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Films Selected to Represent Mexico at Oscars and Goyas

September 16, 2016

Mexico City - Jonas Cuaron's film Desierto (Desert) and David Pablos' Las elegidas (The Chosen Ones) have been chosen to represent Mexico in early 2017 at the next editions of the Oscars and Goya Awards, respectively, the Mexican Academy of Cinematic Arts and Sciences, or AMACC, said Wednesday.

Those movies were selected from a list of 14 in the case of the 31st Goya Awards and a list of 16 in the case of the 89th Academy Awards, according to AMACC President Dolores Heredia, who announced the winners at a press conference in Mexico City.

"Desierto," a thriller that tells the story of an armed American vigilante who pursues a group of U.S.-bound Latin American undocumented migrants in the Arizona desert, will premiere in the United States on October 14, marking the start of its Oscar campaign.

"What interests me is the debate it could generate," Cuaron said of "Desierto," which stars Gael Garcia Bernal and will compete in the Best Foreign Language Film category.

The "hatred for migrants" and foreigners theme is timely in the United States, "where we see a character like (Donald) Trump parading around," the director said in reference to the Republican presidential nominee, who started his campaign by calling Mexican immigrants criminals and "rapists" and has pledged to build a wall on the US-Mexico border if elected.

The son of director Alfonso Cuaron said it was inevitable in making a work of fiction for contemporary concerns to be portrayed in a subjective manner. Carlos Cuaron, the film's producer, said the film would mainly target the Hispanic audience and that the goal was for its run to extend for several weeks so it can capitalize on the Halloween weekend.

"Las elegidas," which will compete in the next Goya Awards in the Best Spanish Language Foreign Film category, tells the story of a teenager who becomes ensnared by a prostitution ring after falling in love with a young man.

Pablos said his film was seeking to shine a light on human trafficking and sex slavery in hopes the debate on this scourge will continue after people leave the theaters.

"It is important for this issue to not only be discussed but for people to become sensitized to it," Pablos said, adding that that latter goal was still far from being achieved.

"Las elegidas" won awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Cinematography and Best Breakthrough Female Performance (Nancy Talamantes) at Mexico's Ariel Awards in May.

Source: Fox Latino News