News

Visaaranai beats Neerja, Udta Punjab to become India's official entry to the Oscars


Vetrimaran's interrogation drama was selected from a group of 29 films which included Neerja, Nil Battey Sannata and Udta Punjab.

Shriram Iyengar

It is the season of dark horses. Vetrimaran's National award-winning Visaaranai (Interrogation) has been selected as India's official entry to the Oscars.

The film was selected for the competition by the Film Federation of India, the trade body which represents the different film industries across the country.

An intense drama about the abuse of prisoners and corruption in the police force, Visaaranai is the third film by Vetrimaran, and was based on M Chandrakumar's novel, Lock Up.

Produced by actor Dhanush's Wunderbar Films, Visaaranai received several accolades, including at the 72nd Venice International Film Festival. The film also won three National awards for Best Feature Film, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Editing at the 63rd National Film Awards.

The film faced some tough competition from the pool of 29 films under consideration. The films in the pool included Nil Battey Sannata, Neerja, Thithi, Umrika, Sairat, Udta Punjab, and Dhanak. The selection committee was headed by Ketan Mehta. FFI secretary-general Supran Sen said the film won a unanimous decision.

The film is also the third National award-winner to make it as the official entry to the Oscars, following Liar's Dice (2014) and Court (2015). The film is expected to compete at the 89th Academy Awards to be held in Los Angeles on 27 February 2017.