An accelerated campaign is planned for the Macedonian film "The Third Half" in December and January in the United States in order to be shortlisted for the Best Foreign Language Oscar at the upcoming Academy Awards.

71 films from all over the world are vying for the coveted prize.

Darko Mitrevski's film was screened on Nov. 4 in Beverly Hills for film distributors and American Film Market professionals. Three more screenings will take place on the US west coast. On Saturday, the movie is to be screened for members of the American Film Academy, while on December 6 the Academy organises an official screening. On December 12, an official projection of "The Third Half" will be held at the Museum of Tolerance, organised by the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Mitrevski said the film was yet to be presented next month in Chicago and New York before a test audience. In January, the film will be participate in festivals in California and Miami.

The Third Half's Oscar campaign is financed by the Government and the Film Fund with 150.00 euros for amongst other things advertisements in the most prestigious film magazines, including Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, The Envelope-Los Angeles Times, Jewish Journal. Moreover, two gala events will be organised to promote Macedonia as a tourist destination in addition to screening the Macedonian Oscar entry.

In January, the American Film Academy will announce the final list of five films in competition for the Best Foreign Language Oscar.

"When I'm being asked about the expectations, I can say we are not amongst the favorite contenders, however we can turn out to be a surprise according to what is being written about us. We have a long way to go in this unpredictable race. For now, we are optimistic because even if we fail to be shortlisted, the film is going to be promoted before an elite audience, there are more chances to be sold. All in all, we are helping the film to be noticed, which is the most challenging part of the job," Mitrevski said.

Thus far, there is interest "The Third Half" to be distributed in Australia, Canada, Russia, India, Italy and the United States.

In Macedonia, "The Third Half" so far has been seen by 60.000 cinema-goers. Its director said he hoped the film would break the box office record (120.000 viewers) achieved by his previous feature film "Balkankan"


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