, they are South Korea’s “Parasite,” Bong Joon-ho’s black comedy that has also stirred up Best Picture and Best Director talk, and Spain’s “Pain and Glory,” a semi-autobiographical fantasia from Pedro Almodovar that found Antonio Banderas winning Cannes’ best-actor award for his quietly gripping performance as an Almodovar-like director.
Other high profile entries include France’s “Les Miserables,” which won the third-place Jury Prize in Cannes this year; the United Kingdom’s “The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind,” from actor-director Chiwetel Ejiofor; Brazil’s “Invisible Life,” from Karim Ainouz; Colombia’s “Monos,” from Alejandro Landes, which has already had a U.S. release; Japan’s “Weathering With You,” the first animated film submitted by that country since “Princess Mononoke” in 1997; Norway’s “Out Stealing Horses,” starring Stellan Skarsgard; Israel’s controversial “Incitement,” about Yitzak Rabin’s assassin; the Czech Republic’s Jerzy Kozinski adaptation “The Painted Bird”; and several other films that also played in Cannes, including Romania’s “The Whistlers,” from Corneliu Porumboiu, Senegal’s “Atlantics,” Italy’s “The Traitor,” Morocco’s “Adam,” Portugal’s “The Domain” and Palestine’s “It Must Be Heaven.”
But it’s risky to assign favorite status to any film before most Academy voters have had a chance to see it. From mid-October until early December, all of the eligible films will be screened for Los Angeles-based volunteers from all branches of the Academy, who can qualify to vote by seeing a minimum number of films.
Those voters will then score each film on a scale of 6 to 10. The top seven films will advance to a shortlist, joined by an additional three films added by a special executive committee. The 10 finalists, one more than in previous years, will be narrowed to five nominees in a second round of voting.
Mexico is the reigning champion in the category, with Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma” winning the 2018 award. Overall, Italy has won the most awards in the category, 14, while France has received the most nominations, 37.
Click here for TheWrap’s complete list of this year’s qualifying films, with descriptions and links to trailers when available.
The Academy’s list of eligible films:
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www.thewrap.com | 10/7/19
Magnolia Pictures has acquired the U.S. rights to “Out Stealing Horses,” the latest film from director Hans Petter Moland that stars Stellan Skarsgård and is Norway’s official submission to the 2020 foreign-language Oscar race, Magnolia announced on Friday.
“Out Stealing Horses” is a drama from Moland (“In Order of Disappearance” and its U.S. remake “Cold Pursuit”) based on the novel by Per Petterson. It premiered in competition at the Berlin Film Festival. Magnolia is planning a theatrical release for next year.
The film follows 67-year-old Trond Sander (Skarsgård) who, after the death of his wife, retires to a desolate place in the east of Norway. As winter arrives he discovers he has a neighbor, a man he knew during the summer of 1948. This leads Trond to reflect on a childhood summer he spent with his father. Long afternoons in the forest, rides on wild horses and hard work felling wood begin to blur into a series of images of carefree happiness but also fateful experiences.
“Hans Petter Moland has delivered an incredibly well-shot and acted adaptation of a greatly loved novel,” Magnolia president Eamonn Bowles said in a statement. “We look forward to bringing it to American audiences.”
“I’m delighted that Magnolia will distribute ‘Out Stealing Horses’ in the Unites [sic] States, as they did with ‘In Order of Disappearance,” Moland said in a statement. “Our film is in good hands with Magnolia, a passionate and dedicated distributor with a keen sense and track record of releasing quality, award-winning films such as ‘The Square’ and ‘Shoplifters.'”
“Out Stealing Horses” is a Film i Väst, Zentropa Denmark, Zentropa Sweden, Helgeland Film, Nordisk Film co-production. The film is produced by Håkon Øverås and Turid Øversveen, 4 ½ Film.
The deal was negotiated by Magnolia EVP Dori Begley and Magnolia SVP of Acquisitions John Von Thaden with Susan Wendt of Trust Nordisk on behalf of the filmmakers.
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www.thewrap.com | 10/4/19
Conan on Greenland Special’s Politics: ‘I Don’t Really Want to Get Down Into the Muck’ With Trump (Video)
Conan O’Brien waded into some potentially political waters with his new travel special, “Conan Without Borders: Greenland.” But as he explained in an audience Q&A session, he’s not actually looking to start a beef with Donald Trump.
The special is inspired by the recent diplomatic weirdness after news that Trump wants the U.S. to buy Greenland from Denmark, an idea Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen called “absurd,” The joke behind the special is that O’Brien thinks buying Denmark is a good idea, so he traveled there to scope it out.
However, asked by an audience member if he hopes for some kind of reaction from Trump on Twitter, O’Brien said, “I kinda don’t.”
