Note: This post will be sticky’d to the top of /Film for the remainder of the day.

The Academy Motion Picture of Arts and Sciences announced the 81st Annual Oscar Nominations this morning. Some VERY quick observations:

  • While Heath Ledger received a Best Supporting Actor nomination, The Dark Knight did not secure a Best Picture nomination, nor a Best Director nomination for Christopher Nolan. However, it did receive a boatload of other technical nominations, including Best Makeup, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, etc.
  • The list of Best Picture noms is virtually the same from the Golden Globes, save Revolutionary Road has been replaced by Milk. In any case, I find both Best Picture nomination lists somewhat unsatisfying.
  • Kate Winslet did NOT get two acting nominations, as some had predicted (instead, only Best Actress, and for her performance in The Reader, not Revolutionary Road like at the Golden Globes). Taraji P. Henson, however, did get a nomination for Best Supporting actress, and I’m 100% rooting for her in this one.
  • Pleasant surprises: Richard Jenkins got a Best Actor nomination for The Visitor, Melissa Leo got a Best Actress nomination for Frozen River.
  • Biggest WTF: Bruce Springsteen’s “The Wrestler” did not receive a Best Original Song nomination, while Slumdog Millionaire received TWO nominations (out of three). I liked the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack, but that strikes me as a bit ridiculous.
  • This list puts The Curious Case of Benjamin Button at a whopping 13 Oscar nominations. However, Slumdog Millionaire is close behind, with 10 noms (if you count the two songs separately). Milk and Dark Knight both have 8, while Wall-E has 6, and The Reader, Doubt and Frost/Nixon each secured 5.
  • /Film commenter Joelnstuff points out (accurately) that Wanted received the same number of Oscar nominations as The Wrestler. Please excuse me while I weep.
  • What kind of twisted world do we live in where Pitt scores a Best Actor nomination for Benjamin Button but Cate Blanchett doesn’t get nominated for anything (including her far better performance in that same film)?

Hit the jump for the full list.
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Yesterday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences released their shortlist of nine foreign-language films, which will be whittled down to five Oscar nominees on January 22:

Revanche – Gotz Spielmann, Austria
The Necessities of Life – Benoit Pilon, Canada
The Class – Laurent Cantet, France
The Baader Meinhof Complex – Uli Edel, Germany
Waltz with Bashir – Ari Folman, Israel
Departures – Yojiro Takita, Japan
Tear This Heart Out – Roberto Sneider, Mexico
Everlasting Moments – Jan Troell, Sweden
3 Monkeys – Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Turkey

If you think there are a few notable omissions from this list, you’re not alone. Over at AICN, Harry Knowles decries the omission of Tomas Alfredson’s Let The Right One In, insisting that the system is broken:
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In this episode of the /Filmcast, Dave, Devindra and Adam discuss their apprehensiveness about a Crow remake, ponder the cheesiness of the X-Men Origins: Wolverine trailer, and debate the choice of Chris Weitz to take over New Moon. Special guests Neha Tiwari and Laremy Legel (from the Film.com podcast) join us. Devin Faraci from CHUD also joins us to report from Butt-Numb-A-Thon and explains the use of the term “Watchmen” in the new film.

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The /Filmcast: After Dark is a recording of what happens right after The /Filmcast is over, when the kids have gone to bed and the guys feel free to speak whatever is on their minds. In other words, it’s the leftover and disorganized ramblings, mindfarts, and brain diarrhea from The /Filmcast, all in one convenient audio file. In this episode, Dave, Devindra, and Adam chat with Peter Sciretta and Alex Billington about their film festival travels (including a run-in with an irate Harvey Weinstein), assess the greatness of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s Sudden Death, and debate what makes an Oscar-worthy performance. Erc D. Snider joins in on the fun as well.

Join us next Monday night at 10 PM EST / 7 PM PST as we review Lakeview Terrace with Dan Trachtenberg from The Totally Rad Show.

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