Actress Genevieve Nnaji‘s movie effort ‘Lion heart’ selected to represent Nigeria in the International Feature Film category of the 2020 Oscars has been disqualified.
Concise News understands that the academy in a mail on Monday, said ‘Lion Heart’ was disqualified as it violates a rule.
Every year, each country outside the United States is expected to submit one film as long as it’s not primarily in English.
The movie is Nigeria’s first-ever submission to the Academy Awards, but it has just under 12 minutes of dialogue that is in the Igbo language native to Southeastern Nigeria, while the rest of the 94-minute pic is in English.
‘Lion Heart’ is however not excluded from entering other Oscar categories, including consideration for best picture.
In her reaction, Genevieve in a tweet, gave the ‘Academy’ some reasons ‘Lion Heart’ should be considered.
She made the tweet while replying American filmmaker, Ava DuVernay who called out the Academy and questioning the authenticity of their judgement wit regards to the disqualification of ‘Lion Heart’.
Ava said: “To @TheAcademy, You disqualified Nigeria’s first-ever submission for Best International Feature because its in English. But English is the official language of Nigeria. Are you barring this country from ever competing for an Oscar in its official language?”
Replying her tweet, Genevieve wrote; “1/1 1/2 Thank you so much @ava.
I am the director of Lionheart. This movie represents the way we speak as Nigerians. This includes English which acts as a bridge between the 500+ languages spoken in our country; thereby making us #OneNigeria.”
“2/2 It’s no different to how French connects communities in former French colonies. We did not choose who colonized us. As ever, this film and many like it, is proudly Nigerian.”