Oscars: Argentina Picks 'Wild Tales' for Foreign-Language Category

'Wild Tales,' Damian Szifron (Competition)

Cannes regular Pedro Almodovar won't be in this year's competition, but this comedy from Argentine director Damian Szifron could be the next best thing. Almodovar is one of the producers of the feature, a series of comic sketches that should provide some welcome laughs amid Cannes' typically grim selection of political and social dramas. Wild Tales marks Szifron's first appearance in Cannes. (Sales: Film Factory)

Damian Szifron's collection of enraged stories is one of Latin America's best bets to bring home a statuette

The Argentine Film Academy announced on Tuesday that Wild Tales will be the country's submission to the Oscars in the foreign-language category, a more-than-expected decision after the film's praised festival tour this year. The film will also travel to the Spanish Goya awards looking for a Best Ibero-American Film nomination, according to a statement from Warner Argentina. 

The results of the online voting were presented at the Buenos Aires Audiovisual District by the local Academy, led by Juan Jose Campanella, helmer of Argentina's 2009 Oscar winner, The Secret in Their Eyes

Read more Toronto: Fest Fan Favorite 'Wild Tales' Could Take Argentina Back to Oscars

Directed by popular filmmaker Damian Szifron, and produced by K&S Films and Pedro and Agustin Almodovar's El Deseo together with Telefe Productions and Corner, Wild Tales left Cannes' official competition empty-handed yet received standing ovations and excited praise from critics. The film was picked up by Sony Pictures Classics for U.S. territories, while Warner Bros. grabbed it for France and Spain. 

In Toronto, the film gained momentum as Latin America's best chance to grab the Foreign Language Oscar after also breaking the record for the best local opening ever in Argentina, where it sold 450,000 tickets ($2.5 million) its first weekend. 

“I’d like to thank the voters of the Academy for the great trust they have deposited on this film; to the bold producers who allowed the film to become real, the wonderful cast that gave life to the characters and the extraordinary crew that supported its making. One day, these six stories presented themselves and started to grow, but it was only thanks to the talent, intelligence, and generosity of a great team that they gained truth and dimension. And above all things, I’d like to thank the public, the final recipients of all our work, for making us feel so corresponded,” stated Szifron.

Read more Box Office: 'Wild Tales' Sets Opening Record in Argentina

"In Wild Tales, we have been trying to combine a film with content, impeccable industrial finishing, audience appeal, and international recognition. None of this would have been possible without the creativity of Damian Szifron, an exceptional cast, a high-quality crew, the accompaniment of El Deseo and other co-producers, and the constant commitment and advice of Warners, our main distributor," added K&S president Hugo Sigman.

The film, a collection of six unconnected episodes featuring stories about violent reactions, features a cast of huge local stars including Ricardo Darin (The Secret in Their Eyes), Oscar Martinez (Empty Nest), Leonardo Sbaraglia (Red Lights), Erica Rivas (Tetro), Rita Cortese (Inheritance), Julieta Zylberberg (The Invisible Eye) and Dario Grandinetti (Talk to Her), as well as a score by two-time Oscar winner Gustavo Santaolalla (Babel, Brokeback Mountain).