The 96th Academy Awards will proceed to the next round of voting with 15 films selected from each category, and the ultimate nominations are set to be announced on January 23, 2024.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced the shortlists for the 96th Oscars in 10 categories, showcasing a diverse range of cinematic achievements. Notable categories include Best Original Song, Documentary Feature, International Feature, Original Score, and craft categories such as Hair and Makeup, Visual Effects, and Sound.
In a momentous achievement for Tunisia, the production Four Daughters by Kaouther Ben Hania secured a spot on the shortlists in both the Documentary and International Feature categories. Similarly, the Middle Eastern region saw The Mother of All Lies, directed by Asmae El Moudir, making the shortlist for the International Feature category.
The film, an ambitious exploration of rebellion, memory, and sisterhood, reconstructs the intricate story of Olfa Hamrouni and her daughters in Tunisia. Directed by Kaouther Ben Hania, the film weaves together intimate interviews, reenactments, and confessions to delve into the complexities of a family history marked by radicalisation and disappearance.
Four Daughters is produced by Tanit Films in association with Cinetelefilms and Twenty Twenty in co-production with Red Sea Film Festival Foundation, ZDF/Arte, and Jour2Fête. The film is produced by Nadim Cheikhrouha in association with Habib Attia and Thanassis Karathanos.
The Mother Of All Lies recently premiered in Un Certain Regard at Cannes, earning the section’s best director prize. It is a hybrid documentary influenced by the historic bread riots that transpired in El Moudir’s hometown of Casablanca in 1981.
In The Mother of All Lies, El Moudir explores her family’s history and the stories and lies told surrounding the upheaval and violence of the 1981 Bread Riots in Casablanca. With no archive footage or even photographs, to draw on, she painstakingly recreates, from memory, her family’s old apartment and the old Casablanca neighbourhood in the form of a miniature set on a soundstage, with figurines to represent her family members.
The film is directed, written, produced and edited by El Moudir. Egypt’s Marc Lotfy contributed as a co-producer through his Fig Leaf Studios company.
Among the 15 international features advancing to the next stage are noteworthy films such as Jonathan Glazer’s The Zone of Interest (UK), Tran Anh Hung’s The Taste of Things (France), Lila Aviles’s Totem (Mexico), and Aki Kaurismaki’s Fallen Leaves (Finland).
The documentary Last Song from Kabul earned a spot on the shortlist for Documentary Short Films.
Films by directors Greta Gerwig (Barbie), Christopher Nolan (Oppenheimer), and Martin Scorsese (Killers of the Flower Moon) emerged prominently among the finalists in multiple categories, including Score and Sound.
The anticipation builds as final nominations in all categories are set to be announced on January 23. The 96th Oscars ceremony, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, is scheduled for March 10, 2024.