List of submissions to the 75th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film
The following 54 films, all from different countries, were submitted for the 75th Academy Awards in the category Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film (release at the country of origin November 1, 2001 – October 31, 2002, ceremony March 2003). The bolded titles were the five nominated films.
Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Chad submitted films for the first time.
The announcement of the submitted films was delayed when the Academy was presented with four films that did not quite conform to the rules, as written:
- Hong Kong elected to send an action film (The Touch) that was completely in English.
- Afghanistan, which had been liberated from Taliban rule only a year before, submitted their first-ever film for consideration. The movie, about Afghan-Americans, was filmed mostly in English, but partially in Dari. When the film was shown in Afghanistan, it was entirely dubbed into Dari and it was this version that was sent to the Oscars.
- The United Kingdom sent The Warrior, a British-produced film set in India, spoken entirely in Hindi, and filmed by Asif Kapadia, a British director of Indian descent.
- Most controversially, Palestine tried to submit Divine Intervention, forcing the apolitical Academy to make a decision about whether it would accept Palestine as a country.
The film from Hong Kong was quickly eliminated, but the film from Afghanistan (whose director had been brutally murdered before post-production was finished) was accepted.
The United Kingdom was asked to submit another film since AMPAS rules stated that all films had to be in a language indigenous to the submitting country. "The Warrior" was not acceptable, AMPAS argued, because Hindi was not a language indigenous to the United Kingdom, and the film was not about, nor set among British people. Had the film been set among the Hindi-speaking community in the UK, it would have been approved. BAFTA appealed to the Academy to reconsider, but to no avail. Ironically, the film won Best British Film at the BAFTA awards the following year. Britain ended up choosing Eldra, a film in Welsh. In 2006, AMPAS changed the rules to allow countries to choose films which were not in the language of the submitting country. Canada was the first to take advantage of this new rule by submitting Water, which was also in Hindi.
AMPAS determined that Palestine was not a country, and therefore could not submit a film. They also said that there had been no "national selection committee" that chose Divine Intervention, as required by the rules. It was also unclear how the film would be released in its home country according to the rules, since Palestine had no internationally recognized boundaries. This decision was much criticized, especially since countries like Taiwan, Puerto Rico and Hong Kong, none of which recognized as sovereign nations by the United Nations, had been submitting movies for years. AMPAS reversed its decision the following year, and allowed Divine Intervention to compete.
The previous year's winner Bosnia & Herzegovina did not submit a film. The Islamic world was better represented in this category than any previous year on record, with ten films in competition, not including Divine Intervention.
The Brazilian submission, City of God was considered as one of the favorites, but it did not receive a nomination in the Best Foreign Film category. When the film was released the following year in the USA, it garnered nominations in four mainstream categories including Best Screenplay and Best Director. Ironically, if the film had been nominated in the Best Foreign Film category, it would have been ineligible for all the mainstream awards the following year because you cannot receive Oscar nominations in two different ceremonies.
|Submitting country||Film title used in nomination||Original title||Language(s)||Director(s)||Result|
|Afghanistan||FireDancer||FireDancer||Pashto, English||Jawed Wassel||Not Nominated|
|Algeria||Rachida||Rachida||French, Arabic||Yamina Bachir-Chouikh||Not Nominated|
|Argentina||Kamchatka||Kamchatka||Spanish||Marcelo Piñeyro||Not Nominated|
|Austria||Gebürtig||Gebürtig||German||Robert Schindel and Lukas Stepanik||Not Nominated|
|Bangladesh||The Clay Bird||মাটির ময়না||Bengali||Tareque Masud||Not Nominated|
|Belgium||The Son||Le Fils||French||Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne||Not Nominated|
|Brazil||City of God||Cidade de Deus||Portuguese||Fernando Meirelles||Not Nominated|
|Bulgaria||Warming Up Yesterday's Lunch||Подгряване на вчерашния обед||Bulgarian||Kostadin Bonev||Not Nominated|
|Canada||Un crabe dans la tête||Un crabe dans la tête||French||André Turpin||Not Nominated|
|Chad||Abouna||Abouna||Chadian Arabic, French||Mahamat Saleh Haroun||Not Nominated|
|Chile||Ogú y Mampato en Rapa Nui||Ogú y Mampato en Rapa Nui||Spanish||Alejandro Rojas||Not Nominated|
|China||Hero||英雄||Mandarin Chinese||Zhang Yimou||Nominated|
|Colombia||The Invisible Children||Los Niños invisibles||Spanish||Lisandro Duque Naranjo||Not Nominated|
|Croatia||Fine Dead Girls||Fine mrtve djevojke||Croatian||Dalibor Matanić||Not Nominated|
|Cuba||Nothing More||Nada||Spanish||Juan Carlos Cremata||Not Nominated|
|Czech Republic||The Wild Bees||Divoké vcely||Czech||Bohdan Sláma||Not Nominated|
|Denmark||Open Hearts||Elsker dig for evigt||Danish||Susanne Bier||Not Nominated|
|Egypt||The Secret of the Young Girl||أسرار البنات||Arabic||Magdy Ahmed Aly||Not Nominated|
|Finland||The Man Without a Past||Mies vailla menneisyyttä||Finnish||Aki Kaurismaki||Nominated|
|France||8 Femmes||8 femmes||French||François Ozon||Not Nominated|
|Germany||Nowhere in Africa||Nirgendwo in Afrika||German, Swahili||Caroline Link||Won Academy Award|
|Greece||The Only Journey of His Life||Το μόνον της ζωής του ταξείδιον||Greek||Lakis Papastathis||Not Nominated|
|Hong Kong||The Touch||天脈傳奇||English||Peter Pau||Disqualified|
|Hungary||Hukkle||Hukkle||Hungarian||György Pálfi||Not Nominated|
|Iceland||The Sea||Hafið||Icelandic||Baltasar Kormákur||Not Nominated|
|India||Devdas||देवदास||Hindi||Sanjay Leela Bhansail||Not Nominated|
|Indonesia||Ca-bau-kan||Ca-bau-kan||Indonesian||Nia diNata||Not Nominated|
|Iran||I'm Taraneh, 15||من ترانه 15 سال دارم||Persian||Rasul Sadrameli||Not Nominated|
|Israel||Broken Wings||כנפיים שבורות||Hebrew||Nir Bergman||Not Nominated|
|Italy||Pinocchio||Pinocchio||Italian||Roberto Benigni||Not Nominated|
|Japan||Out||OUT||Japanese||Hideyuki Hirayama||Not Nominated|
|South Korea||Oasis||오아시스||Korean||Lee Chang-dong||Not Nominated|
|Lebanon||When Maryam Spoke Out||لمّا حكيت مريم||Arabic||mAssad Fouladkar||Not Nominated|
|Luxembourg||Petites misères||Petites misères||French||Laurent Brandenburger & Philippe Boon||Not Nominated|
|Mexico||The Crime of Padre Amaro||El crimen del Padre Amaro||Spanish||Carlos Carrera||Nominated|
|Netherlands||Zus & Zo||Zus & Zo||Dutch||Paula van der Oest||Nominated|
|Norway||Hold My Heart||Tyven, tyven||Norwegian||Trygve Allister Diesen||Not Nominated|
|Philippines||Small Voices||Mga Munting tinig||Tagalog||Gil M. Portes||Not Nominated|
|Poland||Edi||Edi||Polish||Piotr Trzaskalski||Not Nominated|
|Portugal||O Delfim||O Delfim||Portuguese||Fernando Lopes||Not Nominated|
|Romania||Philanthropy||Filantropica||Romanian||Nae Caranfil||Not Nominated|
|Russia||House of Fools||Дом дураков||Russian, Chechen||Andrei Konchalovsky||Not Nominated|
|Slovakia||Cruel Joys||Kruté radosti||Slovak||Juraj Nvota||Not Nominated|
|Slovenia||Headnoise||Zvenenje v glavi||Slovene||Andrej Košak||Not Nominated|
|Spain||Mondays in the Sun||Los lunes al sol||Spanish||Fernando Leon de Aranoa||Not Nominated|
|Sweden||Lilja 4-ever||Lilja 4-ever||Swedish, Russian||Lukas Moodysson||Not Nominated|
|Switzerland||Aime ton père||Aime ton père||French||Jacob Berger||Not Nominated|
|Taiwan||The Best of Times||美麗時光||Taiwanese, Mandarin Chinese, Hakka||Chang Tso-chi||Not Nominated|
|Thailand||Monrak Transistor||มนต์รักทรานซิสเตอร์||Thai||Pen-ek Ratanaruang||Not Nominated|
|Tunisia||The Magic Box||La Boîte magique||French, Arabic||Rida Behi||Not Nominated|
|Turkey||9||Dokuz||Turkish||Ümit Ünal||Not Nominated|
|United Kingdom||Eldra||Eldra||Welsh||Tim Lyn||Not Nominated|
|Uruguay||Corazon de Fuego||El Último tren||Spanish||Diego Arsuaga||Not Nominated|
|Venezuela||The Archangel's Feather||La Pluma del arcángel||Spanish||Luis Manzo||Not Nominated|
|Yugoslavia||Labyrinth||Лавиринт||Serbian||Miroslav Lekic||Not Nominated|
- the film was disqualified because the dialogue was completely in English, and not in a Foreign Language
- The United Kingdom originally selected The Warrior, which was not accepted by the Academy
"Record-Breaking 54 Countries in Competition for Oscar" (Press release). Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. 2002-12-02. Retrieved 2008-08-22.