2015 Oscar Nominations: Snubs, Surprises and Reactions


2015 Oscar Nominations: Snubs, Surprises and Reactions
Photo: AMPAS

The 2015 Oscar nominations were announced this morning and while I’ve already furnished a few thoughts on the omissions and surprises 87th Annual Academy Awards on Sunday, February 22?

Let’s take a look and see what the verdict is on these nominations, which I will ask you to vote on at the bottom of this post.

Best Picture

boyhoodNo real surprises here as I had all eight of these films getting a nomination for Best Picture. The only difference between this list and mine, however, was I had Gone Girl getting a nomination, but as we’ll soon see a Best Actress (Rosamund Pike) nomination is the only one David Fincher‘s film went home with.

Possible contenders that didn’t make the list include Nightcrawler and Foxcatcher, the latter probably being the biggest “surprise” considering it received five other nominations, one of which was for Best Director (Bennett Miller).

  • American Sniper
  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game
  • Selma
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Whiplash

Best Director

richard-linklaterAs I’ve already alluded to, the nomination for Bennett Miller (Foxcatcher) was a bit of a surprise, but the other four I predicted. Of course, the glaring omission is that of Ava DuVernay as the first of the Selma snubs that is sure to dominate the conversation today and probably all the way up to and through the Oscars.

  • Alejandro González Iñárritu (Birdman)
  • Richard Linklater (Boyhood)
  • Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game)
  • Wes Anderson (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
  • Bennett Miller (Foxcatcher)

Best Actor

selma-truth-controversy-featAnd we come to the second of the Selma snubs, the leaving off of David Oyelowo for his performance as Martin Luther King Jr. There are the obvious nominees here, but instead of Oyelowo the Academy went with Steve Carell (Foxcatcher) and Bradley Cooper (American Sniper). It’s up to you how much that upsets you. Personally, I think it’s rather shameful and I’m sure we’ll hear the argument “screeners weren’t sent out in time!” Get off your ass and to one of the screenings Paramount set up for you and quick pretending.

  • Steve Carell (Foxcatcher)
  • Bradley Cooper (American Sniper)
  • Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game)
  • Michael Keaton (Birdman)
  • Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything)

Best Actress

two-days-one-nightOnly one real topic of conversation here and it’s hardly worth dwelling on. That is the nomination for Marion Cotillard (Two Days, One Night) over Jennifer Aniston (Cake). Aniston went without makeup for her movie and received kudos as a result, apparently that wasn’t enough to convince the Academy. The other four nominees were no-brainers with Julianne Moore taking home the win. Next…

  • Marion Cotillard (Two Days, One Night)
  • Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything)
  • Julianne Moore (Still Alice)
  • Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl)
  • Reese Witherspoon (Wild)

Best Supporting Actor

simmons-whiplashDon’t look to me for any surprises in this category, I had this one exactly right and J.K. Simmons (Whiplash) is your winner.

  • Robert Duvall (The Judge)
  • Ethan Hawke (Boyhood)
  • Edward Norton (Birdman)
  • Mark Ruffalo (Foxcatcher)
  • J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)

Best Supporting Actress

dern-wildThe surprise here is Laura Dern for Wild. I don’t know what the Academy saw here, but the role has little to no meat on the bone. It’s a fine performance, but it certainly doesn’t stand out. If you’re looking for another topic of conversation from this list, Meryl Streep extended her record nomination count to 19. Whoop-dee-woo!

  • Patricia Arquette (Boyhood)
  • Laura Dern (Wild)
  • Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game)
  • Emma Stone (Birdman)
  • Meryl Streep (Into the Woods)

Adapted Screenplay

american-sniperI guess it’s finally time to really address American Sniper and its six nominations. This nomination for adapted screnplay over the likes of Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl) is simply ridiculous. Sniper is one of the worst films (if not the worst) of the nominees and to see this nomination is a little painful for someone like me that tracks these things throughout the year. That said, I’m very happy to see Damien Chazelle among the nominees, well deserved. Even if the screenplay was an original, I’m just happy to see the Academy didn’t forget it.

