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Foreign Finalists Selected for 2009 Student Academy Award®


Beverly Hills, CA — Five finalists, selected from a record 57 entries representing 39 foreign countries, will compete for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ 2009 Honorary Foreign Film award in the 36th Annual Student Academy Awards® competition. The winning student filmmaker will be brought to Los Angeles to join U.S.-based Student Academy Award winners for a week of industry-related activities and social events that will culminate in the awards ceremony on Saturday, June 13 in Beverly Hills.

The finalists are (listed alphabetically by film title):

* “Elkland,” Per Hanefjord, Dramatiska Institutet, Sweden
* “Face-to-Face Confrontation,” Igor Khomsky, Gerasimov Institute of Cinematography, Russia
* “The Incredible Story of My Great Grandmother Olive,” Alberto Rodreguz, National Film and Television School, United Kingdom
* “Our Wonderful Nature,” Tomer Eshed, HFF Potsdam-Babelsberg, Germany
* “Pinhas,” Pini Tavger, Tel Aviv University, Israel

Several past winners in the Honorary Foreign Film competition have gone on to earn further recognition by the Academy. Last year’s winner, Reto Caffi, received a nomination in the Live Action Short Film category for his film ”Auf der Streke (On the Line)” at the 81st Academy Awards this past February. In 2005, at the 78th Academy Awards, student winner Ulrike Grote’s “Ausreisser (The Runaway)” was nominated in the Live Action Short Film category. At the 75th Academy Awards, student winner Martin Strange-Hansen of Denmark won the Oscar® in the Live Action Short Film category for “This Charming Man (Der Er Eu Yudig Mand).” He had won the Honorary Foreign Film award that same year (2002) with “Feeding Desire.” In 2000 Florian Gallenberger of Germany won both the Honorary Foreign Film award and the Oscar in the Live Action Short Film category with “Quiero Ser (I Want to be…).” Two other previous winners, Jan Sverak, who was a student in the former Czechoslovakia, and Mike van Diem of The Netherlands, have gone on to direct films that won Oscars® in the Foreign Language Film category.

Tickets for the 36th Annual Student Academy Awards ceremony, at which the Honorary Foreign Film and the Gold Medal award-winning films from the U.S. will be screened in their entirety, are free and available now. A maximum of four tickets may be requested online at, in person at the Academy box office, by mail or by calling the Student Academy Awards department at (310) 247-3000, ext. 130. The ceremony will be held on Saturday, June 13, at 6 p.m. at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater, located at 8949 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills. Doors open at 5 p.m. All seating is unreserved.


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