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Announcement: 2012 Academy Awards Nomination List! (with Surprises & Snubs)

January 24, 2012

Here they are, folks, your 2012 Academy Award Nominations list!  Announced this morning by Oscar nominee Jennifer Lawrence and President of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Tom Sherak at the Samuel Goldwyn Theatre in Beverly Hills, CA. Some of these are still in theaters, some are on DVD or Netflix Watch Instantly, but these are the cream of the crop for 2011, so check them out!  Linked will be the available Keeping It Reel reviews for all nominated films.

The winners will be announced during the telecast of the 84th Academy Awards ceremony, hosted by Billy Crystal on February 26, 2012.

Enjoy! And feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!!


Surprises: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

Snubs: Drive



  • Brad PittMoneyball
  • George Clooney The Descendants
  • Jean DujardinThe Artist
  • Demián Bichir A Better Life
  • Gary Oldman Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

Surprises: Demián Bichir & Gary Oldman

Snubs: Michael Fassbender – Shame & Michael Shannon – Take Shelter or Ryan Gosling – Drive



  • Meryl StreepThe Iron Lady
  • Michelle WilliamsMy Week with Marilyn
  • Glenn Close – Albert Nobbs
  • Rooney MaraThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
  • Viola DavisThe Help

Surprises: Rooney Mara

Snubs: Tilda Swinton – We Need to Talk About Kevin



  • Christopher PlummerBeginners
  • Kenneth BranaghMy Week with Marilyn 
  • Jonah Hill Moneyball
  • Nick Nolte Warrior
  • Max Von SydowExtremely Loud and Incredibly Close

Surprises: Max Von Sydow

Snubs: Albert Brooks – Drive  & Patton Oswalt – Young Adult



  • Melissa McCarthyBridesmaids
  • Jessica ChastainThe Help
  • Octavia SpencerThe Help
  • Janet McTeerAlbert Nobbs
  • Bérénice BejoThe Artist 

Surprises: none

Snubs: no Carey Mulligan – Drive or Shame



  • Woody AllenMidnight in Paris 
  • Michel HazanaviciusThe Artist
  • Alexander PayneThe Descendants
  • Martin ScorseseHugo
  • Terrence MalickThe Tree of Life

Surprises: none

Snubs: Bennet Miller – Moneyball


Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

  • The Descendants – Screenplay by Alexander Payne and Nat Faxon & Jim Rash
  • Hugo – Screenplay by John Logan
  • The Ides of March – Screenplay by George Clooney & Grant Heslov and Beau Willimon
  • Moneyball – Screenplay by Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin. Story by Stan Chervin
  • Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy – Screenplay by Bridget O’Connor & Peter Straughan
Surprises: none
Snubs: Hossein Amini Drive  & Lynne Ramsey & Rory Stewart Kinnear – We Need to Talk About Kevin

Writing (Original Screenplay)

  • The Artist – written by Michel Hazanavicius
  • Bridesmaids –  written by Annie Mumolo & Kristen Wiig
  • Margin Call – written by J.C. Chandor
  • Midnight in Paris – written by Woody Allen
  • A Separation – written by Asghar Farhadi

Surprises: Margin Call

Snubs: Will Reiser – 50/50



  • A Cat in Paris –  Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli
  • Chico & Rita – Fernando Trueba and Javier Mariscal
  • Kung Fu Panda 2 – Jennifer Yuh Nelson
  • Puss in Boots – Chris Miller
  • Rango – Gore Verbinski

Surprises: Uh, the first two – but that’s cool!

Snubs: The Adventures of Tintin


Art Direction

  • The ArtistProduction Design: Laurence Bennett; Set Direction: Robert Gould
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2Production Design: Stuart Craig; Set Direction: Stephenie McMillan
  • HugoProduction Design: Dante Ferretti; Set Decoration: Francesca Lo Schiavo
  • Midnight in ParisProduction Design: Anne Seibel; Set Decoration: Hélène Dubreuil
  • War HorseProduction Design: Rick Carter; Set Decoration: Lee Sandales

Surprises: none

Snubs: The Tree of Life



  • The Artist – Guillaume Schiffman
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Jeff Cronenweth
  • Hugo – Robert Richardson
  • The Tree of Life – Emmanuel Lubezki
  • War Horse – Janusz Kaminski

Surprises: none

Snubs: Meek’s Cutoff



  • AnonymousLisy Christl
  • The ArtistMark Bridges
  • Hugo –  Sandy Powell
  • Jane EyreMichael O’Connor
  • W.E. –  Arianne Phillips

Surprises: W.E. – um, the video game console? Say What?!?!

