You may recall that last year the Israeli Academy of Motion Pictures chose The Band’s Visit as the country’s entry for the Best Foreign Language Oscar only to see it disqualified by the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences for having too much English dialogue. The runner-up, Beaufort, then became the first Israeli film to grab an Oscar nomination in 24 years. Israeli film blogger Yair Raveh tells me that this year Israel’s pick is Waltz With Bashir which debuted in Cannes to much buzz, played at the Toronto and Telluride film fests, and tonight swept the Israel’s Academy Awards so it automatically becomes that country’s AMPAS Oscar pick. Picked up by Sony Pictures Classics, it’s an animated film based on writer-producer-director Ari Folman’s real-life memories – or lack thereof – of the first Lebanon war in 1982. (This is Folman’s 2nd movie to win Israel’s Academy Award; 1st was 1997’s Saint Clara.)
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