Italian film organisation Anica says Italy fully supports theselection of Cristina Comencini's Don't Tell as the country's candidatefor the best foreign language film Oscar, despite reports of fiery argumentswithin the local movie industry.

Italy had initially selected Saverio Costanzo's Middle East drama Private, but the picture was ruled ineligible by the Academy OfMotion Picture Arts & Sciences, since the film was not shot in Italian.(It was shot in Arabic and Hebrew, with some dialogues inEnglish.)

Anica has issued a statementsaying that Aurelio De Laurentiis, the president ofnational producers union UNPF and Angelo Barbagallo,president of Italian independent producers group API, have given their fullsupport to Don't Tell.

"Comencini'sfilm has obtained both critical and box-office success. The film was very wellreceived at the Venice Film Festival, where Giovanna Mezzogiornowon the best actress prize. Together with the entire film industry, we willsupport the film so that it receives the just attention from the Academy,"Anica said.

Don't Tell is about a soon-to-be-mother who is forced to deal for thefirst time with the ghosts of child abuse.

De Laurentiisand several other Italian industry leaders, havenevertheless said that in future the Academy should have more flexible rules aboutthe language in which a film is shot and has called for producers from othercountries to join him in appealing for a change to "anachronistic" regulations.