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Upon invitation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, on August 4th Anica established a selection committee whose purpose was to nominate the Italian candidate for the upcoming Oscars. Committee members Nicola Borrelli, Cristina Comencini, Carlo Cresto-Dina, Felice Laudadio, Federica Lucisano, Nicola Maccanico, Malcom Pagani and Francesco Piccolo has now chosen Jonas Carpignano's A Ciambra to represent Italy in the Oscar run for Best Foreign Language Film. The nominations will be announced on 23 January 2018, while the award ceremony is scheduled on Sunday 4 March 2018 in Los Angeles.

Second feature by 33-year-old Italo-American director Jonas Carpignano, the film premiered in Cannes in the Directors' Fortnight section, where it won the Europa Cinemas Label Award. It tells the story of 14-year-old Pio living in the Ciambra, a small Romani community settled in the outskirts of Gioia Tauro, and his criminial coming-of-age. Executive producer is Martin Scorsese, who fell in love with the project. A ciambra was released theatrically in Italy by Academy Two and was sold internationally in over 15 territories. It is also in the selection of 51 films competing for Efa nominations (other Italian features include Lucky, Red Istanbul, and Indivisible).

Carpignano comments: "I celebrated till dawn with my gipsies, we drank, danced the tarantella, paraded through the streets with the statues of St. Cosimo and Damiano: it's a very important celebration here in Calabria and I've never missed it in the past four years. The news I will represent Italy at the Oscars makes me very happy. Of course I was hoping it, now I can keep on drinking." He also adds: "Martin Scorsese sent me his congratulations. He roots for me. Let's hope he could help the film in this new journey that is just starting now."

Rai Cinema Managing Director Paolo Del Brocco states: "Our congratulations to Jonas Carpignano. We share with the him the joy and honour of representing Italy in the Academy Awards run. The selection committee, who put him up for a big international challenge, saw in this young director an extraordinary narrative power and the ability to convey a new cinematic vision that blends different genres and languages. A Ciambra is an original and surprising film that, back to Cannes, was acclaimed and enthusiastically reviewed by the international press, that understood and underlined its innovative core. Rai Cinema coproduced the film with Stayblack Productions, RT Features and Sikelia Productions, and will support the director and his producers in this new adventure."

Rai Cinema Vice-Director of Contents Paola Malanga adds: "It's a bet on the cinema of today and on the cinema of the future, that doesn't draw distinctions between documentary and fiction, reaching a new and fruitful originality, rightly recognized by this nomination. Jonas Carpignano is not only a young auteur with an undeniable talent: he is also the pioneer of this new cinema in Italy."

Other national contenders include: Happy End by Michael Haneke (Austria), Racer and the Jailbird by Michael R. Roskam (Belgium), Glory by Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov (Bulgaria), BPM by Robin Campillo (France), In the Fade by Fatih Akin (Bermany), On Body and Soul by Ildiko Enyedi (Hungary), Spoor by Agnieszka Holland (Poland), The Fixer by Adrian Sitaru (Romania), The Square by Ruben Ostlund (Sweden), Road to Istanbul by Rachid Bouchareb (Algeria), A Fantastic Woman by Sebastian Lelio (Chile), Foxtrot by Samuel Maoz (Israel), Loveless by Andrey Zvyagintsev (Russia).

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