Xpat Opinion: Hungarian Film ‘The Notebook’ On Oscar Shortlist, Enters North American Market

  • 16 Jan 2014 8:01 AM
Xpat Opinion: Hungarian Film ‘The Notebook’ On Oscar Shortlist, Enters North American Market
“It’s not enough to be Hungarian to make films. One must also have talent.” According to a legend popular among Hungarians, a sign bearing that message was hung in a prominent place at the MGM Studios in the 1930s, a reference to the fact that there were so many with Hungarian origins active in the film industry at the time. We’re understandably proud of the influential role that Hungarians have played in Hollywood but that was a long time ago, and until recently there has been very little in the way of similar recognition of our role in motion pictures. Until recently…

As I mentioned a couple of months ago, Budapest has again become a choice destination for Hollywood film crews thanks to the city’s great attributes, excellent local production talent and an attractive tax break designed especially for motion picture productions.

But this month brought us another reason to celebrate. The film entitled The Notebook (IMDB page) made it to the January shortlist of the 86th Academy Awards and has been picked up by Sony for distribution in North America. Last year, the movie got an excellent reception at the Toronto International Film Festival and became the first Hungarian film ever to take home the Crystal Globe Award, the top prize at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival.

We’ll see how the movie performs in the next stage of the Academy Awards, but the crew deserves a hand for bringing us a film that appeals to critics and festival-goers and the mass audience as well. Afterall, Sony saw fit to acquire its distribution. It’s also a nice feather in the cap of Hungary’s state agency for supporting film arts, the Hungarian National Film Fund, which is led by the Hungarian-American Hollywood producer Andy Vajna. The Film Fund backed the production of “The Notebook” with 180 million HUF from its total budget of 900 million HUF.

By Ferenc Kumin

Source: A Blog About Hungary

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