Norsk filminstitutt

Oscar 2023: The Norwegian Oscar committee presents the shortlist for Norway’s submission to the Academy Award for Best International Feature Film. Selected for the shortlist are Hisham Zaman’s drama A Happy Day, Ole Giæver’s drama Let the River Flow, and Margreth Olin’s documentary Songs of Earth.

A Happy Day, Songs of Earth and Let the River Flow

One of these three features will be selected on September 22nd to represent Norway in the Oscar competition for Best International Film.  
The 96th Academy Awards ceremony will take place on March 10, 2024. 

Here is the Norwegian Oscar Committee shortlist 

foto. to personer sitter med ryggen til kamera på en benk i et snødekt landskap. til høyre ved en lyktestolpe står en tredje person med ryggen til
From the film A Happy Day. Photo: Snowfall Cinema

A Happy Day

Three teenage friends are stuck in a freezing refugee camp in the remote north of Norway, waiting to be sent home on their 18th birthdays. Together, they come up with a plan to escape across the mountain to a world where their dreams can be fulfilled. But when one of them falls in love, their plan begins to unravel. 

DRAMA | 2023 | 113 MIN
ORIGINAL TITLE A Happy Day DIRECTOR Hisham Zaman SCREENWRITER Hisham Zaman CAST Salah Qadi, Ravand Ali Taha, Mohamed Salah, Sarah Aman Mentzoni, Hilde Skovdahl, Aryan Pezeshki, Thea Sofie Loch Næss, Stig Frode Henriksen, Anja Saiva Bongo Bjørnstad PRODUCTION Hisham Zaman for Snowfall Cinema DOMESTIC RELEASE October 20, 2023 SALES REinvent FESTIVALS Norwegian Film Institute 

Let the River Flow

ELLOS EATNU-LA ELVA LEVE  - foto Mer Film[29].jpg
From the film Let the River Flow. Photo: Mer Film AS

Drama feature depicting the Sámi struggle for territory in the late 1970s, when the Norwegian government decided to build a power plant across the Alta river, displacing the Sámi population. Ester, a young women ashamed of her Sámi roots, must embrace her heritage to help fight for the rights of her people. 

DRAMA | 2023 | 120 MIN 
ORIGINAL TITLE Ellos eatnu - La elva leve DIRECTOR Ole Giæver SCREENWRITER Ole Giæver CAST Ella Marie Hætta Isaksen, Gard Emil, Sofia Jannok, Beaska Niillas, Marie Kvernmo PRODUCTION Maria Ekerhovd for Mer Film DOMESTIC RELEASE February 3, 2023 SALES Beta Cinema FESTIVALS Norwegian Film Institute 

Songs of Earth

From the film Songs of Earth. Photo: Speranza Film

With Olin's 85-year-old father as a guide, we experience the scenic valley Oldedalen in Nordfjord, Norway. This is where he grew up and where generations before him have lived in harmony with nature. Majestic images of wild mountains, calving glaciers, and bustling wildlife go side by side with the parents' stories about the generations who trod the trails, our relationship with nature, and what we value in life. The music is composed of unique sound recordings – nature's own melodies, translated and performed by the London Contemporary Orchestra.  

DOCUMENTARY | 2023 | 90 MIN 
ORIGINAL TITLE Fedrelandet DIRECTOR Margreth Olin PRODUCTION Margreth Olin and Lena Faye-Lund for Speranza Film CO-PRODUCTION BBC Storyville (UK) EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS Liv Ullmann and Wim Wenders DOMESTIC RELEASE September 1, 2023 SALES Cinephil FESTIVALS Cinephil  

Norwegian Oscar Committee 2023

The Norwegian Oscar Committee, consisting of seven representatives from the Norwegian film industry and headed by Norwegian Film Institute’s CEO Kjersti Mo. 

  • Norwegian Film Institute: Kjersti Mo, CEO 
  • Norwegian Film Critics Association: Øyvor Dalan Vik, Film Critic 
  • Norwegian Actors’ Union: Jan Erik Madsen, actor 
  • Norwegian Film Directors Association: Maria Sødahl, director 
  • Virke, Norwegian Producers Association: Christian Fredrik Martin, producer 
  • Writers’ Guild of Norway: Mette M. Bølstad, screenwriter 
  • Norwegian Film Workers Union: Bobbie E.G. Pertan, editor

Previous Norwegian nominees for Best International Feature

  • The Worst Person in the World (Verdens verste menneske, 2022) 
  • Kon-Tiki (2013) 
  • Elling (2001) 
  • The Other Side of Sunday (Søndagsengler, 1996) 
  • The Pathfinder (Veiviseren, 1987)  
  • Nine Lives (Ni Liv, 1957)

The King's Choice (Kongens nei) was on the Academy shortlist in 2016 and Hope (Håp) was on the shortlist in 2021.