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The Oscars | Documentary short

Short Takes / The rest of the best

March 01, 2004

'Chernobyl Heart'

Maryann DeLeo

In a year that saw only the third-ever nomination of a woman for best director, it went largely unnoticed that all films nominated in this category were directed by women.

The award went to Maryann DeLeo for "Chernobyl Heart." Following the effects of the disaster on children of Belarus, the film traces a trail of radiation through hospitals and orphanages.

This was the first Oscar nomination for DeLeo, a veteran reporter and documentarian who has been working since the early 1980s.

Also nominated were Katja Esson's "Ferry Tales," a portrait of the culture of the women's bathroom on the Staten Island Ferry, and Sandy McLeod's "Asylum," about a woman from Ghana caught up in bureaucracy in seeking U.S. political asylum.

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