The Norwegian film Do Not Split has been nominated for an Oscar in the Documentary Short Subject Category.
- I'm thrilled; I did not expect this. I hope an Oscar nomination can help keep the attention up around what is happening in Hong Kong, says director Anders Hammer. Hammer attended the Norwegian Film Institute's press conference at the Colosseum cinema in Oslo in connection with the nominations announcement.
About Hong Kong protests
The documentary Do Not Split is about the 2019 Hong Kong protests. The film draws attention to how freedom of expression and freedom of the press are threatened in Hong Kong. Anders Hammer spent 140 days alone in Hong Kong and followed the riots closely from day to day, and thus has done both directing, cinematography, and sound himself - in addition to being one of two producers.
The film is made in collaboration with the American film company Field of Vision and has received support from Fritt Ord and Viken Filmsenter in Norway. Do Not Split film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival last year.
Watch Do Not Split
-It is a very physical film that goes close to the events, says Hammer, commenting on why he believes his film was selected for nomination. His documentary from the uprising in Hong Kong became the only Norwegian film nominated for an Oscar, out of six Norwegian films on shortlists.
-I'm very surprised about the nomination. I'm happy too. At the same time, this is a very serious film, so it puts a damper on the feeling of joy, says Anders Hammer.
- Two of the protesters in the film are still imprisoned and risk their lives for their basic exercise of what we see as universal human rights, Hammer says.
- This is an enormous recognition for Anders Hammer. It is also a great inspiration for the entire Norwegian film industry and everyone who works with Norwegian films. This film shows how important films can be to promote democratic values and showcase societies and cultures we are not exposed to daily, says Kjersti Mo, CEO of the Norwegian Film Institute.
The documentary short subject film will compete against the documentaries "Collette," "A Concerto Is A Conversation," "Hunger Ward," and "A Love Song For Latasha."
In addition to this nomination, the Bosnian film Quo Vadis, Aida? received a nomination for Best International Feature Film. It is financed with funds from Sørfond and is a co-production with the Norwegian production company Tordenfilm.
The 93rd edition of the Oscar gala will be held on April 25, 2021, in Los Angeles. A physical award ceremony is planned.