Palme d’Or winner ‘Anatomy of Fall’ earns Oscars revenge after French snub

With a slew of Oscar nominations on Tuesday, including for best picture, France’s “Anatomy of a Fall” got revenge after being snubbed by the country’s own selection committee. 

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The courtroom drama about a woman accused of murdering her husband was overlooked as France’s selection for best international film at the Oscars, which instead went to “The Taste of Things”, an ode to gastronomy and romance that did well abroad but was widely derided as cliche and old-fashioned back home. 

In the end, “The Taste of Things” did not make the final short-list when the Oscar nominations were announced on Tuesday. 

And revenge was sweet for “Anatomy of a Fall”, which was put in the running for five awards, including best picture, screenplay and editing, as well as best actress for Sandra Hueller and best director for Justine Triet. 

Countries select their entries for best international film, which is then whittled down to five by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Hollywood. All the other categories for Academy Awards, or Oscars, are chosen directly by Academy voters.

Some had seen France’s decision to snub the film as revenge for Triet’s outspoken comments against the government of President Emmanuel Macron when “Anatomy of a Fall” won the top prize at Cannes last year. 

Read moreJustine Triet’s Palme d’Or wraps up vintage year for women in Cannes

She lashed out at the government’s controversial pension reforms and the “commercialisation of culture that this neoliberal government supports”. 

When France’s Oscar selection was announced last year, Triet herself reposted social media users who said the decision “stinks of revenge” and another who called “The Taste of Things” “one of the most boring films at Cannes”.

But others felt the decision, which was made by a panel of independent film professionals, simply reflected the fact that “The Taste of Things” offered an idyllic vision of France that would play well with Oscar voters.

Anatomy of a Fall (Anatomie d'une Chute) new clip official - Cannes Film Festival 2023 - 1/2

In any case, Triet’s film has since been scooping up awards, including surprise wins for best screenplay and best non-English language film at the Golden Globes earlier this month. 

Macron, who had stayed silent over her Cannes victory, finally congratulated Triet, writing on X that he was “proud to see French cinema recognised at the Golden Globes”. 

The president recently also courted controversy in film circles with his staunch defence of actor Gérard Depardieu, who has been accused of multiple sexual assaults, saying he was being subjected to a “manhunt”.