EU hopes for Oscars glory

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The European Union set its sights on Oscars glory on Thursday, as four films that have received funding from Brussels competed for the world's most prestigious entertainment awards.

22 February 2008

The European Union set its sights on Oscars glory on Thursday, as four films that have received funding from Brussels competed for the world's most prestigious entertainment awards.

The EU provided 2.5 million euros in funding to La Mome ("The Girl," newly released in the United States as La Vie en Rose), Le Scaphandre et le Papillon ("The Diving Bell And The Butterfly"), Die Faelscher ("The Counterfeiters") and Persepolis, a spokesman for the European Commission said.

The Commission hopes that at least one - if not more - will receive a prize, he added.

Persepolis has been nominated as best animated feature film, against comedies Ratatouille and Surf's Up. Die Faelscher has been nominated as best foreign-language film.

La Mome scooped nominations for best makeup, best costume design and best actress (Marion Cotillard, playing French diva Edith Piaf), while Le Scaphandre et le Papillon won nominations for best editing, cinematography, adapted screenplay and director (Julian Schnabel).

The promotion of Europe's film industries in the face of the decades-long global dominance of Hollywood blockbusters has long been a preoccupation across the continent.

Two films that received EU funding have already won Oscars, the spokesman said: The Life of Others in 2007 and March of the Penguins in 2006.

[Copyright dpa 2008]

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