Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog, an intense western starring Benedict Cumberbatch, leads this year’s Oscar nominations with 12.
It is closely followed by Dune, which has 10, and Belfast and West Side Story, which have seven each.
Olivia Colman, Benedict Cumberbatch and Andrew Garfield are among the British acting nominees in the leading categories.
Dame Judi Dench and Ciarán Hinds are nominated for supporting roles.
Both appeared in Belfast, Sir Kenneth Branagh’s autobiographical black-and-white film about a family in Northern Ireland during The Troubles.
Sir Kenneth, who is also nominated for best director, said in a statement: “It’s a long way from the streets of Belfast to the Academy Awards.
“Today, I think of my mother and father, and my grandparents – how proud they were to be Irish, how much this city meant to them. They would have been overwhelmed by this incredible honour – as am I.
“Given a story as personal as this one, it’s a hell of a day for my family, and the family of our film. I thank Academy voters for their incredible and generous recognition.”
Her film, The Power of the Dog, is a slow and engaging western which also scored nominations for three of its supporting actors – Jesse Plemons, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Kirsten Dunst.
The main nominees
- The Power of the Dog – 12
- Dune – 10
- Belfast – 7
- West Side Story – 7
- King Richard – 6
- Don’t Look Up – 4
- Nightmare Alley – 4
- Drive My Car – 4
Two couples are nominated within the 20 acting places that were available.
Penelope Cruz (Parallel Mothers) and Javier Bardem (Being The Ricardos) have been married since 2010, while Plemons and Dunst are engaged.
Denzel Washington’s nomination for The Tragedy of Macbeth is his 10th, extending the record he already holds as the most nominated black actor ever.
Writing on Twitter, McPhee said he was “deeply honoured” to have been recognised by the Academy in the best supporting actor category.
And Ariana DeBose, who is a strong contender for best supporting actress, tweeted her excitement over her nomination.
Snubs and surprises
The red carpet will have to do without without Lady Gaga and her Oscars outfit this year. She had been tipped for a best actress nomination for House of Gucci, but has missed out.
It’s not a good year to be both a musician and an actor. Gaga’s co-star Jared Leto, who is also the singer with Thirty Seconds To Mars, and Alana Haim, who has gone from the band Haim to starring in Licorice Pizza, were both in contention but have been overlooked.
Kristen Stewart did make it on to the best actress list, though, for playing Princess Diana in Spencer. The former Twilight star was frontrunner to win a few months ago, but that film has rapidly fallen out of favour and it wasn’t certain that she would be nominated.
On the best supporting actress list, Dame Judi had been an outsider to be nominated for Belfast – but she is loved by the Oscars, and has now received her eighth career nomination. Her on-screen daughter-in-law Caitriona Balfe, who was thought to have been Belfast’s more likely representative in that category, was not recognised.
Irish star Jessie Buckley was also something of a surprise in the best supporting actress category. She plays the younger version of Olivia Colman’s character in The Lost Daughter – with Colman herself up for best actress, days after being snubbed in the Bafta nominations.
Overall, Oscar voters liked The Power of the Dog a bit more than expected, and liked Dune a bit less than expected – typified by the fact that, although Dune has 10 nominations, Denis Villeneuve didn’t make the cut for best director.
Tracee Ellis Ross and Leslie Jordan announced the nominations in Los Angeles on Tuesday.
There is pressure to make the Oscars more popular with and relevant to young audiences, after 2021’s pared-down ceremony tanked in the ratings, partly due to the absence of big film releases during lockdown.
The Academy has confirmed the ceremony will have a host this year, but has not yet revealed who it will be.
The ceremony hasn’t had a host since Jimmy Kimmel was at the helm in 2018. Instead, a variety of celebrity guests have introduced individual categories and announced winners.
This year’s ceremony will take place on Sunday 27 March.