Oscar 2017 Predictions: Will Venezuela get its First Oscar Nomination with Golden Lion winner 'From Afar'?
"From Afar" has been selected as Venezuela's official selection for the Academy Awards. Directed by Lorenzo Vigas, the film premiered at the Venice Film Festival where it went on to win the Golden Lion and made history by becoming the first Venezuelan film to win the honor. It also went on to become a festival favorite at the AFI and Toronto Films Festivals.
The film was later picked for distribution by Strand Releasing and was released in the U.S in the summer where it obtained a modest box office. This is one of Venezuela's strongest contenders in years and it may be propelled to the nomination if the Academy feels inclined to make history.
Venezuela has never been nominated for the Academy Award and only began to submit in 1978. The closest the country has ever come was in 2014 when "The Liberator" made the January shortlist but failed to get nominated. That film premiered at the Toronto Film Festival where it obtained distribution by Cohen Media Group.
Last year the country submitted the Berlin Film Festival hit "Gone with the River" but the film never really obtained the sufficient buzz.
Every year multiple countries submit films for to compete in the Foreign Language category. Last year Hungary took home the Oscar for "Son of Saul" by Laszlo Nemes and competed against 81 other countries.
The deadline for submissions is Oct. 3 with the Academy announcing a list of eligible films later that month. On Jan. 17the Academy will announce the nine finalists from among the eligible films. Nominations will be announced on Jan. 24and the winner will be announced at the Oscar ceremony on Feb. 26, 2017.