New Delhi, Feb. 11 -- Not so long ago, director Bong Joon-ho dismissed the Oscars as "not an international film festival" and a narrow celebration of "very local" fare. He was convinced that English-speaking audiences and juries didn't have the patience for "foreign" cinema. "Once you overcome the one-inch tall barrier of subtitles," he said imploringly, through his translator, at the recent Golden Globe Awards last month, "you will be introduced to so many more amazing films."

It took 92 years, but the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences finally overcame the "once-inch barrier" of subtitles. On Monday, it awarded Bong's social satire Parasite four Oscars, including the inaugural Best International Feature award (renamed from best ...