‘Senna’ and ‘Into the Abyss’ Not Included as Academy Unveils 15 Docs Shortlisted for the 2012 Oscars


Oscar documentaries shortlistThis was not the best year for me and documentaries, which is a round about way of saying I saw very few and haven’t actually seen a single one of the 15 docs shortlisted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. I do, however, hope to remedy that over the coming months and I actually have screeners for three of these 15 right now and need to get to work watching them.

Of course, as is always the case with documentary and foreign film categories, omissions are going to take the focus away from those that make the list. Films such as Senna (which I’ve heard nothing but great things about) and Werner Herzog’s Into the Abyss and Cave of Forgotten Dreams both miss the list despite plenty of praise throughout the year.

I do know people love Buck, Paradise Lost 3, Pina, Project Nim and We Were Here, but there are also several I hadn’t personally heard of before.

Check out the list of the 15 films that did make it directly below.

  • Battle for Brooklyn (RUMER Inc.)
  • Bill Cunningham New York (First Thought Films)
  • Buck (Cedar Creek Productions)
  • Hell and Back Again (Roast Beef Productions Limited)
  • If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front (Marshall Curry Productions, LLC)
  • Jane’s Journey (NEOS Film GmbH & Co. KG)
  • The Loving Story (Augusta Films)
  • Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory (@radical.media)
  • Pina (Neue Road Movies GmbH)
  • Project Nim (Red Box Films)
  • Semper Fi: Always Faithful (Tied to the Tracks Films, Inc.)
  • Sing Your Song (S2BN Belafonte Productions, LLC)
  • Undefeated (Spitfire Pictures)
  • Under Fire: Journalists in Combat (JUF Pictures, Inc.)
  • We Were Here (Weissman Projects, LLC)

The Documentary Branch Screening Committee viewed all the eligible documentaries for the preliminary round of voting. Documentary Branch members will now select the five nominees from among the 15 titles on the shortlist. Nominees will be announced on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, at 5:30 a.m. PT.