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Jordan Peele’s “social horror-thriller” earned a coveted best picture nomination, as well as directing and original screenplay nods for Peele, making him only the third person in history to earn noms in all three categories in a directorial debut. Warren Beatty did so in 1978 for Heaven Can Wait (he shared the writing and directing noms with Buck Henry) and James L. Brooks accomplished the feat in 1983 with Terms of Endearment. Beatty lost in his categories while Brooks swept all three.
Peele is only the fifth African-American to earn a best director nomination in Oscar history. None has won. Last year, Barry Jenkins earned a nom for Moonlight (which went on to win best picture), Steve McQueen was nominated in 2013 for 12 Years a Slave (also a best picture winner), Lee Daniels was nominated for Precious in 2009, and John Singleton became the first-ever African-American nominee in the category in 1991 for Boyz n the Hood.
Also noteworthy for Get Out is its genre. Though the film blurs the lines of traditional horror, its production company, Blumhouse Productions, is known for films in the genre. Only a handful of horror films have earned best picture nominations. In the 1940s, three thrillers were nominated in the category: two Alfred Hitchock films, 1941 Cary Grant starrer Suspicion and 1945’s Spellbound, and George Cukor’s Gaslight from 1944. In 1973, The Exorcist, a more traditional “horror” film, earned a best pic nom, while 1991’s The Silence of the Lambs took home the Oscar. Another notable best pic nom in the genre is M. Night Shyamalan’s 1999 thriller The Sixth Sense.
Another interesting tidbit is Get Out‘s February 2017 release date. Most Oscar contenders open in the fall, timed to the heart of awards season.
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