The following 54 films, all from different countries, were submitted for the 75th Academy Awards in the category Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film (release at the country of origin November 1, 2001 – October 31, 2002, ceremony March 2003).[1]

Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Chad submitted films for the first time.[citation needed]

The announcement of the submitted films was delayed when the Academy was presented with four films that did not quite conform to the rules, as written:

The film from Hong Kong was quickly eliminated, but the film from Afghanistan (whose director had been murdered before post-production was finished) was accepted.

The United Kingdom was asked to submit another film since AMPAS rules stated that all films had to be in a language indigenous to the submitting country. "The Warrior" was not acceptable, AMPAS argued, because Hindi was not a language indigenous to the United Kingdom, and the film was not about, nor set among British people. Had the film been set among the Hindi-speaking community in the UK, it would have been approved. BAFTA appealed to the Academy to reconsider, but to no avail. The film won Best British Film at the BAFTA awards the following year. Britain ended up choosing Eldra, a film in Welsh. In 2006, AMPAS changed the rules to allow countries to choose films which were not in the language of the submitting country. Canada was the first to take advantage of this new rule by submitting Water, which was also in Hindi.

AMPAS determined that Palestine was not a country, and therefore could not submit a film. They also said that there had been no "national selection committee" that chose Divine Intervention, as required by the rules. It was also unclear how the film would be released in its home country according to the rules, since Palestine had no internationally recognized boundaries. This decision was much criticized, especially since countries like Taiwan, Puerto Rico and Hong Kong, none of which recognized as sovereign nations by the United Nations, had been submitting movies for years. AMPAS reversed its decision the following year, and allowed Divine Intervention to compete.

The previous year's winner Bosnia & Herzegovina did not submit a film.

The Brazilian submission, City of God was considered one of the favorites, but it did not receive a nomination in the Best Foreign Film category. When the film was released the following year in the US, it garnered nominations in four mainstream categories including Best Screenplay and Best Director. If the film had been nominated in the Best Foreign Film category, it would have been ineligible for awards the following year because films cannot receive Oscar nominations in two different ceremonies.


