The Oscar nominations have been unveiled – with some surprises

It is the time of the year again. Oscars ante portas sunt! Early this morning the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has unveiled the Oscar nominations. Needless to say that all of Hollywood stayed awake all night, anticipating these important nominations that can make and break careers.

What is immediately noticeable from scanning the list is the variety of titles that do not fall into the artificially sophisticated category. A number of films nominated are real blockbusters and films that we watch every day. This is quite striking as the Academy has oftentimes snubbed perfectly good movies, mostly because of their obvious mainstream appeal it seemed. Well if these nominations are any indication for change, I truly welcome it.

The biggest surprise was for me the nomination of “The Sixth Sense” – a horror film – as “Best Picture.” The other nominees in this category or as expected “The Green Mile”, “The Cider House Rules”, “The Insider” and “American Beauty.” But the interesting things don’t end here. “The Sixth Sense” was also nominated in four other categories, including young Haley Joel Osment as best supporting actor. Another huge – although well-deserved – nod goes to Tim Burton’s “Sleepy Hollow.” The movie was nominated for three Academy Awards. “Star Wars” appears a number of times, albeit mostly in technical categories, as does “The Matrix.”

All in all it is an interesting mix that will make following the ceremonies certainly an interesting evening when it will be held on March 26. Some titles are really going head to head, and it’s hard to really stake out preferences or any obvious winners – apart from “Star Wars” in the visual effects and sound effects department maybe.

For a complete listing of the nominations and more information on the films themselves, please visit the official Oscar website. It contains a lot of information and the rules surrounding the motion picture industry’s biggest event.

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