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Oscar Nominations 2015: Shocks, Snubs and Favourites


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It’s that time of year again: award season.

We may only be two weeks into the new year but we’ve already witnessed the Golden Globes ceremony, last Sunday, and it had us tense with anticipation and tearful with joy for the winners.

The Golden Globe nominees and subsequent winners always alter our predictions of who the Oscar nominees will be, and the announcement of them yesterday brought many shocks. Though some categories’ nominees were entirely the same as they were at the Golden Globes (such as Best Supporting Actor) many categories contained a surprise nominee and/or a couple of snubbed predicted-frontrunners; namely Jennifer Aniston, Amy Adams and the directors Ava DuVernay (Selma) and David Fincher (Gone Girl).

The Oscar nominations this year contain, just as the Golden Globes did, plenty of British acting talent, with Eddie Redmayne unsurprisingly nominated for Best Actor, which he won at last Sunday’s Globes for his performance in The Theory of Everything. Benedict Cumberbatch is nominated in the same category for his portrayal of the famous mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing in The Imitation Game. The Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress categories’ nominees include yet more British talent, with Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl), Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game) and Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything) also nominated.


Six of the eight films nominated in this category were also nominated in the Best Motion Picture (Drama) or Best Motion Picture (Musical or Comedy) categories at the recent Globes. Those six are unsurprising but deserving.

The shock nominations in this category are, firstly, Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper, which was snubbed entirely by the Hollywood Foreign Press (which judges the Golden Globes) receiving no nominations. The Academy must have seen something award-worthy in American Sniper however, as it has six nominations (including Best Actor - Bradley Cooper).

Similarly, Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash was snubbed by the Globes, with only one nomination and one win (Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture - J.K Simmons). The Academy, however, have nominated it for five awards including Best Supporting Actor for J.K Simmons again. Either of these two films have a strong chance of winning, as they have received such a surprisingly contrasting amount of acclaim and interest from the Academy.

However, the six other nominees include the recent Best Picture Golden Globe winning films, Richard Linklater’s Boyhood (Drama) and Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel (Comedy or Musical), the latter of which is a frontrunner at the awards with nine nominations overall. The Grand Budapest Hotel has a strong chance of winning even though it is tied for nominations with Birdman, which recently won two Golden Globes (Best Screenplay - Alejandro G. Iñárratu and Best Actor (Musical or Comedy) - Micheal Keaton).

The other nominations are Ava DuVernay’s Selma, which was nominated for four Golden globes, winning one (Best Song - ‘Glory’ by John Legend and Common) but has been comparatively snubbed by the Academy and is only nominated for two Oscars. This came as a surprise to many, as it was predicted to be a frontrunner for nominations.

Morten Tyldum’s The Imitation Game has been nominated for eight Academy Awards and James Marsh’s The Theory of Everything for five awards, but personally I don’t think these two, as brilliant as they are, stand much of a chance at winning.

Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher was nominated for Best Motion Picture (Drama) at the Globes but has been snubbed for this category by the Oscars, however it is still nominated in four other categories.

Prediction: American Sniper as a recently-snubbed semi-surprise winner, or The Grand Budapest Hotel purely because of the attention it has received from the Academy.


Ava DuVernay, the only female director nominated at last weekend’s Globes, has been snubbed from this category. Her film, Selma, was thought by many to be a frontrunner for Oscar nominations and subsequent wins, but has only received two nominations and unfortunately neither of them is in this category.

Similarly David Fincher, also nominated for a Golden Globe for Gone Girl, has been snubbed from this category. Gone Girl was expected to recieve lots of nominations, but has only received one.

Another director that was predicted a nomination was Angelina Jolie for Unbroken, but alas, sadly not, nor was it nominated for Best Picture.

However, Alejandro G. Iñárratu - Birdman, Richard Linklater - Golden Globe winner for Boyhood, Bennett Miller - Foxcatcher, Wes Anderson - The Grand Budapest Hotel and Morten Tyldum - The Imitation Game were all deservedly nominated.

Prediction: A close-call between Richard Linklater and Alejandro G. Iñárratu, but being a big Wes Anderson fan, I’d love him to win.


