India’s official entry to Oscars 2018, Malayalam film ‘2018’, knocked out of Oscar race

The Malayalam film ‘2018: Everyone Is A Hero’, which was selected as India’s official entry for the Oscars in the Best International Feature Film category, has failed to make it to the final shortlist of the 96th Academy Awards. The film, directed by Jude Anthany Joseph and featuring an ensemble cast of Tovino Thomas, Kunchacko Boban, Indrans, Asif Ali, Tanvi Ram, and Aparna Balamurali, among others, was a survival drama set against the backdrop of the devastating 2018 floods in Kerala. The film was a tribute to the heroes who saved lives during the calamity and also highlighted the global issue of climate change and its impact on the environment and humanity.

The film was chosen by the Film Federation of India (FFI) as the country’s official entry to the Oscars from among 26 entries, including films like ‘The Disciple’, ‘Sherni’, ‘The Great Indian Kitchen’, and ‘Pinki Elli?’. The FFI selection committee, headed by filmmaker Girish Kasaravalli, announced the decision in Chennai on September 28, 2023. The committee praised the film for its technical excellence and its approach to storytelling, and said that it was a film that resonated with audiences across the world.

However, the film could not make the cut in the final list of 15 films that will advance to the next round of voting for the Oscars.

The director of ‘2018’, Jude Anthany Joseph, expressed his disappointment over the film’s exclusion from the Oscar race, but also thanked the FFI and the audience for their support and appreciation. He said that he was proud of his film and his team, and that he hoped that the film would inspire more people to take action against climate change and help those in need. He also congratulated the other films that made it to the shortlist and wished them luck for the Oscars.

‘2018’ is only the fourth Malayalam film after ‘Guru’ (1997), ‘Adaminte Makan Abu’ (2011) and ‘Jallikattu’ (2019) to be picked as India’s official submission for the Academy Awards. As of 2023, India has sent a total of 56 films to the competition, out of which only three films – ‘Mother India’ (1957), ‘Salaam Bombay!’ (1988) and ‘Lagaan’ (2001) – have been nominated for the award. India has never won an Oscar in this category1234

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