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The very dramatic 12 Years a Slave and the idiosyncratically comic American Hustle dominated the film nominations for the 71st Golden Globe nominations announced this morning. Both films collected seven nominations each.
Slave, the account of a free man sold into slavery, scored a dramatic motion picture nomination as well as noms for its lead actor Chiwetel Ejiofor as well as its supporting players Lupita Nyong’o and Michael Fassbender. It also picked up noms for Steve McQueen’s direction, John Ridley’s screenplay and Hans Zimmer’s score.
Hustle, a portrait of ’70s-era con men spun off from the Abscam scandal, benefited from the work of an all-star cast that earned lead nominations for Christian Bale and Amy Adams in the comedy categories and supporting nominations for Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence. David O. Russell earned noms both for directing and for the screenplay he wrote with Eric Warren Singer.
Slave will compete for best dramatic motion picture against Captain Phillips, Gravity, Philomena and Rush. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which votes for the Globes, adopted a very elastic definition of comedy, and so for best motion picture-comedy or musical, Hustle will face off against Her, Inside Llewyn Davis, Nebraska and The Wolf of Wall Street.
Because the Globes divide the top acting categories between drama and comedy performers, that opened up the door for lots of nominees who will face a tougher time securing Academy Award nominations in what are shaping up as very competitive categories.
In addition to Ejiofor, the nominees for best dramatic actor include Idris Elba, who portrays Nelson Mandela in Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, Tom Hanks, who plays the title character in Captain Phillips, Matthew McConaughey, who appears as an unlikely AIDS activist in Dallas Buyers Club, and Robert Redford, who battles the elements in All Is Lost. On the comedy side of the ledger, the best actor nominees are Hustle’s Bale, Nebraska’s Bruce Dern, The Wolf of Wall Street’s Leonardo DiCaprio, Inside Llewyn Davis’ Oscar Isaac and Her’s Joaquin Phoenix.
Turning to the women, best dramatic actress nominations went to Cate Blanchett, for her down-on-her-luck trophy wife in Blue Jasmine, Sandra Bullock, for her astronaut lost in space in Gravity, Judi Dench, for her performance as a mother looking for a son she gave up for adoption in Philomena, Emma Thompson for her portrayal of Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers in Saving Mr. Banks, and Kate Winslet, who plays a single mom who encounters a runaway convict in Labor Day. Best actress in a comedy noms were handed out to Hustle’s Adams, Before Midnight’s Julie Delpy, Frances Ha’s Greta Gerwig, Enough Said’s Julia Louis-Dreyfus and August: Osage County’s Meryl Streep.
When it comes to supporting actor and actresses, the road gets narrower, though, since the Globes offer up only two categories, one male, one female. Alongside Hustle’s Lawrence and Slave’s Nyong’o, the supporting actress nominees are Sally Hawkins, who plays Blanchett’s working-class sister in Jasmine, Julia Roberts, who appears as Streep’s troubled daughter in August and June Squibb, who plays Dern’s squabbling wife in Nebraska. As for the supporting actors, Hustle’s Cooper and Slave’s Fassbender share the category with first-time actor Barkhad Abdi, who plays one of the hijackers in Phillips, Daniel Bruhl, who portrays Formula One race driver Niki Lauda in Rush and Jared Leto, who appears as a transsexual dealing with AIDS in Dallas.
Three of the five movies nominated for best drama also saw their directors nominated: Gravity’s Alfonso Cuaron, Phillips’ Paul Greengrass and Slave’s Russell. But instead of also tossing directing noms to Philomena’s Stephen Frears and Rush’s Ron Howard, the HFPA voters turned to the comedy list and filled out the category with Hustle’s Russell and Nebraska’s Alexander Payne.
The films cited for their screenplays included Her, written by Spike Jonze; Nebraska by Bob Nelson; Philomena by Jeff Pope and Steve Coogan; Ridley’s Slave and Hustle, written by Singer and Russell.
When it came to choosing best foreign film, the HFPA tossed the Japanese animated film The Wind Rises, by Hayao Miyazaki, into the mix. That left four slots, which went to France’s Blue Is the Warmest Color, Italy’s The Great Beauty, Denmark’s The Hunt and Iran’s The Past. Of the five, only Beauty, Hunt and Past have been submitted by their respective countries for Academy Awards consideration.
The Globes nominated just three movies for best animated feature — Dreamworks Animation’s The Croods, which was distributed by Fox; Universal and Illumination Entertainment’s Despicable Me 2 and Disney’s Frozen, leaving Pixar’s Monsters University off its list.
For its original score nominees, the Globes rounded up Alex Ebert for All Is Lost, Alex Heffes for Mandela, Steven Price for Gravity, John Williams for The Book Thief and Zimmer for Slave.
In the original song category, the HFPA favored pop and rock stars. The group selected “Atlas” from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, written by the Coldplay team of Chris Martin, Guy Berryman, Jonny Buckland and Will Champion; “Let It Go,” from Frozen, written by Kristin Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, performed in the film by Idina Menzel and sung in the end credits by Demi Lovato; “Ordinary Love” from Mandela, which Bono wrote with The Edge, Adam Clayton, Larry Mullen Jr. and Brian Burton; “Please Mr. Kennedy” from Davis, which Justin Timberlake wrote with Ed Rush, George Cromarty, T Bone Burnett, Joel Coen and Ethan Coen; and “Sweeter Than Fiction” from One Chance, written by Taylor Swift and Jack Antonoff.
In terms of distributors, Sony (with movies like Hustle and Phillips) led the list with 11 noms, followed by The Weinstein Company with nine, and Fox Searchlight and Paramount, both with eight.
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