Broadcast critics trek with 'Wild'

Penn nominated as writer, director; six for 'Juno'

With seven nominations, Sean Penn's "Into the Wild," the tragic, true-life account of a young man who lights out for the territory, led the pack as the Broadcast Film Critics Assn. announced its nominees for its 13th annual Critics' Choice Awards on Tuesday in New York.

Paramount Vantage's "Wild" figured in the categories of best picture, best actor for Emile Hirsch, best supporting actor for Hal Holbrook, best supporting actress for Catherine Keener and best song for Eddie Vedder's "Guaranteed" while also picking up a double nomination for Penn as writer and director.

The pregnancy comedy "Juno" followed with six noms, followed by a clutch of films — "Atonement," "Michael Clayton," "No Country for Old Men," "Sweeney Todd" and "Hairspray" — that scored five noms each.

Several actors received dual recognition. Newcomer Michael Cera appeared twice among the nominees — for best young actor for his performances as a horny teen in "Superbad" and an unlikely father-to-be in "Juno." Cate Blanchett was hailed with a best actress nom for "Elizabeth: The Golden Age" and a supporting actress nom for her Dylanesque appearance in "I'm Not There." Amy Adams, who plays a Disneyesque princess in "Enchanted" was nominated for best actress and made an appearance in the best song category for "That's How I Know" — in the song category, the critics' group recognizes the performer who sings a song on film.

Made up of nearly 200 TV, radio and online critics from the U.S. and Canada, the BFCA prides itself on its ability to foreshadow eventual Oscar noms and awards.

However, the BFCA does load up some of its categories with six nominations each to cover its bases. And for best picture, the group nominated 10 films: "American Gangster," "Atonement," "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly," "Wild," "Juno," "The Kite Runner," "Michael Clayton," "No Country," "Sweeney Todd" and "There Will Be Blood."

In addition to Hirsch, the best actor heat includes George Clooney ("Michael Clayton"), Daniel Day-Lewis ("Blood"), Johnny Depp ("Sweeney Todd"), Ryan Gosling ("Lars and the Real Girl") and Viggo Mortensen ("Eastern Promises").

For best actress, Adams and Blanchett will face off against Julie Christie ("Away From Her"), Marion Cotillard ("La Vie en Rose"), Angelina Jolie ("A Mighty Heart") and Ellen Page ("Juno").

Nominated for best supporting actor are Holbrook, Casey Affleck ("The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford"), Javier Bardem ("No Country"), Philip Seymour Hoffman ("Charlie Wilson's War") and Tom Wilkinson ("Michael Clayton").

In the supporting actress category, Blanchett and Keener are surrounded by Vanessa Redgrave ("Atonement"), Amy Ryan ("Gone Baby Gone") and Tilda Swinton ("Michael Clayton").

Seven helmers appeared among the BFCA's six nominations for best director, thanks to a shared nomination for brothers Joel and Ethan Coen for "No Country." Their competition consists of Penn, Tim Burton ("Sweeney Todd"), Sidney Lumet ("Before the Devil Knows You're Dead"), Julian Schnabel ("Butterfly") and Joe Wright ("Atonement").

In the best writer category, the nominees are Penn, Diablo Cody ("Juno"), the Coens ("No Country"), Tony Gilroy ("Michael Clayton"), Nancy Oliver ("Lars") and Aaron Sorkin ("Charlie Wilson's War").

"Bee Movie," "Beowulf," "Persepolis," "Ratatouille" and "The Simpsons Movie" will all compete as best animated movie.

The best foreign-language film lineup consists of "Butterfly," "4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days," "La Vie en Rose," "Lust, Caution" and "The Orphanage."

The nominations were announced by Marisa Tomei and film critic Neil Rosen, chairman of the BFCA's New York chapter.

The awards will be presented Jan. 7 at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium in a ceremony emceed by D.L. Hughley, which will be broadcast live on VH1.

A complete list of nominations can be found at THR.com.
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