Academy Selects 15 Documentary Hopefuls to its Shortlist

November 18, 2009
Source: indieWIRE

Food Inc. Oscar Statue

The AMPAS has chosen 15 films from the qualifying 89 documentaries to its shortlist. The hopefuls, vying for a final spot in the Documentary Feature category of the 82nd Academy Awards, are listed below, but the list is not without a bit of controversy. Some prominent omissions include the acclaimed smash Anvil! The Story of Anvil, James Toback's Tyson, and, most notably, Michael Moore's Capitalism: A Love Story. Moore's previous film Sicko was nominated in 2008 and his documentary Bowling for Columbine won an Oscar in 2003. However, the 15 documentaries listed below are still all more than deserving of a selection.

The Beaches of Agnes - Directed by Agnes Varda
Burma VJ - Directed by Anders Ostergaard
The Cove - Directed by Louie Psihoyos
Every Little Step - Directed by James D. Stern and Adam Del Deo
Facing Ali - Directed by Pete McCormack
Food, Inc. - Directed by Robert Kenner
Garbage Dreams - Directed by Mai Iskander
Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders - Directed by Mark N. Hopkins
The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers - Directed by Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith
Mugabe and the White African - Directed by Andrew Thompson and Lucy Bailey
Sergio - Directed by Greg Barker
Soundtrack for a Revolution - Directed by Bill Guttentag and Dan Sturman
Under Our Skin - Directed by Andy Abrahams Wilson
Valentino The Last Emperor - Directed by Matt Tyrnauer
Which Way Home - Directed by Rebecca Cammisa

As a fan of documentaries, I'll be seeking a lot of these out over the coming months. But if you're only going to see one of the above, The Cove is certainly a safe bet (and it was given the highest pop culture praise of all: becoming a plot point and punchline on South Park). It's arresting, haunting, at times devastating, but altogether very powerful and necessary. And for good measure (since it's not receiving the recognition from the Academy that it truly deserves), rent, buy, or Netflix Anvil! The Story of Anvil right away. Crank up the volume and enjoy while you're waiting for the final list of documentary nominees to be announced very soon.

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  • Xerxex
    I need to see these! also, Tenney what is this pic from? I like it!
  • That's all Alex, Xerxex -- he added a little Oscar flare to a screenshot from Food, Inc. I'm really diggin' it, too!
  • lego
    food inc no?
  • lego
    didn't see #2s answer, my bad
  • xerxex
    sweetness, thanks!
  • Aequitas
    Sergio or The Cove to make it into the nominations!!
  • BJS
    I saw Sergio at Sundance, it was one of the most emotionally draining films I've ever seen. Excellently done. The Q&A with Greg Barker afterwards was very excellent and I really liked him, I hope they do well and get the recognition they deserve for such a beautiful and powerful film.
  • dave13
    I was wondering, does "Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders" have any relation to the documentary "Beyond the Call" that Premiered at Tribeca back in either 2006?Because that was an amazing documentary that has unfortunately yet to make it to DVD (least to my knowledge). See info on that documentary here:




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