'Kawasaki's Rose' is Czech Oscar hopeful

Menemsha has U.S. rights to Jan Hrebejk's political drama

ZURICH -- "Kawasaki's Rose," Jan Hrebejk's political drama examining the misdeeds of the Czechoslovakian secret police and the legacy of Communist dictatorship, is the Czech Oscar entry for 2011.

Director Jan Hrebejk was nominated for an Oscar in 2001 for his Nazi-era comedy/thriller "Divided We Fall." "Kawasaki's Rose" is set mostly in the present day. It tells the story of Pavel, a famed dissent set to receive a national honor for his resistance to the Communist regime. But it emerges that Pavel has a dark secret: he once collaborated with the secret police. Some critics have compared "Kawasaki's Rose" to Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's Oscar-winner "The Lives of Others."

Menemsha Films has U.S. rights to "Kawasaki's Rose" and will bow the film Nov. 24 at New York's Film Forum.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will announce the shortlist for Best Foreign Language Film on January 18 and the final five nominees on Jan. 25. The 2011 Oscars will be awarded in Los Angeles on Feb. 27.
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