Though Joker may be dominating the conversation after the 2020 Oscar nominations were announced on Monday, a fascinating documentary about beekeeping is generating its own buzz (sorry). Honeyland, which follows wild beekeepers in the small village of Bekirlija, is only the second movie from North Macedonia to be nominated in the academy’s Best International Feature category, previously known as Best Foreign Language Film. It’s also the first film ever to be nominated for the Academy Awards for International Feature and Documentary Feature in the same year.
The word foreign was removed from the Best Foreign Language Film category on the grounds that it’s an outdated way of thinking about movies in 2020, but the rules for eligibility in the category remain the same. Movies must be feature length, produced outside the United States, and mostly in a language other than English. Each country can only submit one film that fits that description per year, and there were 93 submissions for this year’s ceremony.