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Oscar Foreign Language Frontrunners Amid Record 76 Official Submissions

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood October 7, 2013 at 2:34PM

As the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences continues to debate the best way to reform the foreign language branch, from new president Cheryl Boone-Isaacs to producer Mark Johnson, who is restored to running the various voting committees who check out the movies submitted by countries all over the world. That number has been steadily increasing: This year a record 76 films were officially submitted, up from 71 last year.
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Afghanistan, "Wajma – An Afghan Love Story," Barmak Akram, director; 

Albania, "Agon," Robert Budina, director; 

Argentina, "The German Doctor," Lucía Puenzo, director;

Australia, "The Rocket," Kim Mordaunt, director; 

Austria, "The Wall," Julian Pölsler, director; 

Azerbaijan, "Steppe Man," Shamil Aliyev, director; 

Bangladesh, "Television," Mostofa Sarwar Farooki, director; 

Belgium, "The Broken Circle Breakdown," Felix van Groeningen, director; 

Bosnia and Herzegovina, "An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker," Danis Tanovic, director; 

Brazil, "Neighboring Sounds," Kleber Mendonça Filho, director; 

Bulgaria, "The Color of the Chameleon," Emil Hristov, director; 

Cambodia, "The Missing Picture," Rithy Panh, director; 

Canada, "Gabrielle," Louise Archambault, director; 

Chad, "GriGris," Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, director; 

Chile, "Gloria," Sebastián Lelio, director; 

China, "Back to 1942," Feng Xiaogang, director; 

Colombia, "La Playa DC," Juan Andrés Arango, director; 

Croatia, "Halima’s Path," Arsen Anton Ostojic, director; 

Czech Republic, "The Don Juans," Jiri Menzel, director;

Denmark, "The Hunt," Thomas Vinterberg, director; 

Dominican Republic, "Quien Manda?" Ronni Castillo, director; 

Ecuador, "The Porcelain Horse," Javier Andrade, director; 

Egypt, "Winter of Discontent," Ibrahim El Batout, director; 

Estonia, "Free Range," Veiko Ounpuu, director; 

Finland, "Disciple," Ulrika Bengts, director; 

France, "Renoir," Gilles Bourdos, director; 

Georgia, "In Bloom," Nana Ekvtimishvili and Simon Gross, directors; 

Germany, "Two Lives," Georg Maas, director; 

Greece, "Boy Eating the Bird’s Food," Ektoras Lygizos, director; 

Hong Kong, "The Grandmaster," Wong Kar-wai, director; 

Hungary, "The Notebook," Janos Szasz, director; 

Iceland, "Of Horses and Men," Benedikt Erlingsson, director; 

India, "The Good Road," Gyan Correa, director; 

Indonesia, "Sang Kiai," Rako Prijanto, director; 

Iran, "The Past," Asghar Farhadi, director; 

Israel, "Bethlehem," Yuval Adler, director; 

Italy, "The Great Beauty," Paolo Sorrentino, director; 

Japan, "The Great Passage," Ishii Yuya, director; 

Kazakhstan, "Shal," Yermek Tursunov, director; 

Latvia, "Mother, I Love You," Janis Nords, director; 

Lebanon, "Blind Intersections," Lara Saba, director; 

Lithuania, "Conversations on Serious Topics," Giedre Beinoriute, director; 

Luxembourg, "Blind Spot," Christophe Wagner, director; 

Mexico, "Heli," Amat Escalante, director; 

Moldova, "All God’s Children," Adrian Popovici, director; 

Montenegro, "Ace of Spades - Bad Destiny," Drasko Djurovic, director; 

Morocco, "Horses of God," Nabil Ayouch, director; 

Nepal, "Soongava: Dance of the Orchids," Subarna Thapa, director; 

Netherlands, "Borgman," Alex van Warmerdam, director; 

New Zealand, "White Lies," Dana Rotberg, director; 

Norway, "I Am Yours," Iram Haq, director; 

Pakistan, "Zinda Bhaag," Meenu Gaur and Farjad Nabi, directors; 

Palestine, "Omar," Hany Abu-Assad, director; 

Peru, "The Cleaner," Adrian Saba, director; 

Philippines, "Transit," Hannah Espia, director; 

Poland, "Walesa. Man of Hope," Andrzej Wajda, director; 

Portugal, "Lines of Wellington," Valeria Sarmiento, director; 

Romania, "Child’s Pose," Calin Peter Netzer, director; 

Russia, "Stalingrad," Fedor Bondarchuk, director; 

Saudi Arabia, "Wadjda," Haifaa Al Mansour, director; 

Serbia, "Circles," Srdan Golubovic, director; 

Singapore, "Ilo Ilo," Anthony Chen, director; 

Slovak Republic, "My Dog Killer," Mira Fornay, director; 

Slovenia, "Class Enemy," Rok Bicek, director; 

South Africa, "Four Corners," Ian Gabriel, director; 

South Korea, "Juvenile Offender," Kang Yi-kwan, director; 

Spain, "15 Years Plus a Day," Gracia Querejeta, director; 

Sweden, "Eat Sleep Die," Gabriela Pichler, director; 

Switzerland, "More than Honey," Markus Imhoof, director; 

Taiwan, "Soul," Chung Mong-Hong, director; 

Thailand, "Countdown," Nattawut Poonpiriya, director; 

Turkey, "The Butterfly’s Dream," Yilmaz Erdogan, director; 

Ukraine, "Paradjanov," Serge Avedikian and Olena Fetisova, directors; 

United Kingdom, "Metro Manila," Sean Ellis, director; 

Uruguay, "Anina," Alfredo Soderguit, director; 

Venezuela, "Breach in the Silence," Luis Alejandro Rodríguez and Andrés Eduardo Rodríguez, directors.


The final five for the 86th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Thursday, January 16, 2014, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater; the awards show will be telecast to more than 225 nations on March 2. 

This article is related to: Awards, Academy Awards, Awards


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.