O’Brien explained that he and his staff have wanted to do another travel show, that Greenland had long been a possible destination, and the Trump connection gave them a good excuse. “It’s not that I don’t have strong political feelings, ’cause I do. But I don’t really want to get down into the muck of the political yelling back-and-forth.”
O’Brien emphasized that he has no problem with his “really good friends” on other talk shows who do talk about Trump directly, but added, “that’s not my passion, that’s not my skill set.”
O’Brien joked he also doesn’t want to “distract” Trump, adding, “every day he wakes up like an angry old circus bear that’s been jabbed repeatedly and he’s like grrrrrrr.”
“I want to make comedy that’s gonna be funny to people maybe 15 years from now, long after this era is forgotten,” he concluded.
Watch the whole clip above.
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www.thewrap.com | 9/4/19
Denmark's center-right prime minister has resigned after a general election that ended with a gain for left-leaning parties and a big loss for populists who were supporting the government.
www.foxnews.com | 6/6/19
Phillip Youmans’ “Burning Cane” took home the Founders Award for best narrative feature at the 18th annual Tribeca Film Festival on Thursday, with star Wendell Pierce earning Best Actor. Youmans is the first African-American director to win the Founders Award and the youngest director to have a feature in Tribeca – he wrote, directed and shot the film at age 17.
Korean director Bora Kim’s “House of Hummingbird” won for best international narrative feature, and Ji-hu Park won best international actress.
In addition, Ellen Fiske and Ellinor Hallin won for their documentary feature “Scheme Birds.”
Here’s the complete list of winners.
U.S. NARRATIVE COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jurors for the 2019 U.S. Narrative Competition were Lucy Alibar, Jonathan Ames, Cory Hardrict, Dana Harris, and Jenny Lumet.
Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature – “Burning Cane,” directed by Phillip Youmans. The winner receives $20,000, sponsored by AT&T, and the art award “Bloom” by Fred Tomaselli.
Best Actress in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Haley Bennett in “Swallow”
Best Actor in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Wendell Pierce in “Burning Cane”
Best Cinematography in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Phillip Youmans for “Burning Cane.”
Best Screenplay in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Bridget Savage Cole and Danielle Krudy for “Blow the Man Down.” The winner receives $2,500. Special jury mention: “To a story of a woman finding her biological family and her logical family on the highway, Ani Simon-Kennedy for “The Short History of the Long Road.”
INTERNATIONAL NARRATIVE COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jurors for the 2019 International Narrative Competition were Gbenga Akinnagbe, Angela Bassett, Baltasar Kormákur, Rebecca Miller, and Steve Zaillian.
Best International Narrative Feature – “House of Hummingbird (Beol-sae)” (South Korea, USA) directed and written by Bora Kim. The winner receives $20,000 and the art award “Easter” by Eddie Kang. J
Best Actress in an International Narrative Feature Film – Ji-hu Park in “House of Hummingbird (Beol-sae)” (South Korea, USA).
Best Actor in an International Narrative Feature Film – Ali Atay in “Noah Land.”
Best Cinematography in an International Narrative Feature Film – Cinematography by Kang Gook-hyun for “House of Hummingbird (Beol-sae)” (South Korea, USA) directed by Bora Kim.
Best Screenplay in an International Narrative Feature Film – “Noah Land (Nuh Tepesi)” written by Cenk Ertürk (Germany, Turkey, USA). The winner receives $2,500.
DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jurors for the 2019 Documentary Competition were Drake Doremus, Robert Greene, Julie Goldman, Andrew LaVallee, and Cheryl McDonough.
Best Documentary Feature – “Scheme Birds “(Scotland, Sweden) directed and written by Ellen Fiske, Ellinor Hallin. The winner receives $20,000, and the art award “Oil Lotus Woman” by Shepard Fairey. J
Best Cinematography in a Documentary Film – Cinematography by Yang Sun, “Shuang Liang for Our Time Machine” (China) directed by Yang Sun, S. Leo Chiang. The winner receives $2,500.
Best Editing in a Documentary Film – Editing by Jennifer Tiexiera for “17 Blocks” (USA) directed by Davy Rothbart. The winner receives $2,500. Special Jury mention: “This brave film uses editing to reveal narrative layers that weren’t immediately apparent, challenging and surprising viewers along the way. The special jury mention goes to ‘Rewind.'”
BEST NEW NARRATIVE DIRECTOR COMPETITION:
The jurors for the 2019 Best New Narrative Director Competition were Stephen Kay, Bill Keith, Justin Long, Piper Perabo, and Mélita Toscan du Plantier.
