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Malawi Oscars Selection Committee calls for entries

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Malawi Oscars Selection Committee has called for entries for Best International Feature Film at the 2022 Academy Awards.

This is the second call-up for entries for the country’s films for consideration at the 94th Annual Academy Awards.

The deadline for submission is October 3 2021.

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A press statement says Malawi Oscars Selection Committee will choose one film as the country’s official submission for the International Feature Film category.

Among other things, the film must be first released in Malawi no earlier than January 1 2021 and not later than December 31 2021 and be first publicly exhibited for at least seven consecutive days in a commercial motion picture theatre for the profit of the producer and exhibitor.

Veteran filmmaker Shemu Joyah said Monday there have been a few films “that should give it a try”.

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“It is important that we, as Malawi, should continue giving exposure to our film industry. Some people have argued that it is a waste of time since a Malawian film cannot win an Oscar, which may be true if you consider that, for almost 100 years, only three African films have won, but you don’t participate merely to win,” Joyah said.

He said the participation is for exposure and recognition as a filmmaking country.

“Consequently that will bring benefits in terms of investment in our industry and also make Malawi a film production destination,” Joyah said.

The creator of films such as The Last Fishing Boat, Seasons of a Life and The Road to Sunrise which represented the country in the previous Oscar edition but failed to make it, said, so far, only The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by Chiwetel Ejiofor is the only Hollywood standard film that has been shot in the country.

“But the more exposure we get, the more films of that calibre will be shot here and the more benefits our industry will gain. That is the main reason I encourage filmmakers to enter their films in international film festivals and competitions like Oscars,” Joyah said.

A number of films have been released lately and some have gone on to screen at platforms outside the country.

Some of the notable films that have been released lately include Fatsani: A Tale of Survival by HD Plus, All We Have is Us by Ashukile Mwakisulu and Highbrow by Chaz Daddie.

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