Oscars Break Another Record With 92 Foreign Language Contenders

The biggest field ever will include Ruben Ostlund’s “The Square” and Angelina Jolie’s Cambodian-language film “First They Killed My Father”

The Square Terry Notary
"The Square"

For the fifth time in the last six years, the Oscars race for Best Foreign Language Film has a record number of submissions, with 92 countries eligible to win the award.

Top contenders include Sweden’s Palme d’Or winner “The Square,” Israel’s “Foxtrot,” Russia’s “Loveless,” France’s “BPM (Beats Per Minute),” Germany’s “In the Fade” and Cambodia’s “First They Killed My Father,” which was directed by Angelina Jolie.

The number of eligible films breaks the previous record of 85, which was set last year. Since 2012, when the race had a record 71 entries, the size of the field has increased every year and set a record every year except 2015.

Six countries — Haiti, Honduras, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mozambique, Senegal and Syria — are entering the race for the first time.

The Academy released the list of qualifying films on Thursday, one day after TheWrap revealed that the Oscars documentary race was also on track to set a new record, with 159 entries to date.

“First They Killed My Father” was one of several films that required a judgment call from the Oscars’ Foreign Language Film Award Executive Committee. AMPAS rules require that creative control of a submitted film must be “largely in the hands of citizens or residents” of the submitting country, and co-writer and director Jolie was of course born and raised in the United States. But she was granted Cambodian citizenship a decade ago because of her humanitarian work in that country, and the film’s co-writer, producer and cast were Cambodian.

Volunteers from all branches of the Academy will now watch the films, which will be screened at AMPAS theaters in Beverly Hills and Hollywood for two months, beginning next week and ending in December. Their votes will determine the top six contenders, to which a smaller executive committee will add three more films to make up a nine-film shortlist.

Three special committees, made up of 20 people in Los Angeles and 10 each in New York and London, will then watch the nine shortlisted films over three days, and vote to select the five nominees.

This year, rules were changed to potentially open up the nominations voting to more members. The Academy killed the conflict-of-interest rule that prevented members who worked on or promoted a contending film from voting, a rule that did not exist in any other Oscars category. It also did away with the old practice of dividing voters into color-coded committees, and requiring them to see at least 65 percent of the films assigned to their committee.

Now, members will be given a “required viewing list” of films they must see, but will be encouraged to see as many films as possible not on that list.

TheWrap has compiled a full list of the eligible films, with descriptions and links to trailers, here.

The list:

