2015 Oscar Nominations

  • Publish Date: January 15, 2015
  • Comments: ↓ 12 user comments

Birdman, Grand Budapest lead a field with few surprises

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Films with Most Academy Award Nominations - 2015
1 Birdman 9 noms
  The Grand Budapest Hotel 9 noms
3 The Imitation Game 8 noms
4 American Sniper 6 noms
  Boyhood 6 noms

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the nominees for their 87th Academy Awards early Thursday morning, recognizing the best films, filmmakers, and on- and off-screen talent of 2014. Leading the way were the duo of Birdman and The Grand Budapest Hotel, which each picked up nine nominations overall, topping this year's field.

Both of those films were—as widely expected—among eight nominees for best picture this year, as were longtime Oscar favorite Boyhood and awards-friendly biopics like The Imitation Game, Selma, and The Theory of Everything. In fact, few of the Academy's choices in any categories this year provided much in the way of surprises.

Listed below are the 2015 Academy Award nominees in all 24 categories.

Best picture and director

Best picture

Metascore / Film / Producers Watch It
. American Sniper Clint Eastwood, Robert Lorenz, Andrew Lazar, Bradley Cooper and Peter Morgan  
. Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) AG Iñárritu, J. Lesher and J.W. Skotchdopole Amazon iTunes
. Boyhood Richard Linklater and Cathleen Sutherland Amazon iTunes Netflix
. The Grand Budapest Hotel Wes Anderson, Scott Rudin, Steven Rales and Jeremy Dawson Amazon iTunes Netflix
. The Imitation Game Nora Grossman, Ido Ostrowsky and Teddy Schwarzman  
. Selma Christian Colson, Oprah Winfrey, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner  
. The Theory of Everything Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Lisa Bruce and Anthony McCarten  
. Whiplash Jason Blum, Helen Estabrook and David Lancaster  

The Academy's eight best picture entries (down from nine in each of the previous three years) generally reflect the films receiving the most recognition elsewhere on the awards circuit—in other words, there were few surprises here. The films most heralded elsewhere but omitted here are Nightcrawler and David Fincher's Gone Girl. And the Academy didn't bite (here or in most categories) on seemingly Oscar-ready films like Mr. Turner and Unbroken.

Director

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals*
Noms. Wins
Wes Anderson The Grand Budapest Hotel 6 0
Alejandro González Iñárritu Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 5 0
Richard Linklater Boyhood 5 0
Bennett Miller Foxcatcher 2 0
Morten Tyldum The Imitation Game 1 0

* All career Oscar nomination totals on this page include today's nominations.

Morten Tyldum's surprise DGA nomination earlier this week turned out to foreshadow an only slightly less surprising Oscar nomination. Equally surprising was the inclusion of Bennett Miller, who has been ignored elsewhere on the awards circuit (though the Academy seemed to like Foxcatcher better than other organizations did, awarding it with five nominations in total, though not one for best picture). Their inclusions meant that Selma's Ava DuVernay (who would have been the first African American woman ever nominated for director), American Sniper's Clint Eastwood, and Whiplash's Damien Chazelle couldn't match their films' best picture nominations with best director nominations. Interestingly, none of the five nominated directors has ever won an Academy Award.

Writing

Original screenplay

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Wes Anderson and Hugo Guinness The Grand Budapest Hotel    
E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman Foxcatcher    
Dan Gilroy Nightcrawler 1 0
Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone,
Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. & Armando Bo
Birdman    
Richard Linklater Boyhood 5 0

There are no real surprises here. With three nominations today (including for directing and producing a best picture nominee), Richard Linklater more than doubled his previous career total. Wes Anderson and Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu also picked up three nominations apiece this morning.

