A representative of Telefilm said it will instead put the film forward for general entry categories including Best Picture. It also revealed the selection committee had chosen two initial film choices for its International Oscar submission, in case the first was rejected, and is now waiting to hear back from the Academy about the eligibility of the second movie.
Funny Boy is in Tamil and Sinhalese but also contains English dialogue. The Academy mandates that a film cannot contain more than 50% English to be eligible.
“Although we were disappointed when informed by the Academy, we are excited to extend our ongoing support for Funny Boy as the journey to the Oscars continue,” said Christa Dickenson, Executive Director of Telefilm Canada.
“We were surprised that the film was not able to compete in the Academy’s International Feature category, but then were equally surprised and more than thrilled that Telefilm decided to support the submission of the film for Best Picture and other categories at the Academy Awards,” said Deepa Mehta. “My hope is for Funny Boy to continue to transcend expectations with its story of love, courage and compassion.”