Sunday , May 26 2024

Vietnamese-born director’s film enters 2024 Oscars shortlist


Acclaimed Vietnamese-born director Tran Anh Hung’s latest work “La Passion de Dodin Bouffant” (The Taste of Things) has reached the top 15 in 2024 Oscars’ Best International Feature.

Vietnamese-born director Tran Anh Hung at the closing ceremony of the cinema program Gap Go Mua Thu (Autumn Encounters) in Ho Chi Minh City in July, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Nguyen

Vietnamese-born director Tran Anh Hung at the closing ceremony of the cinema program “Gap Go Mua Thu” (Autumn Encounters) in Ho Chi Minh City in July 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Nguyen

According to Variety, representing France, the film made it to the shortlisted nominations along with other works from Armenia, Bhutan, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, Spain, Tunisia, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom.

A list of official nominees, selected from these 15 works, will be named on Jan. 23, while the 2024 Oscars award ceremony is expected to take place at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, California, on March 10, 2024.

France last won an Oscar for Best International Feature Film in 1993.

“La Passion de Dodin Bouffant” is a screen adaptation of the 1924 novel “La Vie et la passion de Dodin-Bouffant, Gourmet” (The Life Epicure) by Marcel Rouff.

It tells the story of a chef named Eugénie (Juliette Binoche) and a gastronome named Dodin (Benoît Magimel), who have worked together for 20 years before finding they have emotions for each other. As Eugénie hesitates after receiving Dodin’s proposal, Dodin decides to cook for his beloved for the first time in his life.

The picture has received positive acclaim from critics. The Guardian regarded the film as “beautifully shot,” while Deadline said it featured a “beautifully handled treatment of cookery as both poetry and performance art.”

It also helped Hung win the Best Director prize at the 76th Cannes International Film Festival in May this year.

In an interview with Variety in May, Hung said he decided to make “The Pot au Feu” to better understand challenges that directing a movie related to gastronomy may present.

“My first challenge was to make a film that didn’t look like any others,” he said.

“The idea was to weave gastronomy into a love story and see how a man and a woman who share the same passion for the culinary art and have lived together for over 25 years form this spiritual bond.”

Hung, 61, attended the prestigious École Louis-Lumière film school in France. His work “The Scent of Green Papaya” received an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. It is still the only Vietnamese-language film to ever be nominated for an Academy Award.

Hung won the Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival for his film “Cyclo” in 1995. He also directed the film adaptation of Haruki Murakami’s famous novel “Norwegian Wood” in 2010, which was nominated for the Golden Lion.

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