Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

'Wadjda' Selected as Saudi Arabia's Foreign-Language Oscar Entry (TRAILER)

Photo of Beth Hanna By Beth Hanna | Thompson on Hollywood September 13, 2013 at 11:43AM

"Wadjda," which hits theaters stateside today, has been selected as Saudi Arabia's official entry for the Foreign-Language Oscar. Directed by Haifaa Al Mansour, the film is both the first to be made inside the Kindgom of Saudi Arabia, and the first to be made by a woman filmmaker.
0
'Wadjda'
'Wadjda'

"Wadjda," which hits theaters stateside today, has been selected as Saudi Arabia's official entry for the Foreign-Language Oscar. Directed by Haifaa Al Mansour, the film is both the first to be made inside the Kindgom of Saudi Arabia, and the first to be made by a woman filmmaker.

Haifaa Al Mansour at the 2012 Venice International Film Festival
Haifaa Al Mansour at the 2012 Venice International Film Festival

The film centers on a young girl, Wadjda (played by Waad Mohammed), who dreams of owning a bicycle. Even though riding bikes is frowned upon for women in Wadjda's culture, she hatches various schemes to raise the money, including entering a Koran recital competition with a cash prize. Meanwhile, Wadjda's mother deals the with the pressure of her husband considering a second wife.

The film debuted in Venice last year and has been a hit on the festival circuit since. Sony Pictures Classics is its stateside distributor.

Check out our TOH! interview with director Haifaa Al Mansour here.

The five nominations will be announced January 16; the Oscars will take place on March 2, 2014.

This article is related to: Awards, Academy Awards, Awards, Wadjda , Haifaa al Mansour, Sony Pictures Classics, Trailers


E-Mail Updates








Thompson on Hollywood

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.