Chile Sends 'No' to Foreign Oscar Race


Pablo Larrain's film topped the Director's Fortnight at Cannes.

BUENOS AIRES – Pablo Larrain’s fourth feature No will be Chile’s bid for the 2013 Foreign Oscar. The announcement was made today by the country’s Council of Culture and Arts, which also picked Marialy Rivas’ Young and Wild to compete at the Goya Awards in Spain.

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Starred by Gael Garcia Bernal, No depicts the 1988 referendum that decided whether former dictator Augusto Pinochet would continue in office or not. Garcia Bernal plays Rene Saavedra, a young ad exec who returns to the country to lead the campaign against Pinochet.

The film won at the latest Director’s Fortnight in Cannes, where it was picked up by Sony Pictures Classics for US distribution.

Minister of Culture Luciano Cruz-Coke said the selection “confirms the fine moment Chilean cinema is going through, not only submitting films to important international awards, but also regarding the audience.”

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Together with local hit Stefan vs Kramer, No pushed the market share for Chilean films to record numbers. "We’ve managed to reverse the numbers that were dropping since 2003,” said Cruz Coke. He added: “We’re achieving a fair balance between the nominations Chilean cinema is getting abroad and the local audience, which is responding better to their own films.”