The glitz and glamour of Hollywood’s most prestigious night, the Oscars, is set to get a touch of Malayalam flavor as the critically acclaimed film “2018” starring Tovino Thomas emerges as India’s official entry for the 2024 Oscars. This announcement, made by renowned filmmaker Girish Kasaravalli, chairman of the Film Federation of India’s (FFI) selection committee, has sent waves of excitement through the Indian film industry.
A Momentous Achievement for Malayalam Cinema
After the Telugu film industry’s recent successes, it’s now Malayalam cinema’s time to shine on the global stage. “2018” has secured its spot at the Oscars 2024 after achieving tremendous success in theaters and resonating with audiences across the nation. Girish Kasaravalli, while revealing the selection, emphasized the film’s relevance in addressing the pressing issue of climate change and the challenges faced by individuals amidst societal development.
The Selection Process
The Film Federation of India (FFI) conducted a rigorous selection process, led by a 16-member committee headed by Kasaravalli. The committee meticulously reviewed and evaluated 22 films from various Indian languages, including Sudipto Sen’s “The Kerala Story,” Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt-starrer “Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani,” and Rani Mukherjee’s “Mrs. Chatterjee vs Norway” (Hindi), among others, before choosing “2018” as the country’s official entry.
A Real Story that Touched Hearts
Immediately following the announcement of India’s official entry to the Oscars, Kunchacko Boban, one of the stars of “2018,” shared his thoughts in an exclusive interview with IndiaToday.in. He expressed immense pride in the film’s success and highlighted its ability to connect with a wide audience.
“It’s a moment of pride for us. It was wonderful shooting for it, and the film broke all records. Globally, ‘2018’ was lauded by people and broke many milestones. It documented the emotions of the people, which is why it was relatable to many. Since it is a real story, it managed to reach a wider audience,” Boban said.
Boban further underlined that the film’s technical aspects are as strong as its narrative, making it a deserving contender for the Oscars. “Not just the story, the film is technically strong as well. It is a film that deserves the honor. I can’t explain my happiness right now. ‘2018’ is a film that deserves to be placed in the Oscars 2024 race,” he noted.
A Rare Honor for Indian Cinema
The nomination of “2018” marks a significant moment for Indian cinema. Notably, no Indian film has been nominated for the Best International Feature Film category at the Oscars since Aamir Khan’s “Lagaan” in 2002. Only two other Indian films, Nargis Dutt’s “Mother India” and Mira Nair’s “Salaam Bombay!” have made it to the final five nominees in the past.
Last year’s official Indian entry, “Chhello Show,” didn’t make it to the nominees’ list. However, it was a remarkable year for Indian cinema, with “RRR’s” foot-tapping mass anthem “Naatu Naatu” winning the Oscars for the Best Original Song and Guneet Monga-backed “The Elephant Whisperers” also securing victory in the Best Documentary Short Subject category.
Capturing the Kerala Floods
Directed by Jude Anthony Joseph, “2018” is a gripping survival drama that revolves around the devastating 2018 Kerala floods. The film poignantly portrays the struggles of the local population in the face of the catastrophic floods and their heroic efforts to survive in the challenging aftermath.
The film boasts a stellar cast, including Tovino Thomas, Aparna Balamurali, Tanvi Ram, Kunchacko Boban, Asif Ali, Vineeth Sreenivasan, Narain, and Lal, all of whom deliver compelling performances.
Box Office Triumph
Released in May of this year, “2018” has not only won critical acclaim but has also made history as the highest-earning Malayalam film of all time. Made with a budget of approximately Rs 30 crore, the film amassed a staggering Rs 92.85 crore at the Indian box office. Furthermore, it achieved international recognition by raking in an impressive Rs 180.03 crore at the worldwide box office, as reported by trade portal Sacnilk.
In conclusion, “2018” making it to the Oscars 2024 as India’s official entry is a testament to the exceptional storytelling and filmmaking prowess of the Malayalam film industry. This remarkable achievement not only honors the film but also brings forth a story of resilience and survival to the global stage.
What is the significance of “2018” being India’s official entry to Oscars 2024?
“2018” making it to the Oscars is a momentous achievement for the Indian film industry, particularly Malayalam cinema, as it represents India on the global stage.
Why was “2018” chosen as the official entry to the Oscars?
The film was selected due to its compelling narrative on climate change and societal development, resonating with audiences and critics alike.
Who directed “2018,” and what is the film’s storyline?
“2018” was directed by Jude Anthony Joseph and portrays the harrowing events of the 2018 Kerala floods and the resilience of the local population.
What makes “2018” stand out from other Indian films at the Oscars?
“2018” is a rare Indian entry that combines a compelling narrative with strong technical aspects, making it a deserving contender.
How well did “2018” perform at the box office?
“2018” achieved both commercial and critical success, becoming the highest-earning Malayalam film of all time and earning international recognition.
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