Hoards of movie fanatics huddled around their TVs this morning as Seth MacFarlane and Emma Stone announced the 84th Academy Awards nominees. It seemed that this year produced more shocks than ever, with many of the major categories snubbing the previously considered frontrunners and favorites. So, what caught our eye? Read on.
Snub: Best Director
Not only was our man Ben Affleck omitted a Best Director nomination for Argo, but Kathryn Bigelow also was left out for Zero Dark Thirty. After years in Hollywood, it was presumed that 2013 was Affleck's year to finally win an Oscar for his directing. Not to mention, the category could have used some female diversity — Bigelow was the first woman to win the Best Director title in 2010 for her film, The Hurt Locker.
Snub: Leonardo DiCaprio
Our lovely Leonardo DiCaprio was nothing less than deliciously dark, twisted, and hilarious in his portrayal of plantation owner Calvin Candie in this year's Django Unchained. We were banking on a Best Supporting Actor nom for the talented and well-deserving actor, but it was his Django co-star, Christoph Waltz, who got one instead. Note that DiCaprio has still never won an Oscar, though has been nominated three times and snubbed, by many critics' accounts, many times over, including for roles in Revolutionary Road, The Departed, and, naturally, Titanic.
Surprise: Best Actress Age Gaps
2013's nominations broke not one but two age records in its Best Actress categories. The nine-year-old Quvenzhane Wallis is the youngest actress to receive a nomination for Beasts of the Southern Wild, while Emmanuelle Riva, 85, was the oldest ever nominated for Amour. The previous records had respectively been held by Keisha Castle-Hughes, 13, for Whale Rider and Jessica Tandy for Driving Miss Daisy as well as Edith Evans for The Whisperers. Both of those women were 80 years old.
Surprise: Lincoln Tops Noms
We knew the Steven Spielberg film was good, but we didn't expect for it to walk away with a whopping 12 nominations, which included Best Actor (Daniel Day-Lewis), Best Actress (Sally Field), Best Supporting Actor (Tommy Lee Jones), and, of course, Best Picture. The show is always a boring one when one movie sweeps each of its nominated categories, so, for the sake of entertainment, let's hope for some variation.