Adapted screenplay

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Paul Thomas Anderson Inherent Vice 6 0
Damien Chazelle Whiplash 1 0
Jason Hall American Sniper 1 0
Anthony McCarten The Theory of Everything 1 0
Graham Moore The Imitation Game 1 0

It looks like we'll have a first-time Oscar winner in this category—in fact, four of the five contenders are even first-time nominees. The Academy really didn't like Gone Girl much, as Gillian Flynn (who has been owning this category on the awards circuit) couldn't even get a screenplay nomination for adapting her own best-seller. Also omitted was Nick Hornby's script for Wild. Note that most other awards organizations treated Damien Chazelle's Whiplash script as an original screenplay, but the Academy considered it to be an adapted screenplay for reasons known only to the Academy (Chazelle has previously released a single Whiplash scene as a short film to raise funds to complete the full movie, which is apparently the source of the problem).

Acting

Lead actress

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Marion Cotillard Two Days, One Night 2 1
Felicity Jones The Theory of Everything 1 0
Julianne Moore Still Alice 5 0
Rosamund Pike Gone Girl 1 0
Reese Witherspoon Wild 2 1

After all that recent speculation about Jennifer Aniston sneaking in for the middling new drama Cake, it didn't actually happen. Instead, the five most obvious candidates were indeed the five nominees—though that doesn't make predicting the winner any easier.

Lead actor

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Steve Carell Foxcatcher 1 0
Bradley Cooper American Sniper 3 0
Benedict Cumberbatch The Imitation Game 1 0
Michael Keaton Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 1 0
Eddie Redmayne The Theory of Everything 1 0

Here's another category where we'll have a first-time Oscar winner, though the field didn't shape up quite as planned. Steve Carell had not been getting much traction this awards season, so his inclusion (though not undeserved) is a bit of a surprise. And it probably comes at the expense of Ralph Fiennes, who has been getting plenty of love elsewhere for his turn in The Grand Budapest Hotel. The biggest snub, however, goes to Jake Gyllenhaal, whose performance in Nightcrawler has already earned him multiple awards over the past month. Right behind him in the snub department is Selma's David Oyelowo, who had received some recognition from other awards groups. Bradley Cooper, one of the relative (though not huge) surprises in their place, is now the first actor since Renée Zellweger in 2003 to score a nomination in three consecutive years.

Supporting actress

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Patricia Arquette Boyhood 1 0
Laura Dern Wild 2 0
Keira Knightley The Imitation Game 2 0
Emma Stone Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 1 0
Meryl Streep Into the Woods 19 3

The Academy has a hard time resisting Meryl Streep, and she's by far the most veteran presence in a field of relative Oscar newcomers (though everyone is a relative Oscar newcomer compared to Streep, who is the most-nominated actor in history). Her inclusion means that there was no room for Rene Russo (Nightcrawler), Tilda Swinton (admittedly a bit of an underdog for Snowpiercer, which doesn't seem like an Academy-friendly film), and Jessica Chastain (A Most Violent Year) to crack the final five.

Supporting actor

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Robert Duvall The Judge 7 1
Ethan Hawke Boyhood 4 0
Edward Norton Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 3 0
Mark Ruffalo Foxcatcher 2 0
J.K. Simmons Whiplash 1 0

Robert Duvall's inclusion for the less-than-stellar drama The Judge is, while not unexpected, the only choice that doesn't match up with awards given out by other groups this year. Missing from the field are the likes of Josh Brolin (Inherent Vice) and Academy favorite Christoph Waltz (Big Eyes).

Other best film nominations

Animated feature

Metascore / Film / Producers Watch It
. Big Hero 6 Don Hall, Chris Williams and Roy Conli  
. The Boxtrolls Anthony Stacchi, Graham Annable and Travis Knight Amazon iTunes Netflix
. How to Train Your Dragon 2 Dean DeBlois and Bonnie Arnold Amazon iTunes Netflix
. Song of the Sea Tomm Moore and Paul Young  
. The Tale of the Princess Kaguya Isao Takahata and Yoshiaki Nishimura Amazon

The LEGO Movie (which did pick up a best original song nomination, though that's not much of a consolation) is the huge omission here, with the relatively unknown Song of the Sea the surprise nominee in its place. LEGO previously had 25 wins this awards season, while Song had just one other nomination.

