The Academy Awards are always good for a full of surprises. Sure, some filmmakers, actors and movies seem destined for Oscar gold, but there are always plenty of key snubs and shocking inclusions that leave everybody either completely enraged or delighted. And it’s 10 of those that we’re here to talk about today.
What were the most surprising turn of events during this morning’s nomination announcements for the 88th annual Academy Awards? Read on to find out!
Quentin Tarantino And Aaron Sorkin Miss Out On Best ScreenplayBetween the two of them, Quentin Tarantino and Aaron Sorkin have three Academy Awards and two separate nominations in Oscar screenplay categories, but both of them wound up being completely shut out of the 2016 race for their work on The Hateful Eight and Steve Jobs, respectively. It’s obviously their track record that makes the snub this year so surprising, but the results of the Golden Globes certainly don’t help it make any more sense. After all, not only were both Tarantino and Sorkin nominated, but it was Sorkin who actually walked away with the trophy.
Adam McKay Gets Nominated For Best DirectorAfter a career of making ridiculous comedies like Anchorman and Step Brothers, director Adam McKay changed gears a bit to make The Big Short - certainly his most serious work to date – and it has paid off in a huge way. McKay’s nomination for the main prize from the Director’s Guild was certainly a clue that he was very much in the running for the Academy Awards’ Best Director prize – but that doesn’t really make seeing his name on the ballot any less surprising.
Tom Hardy Gets A Best Supporting Actor NominationDespite putting on one of the best supporting actor performances of last year – starring in The Revenant as the man who left Leonardo DiCaprio’s Hugh Glass to die after being attacked by a bear – Tom Hardy was completely looked over during the Golden Globes, and wasn’t even able to secure a nomination. The Academy most certainly did what they could to right that wrong. There’s no guarantee that Hardy will win, as the competition in the category is pretty crazy, but he most certainly deserves to be recognized for his impressive work, and it’s a nice surprise that that’s happening.
Ridley Scott Misses Out On Best DirectorOf all the big surprises from this year’s crop of Oscar nods, this one is definitely the biggest. The Director’s Guild Of America nominations usually do an excellent job predicting who will be nominated for an Academy Award – and while Ridley Scott’s work on The Martian earned him attention from that organization, Lenny Abrahamson took his slot thanks to his work on the emotionally devastating Room. The Academy has previously been kind to Scott, delivering a Best Director nomination on three separate occasions, but he apparently couldn’t get the votes this time around.
Room Gets A Ton Of AttentionLenny Abrahamson’s Room didn’t exactly light the box office on fire when it came out this past fall, pulling in just $5 million and never making it into more than 198 theaters at one time, but the Academy has made it pretty damn clear that they think it’s a film worth celebrating. While left out of all the technical categories, the emotional drama is in the mix for three of the Oscar’s biggest races: Best Actress (Brie Larson), Best Director and Best Picture.
Michael Keaton Gets Passed Over For SpotlightMany were disappointed last year when Eddie Redmayne wound up taking home the Best Actor Oscar over Michael Keaton, but at least the actor's turn in Birdman was nominated. Sadly, the same thing can't be said about his fantastic turn in Tom McCarthy's Spotlight. Admittedly the Best Supporting Actor category is an extremely tough one this year - and many of the votes that would have gone Keaton's way went to Mark Ruffalo instead – but it’s still surprising that the veteran actor couldn’t find his way on to the list.
Charlotte Rampling Gets A Best Actress NominationCharlotte Rampling has been working as a professional actress since 1965, but has never exactly been known to get a lot of awards attention. That has changed in a big way thanks to her performance in writer/director Andrew Haigh’s drama 45 Years. She has been picking up nominations left and right over the last few weeks for her starring role opposite fellow veteran Tom Courtenay, and it’s all led to his first ever Oscar race.
The Peanuts Movie Misses Out On Best Animated FeatureLast year was a rather incredible year for animation, and the nominees for Best Animated Feature Film most certainly demonstrate that. Unfortunately, this fact wound up being bad news for Steve Martino’s The Peanuts Movie. The project certainly earned acclaim from professional critics last fall, and made a significant score at the box office, but apparently this wasn’t enough for it to crack the Top Five with Academy voters. Inside Out and Anomalisa are certainly the frontrunners in the category, but it’s still surprising to not see Peanuts get recognized.
Sylvester Stallone Gets Nominated For CreedSylvester Stallone earned a pair of Oscar nominations back in 1977 for his work writing and acting in the original Rocky, but his career since then hasn’t exactly been filled to the brim with award-worthy films or performances. With Creed, however, it’s all come full circle, as the franchise has been given new life, and Stallone is picking up attention from the Academy. After the Golden Globes, we all definitely knew that a Best Supporting Actor nod was possible, but it’s still surprisingly nonetheless.
Mad Max: Fury Road vs. The RevenantWe got to see so many incredible movies come out in 2015, and we would have been happy to see a whole lot of them get a lot of recognition from the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences… but nobody could have predicted that George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road and Alejandro Inarritu’s The Revenant would be leading the pack in nominations this year. The former is competing in a grand total of 10 races, while the other is in 12. They’re both huge epics, feature amazing performances, and film productions went through hell to get the work done – but they really couldn’t be more different at the same time. Which film will ultimately collect more wins? We’ll leave it to all of you to predict that in the comments below.