Best New Narrative Director – “The Gasoline Thieves (Huachicolero)” (Mexico, Spain, UK, USA) directed by Edgar Nito. The winner receives $10,000, and the art award “Love Trap” by Walter Robinson.
BEST NEW DOCUMENTARY DIRECTOR COMPETITION:
The jurors for the 2019 Albert Maysles New Documentary Director Award were David Cross, Orlando von Einsiedel, and Kathrine Narducci.
Albert Maysles New Documentary Director Award – “Scheme Birds” (Scotland, Sweden) directed by Ellen Fiske and Ellinor Hallin. The winner receives $10,000 sponsored by CNN Films, and the art award “Indigo Rocket Over Tribeca” by Stephen Hannock.
THE NORA EPHRON AWARD
The jurors for the 2019 Nora Ephron Award, presented by CHANEL, were Debra Messing, Chloë Sevigny, and DeWanda Wise.
The Nora Ephron Award – Rania Attieh for “Initials S.G. (Iniciales S.G.)” (Argentina, Lebanon, USA) directed by Rania Attieh, Daniel Garcia. Rania receives $25,000, sponsored by CHANEL, and the art award “Alison the Lacemaker” by Swoon.
SHORT FILM COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jurors for the 2019 Narrative Short Competition and Animated sections were Maureen Dowd, Topher Grace, Rosalind Lichter, Hamish Linklater, Lily Rabe, Phoebe Robinson, and Jeff Scher.
Best Narrative Short – “Maja” (Denmark) directed by Marijana Jankovic. The winner receives $5,000 sponsored by Bulleit Frontier Whiskey, and the art award “Amy Sillman” by Amy Sillman.
Special Jury Mention: “The Dishwasher “directed and written by Nick Hartanto, Sam Roden.
Shorts Animation Award – “My Mother’s Eyes” (UK) directed and written by Jenny Wright. The winner receives $5,000 sponsored by Bulleit Frontier Whiskey, and the art award “Balloon Dog, Magneta” by Jeff Koons.
The jurors for the 2019 Short Documentary and Student Visionary Competitions were Dr. Kevin Cahill, David Krumholtz, Kathy Najimy, Sheila Nevins, Agunda Okeyo, Aaron Rodgers, and Buster Scher.
Best Documentary Short – “Learning To Skateboard In a Warzone (If You’re A Girl)” (UK) directed by Carol Dysinger. The winner receives $5,000 sponsored by Bulleit Frontier Whiskey, and the art award “28 Millimeters, Portrait of a Generation” by JR. Special Jury Mention: “An unflinching and delicate portrait of a loving father with a haunted past who bravely decides to stand up to the powers that be in Ferguson, Missouri in St. Louis Superman.”
Student Visionary Award – “Jebel Banat” (Egypt) directed and written by Sharine Atif. The winner receives $5,000 sponsored by Bulleit Frontier Whiskey, and the art award “Chrysler Building” by Jane Dickson.
The 2019 Storyscapes Award, presented by AT&T, which recognizes groundbreaking approaches in storytelling and technology, jurors were Lisa Osborne, Paul Smalera, and Adaora Udoji.
Storyscapes Award – “The Key” (USA, Iraq), created by Celine Tricart. The winner receives $10,000, presented by AT&T.
TRIBECA X AWARD
Previously awarded last week were the 2019 Tribeca X Awards, sponsored by PwC. Tribeca X recognizes excellence in storytelling at the intersection of advertising and entertainment. The jurors were Nabil Elderkin, Kim Gehrig, Jason Kreher, Kinjil Mathur, Patrick Milling-Smith, and John Osborn.
The winner of the Best Feature Film was awarded to “Almost Human” for The Carlsberg Foundation. Directed by Jeppe Rønde.
The winner of the Best Short Film was awarded to “The Face of Distracted Driving” for AT&T. Directed by Errol Morris for BBDO New York.
The winner of the Best Episodic Film was awarded to “History of Memory” for HP. Directed by Sarah Klein and Tom Mason for Redglass Pictures, The Garage by HP.
The winner of the Best VR Film was awarded to “The 100%” by Stand Up to Cancer, HP and Intel. Directed by Hernan Barangan for Springbok Entertainment.
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www.thewrap.com | 5/3/19
The Danish government is backing esports in a big way, and has devised a national 'esports strategy' to help grow and legitimizeÂ the sport in the country. ...
www.gamasutra.com | 5/1/19
The Politics of Denmark takes place in a framework of a parliamentary, representative democratic, constitutional monarchy, in which the Prime Minister is the head of government, and of a multi-party system. The Monarch is the head of state and plays a largely ceremonial role with reserve powers. Executive power is exercised by the government, with the prime minister acting as primus inter pares. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the Danish Parliament, Folketinget.