Santiago Mitre, the director of “Argentina, 1985” (Gustavo Gavotti)
“I am very happy, very proud,” says Santiago Miter, barely an hour after hearing the news that his film, Argentina, 1985, was nominated for an Oscar for best international film. The director is on vacation in Córdoba, with a poor cell phone signal, and in the midst of the celebrations with his people he took time to answer some questions. “After having won the Golden Globe, we had great expectations and a lot of desire – he adds – and luckily today it was confirmed. Everything that has been achieved with this film is huge, beautiful and very exciting, so we are super happy.”
The Oscar nomination – which will be delivered at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday, March 12 – is a new step, perhaps the most important, in the extraordinary career of awards, standing ovations and great receptions that the film has had since it began its international tour at the Venice Festival, in September last year. “It was very impressive the way in which the film connected with audiences from different countries since we first showed it there and throughout its entire journey,” he says. There is something that is condensed in the trial of the military juntas of Argentina that evidently transcends borders”.
The director explains the reasons why, he believes, Argentina, 1985 is achieving so many international awards. “I feel that it challenges the world today, with a weak democracy and the growth of hate speech, authoritarian and undemocratic. In the United States there is great concern regarding these issues. It now resonates very strongly with them from what happened on January 6, 2021 (when Donald Trump voters tried to take over the Capitol), and for this reason I also believe that the film is permeating there, beyond specifically cinematographic issues. ”.
Ricardo Darín and Santiago Miter pose with the award for best foreign language film for “Argentina, 1985,” at the 80th annual Golden Globe Awards (Photo: Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) It may interest you: Argentina, 1985 was Oscar nominated for Best International Film
Starring Ricardo Darín and Peter Lanzani, Argentina, 1985 was co-written by Miter and Mariano Llinás, and is currently available on Amazon Prime Video after a very successful run in movie theaters. The film recovers the intimate history of the trial of the military juntas for launching a systematic plan to exterminate and persecute people between the years 1976 and 1983 in which they governed the country. “I also want to share this recognition with the people and organizations that, since the time of the dictatorship, have been fighting for truth, justice, memory and democracy,” adds the 42-year-old director. And I want to share it especially with those who carried out the ’85 trial and, above all, with those who suffered the horror”.
The director of La cordillera and El estudiante says that he had no internet signal when the nominations were announced and that he was almost unable to see them. “I got up, there was a terrible storm and there was no signal, nothing. Luckily the cell phone of one of those who is here did have a signal, so we watched the transmission with the phone, somewhat precariously, but when they announced the nomination we jumped like crazy. In fact, they asked me to send a recorded reaction if the film was nominated, but it was too hyped up so I don’t think I’m going to send it.
Ricardo Darín and Peter Lanzani, as prosecutors Julio Strassera and Luis Moreno Ocampo in the film (Amazon Studios)
Argentina, 1985 competes with four other important titles in its category. The main one, without a doubt, is All Quiet on the Front, by the German Edward Berger. This war drama distributed by Netflix is the top candidate in its category as it has nominations in eight others, including “best picture” and is one of the three films with the most nominations in the general table. The international shortlist is completed with Close, by the Belgian Lukas Dhont; EO, by veteran Polish filmmaker Jerzy Skolimowski and The Quiet Girl, an Irish film (spoken in Gaelic), directed by Colm Bairéad. “I have no idea what can happen,” says Mitre. I shared many panels with the director of All Quiet Front. I like him very much, I’m glad he has many nominations. It’s a great movie, well done. We’ll see”.
It may interest you: “Argentina, 1985” nominated for an Oscar: how was the plea that moved in the cinema and in the streets
-Did you ever imagine that you were going to be nominated for an Oscar?
-The Oscar is like a kind of icon that one looks at as a child, like a symbol of cinema that one has since childhood. I don’t know if it’s something I’ve dreamed of since I started making movies, but I like the idea of participating in an event that I’ve been following all my life. So I’m going to get drunk and I’m going to have a good time”.
Ricardo Darín spoke of Argentina’s Oscar nomination, 1985: “I had not gotten on the anxiety machine much, until now” Mariano Llinás defines “Argentina, 1985”: “It does not offer conclusions or truths but it makes you think” Santiago Miter , director of “Argentina, 1985”: other films from his filmography and where to see them