Why India Films Never Won Oscars


As the curtain rose for the biggest movie awards night at Dolby Theatre on 24th February, the envelope was opened to announce the Best Foreign Film- Roma, a Mexican movie that was released on Netflix recently. 

India’s official entry to the Oscars- Village Rockstars (Assamese) lost the game somewhere far behind. Of 51 official submissions to Oscars, only two Indian movies have been nominated for the Best Foreign Film so far and none of them have won the coveted trophy in the celluloid world. The statistics are not so impressive. Why hasn’t any Indian movie won an Oscar yet? Let’s have a look- 

    1.Lack of realistic scripts

Indian movies including both Bollywood and many regional films are nowhere similar to the life around us. They are hardly relatable. The films fail to portray India in its true light. The films that did, swept many awards at the Oscars. The best example would be Slumdog Millionaire starring Dev Patel and Frida Pinto.


Several Indian movies have been accused of plagiarism. Mimicking the scenes from some famous old Hollywood movies and other foreign movies simply doesn’t make the final product look creative. Rather it affects the content quality. Barfi, India’s official entry for the 85th Oscar awards faced similar allegations.

    3.Money-making business

Rather than focusing on producing more quality-driven stories and visuals majority of Indian filmmakers compress the mere idea of film making into a ticket-selling business. While business is important, we need to remind ourselves that cinema is also an art. Ticket-selling heroes, poor script, too many punch dialogues are the key ingredients to this money-making business. So many examples can be given from both regional and Bollywood films. While business is important, we cannot, in anyway, compromise on the artistic value of the movies.

4. Inefficient Jury

While shortlisting movies for one of the most prestigious awards isn’t it necessary to go for films that are a notch above those made for commercial business? Yes, it is.

But our jury consisting of 11-panel members have often been questioned on their choices. No doubt that this year’s official entry Village Rockstars was the best choice but there have been movies that never got considered and lost the race to some commercial business movie.

     5. Too much action sequence and songs

Most of the time, Indian cinema becomes more about pomp and glamour. It is believed that extra touch of color will make the film more presentable as well as sellable. It is this thought that adds to the “Why India will never make it to Oscars” list. 

To make the film more colorful makers go for many songs with vivid backgrounds and actors in glamorous costumes. And to make the characters look more appealing an extra dose of dialogue; there you go, the perfect recipe for a blockbuster movie!!

What makes films worth appreciation is their quality and relatability to common lives. The intensity in scripts is not always mandatory but something that really moves your soul and leaves an indelible imprint is what it is all about in the end. 


Though none of the Indian movies ever made it to the Oscars, there are some individuals who made our country proud by presenting their best works on an international scale. Here’s the name of those individuals


1.  Bhanu Athaiya– First Indian to win an academy award for the film Gandhi (Best Costume Designer)

2.  Resul Pookutty-Best Sound Mixing for Slumdog Millionaire

3.  A R Rahman– Best Music for Slumdog Millionaire

4. Satyajit Ray – Honorary Award for contribution to Indian cinema

Image Courtesy: Instagram

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