In a tweet responding to the news that Minari would be competing as a foreign-language film, Wang wrote: “I have not seen a more American film than ‘Minari’ this year. It’s a story about an immigrant family, in America, pursuing the American dream. We really need to change these antiquated rules that characterizes American as only English-speaking.”
I have not seen a more American film than #Minari this year. It's a story about an immigrant family, IN America, pursuing the American dream. We really need to change these antiquated rules that characterizes American as only English-speaking. https://t.co/1NZbkJFE9v— Lulu Wang (@thumbelulu) December 23, 2020
What’s more, it’s not as if the HFPA has applied this rule with intractable objectivity in the past. Inglourious Basterds, Quentin Tarantino’s 2009 film about a U.S. Army unit seeking revenge on Nazi soldiers in France, was allowed to compete in the Best Picture race, even though it featured multiple languages throughout its run-time. Between the German, French and whatever version of Italian Brad Pitt thought he was speaking as Lieutenant Aldo Raine, a good chunk of Inglourious Basterds’ dialogue was not in English. The difference? The actors are mostly white.