87th Academy Award Nominees

The 87th Academy Award nominations were announced today! Without any further ado, here are the nominees:

Best Picture
I'm glad to see The Grand Budapest Hotel on here, even though I think this race comes down to Boyhood and Birdman. (However, Hotel does have several nominations in the design and other technical categories, even though it did not receive any acting nominations. It's not a runaway for Boyhood or Birdman.) With room for ten nominees, though, the Academy only chose eight nominees, leaving off worthy contenders, like Nightcrawler and Into the Woods. Also note that Interstellar is not on this list, either. Making the list is American Sniper. If you scroll through the nominations, it appears the Academy liked this quite a bit.

Best Actor in a Leading Role
  • Steve Carell, Foxcatcher
  • Bradley Cooper, American Sniper 
  • Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game
  • Michael Keaton, Birdman
  • Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything
How is Jake Gyllenhaal not nominated for Nightcrawler?!? I understand that good money is on Keaton to win this, regardless of the competition, but how did Gyllenhaal not make the cut? He was nominated for a SAG Award and, because of the nomination process, the guild slates (in almost all categories) usually predict the Oscar slates. This is, by far, the biggest snub. It looks like Bradley Cooper, now a three-time nominee (he's been nominated three years in a row), took Gyllenhaal's "slot."

Best Actress in a Leading Role
In another deviation from the guild nominees, here we see Cotillard taking the slot of Jennifer Aniston. (I'm not an Aniston fan, and there's a critical mass of critics who think Cotillard was sensational in Two Days, One Night, so no complaints here.) Even so, Moore is the front-runner, with Witherspoon in second.

Best Actor in a Supporting Role
  • Robert Duvall, The Judge
  • Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
  • Edward Norton, Birdman
  • Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
  • J.K. Simmons, Whiplash
Much as I liked Norton in Birdman, I'm still Team Simmons all the way.

Best Actress in a Supporting Role
  • Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
  • Laura Dern, Wild
  • Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game
  • Emma Stone, Birdman
  • Meryl Streep, Into the Woods 
This might be the most competitive category. I'm thrilled to see Dern in contention, but you can never count out Streep, and Arquette just won the Globe. Hey sports fans, things are getting interesting.

Best Director
  • Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Birdman
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood
  • Bennett Miller, Foxcatcher
  • Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game 
Hooray for Anderson! While this will likely come down to Inarritu vs. Linklater (with Linklater favored, in my estimation), I'm happy to see Anderson, a director with a distinct aesthetic, recognized with the nomination.

Best Original Screenplay
  • Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr., and Armando Bo, Birdman
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood
  • E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman, Foxcatcher
  • Wes Anderson (screenplay and story) and Hugo Guinness (story), The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Dan Gilroy, Nightcrawler
Gilroy's nomination is well deserved, but the fact that it's the film's only nomination is absurd. Nighcrawler is a fascinating look at where we are as a society and absolutely should have been nominated for Best Picture, and star Jake Gyllenhaal, in perhaps his best on-screen performance to date, absolutely should have been nominated for Best Actor. That said, I'm also pleased to see Anderson in this category, and am rooting for him.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Chazelle's screenplay is actually based on his own short film so it is, technically, an adaptation, though the idea comes entirely from him. Most prognosticators will likely be shocked to see Gillian Flynn without a nomination for adapting her novel, Gone Girl. It highlights the lack of nominated women in these top non-acting categories, as there were serious contenders for screenplay and direction. Expect to see several "think pieces" about that in the coming weeks. (Also about the lack of racial diversity, particularly in the acting categories.)    

Best Cinematography
  • Emmanuel Lubezki, Birdman
  • Robert Yeoman, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Lukasz Zal and Ryszard Lenczewski, Ida 
  • Dick Pope, Mr. Turner
  • Roger Deakins, Unbroken
I don't know how you can see Birdman and not immediately give this award to Lubezki. The entire film looks like it was done in one, continuous tracking shot, and that's thanks in large part to Lubezki (and the film's editor; see below).

Best Film Editing
  • Joel Cox and Gary D. Roach, American Sniper
  • Sandra Adair, Boyhood
  • Barney Piling, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • William Goldenberg, The Imitation Game
  • Tom Cross, Whiplash
How is it possible for Douglas Crise and Stephen Mirrione, Birdman's editors, to be left out of this category? Does the Academy think that once Inarritu and Lubezki got all their footage, the film just magically came together to look like one shot? The cinematography is magnificent, but it would not have come together the way it did without the film editors. For shame, Academy.

