Words: Saam Das
So the most important film awards of the year announced their nominations this week.....the Razzies. I jest, I jest.
The nominations for the 89th Academy Awards were announced just yesterday, with 'The King's Speech' leading the way with twelve nom noms. The nominations have been fairly predictable but I thought it might be worth discussing some of the surprises and "snubs".
The biggest snub appears to be Christopher Nolan's lack of a nod in the Best Director category, which really is quite astonishing, and I say that even though I'm not really a massive 'Inception' fanboy. To have created a Hollywood blockbuster that had even the slightest hint of intellectual sophistication was a triumph that deserved more recognition than simply a Best Original Screenplay nod for Nolan.
With the Best Picture list now at ten nominations but with the Best Director list still only at five, it's probably safe to rule out 'Inception' entirely from receiving the Best Picture, despite its eight nominations in total. Although it was always going to be a challenge to overcome 'The Social Network' and 'The King's Speech' anyway.
Nolan's replacement in the Best Director category has effectively been the Coen siblings, whose 'True Grit' has come away with ten nominations, second only to 'The King's Speech'. That's perhaps a surprisingly high number consider its non-appearance at the recent Golden Globes.
It seems bizarre too that the central actress in 'True Grit', Hailee Steinfeld, has been nominated as Best Supporting Actress despite supposedly being pretty much the only actress in the film. Lesley Manville can feel a little disappointed to have missed out possibly as a result, following her well received performance in 'Another Year'
In terms of pleasant surprises, it was wonderful to hear that 'The Illusionist' received a nomination for Best Animated Feature. It may have little chance to win against the superior 'Toy Story 3' (and the equally good 'How To Train Your Dragon') but hopefully it will inspire people to seek out such a beautiful-looking film.
It's a shame that 'Shutter Island' has been completely ignored despite Paramount purposefully choosing to move its release in order to focus on this year's Oscars, instead of last year's. Perhaps all the more painful when 'The Wolfman', which was largely panned, actually managed to get on the board, with a Best Make-Up nomination.
A few actors can feel hard done by too, perhaps none more so than Paul Giamatti, the winner of a Golden Globe earlier in the month but snubbed at the Oscars. Ryan Gosling and Robert Duvall also disappointingly missed out on a shot at Best Actor. And although Mark Wahlberg was never seriously in contention, Christian Bale's observations in his Golden Globes speech that stoic characters in films never receive awards appears to have timely credence.
Mila Kunis might consider her lack of a nomination a snub too but not everyone can look as irresistible as her as well as being a talented actress so I'm sure she'll get over it eventually. I think I already have.
LEADING NOMINEES: 'The King's Speech' (12) // 'True Grit' (10) // 'The Social Network' (8) // 'Inception' (8) // 'The Fighter' (7) // '127 Hours' (6) // 'Toy Story 3' (5) // 'Black Swan' (5) // 'The Kids Are All Right' (4) // 'Winter's Bone' (4).
For the list of Oscar nominations, pop over to the Academy Awards' website.