Oscar Nominations 2011 – Numbers and Reaction

The glorious day of Oscar nominations has come and along with it the roller coaster of emotions that goes along with seeing our favorite films recognized and snubbed. As I mentioned in the previous post, I got 87 of the 106 nominated films correct (shorts not included) for a total of 82%. My favorite film of the year (True Grit) racked up an impressive 10 nominations and the film I thought was the year’s most overrated (The Town) missed out in Best Picture, so I can not say I am disappointed by the results. Here are my reactions and some statistics for the 2011 Oscar nominations:

The Best Oscar Nominations

1) Exit Through the Gift Shop for Best Documentary. One of the best films of the year managed to get seen by enough members of the Documentary branch to score a nomination. It may be a controversial choice because much of its non-fiction nature is in debate, but it is a brave and inspired choice nonetheless and I am very glad the Academy selected it.

2) John Hawkes of Winter’s Bone for Best Supporting Actor. Many doubted that an actor in such a small film would make the cut, but the Academy was very wise in choosing Mr. Hawkes. As the gritty Tear Drop he manifests an uncertain scariness in his performance yet manages to be the only character outside of the protagonist that the audience is meant to feel they can trust.

3) Ethan and Joel Coen of True Grit for Best Director. Before you get upset because these two seem to be the reason that Christopher Nolan was snubbed, I will state that I too am dismayed about Mr. Nolan’s dismissal. However, the Coens easily had one of the greatest directing jobs of last year and deserve to be recognized for their work.

4) How to Train Your Dragon for Best Original Score. John Powell’s beautiful work on this whimsical animated film could have easily been ignored in favor of the sweeping dramatic scores in some of the Best Picture nominees. However, it was wisely included in the shortlist and could actually find itself getting a lot of campaigning as one of Dreamworks’ few nominees.

5) Roger Deakins of True Grit for Best Cinematography. Deakins’ work in the latest Coen brothers film is very subtle and could have easily gone unnoticed by this branch of the Academy. I’m very glad it didn’t and hope that the most overdue cinematographer will be able to hang on for his first ever Oscar win.

The Most Egregious Snubs

1) Christopher Nolan of Inception for Best Director. The reaction around the internet to this snub makes it seem like The Dark Knight has been ignored all over again. It’s definitely the case, however, that there were probably directors who received nominations that were less deserving than Nolan. Perhaps Russell or Aronofsky could have been substituted for Nolan. However, it is starting to look like the Academy has a bias against his sweeping direction.

2) Julianne Moore of The Kids Are All Right for Best Actress. Bening got in, so that offers some minor consolation, but the greatest acted film of 2010 deserved more recognition than it got. In my opinion Bening and Moore should be 1 and 2 in the overall rankings, but alas it shall not be the case.

3) Armie Hammer of The Social Network for Best Supporting Actor. The idea that Hammer had a shot at all was wishful thinking, but I am not actually very disappointed that Andrew Garfield was snubbed. Hammer’s performance in The Social Network should have been the Oscar frontrunner and maybe if Sony had campaigned correctly, he would have heard his name announced this morning.

4) Waiting for “Superman” for Best Documentary. I have not seen most of the documentaries that were nominated, so it is sort of unfair for me to make this claim, but there may have not been a movie of 2010 with higher stakes than Davis Guggenheim’s look at America’s broken education system.

5) “Shine” by John Legend from Waiting for “Superman” for Best Original Song. Easily better than the songs from Country Strong, Tangled, and 127 Hours.

Some Interesting Numbers

12 – The number of nominations received by The King’s Speech. Only 4 films since 2000 have received 12 nominations or more including The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, Chicago, and Gladiator. Of those only Benjamin Button did not win Best Picture.

15 – The number of films that received nominations today that played at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. indieWIRE has made a list of all of them.

21 – The number of nominations received by Paramount Pictures, whose films The Fighter and True Grit were big hits this year and scored many nominations.

9 – There are six individuals whose nomination this morning made it their 9th career Oscar nomination. Those individuals are Roger Deakins (Cinematography, True Grit), Stuart Craig (Art Direction, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1), Colleen Atwood (Costume Design, Alice in Wonderland), Jenny Beavan (Costume Design, The King’s Speech), Sandy Powell (Costume Design, The Tempest), Hans Zimmer (Original Score, Inception).

What are your reactions to today’s nominations? In your opinion, what was the biggest snub?

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  • yan

    I just don’t understand why Nolan keeps getting snub, even at this point the bafta and globes decided to embrace him. Do they hate nolan, but for what reason, and especially over someone likes russell?

  • Jose

    I’m satisfied with the results as mentioned in my comment. My snubs are there too.

  • The Fellowship of the Ring was nominated for 13 awards.

  • J

    He said “12 or more”

  • Andrew R.

    I think they do, indeed, hate Christopher Nolan. Oh well, Coens are good too.

    PICTURE: I predicted 10/10. To all of you who doubted 127 Hours, I say, HAHA! (Great group, BTW.)

    DIRECTOR: Yeah, I missed Nolan too. Oh well.

    The acting nominations are SO GREAT this year. I predicted 16 nominees correctly. I missed Bardem, Williams, Hawkes, and Weaver. I said that it would be Gosling, Moore, Garfield, and Kunis instead. I’m actually sort of glad I missed the middle two, because the ones who actually made it are much better.

    In Screenplay, 9/10. I said Black Swan instead of Another Year. I’m OK with that, since I didn’t like how Swan’s screenplay had to summarize Swan Lake and Another Year had a beautiful screenplay.

    Animation: 3/3. Yay.

    Documentary: All I said was, “Waiting for Superman and Inside Job are definitely in.” Well, those of you who didn’t like Superman are lucky.

    Foreign: Wait, Dogtooth made it? My reaction: HOLYFUCKINGSHITTHANKYOUACADEMY! I said Japan instead. But I’m good with this for Greece’s sake. I do wish we could see Japan’s, though. Ah well.

    I think the one disappointment was The Town. Only one nomination? That stinks.

    I actually ended up reshuffling my personal nominations a little.

    I think the BP race is between four films: Social Network and King’s Speech in the lead, with The Fighter and True Grit possibly pulling an upset. (If The Fighter wins, I’m going to be the only annoyed person on the planet.)

  • I got 9/10 for Best Picture. I missed “127 Hours”. I had “The Town” in its place. I was really hoping “the Town” would make it, but still the nominees are excellent.

    For Directing, I missed the Coens. I can’t believe they snubbed Nolan. Unbelievable. They really do truly hate him.

    For the acting categories I missed Bardem and Hawkes. I had Duvall in Bardem’s place, and Garfield in Hawkes place.

    For writing I missed “Another Year” and “127 Hours”. I knew I was wrong picking “The Town” over “127 Hours”….oh wwell

    @Andrew – I really wished The Town got more than one nomination. Renner deserved it, but there were at least 3 other categories it could get nominated in.

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