There was a lot of cheer when Newton was selected as India’s official entry to the Oscars. After all, it was a film that had a great word of mouth and even did well commercially. But the race to Oscars is never easy. After all, almost 90 countries had sent a film each, in the Best Foreign Language Film category, out of which 9 get shortlisted in the first round. Almost every time, our Indian films never reach the top 9. And this year too, history has repeated. Newton has lost in the Oscar race.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Thursday announced the list of nine films that have made it to the semi-final list and Newton is nowhere to be seen. These nine films are A Fantastic Woman (Chile), In The Fade (Germany), On Body and Soul (Hungary), Foxtrot (Israel), The Insult (Lebanon), Loveless (Russia), Felicite (Senegal), The Wound (South Africa) and The Square (Sweden). The final nominations for all categories of the 90th Academy Awards will be announced on January 23. The main Oscars ceremony, meanwhile, will be held on March 4 at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.
Till now, only three Indian films have reached the final list of Nominations in the Best Foreign Language Film category: Nargis-Sunil Dutt’s classic Mother India, Mira Nair’s Salaam Bombay and the cult period sports drama Lagaan, starring Aamir Khan.
Newton starred Rajkummar Rao, Pankaj Tripathi, Anjali Patil and Raghubir Yadav. It talked about an honest government officer who is sent to a remote Naxal-infested village in Chhatisgarh during the election time. His quest to conduct free and fair polls leads to hilarious and shocking consequences. It was directed by Amit Masurkar and coincidentally, it released on the same day when it was announced that its India’s official selection for the Oscars. This gave the film’s collections a huge boost.