The Swedish Film Institute has announced its selection for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, with the honour going to Ali Abbasi’s Border.
Border follows a customs officer who has a unique ability to smell human emotions, a skill that makes her one of the best officers at catching smugglers. However, one day she smells someone with a unique scent, and it changes her perception of her job as well as mankind. The film is described as a unique take on Nordic fairytales with the aim of depicting the experience of being a minority.
Border was the winner of this year’s Un Certain Regard prize at the Cannes Film Festival, so it’s unsurprising that Sweden would choose the film as its Academy Award representative.
When it comes to Sweden at the Oscars, it is only Ingmar Bergman who has been able to win a prize – with The Virgin Spring (1960), Through a Glass Darkly (1961) and Fanny and Alexander (1983) all winning the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Sweden has been nominated sixteen times, most recently for Ruben Östlund’s The Square. Östlund’s Force Majeure wasn’t nominated, and he recorded himself reacting live to the news (you can watch that here).
The last ten years of Swedish Oscar winners
2017 – The Square – nominated
2016 – A Man Called Ove – nominated
2015 – A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence
2014 – Force Majeure – shortlisted
2013 – Eat Sleep Die
2012 – The Hypnotist
2011 – Beyond
2010 – Simple Simon – shortlisted
2009 – Involuntary
2008 – Everlasting Moments – shortlisted