Oscars 2016 Predictions: Venezuela Submits 'Gone with the River'; Austria Submits Radius TWC's 'Goodnight Mommy'
Venezuela has submitted "Gone with the River" to represent the country at the Academy Awards.
The country is the third Latin American country to submit. The new film is another strong selection for Venezuela, which made the shortlist last year with "The Liberator." "Gone with the River" premiered at the Berlin Film Festival, where it scored rave reviews and played in the indigenous cinema sidebar.
Venezuela has never been nominated for the Oscars, but this selection could very well get it the first nomination. The Academy is always more responsive to films that premiere at big festivals such as Cannes, Berlin, Toronto and Venice.
Venezuela's announcement came alongside Austria, who will submit the Radius TWC film "Goodnight Mommy." The film played last year at the Venice Film Festival and also played in the Vanguard sidebar at Toronto.
Reviews are fairly positive and it holds a 75 percent aggregate score on Rotten Tomatoes. It also has the advantage that it will be released in the U.S next weekend. If the film has a good box office, it is likely that the Academy will take notice. The film will also qualify for other awards since it will be released this year.
Austria has been present at the Academy for many years, and recently won in 2012 and 2007 for the films "Amour" and "The Counterfeiters." It will be interesting, though, how the Academy responds to a genre film this year.
Meanwhile South Korea submitted "The Throne." The historical period film was selected by the Korean film council. The film has not been widely seen worldwide and this could affect its chances. The country has yet to be nominated for the Oscars even though it has submitted regularly since 1962.
Norway selected "The Wave," a film that had its world premiere at the Haugesund Film Festival and is slated for Toronto and London Film Festivals. The film also stars the renowned actor Kristoffer Joner, who is best known for "King's of Devil Island" and "Next Door."
While Norway has never won a single Oscar, this year they have a possibility of getting nominated, especially if the film breaks out at these festivals.
The country was last nominated for "Kon-Tiki" and was also nominated for the films "Elling" and "The Other Side of Sunday."
Greece also sent a promising candidate in the 2014 Un Certain Regard candidate "Xenia." The LGBT film has travelled all over the world and has won numerous awards. The film is the country's most exciting candidate since the 2010 nominee "Dogtooth," which was beloved by the country.
While Greece has never won an Academy Award, "Xenia" could be the next nominated film from the country.
With 20 countries already having submitted, a number of countries are still missing, including Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Italy and France. Hungary is still the top country to beat for its film "Son of Saul," which premiered at the Cannes Film festival and won the Grand Jury Prize.
Other big contenders include "Aferim!" from Romania and Germany's "Labyrinth of Lies."
The deadline to submit entries for the foreign-language race is Oct. 1. The nominations for the Academy Awards will be announced Jan. 14, and the Oscar ceremony takes place Feb. 28 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.