Dutch director’s animated short “Mind My Mind” shortlisted for an Oscar

Mind My Mind, a film from Dutch animator and film director Floor Adams, was one of ten films shortlisted for the Animated Short Film Oscar. The announcement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was revealed early Tuesday morning in the Netherlands, and it also showed that Dutch film Instinct did not make the cut in the International Feature Film category.

The list of films in both categories will be whittled down to the final nominees for the 92nd Academy Awards, expected to be announced on January 13. The Oscars will be handed out on February 9.

The animated film Mind My Mind has won critical acclaim for its portrayal of Chris, a man living with autism. He is aided by Hans, the name of the controller trying to prompt him with social cues from inside Chris’ brain. Adams, a 2005 graduate of ArtEZ Arnhem, has been running her own production company since 2007, and began teaching animation to students with autism the following year.

“As a viewer, you could almost get tired of all his attempts to respond in a socially desirable way,” Adams told Autisme, the magazine of the Dutch Autism Association. “And that probably comes close to the feeling that many people with autism have after a party,” she said.

The 30-minute film was selected for inclusion at the Netherlands Film Festival this year. The Amsterdam-based EYE Film Institute submitted the film to the Academy Awards on Adams’ behalf.

Meanwhile, Instinct, the first film directed by Halina Reijn, did not qualify for the International Feature Film shortlist. The Academy said it received 91 eligible submissions for the category. It chose three Golden Globe nominees, including Parasite, the South Korean film which won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival, Pain and Glory from Spanish director Pedro Almodovar, and French director Ladj Ly’s Les Miserables.

Reijn’s film stars Carice van Houten, known internationally for her work on Game of Thrones. Van Houten portrays Nicoline, a clinician working with her patient, Idris, a violent repeat sex offender, in the psychiatric ward of a prison.Instinct opened the 2019 Netherlands Film Festival, and was given both a Special Mention for First Feature and the Piazza Grande Award at the 2019 Locarno Film Festival.