Magazine article Screen International

Oscars 2016: Inside the 85 Best Foreign-Language Film Submissions

Magazine article Screen International

Oscars 2016: Inside the 85 Best Foreign-Language Film Submissions

Article excerpt

PROFILES OF THE 85 SUBMITTED FILMS:

* Europe

* North and South America

* Asia-Pacific, Middle East, and Africa

With 2016 marking the 60th anniversary of the foreign language Oscar, first awarded to Federico Fellini's La Strada in 1957, it is particularly fitting that it's also the year in which a record number of films were submitted to the category for the 2017 Academy Awards. Of those 89 submissions, 85 are vying for nomination, up from the previous high of 83 in 2014.

That increase is surely indicative of the strengthening global industry, in which a growing number of countries are able to produce engaging films that not only satisfy the Academy's eligibility criteria, but also play well on the international stage. A burgeoning region for film-making, the Middle East has delivered some of this year's most enthralling fare, including Iran's Cannes Competition entry The Salesman (directed by Asghar Farhadi, who won the country's first ever award in this category for A Separation in 2012) and Lebanon's Very Big Shot, which made a splash at the 2015 BFI London Film Festival and played in Toronto's Discovery section the same year.

They are competing against a slew of hotly tipped European titles including category front-runner Toni Erdmann. …

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