Lagos, Nigeria (CNN)The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has disqualified Nigeria's "Lionheart" as the nation's contender for the Oscar in the Best International Feature Film category.
The Academy disqualifies 'Lionheart', Nigeria's first-ever entry for best international film
The film, directed by and starring award-winning Nigerian actress Genevieve Nnaji, was initially one of 92 films submitted in the category. But the film was withdrawn Monday after the Academy ruled that it didn't meet the requirements for the award.
Films in the category must be produced outside the United States with a predominantly non-English dialogue track, according to the Academy's rules.
Most of "Lionheart" is in English with just under 12 minutes of dialogue in the Igbo language, primarily spoken in eastern Nigeria, making it ineligible.
"Lionheart," Nigeria's first Netflix original film, is about a Nigerian woman named Adaeze, portrayed by Nnaji, trying to keep her family's transportation business together.
Nnaji expressed her disappointment on Twitter over the Academy's decision.
According to the actress, the film represents how Nigerians communicate and the country should be able to compete for an Oscar in its official language — English.
"This movie represents the way we speak as Nigerians. This includes English which acts as a bridge between the 500+ languages spoken in our country; thereby making us #OneNigeria," she wrote.