Dec 21, 2011 at 07:45am IST

Dam999 enters Oscar race as Hollywood entry

CHENNAI: Controversial film, Dam999, which has been banned by the State for six months, has made it to a shortlist for the Oscars under the Best Picture category.
The film, based on a catastrophe caused by a 100-year-old dam in India giving way, is among the 265 films in contention for the Best Picture. Three songs from the film are also among the 39 shortlisted in the Best Original Song category.
Directed by Kerala-based naval architect Sohan Roy, Dam999 is an English film that features Indian actors Rajit Kapur, Vimala Raman, Vinai Rai and Ashish Vidhyarthi. It has been dubbed in Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and Malayalam.
It has made it to the Oscar shortlist as a Hollywood film. (Malayalam film Adaminte Makan Abu is India’s official entry).
For this, the film was screened for a week starting October 28, at Los Angeles, USA.  It also fulfilled other criteria of being exhibited theatrically on 35 mm, 70 mm or in digital format and having a running time of over 40 minutes.
According to a press release from Warner Bros, the distributors of the film in India, three of the songs from Dam999, including the theme song Mujhe Chodke and Dakkanaga, are among the 39 songs shortlisted under the Best Original Song category. All three songs have been written by Roy himself, and set to tune by Ousephachan. Confirming the news, Roy, who is currently on a vacation in Bali, told Express that he was happy that the film had made it to the list. It may be recalled that the film’s screenplay had already made it to the Oscar library. “This news was confirmed to us on the fourth day of screening in the US,” said Roy.
The Academy Award nominations would be announced on January 24, 2012, while the Oscars presented, on February 26.
Time Not Right for TN Debut: Sohan Roy
On his debut directorial venture being released in other parts of the world and not in TN, Roy said, “It is a sad thing. But, I know the heated situation in the state. It is not the right time to show it.