Afghanistan, “A Letter to the President,” Roya Sadat, director
Albania, “Daybreak,” Gentian Koçi, director
Algeria, “Road to Istanbul,” Rachid Bouchareb, director
Argentina, “Zama,” Lucrecia Martel, director
Armenia, “Yeva,” Anahit Abad, director
Australia, “The Space Between,” Ruth Borgobello, director
Austria, “Happy End,” Michael Haneke, director
Azerbaijan, “Pomegranate Orchard,” Ilgar Najaf, director
Bangladesh, “The Cage,” Akram Khan, director
Belgium, “Racer and the Jailbird,” Michaël R. Roskam, director
Bolivia, “Dark Skull,” Kiro Russo, director
Bosnia and Herzegovina, “Men Don’t Cry,” Alen Drljević, director
Brazil, “Bingo – The King of the Mornings,” Daniel Rezende, director
Bulgaria, “Glory,” Petar Valchanov, Kristina Grozeva, directors
Cambodia, “First They Killed My Father,” Angelina Jolie, director
Canada, “Hochelaga, Land of Souls,” François Girard, director
Chile, “A Fantastic Woman,” Sebastián Lelio, director
China, “Wolf Warrior 2,” Wu Jing, director
Colombia, “Guilty Men,” Iván D. Gaona, director
Costa Rica, “The Sound of Things,” Ariel Escalante, director
Croatia, “Quit Staring at My Plate,” Hana Jušić, director
Czech Republic, “Ice Mother,” Bohdan Sláma, director
Denmark, “You Disappear,” Peter Schønau Fog, director
Dominican Republic, “Woodpeckers,” Jose Maria Cabral, director
Ecuador, “Alba,” Ana Cristina Barragán, director
Egypt, “Sheikh Jackson,” Amr Salama, director
Estonia, “November,” Rainer Sarnet, director
Finland, “Tom of Finland,” Dome Karukoski, director
France, “BPM (Beats Per Minute),” Robin Campillo, director
Georgia, “Scary Mother,” Ana Urushadze, director
Germany, “In the Fade,” Fatih Akin, director
Greece, “Amerika Square,” Yannis Sakaridis, director
Haiti, “Ayiti Mon Amour,” Guetty Felin, director
Honduras, “Morazán,” Hispano Durón, director
Hong Kong, “Mad World,” Wong Chun, director
Hungary, “On Body and Soul,” Ildikó Enyedi, director
Iceland, “Under the Tree,” Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson, director
India, “Newton,” Amit V Masurkar, director
Indonesia, “Turah,” Wicaksono Wisnu Legowo, director
Iran, “Breath,” Narges Abyar, director
Iraq, “Reseba – The Dark Wind,” Hussein Hassan, director
Ireland, “Song of Granite,” Pat Collins, director
Israel, “Foxtrot,” Samuel Maoz, director
Italy, “A Ciambra,” Jonas Carpignano, director
Japan, “Her Love Boils Bathwater,” Ryota Nakano, director
Kazakhstan, “The Road to Mother,” Akhan Satayev, director
Kenya, “Kati Kati,” Mbithi Masya, director
Kosovo, “Unwanted,” Edon Rizvanolli, director
Kyrgyzstan, “Centaur,” Aktan Arym Kubat, director
Lao People’s Democratic Republic, “Dearest Sister,” Mattie Do, director
Latvia, “The Chronicles of Melanie,” Viestur Kairish, director
Lebanon, “The Insult,” Ziad Doueiri, director
Lithuania, “Frost,” Sharunas Bartas, director
Luxembourg, “Barrage,” Laura Schroeder, director
Mexico, “Tempestad,” Tatiana Huezo, director
Mongolia, “The Children of Genghis,” Zolbayar Dorj, director
Morocco, “Razzia,” Nabil Ayouch, director
Mozambique, “The Train of Salt and Sugar,” Licinio Azevedo, director
Nepal, “White Sun,” Deepak Rauniyar, director
Netherlands, “Layla M.,” Mijke de Jong, director
New Zealand, “One Thousand Ropes,” Tusi Tamasese, director
Norway, “Thelma,” Joachim Trier, director
Pakistan, “Saawan,” Farhan Alam, director
Palestine, “Wajib,” Annemarie Jacir, director
Panama, “Beyond Brotherhood,” Arianne Benedetti, director
Paraguay, “Los Buscadores,” Juan Carlos Maneglia, Tana Schembori, directors
Peru, “Rosa Chumbe,” Jonatan Relayze, director
Philippines, “Birdshot,” Mikhail Red, director
Poland, “Spoor,” Agnieszka Holland, Kasia Adamik, directors
Portugal, “Saint George,” Marco Martins, director
Romania, “Fixeur,” Adrian Sitaru, director
Russia, “Loveless,” Andrey Zvyagintsev, director
Senegal, “Félicité,” Alain Gomis, director
Serbia, “Requiem for Mrs. J.,” Bojan Vuletic, director
Singapore, “Pop Aye,” Kirsten Tan, director
Slovakia, “The Line,” Peter Bebjak, director
Slovenia, “The Miner,” Hanna A. W. Slak, director
South Africa, “The Wound,” John Trengove, director
South Korea, “A Taxi Driver,” Jang Hoon, director
Spain, “Summer 1993,” Carla Simón, director
Sweden, “The Square,” Ruben ?-stlund, director
Switzerland, “The Divine Order,” Petra Volpe, director
Syria, “Little Gandhi,” Sam Kadi, director
Taiwan, “Small Talk,” Hui-Chen Huang, director
Thailand, “By the Time It Gets Dark,” Anocha Suwichakornpong, director
Tunisia, “The Last of Us,” Ala Eddine Slim, director
Turkey, “Ayla: The Daughter of War,” Can Ulkay, director
Ukraine, “Black Level,” Valentyn Vasyanovych, director
United Kingdom, “My Pure Land,” Sarmad Masud, director
Uruguay, “Another Story of the World,” Guillermo Casanova, director
Venezuela, “El Inca,” Ignacio Castillo Cottin, director
Vietnam, “Father and Son,” Luong Dinh Dung, director