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Have any other foreign films been “Lust, Caution’d” in the past?

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  • Münster
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    #107109

    For some reason the Lust, Caution shutout came across my mind just now, so I looked it up to revive my faded memory on why exactly it was disqualified as a submission for Taiwan. Here’s what I found:

    ‘The film was disqualified because the rules require that creative talent from the submitting nation head up at least a few of the key areas beyond producer/director/writer,’ Academy spokeswoman Leslie Unger clarified. ‘The cinematographer, editor, composer, production designer, costume designer, sound mixer and the principal cast members [of Lust, Caution] were all non-Taiwanese.’

    Academy Executive Director Bruce Davis said the situation was a clear-cut case of the film not meeting Oscar rules. ‘We certainly agree with Mr. Schamus that Ang Lee is a ‘world-class director making a film in a foreign language,’ but [b]we’re not as clear about how a film set in mainland China and Hong Kong is ‘expressing the quintessence and height of a culture,’ if by that he means Taiwanese culture[/b],’ Davis said in a statement to ScreenDaily.com.

    Given the very fact that quite a few films that were neither set in the territory which submitted it nor featured any characters from the territory have won the award – Mr. Lee’s very own CTHD comes to mind, as well the most recent winner Amour which, in addition, did not even have a single word spoken in Austria’s native language – the bolded part sounds more like an arrogant political statement than a reasonable explanation for academy’s decision. This BS-ness of this statement doesn’t necessarily cancel out the credibility of the clarification in the first paragraph, but it certainly does make the whole situation seem a bit sketchy.

    But let’s the put the sketchy part aside for a moment. The first paragraph sounds reasonable enough, but I’ll only buy it if it’s proved that either A) no FLF entries have ever been in a similar situation before, or B) there have been other FLF entries in the same situation and they were subsequently disqualified in accordance to this rule, which I haven’t been able to find any.

    So my question is, is anybody here able to prove either of the scenarios? Many thanks in advance.

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    Münster
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    #107111

    Fixed the mess. Not a very mobile-friendly site is it.

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    Scottferguson
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    #107112

    It is another example of the sheer idiocy of the current system, which submits art as a product of a political entity, which is contrary to what should be the consideration. And that doesn’t even get into the politics in each country which often means the best film doesn’t have a chance to be submitted.

    I think the Academy has done some tinkering so that it might now be eligible. I know that Sony Classics believes that Iran (as well as France – not both, but one) could submit The Past because the director is Iranian, despite the film being otherwise French.

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    Riley
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    #107113

    Dumb!

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    Münster
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    #107114

    Still hoping for more participation, so bump.

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    Scottferguson
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    #107115

    The answer is the Academy addressed the issues you raised after Lust Caution.
    The rule use to be a film submitted had to be in the language of that country and most elements as well had to be from there. It has been relaxed, in part because of situations like Lust Caution.
    The whole category is a mess. Separately, for me it was no big loss that the mediocre Lust Caution didn’t contend.

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    Jose Manuel Garcia
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    #107116

    I think all it comes from 1992. An argentinian film “Un Lugar en el Mundo/ A place in the world” wasnt selected for the oscars.

     A Place in the World, which was registered for the Golden Globes as an entry from Argentina alone, was originally submitted in the fall of 1992 to Argentina‘s Oscar selection committee as a possible contender. However, the committee chose (by one vote) to submit The Dark Side of the Heart instead.[4] A Place in the World’s director Adolfo Aristarain then asked Antonio Mercader,Uruguay‘s Minister of Education and Culture, to submit the film as a Uruguayan entry. After the minister refused, Aristarain took the matter to Manuel Martinez Carril, director of the Cinematheque of Uruguay, who agreed to sponsor the film for submission to the Academy’s foreign-language film committee.[4]

    When the nominations were announced by the Academy on February 17, 1993, A Place in the World was initially included among the five nominees, and was presented as a Uruguayan submission.[5] However, a week later, the Academy launched an investigation after it was revealed that the film was almost entirely Argentine with minimal input from Uruguayan artists.[4] It was disqualified three days later, with the Academy saying it was essentially an Argentine production and that this violated the Academy’s rules which require that there be “substantial filmmaking input from the country that submits the film”.[6] This was only the second time in the Academy’s history that a film was disqualified after being nominated, the previous case being that of the documentary Young Americans (1967), which had won the Academy Award for Documentary Feature but was later ruled ineligible after it was revealed that it had opened theatrically prior to the Academy’s eligibility period.[6] The disqualification of A Place in the World was all the more unusual as the Academy decided not to replace it with another film, leaving only four films in competition.[6]

