Feb. 21 - The teenage stars of an Oscar-nominated short film from Afghanistan arrive in Los Angeles for the Academy Awards after an Internet campaign raised enough money to pay for their trip. Kilmeny Duchardt reports.
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From the streets of Kabul to the red carpet in Los Angeles.
After flying more than 18 hours from the Afghan capital, the teenage stars of "Buzkashi Boys" finally arrived in Tinsel Town to gear up for the 85th annual Academy Awards.
Actors Fawad Mohammadi and Jawanmard Paiz greeted the film's director Sam French and producer Ariel Nasr at Los Angeles International Airport.
Thanks to money raised by an internet campaign and free tickets on Turkish Air, attending the Oscars will be a dream come true for the acting duo.
It was not only Mohammadi's first flight, but his first trip out of his home country.
(SOUNDBITE) Fawad Mohammadi, actor, Buzkashi Boys, saying (English):
"I am so excited and so happy, and lots of pictures. I am so happy and so excited."
Mohammadi was discovered by filmmakers while selling maps on Chicken Street Market in the Afghan capital.
And on Sunday, he and Paiz will be rubbing elbows with Hollywood's biggest stars on Oscar night.
Director Sam French said their visit was culturally significant.
(SOUNDBITE) Sam French, director, Buzkashi Boys, saying (English):
"Well I just think, just the fact that we're talking about something other than the war, other than bombs and bullets, I think is a huge step forward. And hopefully we can show that these kids are like normal kids everywhere and that is huge. And that's what we want to try to do with Buzkashi Boys is to show that, you know, kids here are no different than kids there, and people are no different. And if that comes across in any way, that would be great."
The boys will fly to Washington for screenings of the film on February 27, before beginning their journey back to Kabul on March 1.
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