Tunisia has submitted films for the Academy Award for Best International Feature Film[nb 1] on an irregular basis since 1995. The award is handed out annually by the United States Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to a feature-length motion picture produced outside the United States that contains primarily non-English dialogue. As of 2021[update], eight Tunisian films have been submitted for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, and only one, The Man Who Sold His Skin, was nominated for an Oscar.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has invited the film industries of various countries to submit their best film for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film since 1956. The Foreign Language Film Award Committee oversees the process and reviews all the submitted films. Following this, they vote via secret ballot to determine the five nominees for the award. Below is a list of the films that have been submitted by Tunisia for review by the Academy for the award by year and the respective Academy Awards ceremony.
|Film title used in nomination||Original title||Language(s)||Director||Result|
|Le magique||Le magique||Arabic, French||Azdine Melliti||Not nominated|
|The Magic Box||La Boîte magique||French, Arabic||Ridha Behi||Not nominated|
|As I Open My Eyes||À peine j'ouvre les yeux||Tunisian Arabic, French||Leyla Bouzid||Not on the final list|
|The Last of Us||The Last of Us||No dialogue||Ala Eddine Slim||Not nominated|
|Beauty and the Dogs||ʿAlā kaff ʿifrīt||Arabic||Kaouther Ben Hania||Not nominated|
|Dear Son||Weldi||Arabic||Mohamed Ben Attia||Not nominated|
|The Man Who Sold His Skin||The Man Who Sold His Skin||Arabic, English, French||Kaouther Ben Hania||Nominated|
|Golden Butterfly||Papillon d'Or||Arabic, French||Abdelhamid Bouchnak||Not nominated|
Tunisia's first two Oscar submissions were dramas with exceptionally similar plots, both revolving around the influence of cinema on the life of impressionable young Tunisian boys. Le Magique is a semi-autobiographical story, based on the life of director Melliti, in which a young boy is left home alone to watch over the family residence when his impoverished family emigrates to France. The boy discovers the joy of movies at a local cinema and begins to try and re-enact them (sans camera) with his friends. In The Magic Box, a Tunisian director in France is writing a screenplay based on his life as a boy in Tunisia, seen through flashbacks, in which his strict, religious father tried to instill different values in him than his more liberal film-loving uncles. Both films were primarily in French, with some Arabic dialogue.