In January 2017 Feras Fayyad's 'Last Men in Aleppo' made its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, where it took home the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize as best international documentary. Now the film is selected as part of the 15 film Oscar shortlist in contention for a nomination in the Documentary Feature category at the Academy Awards 2018.
The film, which is made to a large extent from footage by video journalists from the independent Aleppo Media Center, follows the daily life of the White Helmets rescue workers helping their fellow citizens in the war-torn city of Aleppo. Co-director is Steen Johannessen, who also edited the film.
'Last Men in Aleppo' is produced by Søren Steen Jespersen for Larm Film and Kareem Abeed for Aleppo Media Center with support from the Danish Film Institute.
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Furthermore, three films on the shortlist have Danish technical or creative participation:
Yance Ford's US production 'Strong Island,' in which the director examines the brutal circumstances surrounding his brother's death in 1992 and the judicial system that allowed the killer to go free, is edited by Janus Billeskov Jansen and co-produced by Signe Byrge Sørensen for Final Cut for Real with co-production support from the Danish Film Institute.
In 'Human Flow,' renowned artist Ai Weiwei focuses on the global refugee crisis currently affecting 65 million people fleeing from war and persecution. The film is edited by Niels Pagh Andersen, and Karsten Fundal wrote the score. Fundal also wrote the music for 'Last Men in Aleppo.'
Finally on Jennifer Brea's 'Unrest,' in which the director portrays her life with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Christian Laursen is one of the two cinematographers, while Anne Troldtoft Hjorth is co-producer.
15 Films on Oscar Shortlist / Documentary Feature
'City of Ghosts'
'Ex Libris – The New York Public Library'
'An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power'
'Last Men in Aleppo'
'Long Strange Trip'
'One of Us'
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will announce the five nominations for the title as Best Documentary Feature on 23 January. The 2018 winners will be announced on Oscar Night taking place in Los Angeles on 4 March.