‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’ Loses Out on France’s Oscar Pick to Ladj Ly’s ‘Les Miserables’

‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’ Loses Out on France’s Oscar Pick to Ladj Ly’s ‘Les Miserables’
Portrait of a Lady on Fire,” Celine Sciamma’s ravishing lesbian romance that is one of the best reviewed movies of the year, will not be competing in the Oscar race for Best International Film (the new name for the Best Foreign Language Film category). France has officially submitted Ladj Ly’s “Les Miserables” as its Oscar entry. As IndieWire deputy editor Kate Erbland reported earlier this week, France’s 2020 Oscar pick came down to three contenders: “Portrait,” “Les Miserables,” and Alice Winocour’s “Proxima.” All three movies were festival hits, with Sciamma picking up the Queer Palm and the Best Screenplay award at Cannes, Ly winning the Cannes Jury Prize, and Winocour earning an honorable mention from the Platform Prize jury at Tiff.

While “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” has been singled out as a critical favorite in 2019 (IndieWire even named it one of the best movies of
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