There are two British actors nominated and yes, if you haven’t yet checked the nominees list on the Oscars website, those two nominees are indeed Golden Globe winner Eddie Redmayne - The Theory of Everything and Benedict Cumberbatch - The Imitation Game.

This award season is likely to be very good to Eddie Redmayne and he will likely come out on top. However, a win for Benedict Cumberbatch would recognise their equally fantastic performances in their respective films by seeing them both get an award this season. It’s easy to set their performances against each other as they are both young British actors playing the roles of real people; Benedict as Alan Turing and Eddie as Stephen Hawking, and these are both of their first Academy Award nominations.

However, it may very well not be a British win as there is tough competition from the other nominees: Steve Carrell - Foxcatcher, Bradley Cooper - American Sniper and Michael Keaton - Birdman. Michael Keaton won Best Actor in a Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical) at the recent Golden Globes, so this makes him a strong contender against Eddie Redmayne who also won at the Globes for Best Actor in a Motion Picture (Drama). For these roles, Michael Keaton and Steve Carrell have both earned their first Oscar nominations, with Bradley Cooper being this categories’ only nominee to have been previously nominated for an Oscar.

Prediction: Though a lot of people have named Steve Carrell or Michael Keaton as the most likely to win, it is most likely to be Eddie Redmayne. However - although Michael Keaton also has quite a good chance of winning.


This category had the most surprises, in both who it included and who it didn’t. Jennifer Aniston was predicted to be nominated but unfortunately wasn’t. Many people hoped, and rightfully thought it likely, especially as she was nominated for Best Actress at the Golden Globes, for her performance in Cake. Amy Adams was also not nominated, which came as another surprise when the nominees were announced, as she won Best Actress (Comedy or Musical) for her role in Tim Burton’s Big Eyes at the Globes.

However, French actress Marion Cotillard was nominated for her performance in The Dardenne Brother’s Two Days, One Night (Deux Jours, Une Nuit), the only nomination for an actress in a Foreign-Language Film in this category. Cotillard won the last time she was nominated in 2007 for another Foreign-Language Film, La Vie En Rose, so she could be a surprise winner.

Julianne Moore, however, is still the front-runner for this award, for her performance in Still Alice. She won the Best Actress (Drama) Golden Globe last Sunday.

The two British actresses in this category are, yes you guessed it, Felicity Jones - The Theory of Everything and Rosamund Pike - Gone Girl. They both went away empty-handed at the Globes last weekend and although they both gave brilliant, nomination-deserving performances, I don’t think that they have that strong a chance of winning.

Reese Witherspoon has been nominated for her performance in Wild and, judging by many people’s reactions to the nominees when announced, I think a lot of people see her as a frontrunner for this award. However, it's difficult to see her winning. Reese won an Oscar back in 2005, for her performance in Walk The Line.

My prediction: Julianne Moore is a favourite to win, but Marion Cotillard stands a good chance.


This category contains exactly the same nominees as the Globes’ Best Supporting Actor category, which J.K Simmons won for his performance in Whiplash. I’d personally love to see Edward Norton win for his role in Birdman, but this category may go the same way once again. Not that Robert Duvall - The Judge, Ethan Hawke - Boyhood and Mark Ruffalo - Foxcatcher weren’t excellent, because they were.

Prediction: J.K Simmons once again, although it would be good to see Edward Norton triumph.


There are a few differences between the Oscar nominees for this category and the Globes nominees. The main difference being that Jessica Chastain was not nominated, as she was at the Globes, for her performance in A Most Violent Year.

There is, instead, a surprise nominee in the form of Laura Dern, for her performance in Wild, whom it would be great to see win this award.

Patricia Arquette (pictured), who won in this category at the Globes for Boyhood, obviously has a strong chance of winning again, but equally this award may go to Emma Stone for her amazing performance in Birdman. However, with British actress Keira Knightley nominated for her performance in The Imitation Game and Meryl Streep for her role in Into The Woods it is a really tough one to call.

Prediction: Emma Stone - Birdman, though I’d like Laura Dern to win.

Other noteable suprises: Lorde’s Yellow Flicker Beat - The Hunger Games: MockingJay Part One and Lana Del Rey’s Big Eyes from Big Eyes were snubbed in the Original Song category and The Lego Movie was not nominated in the Animated Feature Film category, as many thought and hoped it would be.

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