'Slumdog', Okazaki Get Oscar Nods

January 22, 2009

Golden Globe winner Slumdog Millionaire racked up 10 nods including Best Picture, Best Director (Danny Boyle), and Best Adapted Screenplay (Simon Beaufoy).

Slumdog composer A.R. Rahman snagged two of the three nominations for Best Original Song for "O Saya" — a shared nomination with M.I.A — and "Jai Ho" which was featured in the crowd-pleasing dance number during the film's closing credits:

As always, Asian/American filmmakers are top contenders in the documentary categories. Steven Okazaki earns his fourth Oscar nomination for The Conscience of Nhem En which explores the life of a teen photographer assigned to the Tuol Sleng Prison in 1970s Cambodia, while Thavisouk Phrasavath and Ellen Kuras' The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) is up for Best Documentary Feature:

Best Foreign Film nominees include Yojiro Takita's Departures from Japan and France's Entre les murs or The Class, Laurent Cantet's peek inside a tough Parisian junior high school comprised of children of Asian, African, and Arab immigrants.

And let us not forget, the crowning achievement in Asian American cinema this past year: Kung Fu Panda, nominated for Best Animated Feature.


The Academy Awards air live on Sunday, February 22nd on ABC.


Sylvie Kim

contributing editor & blogger

Sylvie Kim is a contributing editor at Hyphen. She previously served as Hyphen's blog coeditor with erin Khue Ninh, film editor, and blog columnist.

She writes about gender, race, class and privilege in pop culture and media (fun fun fun!) at www.sylvie-kim.com and at SF Weekly's The Exhibitionist blog. Her work has also appeared on Racialicious and Salon.



Wait, are we not supposed to like Kung Fu Panda? Cause I kinda did. Is it one of those things asian people are supposed to be offended by, like the word "oriental", which I never got on board with?
Don't worry, InfoMofo, we have not blacklisted Kung Fu Panda.I added it as a joke because when thinking about Asian American films from 2008 (or lack thereof), I could just imagine someone saying, "Hey, but what about Kung Fu Panda?" If you enjoyed it, then it's all good.There is no way it's beating Wall-E, though.
wall-e's the better flick, but i dug kung fu panda too.but that point reminds me of that mcdonald's site: i-am-asian.com. when it first launched like 6 years ago or so, they had these pictures of asian folks eating mcdonalds that would rotate through, and one of the pictures was a chinese sharpei - yes, a freaking dog. and i remember thinking like they probably didn't have enough asians so they were like "let's use an asian breed of dog. that counts as asian american..."