NEW YORK (AP) — The brutal frontier saga “The Revenant” landed a leading 12 nominations for the 88th annual Academy Awards.
The strong showing Thursday for “The Revenant,” including a best actor nod for Leonardo DiCaprio and best supporting actor for Tom Hardy, follows its win at the Golden Globes. It sets up director Alejandro Inarritu for a possible back-to-back win following his sweep for best picture, director and screenplay for “Birdman” last year.
“We gave it our all on this film and this appreciation from the Academy means a lot to me and my colleagues who made it possible,” said Inarritu in a statement. “Champagne and mezcal will run tonight!”
The Oscar nominations in under a minute https://t.co/cEU1H0Hy8D
— Sky News (@SkyNews) January 14, 2016
George Miller’s post-apocalyptic sequel “Mad Max: Fury Road” followed with 10 nominations, including best picture and best director for Miller. Ridley Scott’s sci-fi epic “The Martian” landed seven nominations, including best picture and best actor for Matt Damon, but no best director nod for Scott.
Eight films were nominated for best picture. The other five were: Tom McCarthy’s investigative journalistic procedural “Spotlight,” Steven Spielberg’s Cold War thriller “Bridge of Spies,” Adam McKay’s Michael Lewis adaptation “The Big Short,” the mother-son captive drama “Room” and the ’50s Irish immigrant tale “Brooklyn.”
Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs slated Chris Rock to host this year’s Feb. 28 ceremony.
Alongside DiCaprio and Damon, the best actor nominees are: Michael Fassbender (“Steve Jobs”), Eddie Redmayne (“The Danish Girl”) and Bryan Cranston (“Trumbo”). Two big names were omitted: Johnny Depp for “Black Mass” and Will Smith for “Concussion.”
— Germany Kent (@GermanyKent) January 14, 2016
In a statement, DiCaprio, who’s expected to land his first Oscar in his fifth nomination, called making “The Revenent” ”one of the most rewarding and collaborative experiences of my life.”
The best actress field is led by favorite Brie Larson for “Room,” along with Jennifer Lawrence (for “Joy,” making her, at 25, the youngest four-time nominee), Cate Blanchett (her seventh nod, for “Carol”), Saoirse Ronan (“Brooklyn”) and Charlotte Rampling (“45 Years”).
After seemingly slipping in an unpredictable awards season, “Spotlight” showed particularly strength Thursday, landing six nominations including best director for McCarthy, best screenplay for McCarthy and Josh Singer, best supporting actress for Rachel McAdams and best supporting actor for Mark Ruffalo.
Sylvester Stallone, reprising his role as Rocky Balboa in “Creed,” looms large in the supporting actor category. His stiffest competition is seen as Mark Rylance, best known for his legendary stage work, for “Bridge of Spies.” Also nominated were Tom Hardy (“The Revenant”) and Christian Bale (“The Big Short”).
“I am incredibly humbled by this honor,” Stallone, first nominated for the role in 1976 for “Rocky,” wrote in an email. “I was not expecting it … especially at this time in my life. I am certainly grateful to the artists and collaborators who helped make it possible.”
Stallone was the only nominee for Ryan Coogler’s “Creed,” which drew raves for its director and star, Michael B. Jordan.
Nominees for best director left out Spielberg. Instead, Lenny Abrahamson for “Room” was the unexpected addition along with Adam McKay, known best for his broader Will Ferrell comedies, for “The Big Short.”
As expected, Pixar’s “Inside Out” landed a best animated feature nod, as did the Charlie Kaufman-penned “Anomalisa,” ”Shaun the Sheep Movie,” ”Boy and the World” and “When Marnie Was There.”
The nomination for Pixar (which also landed a best screenplay nod for “Inside Out”) restores its nearly unblemished record of Oscar nominations, broken only by 2011’s “Cars 2” and 2013’s “Monsters University.”
The foreign language category drew films from Hungary (“Son Of Saul”), France (“Mustang”), Jordan (“Theeb”), Denmark (“A War”) and Colombia (“Embrace the Serpent”). Jordan and Columbia celebrated their first nominees.
Though some fans had hoped for a better showing, the box-office behemoth “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” failed to land a best picture nomination. It instead scored five technical nods for editing, score, visual effects, sound mixing and sound editing.
Since the best picture field was expanded from five nominees to up to 10, in 2010, every year has delivered nine nominations until this year’s eight. The original reasoning was partly to make room for bigger, more populist films like Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight” alongside acclaimed independent releases.
But the chances for “The Force Awakens” were hurt because the category already has one sci-fi blockbuster (“The Martian”), as well as a number of major studio releases. 20th Century Fox had an especially good day, led by “The Revenant” and “The Martian.”
Netflix, which has previously scored nominations for documentaries, fell short in its first bid for fiction film nods. Its first original feature, Cary Fukunaga’s West African child war film “Beasts of No Nation,” was shut out.
Netflix did, however, again break into the documentary category with “What Happened, Miss Simone” and “Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom.” The other nominees were “Amy,” ”Cartel Land” and “The Look of Silence.” Surprisingly left out was Alex Gibney’s incendiary Scientology documentary, “Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief.”
Nominations were announced shortly after the passing of Alan Rickman, famed for “Die Hard” and “Harry Potter” but never Oscar-nominated, at 69.