“Close” is Dhont’s second movie. Two 13-year-old boys and their intimate friendship is its focus.
Oscar Night is 12 March. The nomination is a boost to Dhont’s international career after his debut movie “Girl” failed to land a nomination for an Oscar. “Close” has already picked up several international prizes including the Grand Prix of the Cannes Film Festival and has also been nominated for the European film awards, the Golden Globes.
"Close" is up against "Argentina, 1985" (Argentina), "All Quiet on the Western Front" (Germany), "The Quiet Girl" (Ireland) and "EO" (Poland).
"After an exceptionally successful year for Flemish film, this really is the icing on the cake," Flemish premier and culture minister Jan Jambon (nationalist) said on Tuesday. "We are all keeping our fingers crossed for "Close" on March 12".
It's been nine long years since a Belgian feature film stood any chance of an Oscar. In 2014 Felix van Groeningen’s "The Broken Circle Breakdown" was nominated. Over the years many have been the Belgian movies nominated in this category: Michaël R. Roskam’s "Rundskop", Dominique Deruddere’s "Iedereen beroemd!" Stijn Coninx’ "Daens", Gérard Corbiau’s "Farinelli" and "Le maître de musique" and Jacques Boigelot’s "Paix sur les champs".