Peruvian film Wiñaypacha is an early candidate for some major movie awards like the Oscars and the Goya, according to the country’s Culture Ministry. It is hailed as the first movie to be filmed entirely in the Aymara language, a dialect native to the Andes, and was recently chosen as Peru’s film representative going towards awards season.
The film was chosen after a committee of 16 movie-industry experts in the country chose it over other Peruvian movies from this year. It is a pre-candidate for the 2019 Oscars’ Best Foreign Film and for the 2019 Goya’s (Spain) Best Ibero-American Film.
In a matter of months, both prestigious award committees will narrow down the category fields of candidates.
Wiñaypacha was released on April 19 and depicts an elderly indigenous couple in the Andes who are waiting for their son to visit them while amid the dramatic mountain settings.
Director Oscar Catacora is 31-year-old from Peru who has already seen his decorated film rake in the Best Film and the Best Photography awards at this year’s International Film Festival of Guadalajara in Mexico.
Catacora told reporters at that event that the movie is meant to shine a light on often-overlooked indigenous cultures and provide them with the respect of keeping it in their own languages.
Aymara is spoken by some 1.5 million people throughout Peru, Bolivia and Chile.
There is already some precedent in Latin America for a film in an indigenous language being named a final nominee for the Best Foreign Film and the Academy Awards as Colombia’s Embrace of the Serpent did just that in 2016.
After its April release in Peru, the Culture Ministry reports that Wiñaypacha was kept in local theaters for five weeks and brought in more than 30,000 ticket buyers.
The official trailer of the film can be seen below in Spanish subtitles: