‘American Hustle,’ ‘Gravity’ fortify front-runner status with 10 Oscar nominations

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George Clooney stars in “Gravity.” 

By Susan King and Rene Lynch

LOS ANGELES — “American Hustle” and “Gravity” dominated the Academy Award nominations Thursday morning, earning 10 nominations apiece, while “12 Years a Slave” followed with nine nominations. All three earned nominations for best picture and best director.

The top nominees — a con-man comedy, a lost-in-space thriller and a harrowing depiction of slavery in America — have fortified their status as the front-runners for Oscar gold. All three performed well this awards season, earning critics honors as well as taking home the marquee trophies at the Golden Globe Awards on Sunday.

“Captain Phillips,” “Dallas Buyers Club” and “Nebraska” each earned six nominations, including best picture. “Her,” “Philomena” and “The Wolf of Wall Street” rounded out the roster of nine best picture nominees.

The 86th Academy Awards are in a position to make Oscar history. If Steve McQueen wins best director for “12 Years a Slave,” he will be the first black filmmaker to do so.

The nominations are a Cinderella story of sorts for “Dallas Buyers Club.” Hollywood passed on the film — an intimate and poignant look at the AIDS crisis in the 1980s — again and again. But the project was vindicated with Thursday’s strong showing. Besides a best picture nomination, it earned nominations for original screenplay and a first-time nomination for Matthew McConaughey in the lead actor category and Jared Leto in the supporting actor category.

In addition to McConaughey, the lead actor nominees for the 86th Academy Awards are Christian Bale for “American Hustle,” Leonardo DiCaprio for “The Wolf of Wall Street,” Bruce Dern for “Nebraska” and Chiwetel Ejiofor for “12 Years a Slave.”

Lead actress contenders include Amy Adams for “American Hustle,” Cate Blanchett for “Blue Jasmine,” Sandra Bullock for “Gravity,” Judi Dench for “Philomena” and Meryl Streep for “August: Osage County.”

Besides McQueen, best director nominees are Alfonso Cuaron for “Gravity,” David O. Russell for “American Hustle,” Martin Scorsese for “The Wolf of Wall Street” and Alexander Payne for “Nebraska.”

Jennifer Lawrence, who won the lead actress Oscar last year for “Silver Linings Playbook,” is nominated again this year, in the supporting actress category for “American Hustle.” Bradley Cooper, who was nominated for lead actor last year for playing her “Silver Linings” leading man, also returns this year with a nomination in the supporting actor category for “American Hustle.”

If the 23-year-old Lawrence goes on to win, she’ll make history as the youngest woman ever to have two Academy Awards, and the first actress to win back-to-back Oscars since acting legend Katharine Hepburn accomplished that feat in the late 1960s.

Rounding out the best supporting actress nominees are Sally Hawkins in “Blue Jasmine,” Lupita Nyong’o in “12 Years a Slave,” Julia Roberts in “August: Osage County” and June Squibb in “Nebraska.” If Squibb, 84, goes on to win, she’ll be the oldest performer to take home Oscar gold.

Nominated along with Cooper and Leto in the best supporting actor category are: Barkhad Abdi in “Captain Phillips,” Michael Fassbender in “12 Years a Slave” and Jonah Hill in “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

Notably missing from the nominations list were lead actor contenders Tom Hanks for “Captain Phillips” and Robert Redford for “All Is Lost.” Also overlooked were Emma Thompson for “Saving Mr. Banks,” Oprah Winfrey for “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” and Paul Greengrass for directing “Captain Phillips.”

Ellen DeGeneres, who hosted the Oscars in 2007, returns this year as the emcee of the ceremony, which will be telecast live on ABC on March 2 from the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood and Highland.

Here’s a full list:

Best picture

“12 Years a Slave”

“American Hustle”

“Captain Phillips”

“Dallas Buyers Club”

“Gravity”

“Her”

“Nebraska”

“Philomena”

“The Wolf of Wall Street”

Director

Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity”

Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave”

Alexander Payne, “Nebraska”

David O. Russell, “American Hustle”

Martin Scorsese, “The Wolf of Wall Street”

Lead actor

Christian Bale, “American Hustle”

Bruce Dern, “Nebraska”

Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”

Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club”

Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Wolf of Wall Street”

Lead actress

Amy Adams, “American Hustle”

Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”

Judi Dench, “Philomena”

Meryl Streep, “August: Osage County”

Sandra Bullock, “Gravity”

Supporting actor

Barkhad Abdi, “Captain Phillips”

Bradley Cooper, “American Hustle”

Michael Fassbender, “12 Years a Slave”

Jonah Hill, “The Wolf of Wall Street”

Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club”

Supporting actress

Sally Hawkins, “Blue Jasmine”

Jennifer Lawrence, “American Hustle”

Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave”

Julia Roberts, “August: Osage County”

June Squibb, “Nebraska”

Animated feature film

“The Croods”

“Despicable Me 2”

“Ernest & Celestine”

“Frozen”

“The Wind Rises”

Cinematography

“The Grandmaster,” Philippe Le Sourd

“Gravity,” Emmanuel Lubezki

“Inside Llewyn Davis,” Bruno Delbonnel

“Nebraska,” Phedon Papamichael

“Prisoners,” Roger A. Deakins

Costume design

“American Hustle,” Michael Wilkinson

“The Grandmaster,” William Chang Suk Ping

“The Great Gatsby,” Catherine Martin

“The Invisible Woman,” Michael O’Connor

“12 Years a Slave,” Patricia Norris

Documentary feature

“The Act of Killing”

“Cutie and the Boxer”

“Dirty Wars”

“The Square”

“20 Feet from Stardom”

Documentary short subject

“CaveDigger”

“Facing Fear”

“Karama Has No Walls”

“The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life”

“Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall”

Film editing

“American Hustle,” Jay Cassidy, Crispin Struthers and Alan Baumgarten

“Captain Phillips,” Christopher Rouse

“Dallas Buyers Club,” John Mac McMurphy and Martin Pensa

“Gravity,” Alfonso Cuaron and Mark Sanger

“12 Years a Slave,” Joe Walker

Foreign language film

“The Broken Circle Breakdown,” Belgium

“The Great Beauty,” Italy

“The Hunt,” Denmark

“The Missing Picture,” Cambodia

“Omar,” Palestine

Makeup and hairstyling

“Dallas Buyers Club,” Adruitha Lee and Robin Mathews

“Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa,” Stephen Prouty

“The Lone Ranger,” Joel Harlow and Gloria Pasqua-Casny

Original score

“The Book Thief,” John Williams

“Gravity,” Steven Price

“Her,” William Butler and Owen Pallett

“Philomena,” Alexandre Desplat

“Saving Mr. Banks,” Thomas Newman

Original song

“Alone Yet Not Alone” from “Alone Yet Not Alone”

“Happy” from “Despicable Me 2”

“Let It Go” from “Frozen”

“The Moon Song” from “Her”

“Ordinary Love” from “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom”

Production design

“American Hustle,” Production Design: Judy Becker; Set Decoration: Heather Loeffler

“Gravity,” Production Design: Andy Nicholson; Set Decoration: Rosie Goodwin and Joanne Woollard

“The Great Gatsby,” Production Design: Catherine Martin; Set Decoration: Beverley Dunn

“Her,” Production Design: K.K. Barrett; Set Decoration: Gene Serdena

“12 Years a Slave,” Production Design: Adam Stockhausen; Set Decoration: Alice Baker

Animated short film

“Feral”

“Get a Horse!”

“Mr. Hublot”

“Possessions”

“Room on the Broom”

Live action short film

“Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn’t Me)”

“Avant Que De Tout Perdre (Just before Losing Everything)”

“Helium”

“Pitaako Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?)”

“The Voorman Problem”

Sound editing

“All Is Lost,” Steve Boeddeker and Richard Hymns

“Captain Phillips,” Oliver Tarney

“Gravity,” Glenn Freemantle

“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” Brent Burge

“Lone Survivor,” Wylie Stateman

Sound mixing

“Captain Phillips,” Chris Burdon, Mark Taylor, Mike Prestwood Smith and Chris Munro

“Gravity,” Skip Lievsay, Niv Adiri, Christopher Benstead and Chris Munro

“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” Christopher Boyes, Michael Hedges, Michael Semanick and Tony Johnson

“Inside Llewyn Davis,” Skip Lievsay, Greg Orloff and Peter F. Kurland

“Lone Survivor,” Andy Koyama, Beau Borders and David Brownlow

Visual effects

“Gravity,” Tim Webber, Chris Lawrence, Dave Shirk and Neil Corbould

“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” Joe Letteri, Eric Saindon, David Clayton and Eric Reynolds

“Iron Man 3,” Christopher Townsend, Guy Williams, Erik Nash and Dan Sudick

“The Lone Ranger,” Tim Alexander, Gary Brozenich, Edson Williams and John Frazier

“Star Trek Into Darkness,” Roger Guyett, Patrick Tubach, Ben Grossmann and Burt Dalton

Adapted screenplay

“Before Midnight,” written by Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke

“Captain Phillips,” screenplay by Billy Ray

“Philomena,” screenplay by Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope

“12 Years a Slave,” screenplay by John Ridley

“The Wolf of Wall Street,” screenplay by Terence Winter

Original screenplay

“American Hustle,” written by Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell

“Blue Jasmine,” written by Woody Allen

“Dallas Buyers Club,” written by Craig Borten & Melisa Wallack

“Her,” written by Spike Jonze

“Nebraska,” written by Bob Nelson