“20 Days in Mariupol” exclusion from international Oscars telecast sparks protest in Ukraine

March 13,2024 631
“20 Days in Mariupol” exclusion from international Oscars telecast sparks protest in Ukraine

The Oscar-winning documentary 20 Days in Mariupol was not included in the international shortened television version of the Oscar Awards ceremony. A lack of airtime was used to explain the decision. The National Council of Ukraine on Television and Radio Broadcasting has reached out to the leadership of the Walt Disney Company, requesting the creation of an updated video version with a segment featuring the awarding of the Ukrainian film.

Today, all democracies in the world are looking for any opportunity to resist military aggression that poses a threat to the peaceful world order. At this point, your staff decides to remove the fragment of the Ceremony where journalists receive the Prize for a full-length documentary film that talks about the horrors of war! And this moment, which caused enormous emotion in the Dolby Theater and in numerous posts throughout the day on the Internet, will not be seen by viewers in many countries of the Eastern Hemisphere and those viewers around the globe who will watch the Ceremony in subsequent screenings,” the appeal reads.

The request was addressed to Bob Iger, CEO of Disney. “It difficult for us to believe that such a decision by the studio staff would be a politically motivated decision agreed by the company’s management. … Therefore, we ask you to create and distribute to broadcasters an updated international version, in which the fragment with the nomination “Best Documentary Feature” will be preserved,” the text concludes.

Last year, during the awards ceremony, organizers included the recording and awarding of the Navalny documentary and the speech of the Russian politician’s wife.

This year, a Ukrainian film has become a laureate of the Oscar for the first time. The American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences recognized 20 Days in Mariupol by director Mstyslav Chernov as the best full-length documentary film. The decision was announced at the 96th Academy Awards ceremony. The documentary depicts the Russian attack on Mariupol on February 24, 2022.

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