Best Costume Design
  • Milena Canonero, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Mark Bridges, Inherent Vice
  • Colleen Atwood, Into the Woods
  • Anna B. Sheppard and Jane Clive, Maleficent
  • Jacqueline Durran, Mr. Turner
In my mind, there isn't a clear frontrunner here. The three I've seen are all deserving.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
  • Bill Corso and Dennis Liddiard, Foxcatcher
  • Frances Hannon and Mark Coulier, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Elizabeth Yianni-Georgiou and David White, Guardians of the Galaxy  
Best Production Design
(the first person listed is credited with production design; the second person is credited with set decoration)
  • Adam Stockhausen and Anna Pinnock, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Maria Djurkovic and Tatiana Macdonald, The Imitation Game
  • Nathan Crowley and Gary Fettis, Interstellar  
  • Dennis Cassner and Anna Pinnock, Into the Woods
  • Suzie Davies and Charlotte Watts, Mr. Turner
I wonder if The Grand Budapest Hotel is going to sweep the design awards while Boyhood and Birdman duke it out for best picture.

Best Sound Editing
  • Alan Robert Murray and Bub Asman, American Sniper
  • Martin Hernandez and Aaron Glascock, Birdman
  • Brent Burge and Jason Canovas, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
  • Richard King, Interstellar
  • Becky Sullivan and Andrew DeCristofaro, Unbroken
Best Sound Mixing
  • John Reitz, Gregg Rudloff and Walt Martin, American Sniper
  • Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montano and Thomas Varga, Birdman
  • Gary A. Rizzo, Gregg Landaker and Mark Weingarten, Interstellar
  • Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montano and David Lee, Unbroken
  • Craig Mann, Ben Wilkins and Thomas Curley, Whiplash    
Best Original Score
  • Alexandre Desplat, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Alexandre Desplat, The Imitation Game
  • Hans Zimmer, Interstellar
  • Gary Yershon, Mr. Turner
  • Johann Johannsson, The Theory of Everything
I still think it's unconscionable that Antoni Sanchez's drum score for Birdman was deemed ineligible.

Best Original Song
  • "Everything is Awesome," music and lyrics by Shawn Patterson, from The Lego Movie
  • "Glory," music and lyrics by John Stephens (aka John Legend) and Lonnie Lynn (aka Common), from Selma
  • "Grateful," music and lyrics by Diane Warren, from Beyond the Lights 
  • "I'm Not Gonna Miss You," music and lyrics by Glen Campbell and Julian Raymond, from Glen Campbell: I'll Be Me
  • "Lost Stars," music and lyrics by Gregg Alexander and Danielle Brisebois, from Begin Again 
There's not break out hit like last year's "Let it Go," but "Glory" did just take home the Globe.

Best Visual Effects
  • Dan DeLeeuw, Russell Earl, Bryan Grill and Dan Sudick, Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  • Joe Letteri, Dan Lemmon, Daniel Barrett and Erik Winquist, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
  • Stephane Ceretti, Nicolas Aithadi, Jonathan Fawkner and Paul Corbould, Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Paul Franklin, Andrew Lockley, Ian Hunter and Scott Fisher, Interstellar
  • Richard Stammers, Lou Pecora, Time Crosbie and Cameron Waldbauer, X-Men: Days of Future Past  
Best Documentary Feature
  • Citizen Four
  • Finding Vivian Maier
  • Last Days in Vietnam
  • The Salt of the Earth
  • Virunga
Citizen Four is about Edward Snowden and the surrounding events, and Virunga documents climate change.

Best Documentary Short Subject
  • Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1
  • Joanna
  • Our Curse
  • The Reaper (La Parka)
  • White Earth
Best Live Action Short
  • Aya
  • Boogaloo and Graham
  • Butter Lamp
  • Parvaneh
  • The Phone Call
Best Animated Feature
  • Big Hero 6
  • The Boxtrolls
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2
  • Song of the Sea
  • The Tale of the Princess Kaguya
Best Animated Short
  • The Bigger Picture
  • The Dam Keeper
  • Feast
  • Me and My Moulton
  • A Single Life
Best Foreign Language Film
  • Ida (Poland)
  • Leviathan (Russia)
  • Tangerines (Estonia)
  • Timbuktu (Mauritania)
  • Wild Tales (Argentina)   

The Academy Awards will be presented on Sunday, February 22, on ABC. Neil Patrick Harris will take on hosting duties. Throughout the season, check my Oscars Pinterest board for photos of the nominees at Oscar-related events.

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