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Lang Thompson explains:


> You may already know this but the foreign language film award doesn't work
> like the other awards.  Each country chooses one film to be considered by
> the Academy; there must be available an English-subtitled print for viewing
> by members though I'm not sure if that status of release in the US makes a
> difference (probably not since many haven't been).  From this "short list"
> the Academy then determines the actual nominations, so that the foreign
> language nominations have actually been filtered twice: once by the country
> and then once by the Academy.  It's no surprise that the best work
> (Kiarostami? Hou Hsiao-Hsien?) is ignored as is anything politically or
> formally innovative.  The complete list of country submissions for this
> year was printed in "Variety"; if you need the info I can get the issue
> date fairly easily.

There are also other complications.  One  is that the official category
is "Best Foreign *Language* Film*, which creates the uncertain status
given to British/Irish/Canadian/Australian and other productions
mentioned in other posts.

In addition, the global economy creates new questions, as cross-border
coproductions raises questions about which country, if any, should get
the credit as the sponsor of the film.  Thus, some well-received films
in recent years have been totally ignored.

Don Larsson
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Donald Larsson
Minnesota State U, Mankato
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Screen-L is sponsored by the Telecommunication & Film Dept., the
University of Alabama.