Oscars: Norway Selects 'Thelma' for Foreign-Language Category

Courtesy of TIFF
'Thelma'

The supernatural lesbian love thriller from Joachim Trier is having its international premiere at the Toronto Film Festival.

Norway has selected Joachim Trier’s fourth feature Thelma — a supernatural thriller focused around a story of a young woman struggling with her feelings for a female classmate — as its candidate for the foreign-language Oscar race.

Starring Eili Harboe, Thelma explores what happens when a young Oslo student is overwhelmed by feelings she does not dare to acknowledge. As her attraction for another woman progresses, she develops inexplicable and frightening supernatural powers.

It is a film, the Norwegian Oscar committee said, announcing its decision, "that fascinates, touches and revolts."

Scripted by Eskil Vogt and produced by Thomas Robsahm for Oslo’s Motlys, Thelma had its national premiere last month at the Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund where it won the Norwegian Film Critics Prize.

The film is due its international premiere at the Toronto Film Festival, which opens tomorrow.

The domestic release on Sept. 15 will be followed by a U.S rollout starting on Nov. 10 by American distributor The Orchard. Memento Films International is handling international sales.

Norway has been nominated for the foreign-language Oscar five times, with Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg’s Kon-Titki last making the shortlist in 2012. It has never won the award.

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