The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announces nine films in the short list of Best Foreign Language Film nominees. Chosen among 76 entries around the world, the nine movies will later be cut down to five for the final nominations to be unveiled on January 16, 2014.
In the short list are the films from such countries as Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, Denmark, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Italy, and Palestine. One of the snubs is Saudi Arabia's "Wadjda" which won Best Foreign Language Film titles in several pre-Oscar film critics' awards.
Another surprising absentee is Iran's "The Past", a film directed by 2011 Foreign Language Oscar winner Asghar Farhadi. It won Cannes' Best Actress for Berenice Bejo. Both films are nominated for Golden Globe Awards and come from Sony Pictures Classics which got an Oscar last year with French's "Amour".
France fails to make it to the short list this year. Abdellatif Kechiche's "Blue Is the Warmest Color" could have been a strong candidate, but it was not eligible because it opened after the Academy's deadline date for foreign eligibility. So Gilles Bourdos' "Renoir" was submitted for the entry instead.
Short list of Best Foreign Language Nominees: