List of British submissions for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film

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The United Kingdom has submitted films for consideration for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film irregularly since 1991. The award is handed out annually by the United States Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to a feature-length motion picture produced outside the United States that contains primarily non-English dialogue.[1] The UK has one of the world's most visible film industries and British films, as well as British actors, actresses and behind-the-scenes crew members have been prominently featured amongst Oscar nominees since the 1930s. Most British features are not eligible for the Best Foreign Language Film, because they are produced in English.

As of 2017, the United Kingdom has submitted fifteen films for Oscar consideration, with two of them getting Oscar nominations. Most of these films were made by directors from or based in Wales, and were in partially or completely filmed in the Welsh language.

The British nominee is selected by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA).[2]


The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has invited the film industries of various countries to submit their best film for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film since 1956.[3] The Foreign Language Film Award Committee oversees the process and reviews all the submitted films. Following this, they vote via secret ballot to determine the five nominees for the award.[1] Below is a list of the films that have been submitted by the United Kingdom for review by the Academy for the award by year and the respective Academy Awards ceremony.

Film title Main Language(s) Director Result
Lost in Siberia Russian, English Mitta, AlexanderAlexander Mitta Not Nominated
Hedd Wyn Welsh Turner (director), PaulPaul Turner (director) Nominated
Branwen Welsh, Irish, English Sherlock, CeriCeri Sherlock Not Nominated
Cameleon Welsh Sherlock, CeriCeri Sherlock Not Nominated
Solomon and Gaenor Welsh, English Morrison (director), PaulPaul Morrison (director) Nominated
Do Not Go Gentle Welsh, English Williams, EmlynEmlyn Williams Not Nominated
Eldra Welsh, English Lyn, TimTim Lyn Not Nominated
Hope Eternal Bemba, English, Welsh
French, Afrikaans, Swahili
Francis, KarlKarl Francis Not Nominated
Afghan Star Dari, Pashto, English Marking, HavanaHavana Marking Not Nominated
Patagonia[4][5] Welsh, Spanish Evans, MarcMarc Evans Not Nominated
Metro Manila[6] Filipino Ellis, SeanSean Ellis Not Nominated
Little Happiness[7] Turkish Seven, NihatNihat Seven Not Nominated
Under Milk Wood[8] Welsh Kevin Allen Not Nominated
Under the Shadow[9] Persian Babak Anvari Not Nominated
My Pure Land[10] Urdu Sarmad Masud Not Nominated

Britain's initial Oscar submission- Lost in Siberia- was set in Russia, and focused on a British archaeologist imprisoned in a Soviet gulag.

All six British submissions between 1993 and 2002 were set in Wales. 2008's Hope Eternal is set in Southern Africa but made by a Welsh director.

In 2009, the UK submitted a documentary, and a film directed by a woman, for the first time with Afghan Star, about an American Idol-type talent competition in post-Taliban Afghanistan.

The 2011 submission Patagonia is set in Argentina and Wales.

The 2013 submission Metro Manila is set in the Philippines.

The 2014 submission Little Happiness is set in Turkey.

The 2016 submission Under the Shadow is set in Iran.

  • In 2002, BAFTA originally selected the Hindi language The Warrior as its Oscar submission but the film was controversially disqualified by AMPAS because the film did not take place in, nor was it filmed in a language indigenous to, the United Kingdom.[11] The rule was changed in 2005, and the first film to benefit was a Hindi-language film from Canada.
  • In 2007, BAFTA invited British filmmakers to submit films for consideration to represent the UK in the category. Two films responded to the call- Calon Gaeth, in Welsh and Seachd: The Inaccessible Pinnacle, one of the first films made in Scots Gaelic. For unknown reasons, BAFTA declined to submit either film. The ensuing controversy led to widespread coverage in the international press and producer Christopher Young resigning his membership of BAFTA. The matter was also raised in the Scottish Parliament [12] and BAFTA was asked to reconsider its decision, to no avail.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Rule Thirteen: Special Rules for the Foreign Language Film Award". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on 22 August 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "History of the Academy Awards — Page 2". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on 22 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-08. 
  4. ^ Dawtrey, Adam (2011-10-13). "U.K. enters 'Patagonia' for Oscars". Variety. Retrieved 2011-10-13. 
  5. ^ "63 Countries Vie for 2011 Foreign Language Film Oscar". Archived from the original on 21 May 2012. Retrieved 2011-10-14. 
  6. ^ "Oscars: U.K. Picks 'Metro Manila' as Foreign Language Nomination". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2013-09-19. 
  7. ^ "83 Countries In Competition For 2014 Foreign Language Film Oscar". AMPAS. Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  8. ^ "81 Countries In Competition For 2015 Foreign Language Film Oscar". AMPAS. 9 October 2015. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  9. ^ McNary, Dave (21 September 2016). "Iranian Horror Movie 'Under the Shadow' Selected as U.K. Foreign-Language Oscar Entry". Variety. Retrieved 22 September 2016. 
  10. ^ Roxborough, Scott (14 September 2017). "Oscars: U.K. Selects 'My Pure Land' for Foreign-Language Category". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 14 September 2017. 
  11. ^ "UK Hindi film causes Oscar trouble". BBC News. 2002-11-29. Retrieved 2008-09-28. 
  12. ^ Dawtrey, Adam (2007-10-04). "BAFTA attacked over Oscars". Variety. 

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