Last updateTue, 17 Mar 2015 2pm

Anurag Kashyap, Karan Johar "disappointed" at Oscar snub for 'The Lunchbox'

Directors Anurag Kashyap and Karan Johar have lashed out at the decision by the Film Federation of India to pick a little-known Gujarati-language film as the country's official entry at the 2014 Academy Awards.

'The Good Road', directed by Gyan Correa and set in the bleak Kutch region of Gujarat, has already won the Best Gujarati Film award at India's National Film Awards and becomes the first Gujarati-language motion picture to represent India at the Oscars.

Kashyap and Johar however, say they are "shocked and disappointed" that Ritesh Batra's critically acclaimed 'The Lunchbox' didn't make the cut.

The filmmakers are co-producers of 'The Lunchbox', which stars Irrfan Khan and Nawazzuddin Siddiqui and which has won widespread praise from critics and audiences alike.

The film received a standing ovation following its screening at Cannes where it won the Critics Weeks Viewers Choice award and was warmly received during its North American premier at the Toronto International Film Festival.

“Feeling very, very disappointed, can’t comment on the film I have not seen, but it better make it to final five… I hope and pray I am wrong and it actually is a film that knocks the socks off everyone,” Kashyap said on twitter while Johar tweeted: “Really shocked and disappointed. ‘The Lunchbox’ had every factor working in its favour, we may have just lost our golden chance. Sad.”

Batra blamed the 16-member jury appointed by the Film Federation of India to choose the country's Oscar entrant, saying it "lacked understanding" about films.

“Congrats to ‘The Good Road’, hope it makes it all the way, else it will be a lost chance by FFI appointed jury that lacks vision. Hope I am wrong,” Batra said.

Bengali film director Goutam Ghose, chairman of the jury, said the selectors felt “The Good Road” was the best choice because it was a "fresh experience" that showed a "different kind of India".

“I have no clue how we are going to go ahead with it. I have no experience with this,” Correa told Reuters.

“I guess me and my producers will sit down and talk about it. If we win, great. If not, we live another day,” he said.

An Indian film has never won the best foreign film Oscar, but "Mother India", "Salaam Bombay" and "Lagaan" have made the shortlist.



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