Documentary feature

Metascore / Film / Producers Watch It
. Citizenfour Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy and Dirk Wilutzky  
. Finding Vivian Maier John Maloof and Charlie Siskel Amazon iTunes Netflix
. Last Days in Vietnam Rory Kennedy and Keven McAlester  
. The Salt of the Earth Wim Wenders, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado and David Rosier  
. Virunga Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara Netflix

Citizenfour has been a favorite on the awards circuit, as has the Roger Ebert doc Life Itself, though the latter was a snub here with the Academy. Note that several acclaimed documentaries, including Glen Campbell … I’ll Be Me and Red Army, were left off of the Academy's 15-film shortlist in December (and thus were already known to be out of the running).

Foreign-language feature

Metascore / Film / Country of Origin Watch It
. Ida Poland Amazon iTunes Netflix
. Leviathan Russia  
  Tangerines Estonia  
. Timbuktu Mauritania  
. Wild Tales Argentina  

Sweden's excellent Force Majeure is the huge omission here, as that film has been cleaning up on the awards circuit (along with Ida, which did get nominated). As with the documentary category, the Academy previously released a foreign film shortlist in December, and at that time the omissions of films such as the widely praised Two Days, One Night, Winter Sleep (which won the Palme d'Or at Cannes last year), and Mommy were considered major snubs.

Short subjects

Animated Short
The Bigger Picture Daisy Jacobs and Christopher Hees
The Dam Keeper Robert Kondo and Dice Tsutsumi
Feast Patrick Osborne and Kristina Reed
Me and My Moulton Torill Kove
A Single Life Joris Oprins
Documentary Short
Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1 Ellen Goosenberg Kent and Dana Perry
Joanna Aneta Kopacz
Our Curse Tomasz Śliwiński and Maciej Ślesicki
The Reaper (La Parka) Gabriel Serra Arguello
White Earth J. Christian Jensen
Live-Action Short
Aya Oded Binnun and Mihal Brezis
Boogaloo and Graham Michael Lennox and Ronan Blaney
Butter Lamp (La Lampe au Beurre de Yak) Hu Wei and Julien Féret
Parvaneh Talkhon Hamzavi and Stefan Eichenberger
The Phone Call Mat Kirkby and James Lucas

Music

Original score

Composer Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Alexandre Desplat The Grand Budapest Hotel 8 0
Alexandre Desplat The Imitation Game 8 0
Johann Johannsson The Theory of Everything 1 0
Gary Yershon Mr. Turner 1 0
Hans Zimmer Interstellar 10 1

Previous Oscar winners Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross could not pick up another nomination for their Gone Girl score. They were probably the biggest snubs here, with Gary Yershon the most notable surprise among the field of four nominees.

Original song

Song/Composer Performer Film
"Everything Is Awesome"
by Shawn Patterson, Joshua Bartholomew,
Lisa Harriton, and The Lonely Island
Tegan and Sara and
The Lonely Island
The LEGO Movie
"Glory"
by John Legend and Common
John Legend and Common Selma
"Grateful"
by Diane Warren
Rita Ora Beyond the Lights
"I'm Not Gonna Miss You"
by Glen Campbell and Julian Raymond
Glen Campbell Glen Campbell … I’ll Be Me
"Lost Stars"
by Gregg Alexander, Danielle Brisebois,
Nick Lashley, and Nick Southwood
Adam Levine Begin Again

Lana Del Rey's "Big Eyes" (from the film of the same name) and Boyhood's "Split the Difference" (written by that film's co-star, Ethan Hawke) are among the omissions, with "Grateful" perhaps the biggest surprise among the nominees.

Technical categories

Cinematography

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Roger Deakins Unbroken 12 0
Ryszard Lenczewski, Lukasz Zal Ida 1 0
Emmanuel Lubezki Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 7 1
Dick Pope Mr. Turner 2 0
Robert D. Yeoman The Grand Budapest Hotel 1 0
The biggest snub here is probably Interstellar's Hoyte Van Hoytema, who has been doing well elsewhere on the awards circuit (though not as well as Birdman's Emmanuel Lubezki, who was nominated).

