Euro Oscar hopefuls to screen at AFM

Eight films will screen Nov. 4-11 in Santa Monica

LONDON -- A slew of European Oscar wannabes will be hoping influential eyes from the Academy are among the attendees at next month's American Film Market in Santa Monica.

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Trade promotions body European Film Promotion said it is supporting the screening of eight movies looking to secure a foreign-language Oscar nomination slot.

Movies submitted by countries Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Finland, Hungary, Poland, Switzerland and the Netherlands will unspool during the AFM from Nov. 4-11 at the Wilshire Screening Room in Beverly Hills, EFP said.

Screened for film professionals, selected press and Academy members, the octet of titles will be shown over five days in the afternoon and evening and supported with cash from the European Union's MEDIA program.

The eight titles include Austria's "For a Moment Freedom," directed by Arash T. Riahil; the snappily titled "The World Is Big and Salvation Lurks Around the Corner" from Bulgaria and directed by Stephan Komandarev; Antonio Nuic's "Donkey" from Croatia; and "Letters to Father Jacob," helmed by Klaus Haro from Finland.

Also listed to screen is Hungary's "Chameleon," from Krisztina Goda; Borys Lankosz's Polish hopeful "Reverse"; Switzerland's "Home" by Ursula Meier; and "Winter in Wartime," by Martin Koolhoven from the Netherlands.

"With this unique screening series, EFP is focusing attention on some of the best and most exciting filmmaking taking place in Europe today," EFP vp Claudia Landsberger said. "All of the films were extremely successful in their home countries and at international film festivals, and it is our hope that we can give maximum exposure to these extraordinary films during this decisive time in Los Angeles."