Snubs: Meek’s Cutoff



  • Hell and Back AgainDanfung Dennis and Mike Lerner
  • If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front –  Marshall Curry and Sam Cullman
  • Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory –  Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
  • PinaWim Wenders and Gian-Piero Ringel
  • Undefeated –  TJ Martin, Dan Lindsay and Richard Middlemas

Surprises: yes – the amount of docs that got snubbed!

Snubs: The Interrupters & no Herzog!!


Documentary (Short Subject)

  • The Barber of Birmingham: Foot Soldier of the Civil Rights MovementRobin Fryday and Gail Dolgin
  • God Is the Bigger ElvisRebecca Cammisa and Julie Anderson
  • Incident in New Baghdad James Spione
  • Saving Face –  Daniel Junge and Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy
  • The Tsunami and the Cherry BlossomLucy Walker and Kira Carstensen


Film Editing

  • The ArtistAnne-Sophie Bion and Michel Hazanavicius
  • The Descendants Kevin Tent
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo –  Kirk Baxter and Angus Wall
  • HugoThelma Schoonmaker
  • MoneyballChristopher Tellefsen

Surprises: The Descendants

Snubs: Drive


Foreign Language Film

  • BullheadBelgium
  • Footnote Israel
  • In Darkness Poland
  • Monsieur Lazhar Canada
  • A Separation –  Iran

Surprises: none

Snubs: Le Havre



  • Albert NobbsMartial Corneville, Lynn Johnston and Matthew W. Mungle
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2Edouard F. Henriques, Gregory Funk and Yolanda Toussieng
  • The Iron LadyMark Coulier and J. Roy Helland

Surprises: none

Snubs: J. Edgar – KIDDING!!


Music (Original Score)

  • The Adventures of TintinJohn Williams
  • The Artist Ludovic Bource
  • HugoHoward Shore
  • Tinker Tailor Soldier SpyAlberto Iglesias
  • War Horse John Williams

Surprises: none

Snubs: Cliff Martinez – Drive & Michael Giacchinio – Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol or Super 8 & Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross – The Girl With The Dragon Tatoo


Music (Original Song) 

  • “Man or Muppet” from The MuppetsMusic and Lyric by Bret McKenzie
  • “Real in Rio”  from Rio–  Music by Sergio Mendes and Carlinhos Brown Lyric by Siedah Garrett

Surprises: Only two?!?! Why bother?

Snubs: “Life’s a Happy Song” – The Muppets


Short Film (Animated)

  • Dimanche/Sunday – Patrick Doyon
  • The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore – William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg
  • La Luna –  Enrico Casarosa
  • A Morning Stroll –  Grant Orchard and Sue Goffe
  • Wild Life – Amanda Forbis and Wendy Tilby


Short Film (Live Action)

  • Pentecost – Peter McDonald and Eimear O’Kane
  • Raju Max Zähle and Stefan Gieren
  • The Shore – Terry George and Oorlagh George
  • Time Freak –  Andrew Bowler and Gigi Causey
  • Tuba Atlantic –  Hallvar Witzø


Sound Editing

  • Drive –  Lon Bender and Victor Ray Ennis
  • The Girl with the Dragon TattooRen Klyce
  • HugoPhilip Stockton and Eugene Gearty
  • Transformers: Dark of the Moon Ethan Van der Ryn and Erik Aadahl
  • War HorseRichard Hymns and Gary Rydstrom

Surprises: Drive – just the fact that it’s the only nom for the film!

Snubs: Super 8 & Captain America: The First Avenger


Sound Mixing

  • The Girl with the Dragon TattooDavid Parker, Michael Semanick, Ren Klyce and Bo Persson
  • Hugo Tom Fleischman and John Midgley
  • MoneyballDeb Adair, Ron Bochar, Dave Giammarco and Ed Novick
  • Transformers: Dark of the MoonGreg P. Russell, Gary Summers, Jeffrey J. Haboush and Peter J. Devlin
  • War HorseGary Rydstrom, Andy Nelson, Tom Johnson and Stuart Wilson

Surprises: none

Snubs: Drive & Super 8


Visual Effects

  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 Tim Burke, David Vickery, Greg Butler and John Richardson
  • HugoRob Legato, Joss Williams, Ben Grossman and Alex Henning
  • Real SteelErik Nash, John Rosengrant, Dan Taylor and Swen Gillberg
  • Rise of the Planet of the Apes Joe Letteri, Dan Lemmon, R. Christopher White and Daniel Barrett
  • Transformers: Dark of the MoonScott Farrar, Scott Benza, Matthew Butler and John Frazier

Surprises: none

Snubs: The Tree of Life  & Attack the Block

16 Comments leave one →
  1. Lauri permalink
    January 24, 2012 12:47 pm

    A few disappointments (snubs):
    Drive – Best Picture (It was my favorite of 2011)
    Albert Brooks – Best Supporting Actor
    Ryan Gosling – Best Actor (Drive… or I’d even accept it for Crazy Stupid Love)

    Am I being too Drive-centric?!

