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Oscars: Kosovo Selects ‘Unwanted’ for Foreign-Language Category

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Edon Rizvanolli’s debut is about a young man living in exile confronting the unresolved issues of his past.

Kosovo has selected Edon Rizvanolli’s Unwanted as its candidate for the best foreign-language Oscar.

A social drama by Amsterdam-based actor turned director, Rizvanolli’s film tells the story of a teenage boy from Kosovo, Alban (Jason De Ridder) living in exile in Holland with his mother Zana (Adriana Matoshi). Although they both left Kosovo during the Balkans civil war, when Alban begins a romance with a sensitive young woman, Anna, neither realize that unresolved injustices and dark memories of the past lie just beneath the surface.

The film marks Kosovo’s fourth submission to the Oscars and is produced by Pristina-based 1244 Productions and Dutch company Asfalt Films with the support of the Kosovo Cinematography Center and the Netherlands Film Fund.

Unwanted had its international premiere in July in the East of the West competition at the Karlovy Film Festival.

Kosovo has yet to win or be nominated for an Oscar in the foreign-language category, although in 2016 national hopes were raised when Shok (Friend) was shortlisted in the short-film category of the Academy Awards.

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