The hashtag #OscarsSoWhite was quickly revived on Twitter. It
had emerged last year, when only white actors received nods.
Will Smith, who stars in football injury drama "Concussion," and
Idris Elba from "Beasts of No Nation" were among the black
actors who were not nominated this year. The black cast and
director of hip hop biopic "Straight Outta Compton" were also
left out of the race.
"In a year with an extraordinary number of great performances by
black actors that were embraced by audiences and embraced by
critics, for them all to get ignored is tragic,” said Reginald
Hudlin, who will produce the Feb. 28 awards ceremony hosted by
comedian Chris Rock.
"The Revenant," an ambitious pioneer-era saga, led with 12
nominations, including best picture, best actor for Leonardo
DiCaprio and best director for Mexico's Alejandro Inarritu, who
won the top Oscar last year for the dark showbiz comedy
"The Revenant" will compete with gritty action adventure "Mad
Max: Fury Road" and space film "The Martian." All three boast
budgets above $100 million.
The best picture nominees also include independent films "Room,"
"Spotlight" and "Brooklyn" as well as studio productions "The
Big Short" and "Bridge of Spies," which had budgets in the $20
million to $40 million range.
Amid the excitement from nominees, others in Hollywood were
nursing their wounds. "Straight Outta Compton" and "Star Wars:
The Force Awakens" were left out of the best picture race, while
Ridley Scott, director of best picture nominee "The Martian,"
did not make the grade in the director category.
20th Century Fox <FOXA.O> led the studios with a total of 30
nominations, including for "The Revenant," "The Martian" and
"Joy," as well as its Fox Searchlight independent film arm's
"Brooklyn" and "Youth." The tally also includes six nods for
"Bridge of Spies," which it shared with Walt Disney Co <DIS.N>.
FIRST OSCAR FOR DICAPRIO?
"The Revenant," about a fur trapper mauled by a bear and left
for dead by his companions, brought nominations for DiCaprio,
who has never won an Oscar, and supporting actor for Tom Hardy..
[to top of second column]
"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,"
Inarritu said in a statement. "Champagne and Mezcal will run
The Oscars, chosen by the 6,000 members of the Academy of Motion
Pictures Arts and Sciences, can have up to 10 best picture nominees,
but voters selected just eight.
While diversity was lacking in the acting race, the films nominated
reflect a variety of genres.
"Look at the range of movies we're discussing," film critic Leonard
Maltin said. "A lesbian love story, a brutal story of survival and
everything in between."
Previous Oscar winners Cate Blanchett and Jennifer Lawrence returned
to the best actress race, which has no obvious front-runners. At 25,
Lawrence, is the youngest four-time acting nominee.
This year, she was recognized for playing the Miracle Mop inventor
in "Joy." Blanchett was nominated for lesbian romance "Carol",
although the movie was overlooked for best picture.
The best actress field also includes rising star Brie Larson for
"Room"; veteran Charlotte Rampling, who is hoping British drama "45
Years" will bring her first Oscar; and Saoirse Ronan for Irish
immigrant tale "Brooklyn."
Sylvester Stallone, enjoying a new wave of popularity, scored a
supporting actor nod for reprising his career-defining role as boxer
Rocky Balboa in "Creed."
"I was not expecting it ... especially at this time in my life," the
69-year-old actor said in a statement.
Director Inarritu will face off with George Miller for "Mad Max";
Adam McKay for "The Big Short," about the 2007 U.S. financial
collapse; Lenny Abrahamson for "Room"; and Tom McCarthy for
"Spotlight," about the Boston Globe's probe into child abuse by
(Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy and Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Jill
Serjeant and Lisa Von Ahn)
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