Oscars: Armenia Selects 'Lengthy Night' for International Feature Film Category

Lengthy Night - Publicity Still 1 - H 2019
Sharm Holding

Edgar Baghdasaryan's film weaves a human story across a thousand years, connected by a bewitchingly attractive stone.

Armenia has submitted Edgar Baghdasaryan's Lengthy Night for consideration in the international feature film Oscar category.

Produced by Yerevan's Sharm Holding, the historical drama (also known as Erken Kisher) pivots around three stories set across a thousand years of Armenian history, where an unusual and attractive stone is the common thread.

Beginning in the 21st century, with a story about a couple whose relationship is under stress, the film goes back in time to the Armenian Genocide of 1915 and far into the country's distant past in the early 11th century to create three self-contained stories of human strife.

Opening with the contemporary story of a couple driving aimlessly around Yerevan at night, venting their frustrations with a scene that includes the husband picking up a prostitute, while his wife sits furiously in the car, Lengthy Night touches upon the tragedies of Armenia's past, the memory of which continue to hold the country together as a nation to this day.

The pic, starring Shant Hovhannisyan, Samvel Grigoryan, Luiza Nersisyan and Babken Chobanyan, won best film honors and five other awards, including for best script, cinematography and director, earlier this year at Armenia's Anahit National Awards Ceremony.

Armenia has been submitting films to the Oscars since 2001, but has yet to earn a nomination. Its 2016 submission, Earthquake, which was produced by Moscow-based company Mars Media, was disqualified by the Academy because the movie had too many Russians on the crew compared to Armenians.

The 92nd Academy Awards are set to take place Feb. 9, 2020.