    Also snubbed:
    Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Best Picture
    Patton Oswalt – Best Supporting Actor
    David Fincher – Best Director

    I need more time to review and absorb all of the nominations, but those (above) were my initial reactions.

    • David J. Fowlie permalink*
      January 24, 2012 4:13 pm

      clearly, the Academy was going for nostalgia waxing this year – especially over artfully done violent/controversial films.

  2. Jeff Duhigg permalink
    January 24, 2012 1:38 pm

    That best actor category is some weak cheese, dude

    • David J. Fowlie permalink*
      January 24, 2012 4:14 pm

      I woulda switched out the bottom two for Fassbender and Shannon, for sure.

  3. Jeff Duhigg permalink
    January 24, 2012 1:59 pm

    No room for Elizabeth Olsen? Your thoughts?

    • David J. Fowlie permalink*
      January 24, 2012 4:15 pm

      I woulda chosen Olsen over Mara or Close, indeed.

  4. Sean Stevens permalink
    January 25, 2012 11:24 am

    I agree with most of the posted snubs, but the song thing boggles my mind. 2 songs in a year of movies?? Nothing exposes how whack the academy voting rules are more then that. It’s also stupid because live music performances aren’t the only thing that gets ratings, but they might help, more so if a star is performing. Crystal won’t be bringing in the youth to watch this years awards!

    • David J. Fowlie permalink*
      January 25, 2012 2:49 pm

      Hey Steve – with only two nominees in this category, they might as well just have a face-off, or flip a coin or just give it to “The Muppets”. In the past, both “Dreamgirls” and “Enchanted” received at least two nominations in this category. So why couldn’t they throw in another Muppets song? It’s just silly and a waste to have zero competition in this category. I guess they wanted to make the show shorter and less entertaining.

      • Sean Stevens permalink
        January 25, 2012 3:03 pm

        And it just seems like the song category is a softball for the academy to get more kids watching their show with a song by a pop artist. They annually change hosts and cry about lower ratings. Now I guess they’ll have more time for Some academy octogenarian to get up and put hundreds of us to sleep early with some looong show killing speech about the return of the good ole days before talkies.

  5. January 27, 2012 12:15 pm

    The fact that they snubbed Ben Nichols’ “Shelter” in the song category is a travesty.

  6. February 6, 2012 2:44 am

    Just watched “Hell and Back Again”. Up for a Best Documentary Oscar. Have you seen it? Nice to have a little inlook into a soldier’s life, but the story arc was kinda weak, and it seemed to have a lot of filler. It’s hard to believe that there aren’t DOZENS of better documentaries out there that could have beat it out of the nom.

    • David J. Fowlie permalink*
      February 7, 2012 11:36 am

      I did see it as well recently and thought it was alright, but not Oscar-worthy. I liked that they stuck with one soldier, but I felt like I’ve seen it before with all the documentary coverage of soldiers over the years – especially white soldiers from the South. I had a hard time going back and forth from the war images (from his head? actually footage?) to his assimilation back into real life. It seemed like there was more of a story back home in North Carolina – what with the various reactions to his injuries from other physically unscathes soliders and the expected tension between him and his family. And yes – there were indeed far better docs in 2011.

  7. Sean Stevens permalink
    February 7, 2012 2:26 pm

    Is there something odd about the rules for voting on the Doc category? It seems like for the last few years (maybe dating back to Hoop Dreams?) almost none of the most popular OR critically fave docs make it into the nominees. With a few exceptions. This year it seemed like Project Nim and Interrupters were huge faves until the nominations came out

    • David J. Fowlie permalink*
      February 7, 2012 4:25 pm

      There is certainly an uproar about the changes made that go into the qualifying factors for documentaries. When Steve James’ “The Interrupters”, “Project Nim”, “Senna”, or either of Werner Herzog’s two docs didn’t make the Oscar shortlist of 15 films (!!) – many were baffled and outraged. Time Magazine called the omission “preposterous” and “egregious.” The New York Times – noting that James’ masterwork “Hoop Dreams” was similarly snubbed in 1994 – cited it as an example of how “the Oscars never get it right.” James reflects on this here:

  8. February 7, 2012 7:51 pm

    Steve James film “Stevie” is probably my all-time favorite documentary. I’m gonna guess it got overlooked, too?

    • David J. Fowlie permalink*
      February 7, 2012 9:01 pm

      You know it – although it did win best doc at Sundance and the Independent Spirit Awards.

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