Foreign Language Film Issues 2013: Introduction (Part 1 of 5)

As has been the case in years past I will here look at some of the issues plaguing the Best Foreign Language Film nomination process at the Oscars. Since this year I am touching on a large array of interrelated topics I thought it best to post my thoughts in a weekly series.


The time has come again in the year when I look at the the Best Foreign Language submission process. As opposed to years past when I looked at the overall process and discussed pie-in-the-sky solutions here I’ll look at some more microcosmic issues that will illuminate some other issues with the process that need to be looked at; some of these issues will have been discussed prior but here are looked at under a different guise and others have not been discussed. This time I’ve not contacted as many people as I did in previous years but I did glean some insight and just want to get some issues mentioned. Every year, at least in the trades, this process is brought up so it’s one that even the Academy will admit is imperfect and constantly tweaked. A majority of the discussion highlighting what is not taken into consideration under current rules.

One Film Per Country

One of the key Oscar rules that, I have frequently hearkened back to, is one film per country submission policy. In the past I discussed the possibility of adding more viewers and a “merit-based” quota. This year aside from tossing out potential alternate systems I did want to discuss some of the things that create issues in the current system. This is one of the first and foremost offenders. And, yet again, I found new ways in which this can be limiting.

    To be continued