Submitting country Film title used in nomination Original title Language(s) Director(s) Result
 Afghanistan FireDancer FireDancer Pashto, English Jawed Wassel Not nominated
 Algeria Rachida Rachida French, Arabic Yamina Bachir-Chouikh Not nominated
 Argentina Kamchatka Kamchatka Spanish Marcelo Piñeyro Not nominated
 Austria Gebürtig Gebürtig German Robert Schindel and Lukas Stepanik Not nominated
 Bangladesh The Clay Bird মাটির ময়না Bengali Tareque Masud Not nominated
 Belgium The Son Le Fils French Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne Not nominated
 Brazil City of God Cidade de Deus Portuguese Fernando Meirelles Not nominated
 Bulgaria Warming Up Yesterday's Lunch Подгряване на вчерашния обед Bulgarian Kostadin Bonev Not nominated
 Canada Un crabe dans la tête Un crabe dans la tête French André Turpin Not nominated
 Chad Abouna Abouna Chadian Arabic, French Mahamat Saleh Haroun Not nominated
 Chile Ogú y Mampato en Rapa Nui Ogú y Mampato en Rapa Nui Spanish Alejandro Rojas Not nominated
 China Hero 英雄 Mandarin Chinese Zhang Yimou Nominated
 Colombia The Invisible Children Los Niños invisibles Spanish Lisandro Duque Naranjo Not nominated
 Croatia Fine Dead Girls Fine mrtve djevojke Croatian Dalibor Matanić Not nominated
 Cuba Nothing More Nada Spanish Juan Carlos Cremata Malberti Not nominated
 Czech Republic The Wild Bees Divoké vcely Czech Bohdan Sláma Not nominated
 Denmark Open Hearts Elsker dig for evigt Danish Susanne Bier Not nominated
 Egypt A Girl's Secret أسرار البنات Arabic Magdy Ahmed Aly Not nominated
 Finland The Man Without a Past Mies vailla menneisyyttä Finnish Aki Kaurismäki Nominated
 France 8 Femmes 8 femmes French François Ozon Not nominated
 Germany Nowhere in Africa Nirgendwo in Afrika German, Swahili Caroline Link Won Academy Award
 Greece The Only Journey of His Life Το μόνον της ζωής του ταξείδιον Greek Lakis Papastathis Not nominated
 Hong Kong The Touch[2] 天脈傳奇 English Peter Pau Disqualified
 Hungary Hukkle Hukkle Hungarian György Pálfi Not nominated
 Iceland The Sea Hafið Icelandic Baltasar Kormákur Not nominated
 India Devdas देवदास Hindi Sanjay Leela Bhansail Not nominated
 Indonesia Ca-bau-kan Ca-bau-kan Indonesian Nia diNata Not nominated
 Iran I'm Taraneh, 15 من ترانه 15 سال دارم Persian Rasul Sadrameli Not nominated
 Israel Broken Wings כנפיים שבורות Hebrew Nir Bergman Not nominated
 Italy Pinocchio Pinocchio Italian Roberto Benigni Not nominated
 Japan Out OUT Japanese Hideyuki Hirayama Not nominated
 South Korea Oasis 오아시스 Korean Lee Chang-dong Not nominated
 Lebanon When Maryam Spoke Out لمّا حكيت مريم Arabic mAssad Fouladkar Not nominated
 Luxembourg Dead Man's Hand Petites misères French Laurent Brandenburger & Philippe Boon Not nominated
 Mexico The Crime of Padre Amaro El crimen del Padre Amaro Spanish Carlos Carrera Nominated
 Netherlands Zus & Zo Zus & Zo Dutch Paula van der Oest Nominated
 Norway Hold My Heart Tyven, tyven Norwegian Trygve Allister Diesen Not nominated
 Philippines Small Voices Mga Munting tinig Tagalog Gil M. Portes Not nominated
 Poland Edi Edi Polish Piotr Trzaskalski Not nominated
 Portugal O Delfim O Delfim Portuguese Fernando Lopes Not nominated
 Romania Philanthropy Filantropica Romanian Nae Caranfil Not nominated
 Russia House of Fools Дом дураков Russian, Chechen Andrei Konchalovsky Not nominated
 Serbia Labyrinth Лавиринт Serbian Miroslav Lekic Not nominated
 Slovakia Cruel Joys Kruté radosti Slovak Juraj Nvota Not nominated
 Slovenia Headnoise Zvenenje v glavi Slovene Andrej Košak Not nominated
 Spain Mondays in the Sun Los lunes al sol Spanish Fernando Leon de Aranoa Not nominated
 Sweden Lilja 4-ever Lilja 4-ever Swedish, Russian Lukas Moodysson Not nominated
  Switzerland Aime ton père Aime ton père French Jacob Berger Not nominated
 Taiwan The Best of Times 美麗時光 Taiwanese, Mandarin Chinese, Hakka Chinese Chang Tso-chi Not nominated
 Thailand Monrak Transistor มนต์รักทรานซิสเตอร์ Thai Pen-ek Ratanaruang Not nominated
 Tunisia The Magic Box La Boîte magique French, Arabic Ridha Behi Not nominated
 Turkey 9 Dokuz Turkish Ümit Ünal Not nominated
 United Kingdom Eldra[3] Eldra Welsh Tim Lyn Not nominated
 Uruguay Corazon de Fuego El Último tren Spanish Diego Arsuaga Not nominated
 Venezuela The Archangel's Feather La Pluma del arcángel Spanish Luis Manzo Not nominated


  1. ^ "Record-Breaking 54 Countries in Competition for Oscar". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. 2 December 2002. Archived from the original on 19 December 2002. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  2. ^ the film was disqualified because the dialogue was completely in English, and not in a Foreign Language
  3. ^ The United Kingdom originally selected The Warrior, which was not accepted by the Academy