Film Editing

Nominee Film Career Oscar Totals
Noms. Wins
Joel Cox & Gary Roach American Sniper    
Sandra Adair Boyhood 1 0
Barney Pilling The Grand Budapest Hotel 1 0
William Goldenberg The Imitation Game 5 1
Tom Cross Whiplash 1 0

Costumes/Makeup

Costume Design Makeup and Hairstyling
The Grand Budapest Hotel Foxcatcher
Inherent Vice The Grand Budapest Hotel
Into the Woods Guardians of the Galaxy
Maleficent  
Mr. Turner  

Sound

Sound Editing Sound Mixing
American Sniper American Sniper
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Interstellar
Interstellar Unbroken
Unbroken Whiplash

Visuals

Production Design Visual Effects
The Grand Budapest Hotel Captain America: The Winter Soldier
The Imitation Game Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Interstellar Guardians of the Galaxy
Into the Woods Interstellar
Mr. Turner X-Men: Days of Future Past

More Oscar coverage to come

Neil Patrick Harris will host the Oscars for the first time when the 87th Annual Academy Awards ceremony airs live on ABC on Sunday, February 22, 2015 at 7:00p ET / 4:00p PT. Look for additional Oscars coverage on this site over the next month, including a chance for you to predict this year's winners as well as a roundup of Oscar predictions from dozens of critics and industry experts. You can also check out our 2014-15 Film Awards Scorecard for a compilation of this season's movie awards from over 50 different organizations.

What's your take?

What do you think of this year's Academy Award nominations? Let us know in the comments section below.

Comments (12)

  • DanBurrito  

    The highlight was when they called Dick Pope "Dick Poop"! They should have given him the Oscar to make up for that alone.

  • LamontRaymond  

    The easiest category to pick among all the nominations is Lead Actor - Benedict Cumberbatch does so far and away the best in his role, it will be an injustice if anyone else wins.

  • Christopher_G2  

    I remember a couple years ago when Bigelow, Affleck, and Tarantino all didn't get nominated for director, so this isn't the worst ever. That said it's pretty bad. The Academy continues to show undue support for really just passable biographical films, and to ignore a great one in Selma at the same time is inexcusable. That it happens to be about a black man and it was directed by a black woman makes them look particularly bad.

  • sepehr  

    Gone Girl ، Nightcrawler ، Inherent vice ، Snowpiercer
    these films Could be nominated for best film

  • shavenwookie  

    Crazy that there is no nominations for the gone girl score and no nominations for nightcrawler, seems like a giant mistake.

  • RedOwlReviews  

    No Ava DuVernay? No Lego Movie? No Force Majeure? No Snowpiercer anywhere? No Trent Reznor + Atticus Ross? No editing for Birdman? No Gillian Flynn? No Life Itself? No Agata Kulesza?

    Like what is g o i n g o n ??? ? ?? ??

    At least there were pleasant surprises like Bennett Miller, Song of the Sea + The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, Marion Cotillard, Alexandre Desplat for TGBH, cinematography for Ida, and a couple others. But still. This year's nominations were very shabby.

  • easybreezy248  

    no gyllenhaal? **** the oscars...

  • JoshFriesen  

    I wasn't as smitten by the Lego movie as much as many were (I much preferred the Tale of Princess Kaguya and Boxtrolls), however its still an embarrassing snub for the Academy. It was on more critics top 10 lists than any other animated film by a mile, and much loved by viewers, how does it not get a nom?

  • JRath  

    The Oscars are quickly becoming nothing more than a punchline. No Gyllenhaal for Nightcrawler, no Original Score for Gone Girl, huge Selma snubs, and NO LEGO MOVIE?

    But of course, we have to nominate Streep for the umpteenth-million time for a role that she could have done in her sleep.

    What a joke.

  • BobbyPeru  

    I agree with FleshWorld. Force Majeure should have been nominated, but I'm glad to see Ida get a nom (in cinematography too). I would have preferred the academy pick some new blood rather than go back to Streep and Duvall again in the supporting categories. They are great, but their performances this year did not warrant award recognition. No LEGO movie is very surprising, but everything is still awesome!

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