  • Jason Dean Hall (American Sniper)
  • Graham Moore (The Imitation Game)
  • Paul Thomas Anderson (Inherent Vice)
  • Anthony McCarten (The Theory of Everything)
  • Damien Chazelle (Whiplash)

Original Screenplay

Gotta say, I’m surprised with this one… because I got all five of these correct. Then again, not sure what would have really found its way in otherwise. Maybe Damian Szifron‘s Wild Tales screenplay?

  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris and Armando Bo (Birdman)
  • Richard Linklater (Boyhood)
  • E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman (Foxcatcher)
  • Wes Anderson, Hugo Guinness (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
  • Dan Gilroy (Nightcrawler)

Animated Feature Film

lego-movieThe fact The Lego Movie wasn’t nominated is probably the biggest surprise of the day. Yes, no Director or Actor noms for Selma is a shameful, but in terms of surprises, no Lego Movie takes the cake. Otherwise, nothing too surprising here.

  • Big Hero 6
  • The BoxTrolls
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2
  • Song of the Sea
  • The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

Documentary (feature)

  • CitizenFour
  • Finding Vivian Maier
  • Last Days in Vietnam
  • The Salt of the Earth
  • Virunga

Film Editing

Look closely, your Best Picture winner will likely be one of these five.

  • Joel Cox and Gary D. Roach (American Sniper)
  • Sandra Adair (Boyhood)
  • Barney Pilling (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
  • William Goldenberg (The Imitation Game)
  • Tom Cross (Whiplash)


I just don’t get it, like Streep the Academy just nominates Roger Deakins as a default even though Unbroken is probably one of his worst shot films in some time.

  • Emmanuel Lubezki (Birdman)
  • Robert D. Yeoman (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
  • Ryszard Lenczewski and Lukasz Zal (Ida)
  • Dick Pope (Mr. Turner)
  • Roger Deakins (Unbroken)

Original Score

Will Desplat cancel himself out? He might as this one could very easily land in the hands of Johann Johannsson who was more deserving with his Prisoners score than this one, but oh well.

  • Alexandre Desplat (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
  • Alexandre Desplat (The Imitation Game)
  • Hans Zimmer (Interstellar)
  • Johann Johannsson (The Theory of Everything)
  • Gary Yershon (Mr. Turner)

Original Song

  • “Lost Stars” from Begin Again
  • “I’m Not Gonna Miss You” from Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me
  • “Everything is Awesome” from The Lego Movie
  • “Glory” from Selma
  • “Grateful” from Beyond the Lights

Sound Mixing

Have people started complaining about the two Interstellar sound nominations yet?

  • American Sniper
  • Birdman
  • Interstellar
  • Unbroken
  • Whiplash

Sound Editing

How about now?

  • American Sniper
  • Birdman
  • The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
  • Interstellar
  • Unbroken

Visual Effects

  • Captain America: The winter Soldier
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Interstellar
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past

Costume Design

  • Milena Canonero (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
  • Mark Bridges (Inherent Vice)
  • Colleen Atwood (Into the Woods)
  • Anna B. Sheppard (Maleficent)
  • Jacqueline Durran (Mr. Turner)

Production Design

  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game
  • Interstellar
  • Into the Woods
  • Mr. Turner

Makeup & Hairstyling

  • Foxcatcher
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Guardians of the Galaxy

Foreign Language Film

I didn’t see all the nominees this year, but if I was to name a surprise it would be the absence of Force Majeure, but, again, I didn’t see all of this year’s nominees. I did see Ida, Leviathan and Wild Tales though and I expect it will either be Ida or Leviathan for the win.

  • Tangerines
  • Ida
  • Leviathan
  • Timbuktu
  • Wild Tales

Documentary Short Subject

  • Crisis Veterans Hotline: Press 1
  • Joanna
  • Our Curse
  • The Reaper (La Parka)
  • White Earth

Animated Short Film

  • The Bigger Picture
  • The Dam Keper
  • Feast
  • Me and My Moulton
  • A Single Life

Live Action Short Film

  1. Aya
  2. Boogaloo and Graham
  3. Butterfly Lamp (La Lampe au Beurre de Yak)
  4. Parvaneh
  5. The Phone Call

And there you have it. You can see all of my updated Oscar predictions right here, but before you go vote in the poll and share some comments below.

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