Lionheart: Nigeria’s first submission for the Oscars disqualified

THE NEWSGHOST, NIGERIA – The 2018 Nollywood movie Lionheart, directed by Nigerian movie actress and director Genevieve Nnaji, has been disqualified from the 2020 Academy Awards.

The movie is Nigeria’s first submission ever for the Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars. It was submitted to contend in the Best International Feature Film category, but was disqualified for too much use of English language.

According to report, the movie violates an Academy Awards rule that entries in the Best International Feature Film category must have ‘a predominantly non-English dialogue track’.

Before Academy Awards organisers announced its disqualification in an email on Monday, Lionheart was scheduled to screen for Academy Awards voters in the international category on Wednesday.

Genevieve Nnaji has criticised the decision of the organisers of the award to disqualify the movie. She expressed this in a two-part tweet to @TheAcademy that read:

‘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.

‘It’s no different to how French connects communities in former French colonies. We did not chose who colonized us. As ever, this film and many like it, proudly Nigerian.’

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