Belgium backs 'Misfortunates' for Oscar

Foreign-language film nominees announced Feb. 2

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PARIS -- Belgium is hoping to bring some awards season luck to Felix van Groeningen's "The Misfortunates" with a bid for a Best Foreign Film nomination slot at the 2010 Oscars, Flanders Image confirmed Monday.

Produced by Oscar-nominated producer Dirk Impens for Menuet in co-production with IDTV, "The Misfortunates" features a Flemish-speaking Belgian cast in the tragicomedy about a 13 year-old boy in a working class family based on the semi-autobiographical novel by Dimitri Verhulst. Belgian distributor KFD is releasing "Misfortunates" on its home turf, and the film has already been sold to France, Poland, Russia and the Netherlands.

Paris-based sales agent MK2 is in the process of closing stateside distribution rights. The film premiered in the Director's Fortnight sidebar at May's Festival de Cannes, screened last week at the Toronto International Film Fest and is confirmed for a festival run across the globe in the Hamptons, Montreal, Pusan, Warsaw and Washington.

"Misfortunates" was made with the support of the Flanders Audiovisual Fund (VAF), the NFF and Media/EACEA.

The 82nd Academy Awards nominations will be announced on Feb. 2.
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