Nominations voting is from January 11-16, 2024, with official Oscar nominations announced January 23, 2024. Final voting is February 22-27, 2024. And finally, the 96th Oscars telecast will be broadcast on Sunday, March 10 and air live on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET/ 5:00 p.m. PT. We update predictions through awards season, so keep checking IndieWire for all our 2024 Oscar picks.
The State of the Race
Most early contenders in the race for the Best International Feature Film Oscar break out of film festivals. Of last year’s Oscar nominees, “The Quiet Girl” debuted in Berlin; “Close” and “EO” won prizes at Cannes, including the shared Grand Prix and Jury Prize, respectively; “Argentina 1985” premiered in Venice; and the eventual winner, “All Quiet on the Western Front,” debuted at Toronto.
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This year’s early field includes festival hits that have not yet been submitted by their individual countries. Since the award was created in 1956, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences invites each country’s film industry to submit their selection for the Academy Award for what is now called Best International Feature Film. For the 96th Academy Awards, the submitted motion pictures must first open in theaters in their respective countries between December 1, 2022, and October 31, 2023. The deadline for submissions to the Academy is October 2, 2023.
The movie must contain primarily non-English dialogue, which may be why France finally did not select Justine Triet’s “Anatomy of a Fall” (Neon), the Palme d’Or winner starring Sandra Huller, much of which is in English as well as French. The French submission is Vietnamese-born Tràn Anh Hùng’s period food drama “The Taste of Things” (originally “The Pot-Au-Feu”) starring Juliette Binoche, which took home the Cannes Best Director prize and is a delectable crowdpleaser on the festival circuit.
Sharing the Cannes runner-up Grand Jury Prize was British director Jonathan Glazer’s German-language holocaust film “The Zone of Interest” (A24), also starring Huller, which was submitted by the UK. Beating out Cannes Best Actor winner Wim Wenders’ “Perfect Days” was German entry “The Teacher’s Lounge” (Sony Pictures Classics), which debuted in Berlin and swept the German Film Awards. But Japan selected “Perfect Days,” despite its German director, as its Oscar contender.
Also playing the fall festivals is the Spanish submission, J.A. Bayona’s airplane crash survival saga “Society of the Snow” (Netflix), which played Venice. Matteo Garrone’s immigration drama “Io Capitano” (Italy) took home the Silver Lion in Venice, as well as a Best New Actor prize for Seydou Sarr. Not surprisingly, Aki Kaurismäki’s romantic comedy “Fallen Leaves,” which won the 2023 Cannes jury prize, was submitted by Finland.
Also hitting the fests is the Bhutan entry, Pawo Choyning Dorji’s second fiction feature, sales title “The Monk and the Gun,” which is a follow-up to his Oscar-nominated debut “Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom”; and Oscar-nominated “A Royal Affair” auteur Nicolaj Arcel’s “The Promised Land” (Magnolia Pictures), starring Mads Mikkelsen as a rugged veteran trying to tame the harsh Danish heath and pull himself up into the noble classes.
Contenders for the shortlist of 15 are listed in alphabetical order below. No film will be deemed a frontrunner until I have seen it. * titles have not been submitted by their country as yet.
“The Monk and the Gun” (Pawo Choyning Dorji, Bhutan)
“Perfect Days” (Wim Wenders, Japan)
“The Promised Land” (Nikolaj Arcel, Denmark)*
“The Taste of Things” (Tràn Anh Hùng, France)
“The Teachers’ Lounge” (İlker Çatak, Germany)
“The Zone of Interest” (Jonathan Glazer, UK)
“20 Days in Mariupol” (Mstyslav Chernov, Ukraine)
“About Dry Grasses” (Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Turkey)
“Americkats” (Michael A. Goorjian, Armenia)
“Autobiography” (Makbul Mubarak, Indonesia)
“Beyond the Haystacks” (Asimina Proedrou, Greece)
“Blaga’s Lessons” (Stephan Komandarev, Bulgaria)
“Brothers” (Tomáš Mašín, Czech Republic)
“The Burdened” (Amr Gamal, Yemen)
“Concrete Utopia” (Um Tae-hwa, South Korea)
“Do Not Expect Too Much from the End of the World” (Radu Jude, Romania)
“The Erection of Toribio Bardell” (Adrián Saba, Peru)
“Excursion” (Una Gunjak, Bosnia/Herzegovena)
“Fallen Leaves” (Aki Kaurismäki, Finland)
“Family Album” (Guillermo Rocamora, Uruguay)
“Four Daughters” (Kaouther Ben Hania, Tunisia)
“Four Souls of Coyote” (Áron Gauder, Hungary)
“Godland” (Hlynur Pálmason, Iceland)
“Halkara” (Bikram Sapkota, Nepal)
“Hanging Gardens” (Ahmed Yassin Al Daradji, Iraq)
“Io Capitano” (Matteo Garrone, Italy)
“The Last Ashes” (Toic Tanson, Luxembourg)
“Marry My Dead Body” (Cheng Wei-hao, Taiwan)
“Slow” (Marija Kavtaradze, Lithuania)
“A Male” (Fabián Hernández Alvarado, Colombia)
“Melody” (Behrouz Sebt Rasoul, Tajikistan)
“The Night Guardian” (Reza Mirkarimi, Iran)
“Omen” (Baloji, Belgium)
“Pictures of Ghosts” (Kleber Mendonça Filho, Brazil)
“Photophobia” (Ivan Ostrochovsky, Pavol Pekavcik, Slovakia)
“Riders” (Dominik Mencej, Slovenia)
“Rojek” (Zaynê Akyol, Canada)
“The Settlers” (Felipe Gálvez Haberle, Chile)
“Seven Blessings” (Ayelet Menahemi, Israel)
“Shayda” (Noora Niasari, Australia)
“Smoke Sauna Sisterhood” (Võro Anna Hints, Estonia)
“Society of the Snow” (J.A. Bayona, Spain)
“Sweet Dreams” (Ena Sendijarević, The Netherlands)
“This is What I Remember” (Aktan Abdykalykov, Kyrgyzstan)
“Thunder” (Carmen Jaquier, Switzerland)
“Traces” (Dubravka Turic, Croatia)
“The Visitor” (Martín Boulocq, Bolivia)
“Voy! Voy!” (Omar Hilal, Egypt)
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