Published: 16/12/2016 | Edited: 14/01/2017
Norwegian director Erik Poppe’s historical epic, which had after last weekend sold 705,726 tickets in Norway, is among the nine candidates for the five nominations for Best Foreign-Language Feature
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Norwegian director Erik Poppe’s The King’s Choice (Kongens nei) – this year’s No 1 Norwegian film on the charts, with 705,726 admissions after last weekend – is among the top candidates for the Oscar nomination as Best Foreign-Language Feature, after the Oscar Committee yesterday (15 December) published its shortlist of nine films from 85 entries.
Another two Scandinavian films were shortlisted for the award – Danish director Martin Zandvliet’s Land of Mine and Swedish director Hannes Holm’s A Man Called Ove, which was co-produced with Norwegian Production Company Fantefilm– with Bentley, Dean-Martin Butler’s Tanna (Australia), Xavier Dolan’s It’s Only the End of the World (Canada), Maren Ade’s Toni Erdmann (Germany), Asghar Farhadi’s The Salesman (Iran), Andrei Konchalovsky’s Paradise (Russia) and Claude Barras’ My Life As A Zucchini (Switzerland).
Based on real events during WW2
Scripted by Norwegian writers Jan Trygve Røyneland and Harald Rosenløw Eeg, the film is set during Nazi Germany’s invasion of Norway in 1940. On these few days in April, King Haakon VII was faced with the Germans’ demand for capitulation, a passive government and a Crown Prince ready for action – when “the real events turned a brave man into the people’s King.” He refused.
Starring Danish actor Jesper Christensen as King Haakon VII and Norwegian actor Anders Baasmo Christiansen as Crown Prince Olav, with Tuva Novotny, Karl Markovics and Katharina Schuttler, The King’s Choice was produced by Finn Gjerdrum and Stein B Kvae, for Paradox. It was domestically released on 23 September by Nordisk Film Distribusjon and international sales is handled by Beta Film.
“The King’s Choice tells of a dramatic event for us as a nation, but also examines a part of history that affected large parts of the world. With its engaging themes and strong cinematic qualities, it is a strong and universal story about taking the right decisions under extreme conditions," said head of the Norwegian selection committee, CEO Sindre Guldvog, of the Norwegian Film Institute.
Reduce the shortlist to five titles
The US Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will reduce the shortlist to five titles, after selection committees in New York, Los Angeles and London have watched the films on 13-15 January, 2017, and publish the nominations on 24 January, 2017; the awards ceremony will take place on 26 February, 2017. Last year’s winner was Hungarian director László Nemes’ Son of Saul.