Germany has announced its shortlist for the 2024 Oscars, naming the pool of 12 films from which it will select its official contender in the best international film category for the 96th Academy Awards.
The selection, unveiled by the national promotional body German Films on Monday, includes several critical darlings from this year’s Berlinale, among them the Christian Petzold romantic feature Afire, which won the Silver Bear Grand Jury prize; Ilker Çatak’s school drama The Teachers’ Lounge, the big winner at Germany’s national film awards, where it won 6 trophies, including for best film and best actress for star Leonie Benesch; Milena Aboyan’s Elaha, winner of Berlin’s Perspektive Deutsches Kino sidebar; and Fraunke Finsterwalder’s Sisi & I, a feminist-look at an iconic Austrian Empress and her toxic relationship with her lady-in-waiting.
Perfect Days, the Japanese-set drama from three-time German Oscar nominee Wim Wenders — an audience favorite in Cannes, where it took the best actor nod for star Kôji Yakusho — did not make the German Films cut but Wenders’ new documentary Anselm, a portrait of German painter and sculptor Anselm Kiefer, is in the running. The film also premiered in Cannes.
Other contenders on the German shortlist include Jeanine Meerapfel’s documentary A Woman, which traces a single life through the 20th century; Sophie Linnenbaum’s high-concept sci-fi feature The Ordinaries; Axel Ranisch’s Orphea in Love, a modern-day re-imagining of the Orpheus myth; and Aron Lehmann’s literary adaptation What You Can See From Here. Three upcoming features: Marc Rothemund’s Weekend Rebels, a comedy about a father and his autistic son; Hans Steinbichler’s upcoming period drama A Whole Life; and Timm Kröger’s The Theory of Everything, which will premiere at the Venice Film Festival, also made the Oscar pre-selection shortlist.
An independent jury will meet in Munich on Aug. 22 and 23 and pick Germany’s official Oscar contender. All national nominees have to be submitted to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences by Oct. 2.
The Academy will unveil the films on the 2024 Oscar shortlist on Dec. 21. The five nominees for best international film will be announced on Jan. 23. The 95th Oscars will be held at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on March 10, 2024.