Riahi wants to bring Freedom to America
While Germany has chosen European co-production The White Ribbon [+see also:
interview: Michael Haneke
film profile], by Austrian director Michael Haneke, as its representative in the Oscar nomination race, the Austrian committee in charge of selecting a Best Foreign Language Film hopeful has opted for Arash T. Riahi’s debut feature For a Moment, Freedom [+see also:
The film was produced by Wega Film in co-production with French company Les Films du Losange and with backing from the Austrian Film Institute, ORF (Austrian Radio and Television), the Vienna Film Fund and Lower Austria province.
It tells the story of some young Iranians who cross the Turkish border and end up in Ankara, like so many other refugees, waiting for a European visa. Different fates await all these migrants.
The committee was won over by the subtle way in which the characters’ paths cross and the director combines tragic and moving moments with touches of comedy, creating an original film language, which also expresses the cultural diversity of Austrian cinema.
After its international premiere at last year’s Montreal Film Festival, where it won the Golden Zenith, For a Moment, Freedom picked up honours at many other events across the world, including the Viennale (Best Film Award), the Zurich Festival (Golden Eye), the Max Ophüls festival (two prizes) and the Lecce European Film Festival (Audience Award and Special Jury Prize). Filmladen released the title in Austrian theatres on January 9, 2009.
The Oscar nominees will be announced on February 2, 2010. The awards ceremony will be held in Los Angeles on March 7.
(Translated from French)
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