[Updated] "Hear Me" to represent Taiwan at the Oscars (not anymore)

[Update] The GIO confirmed on the 20th that Hear Me is not eligible after all.  They will begin the selection process next week to find its replacement out of the other 8 finalists.  This year's smash hit, Monga, is expected to be the front-runner.

2009's Hear Me was announced yesterday as Taiwan's entry for Best Foreign Language film at the Oscars. The hit movie starring Eddie Peng, Ivy Chen and Michelle Chen made 30 million NTD at the box office last year. Hear Me garnered praises for its combination of family and romance, as well as the use of sign language in the story.

Due to the amount of sign language required, cast members underwent training for a month before filming began. Michelle Chen went on to receive a Best Newcomer nomination at the Golden Horse Awards for her supporting role. Hear Me beat out 9 other films including Monga, Au Revoir Taipei, Close to You and Zoom Hunting for a chance at an Academy award, as well as 1.5 million NTD in competition bonus.

Unfortunately, several news sources reported today that the film might not be eligible after all. According to Oscar rules and regulations, a film qualifying for the Foreign Language category must have its first showing of 7 consecutive days between 2009/10/1 and 2010/9/30. Hear Me was in fact released in late August of last year. However, it submitted a proof (newspaper ad) that indicated its first “7 consecutive days” showing took place from 2009/10/10 to 2009/10/16.

The Government Information Office said they have asked the Motion Picture and Drama Association to verify with organizers of the Academy Awards. If Hear Me is deemed ineligible, they will proceed with a new round of selection.

Source: Appledaily, CNA, Yahoo! Kimo Movies

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