    Aristarain, who argued that the film was an international co-production between Uruguay and Argentina, contested the Academy’s decision, and filed suit in the United States District Court for the Central District of California on March 4.[7] Aristarain cited the precedents set by Black and White in Color (1976), Le Bal (1983) and Dangerous Moves (1984), all of which were French productions but which were submitted, respectively, by Ivory CoastAlgeria and Switzerland.[8] After the judge determined that, while Academy procedures may have been lax, the organization had essentially followed its rules, Aristarain decided not to take the case to appeal, as ballots were already being mailed to voters and the awards ceremony was about to take place.[9]

    Because of the controversy surrounding A Place in the World’s disqualification, the Academy adopted in the summer of 1993 new guidelines aimed at clarifying its eligibility rules for the Foreign Language Film category, and especially at making more specific the role played by each crew member.[10] It is also worth mentioning that in its November 2001 press release listing the foreign language submissions to the 74th Academy Awards, the Academy announced that a film from Uruguay (In This Tricky Life) had “qualified this year for the first time”, thereby omitting any mention of A Place in the World.[11]

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    Scottferguson
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    #107117

    Again, they’ve made major rules chances since then, so that situation no longer applies.

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    Jose Manuel Garcia
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    #107118

    Haneke had a similar problem some years before with “Cached”. It was selected by the french committee but it had to be dropped caused it was not enought french… funny cause it was everyone but haneke french. Therefore, he learnt his lesson and last year he submitted by Austria.

    For instance, some years ago, it was something funny. Spain submitted as entry “Y tambien la lluvia” a film settle in Bolivia, with mostly crew from south America whereas Mexico submitted “Biutiful”. A spanish-mexican co-production. Most of the crew were spanish.

    I am all against the rule one country one film… it should be any film who is realised in the states in a foreign language should be able to get a nomination. An the award should go to the director/productors of the film as they did in 1956. 

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    Scottferguson
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    #107119

    That was a French rule, not Academy. The French committee prefers to submit a film with a French director (reason # 1045 why this idiotic system needs to be scrapped).

    This will come up again this year when The Past – clearly eligible under Academy rules –  should be the main contender for submission. And with Blue Is the Warmest Color not eligible until next year (because it opens in France too late this year) there is at this point no obvious alternative. If France submits The Past, the Academy will accept it. If Iran does, despite it being a French film, because the director is Iranian it will be accepted. In the past, that might not have happened (particularly the later), but again, the Academy has relaxed the rules greatly. 

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    Jose Manuel Garcia
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    #107120

    I think academy should fix this cathegory. For instance, “Blancanieves” was a silent movie and it was able to compete in a foreign language movie…. that it buffles me. 

    And one more issue, they let countries like Australia (who has no other official language), Uk (ok, they have welsh and scottish) to take part in the oscars but none film from the States may qualify for this. I am talking about “Letters from Iwo Jima” or any of Gibson´s movie.

     

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    Scottferguson
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    #107121

    The award needs to be for the best foreign language film released in the US during the calendar year, like every other category.

    It would need some careful work, but a committee of foreigners in the Academy should select a list of 50-60 films that have played in multiple cities (to eliminate 1 week bookings), then have the existing committee screen them, have an executive committee flesh out the list to 9 as they do now, then another committee select the final five, again as they do now. Forget countries having anything to do with it – if two French films, or two Spanish films make it in, fine. There is no rule that say Weinstein can have only one nominee per category, is there? That’s basically the same thing. 

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    Jose Manuel Garcia
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    #107122

    The award needs to be for the best foreign language film released in the US during the calendar year, like every other category.

    It would need some careful work, but a committee of foreigners in the Academy should select a list of 50-60 films that have played in multiple cities (to eliminate 1 week bookings), then have the existing committee screen them, have an executive committee flesh out the list to 9 as they do now, then another committee select the final five, again as they do now. Forget countries having anything to do with it – if two French films, or two Spanish films make it in, fine. There is no rule that say Weinstein can have only one nominee per category, is there? That’s basically the same thing. 

    Agree 

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    outsider
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    #107123

    Haneke had a similar problem some years before with “Cached”. It was selected by the french committee but it had to be dropped caused it was not enought french… funny cause it was everyone but haneke french. Therefore, he learnt his lesson and last year he submitted by Austria.

    I don’t know about France wanting to submit it, but I remember reading that Austria wanted to and wasn’t allowed because the film was in French which was not the country’s official language.

    The Academy revised the rules in the following years, so now a country can submit a film in any language (other than English, of course), even if it’s not actually an official language of the country.

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