81st Annual Academy Award Nominees

The much anticipated nominees for the 81st Annual Academy Awards have just been announced this morning, live from the Samuel Goldwyn Theater. Before you go scanning the list of noms, I’ll just say it right up front… The Dark Knight got snubbed! But hey, Robert Downey Jr. got the nod for his role in Tropic Thunder, so I guess fanboys should be happy? The Oscars will air on Sunday. February 22nd, and Film Junk will likely be doing another live chat again this year. Stay tuned for details!

Best Picture

  • The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Frost/Nixon
  • Milk
  • The Reader
  • Slumdog Millionaire

Best Director

  • David Fincher (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button)
  • Ron Howard (Frost/Nixon)
  • Gus Van Sant (Milk)
  • Stephen Daldry (The Reader)
  • Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire)

Best Actor

  • Richard Jenkins (The Visitor)
  • Frank Langella (Frost/Nixon)
  • Sean Penn (Milk)
  • Brad Pitt (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button)
  • Mickey Rourke (The Wrestler)

Best Actress

  • Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married)
  • Angelina Jolie (Changeling)
  • Melissa Leo (Frozen River)
  • Meryl Streep (Doubt)
  • Kate Winslet (Revolutionary Road)

Best Supporting Actor

  • Josh Brolin (Milk)
  • Robert Downey Jr. (Tropic Thunder)
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman (Doubt)
  • Heath Ledger (The Dark Knight)
  • Michael Shannon (Revolutionary Road)

Best Supporting Actress

  • Amy Adams (Doubt)
  • Penelope Cruz (Vicky Cristina Barcelona)
  • Viola Davis (Doubt)
  • Taraji P. Henson (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button)
  • Marisa Tomei (The Wrestler)

Best Original Screenplay

  • Frozen River
  • Happy-Go-Lucky
  • Milk
  • Wall-E
  • In Bruges

Best Adapted Screenplay

  • The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Doubt
  • Frost/Nixon
  • The Reader
  • Slumdog Millionaire

Best Animated Feature

  • Wall-E
  • Bolt
  • Kung Fu Panda

Best Documentary

  • The Betrayal – Nerakhoon
  • Encounters at the End of the World
  • The Garden
  • Man on Wire
  • Trouble the Water

Best Foreign Language Film

  • Der Baader Meinhof Komplex (Germany)
  • Entre les murs (France)
  • Revanche (Austria)
  • Okuribito (Japan)
  • Vals Im Bashir (Israel)

Best Cinematography

  • Changeling – Tom Stern
  • The Curious Case of Benjamin Button – Claudio Miranda
  • The Dark Knight – Wally Pfister
  • The Reader – Roger Deakins, Chris Menges
  • Slumdog Millionaire – Anthony Dod Mantle

Best Original Score

  • The Curious Case of Benjamin Button – Alexandre Desplat
  • Defiance – James Newton Howard
  • Milk – Danny Elfman
  • Slumdog Millionaire – A.R. Rahman
  • WALL-E – Thomas Newman

Best Original Song

  • “Down to Earth” – WALL-E (Peter Gabriel)
  • “Jaiho” – Slumdog Millionaire (Gulzar and A.R. Rahman)
  • “O Saya” – Slumdog Millionaire (Gulzar and A.R. Rahman)

Best Visual Effects

  • The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • The Dark Knight
  • Iron Man
» Related Link: 81st Annual Academy Awards: Nominees



  • Goon

    Dark Knight did not get snubbed.

    Sally Hawkins is the biggest acting snub.

    “The Wrestler” not up for original song is the biggest snub of all, especially consider most years they have 5 songs nominated.

  • Goon

    Anyways, I normally never bitch about the Oscars. I like watching them, I like guessing, and its not worth bitching about. And the majority of the movies on the lists are not actually BAD here.

    but their choices are actually worse than the Globes, and there are so many glaring snubs, that I will abide all bitching from the Internet on this one. They fucked up large.

  • GUNN

    Man….even “The Boss” doesn’t even get a nomination for best song, for the Wrestler?. Wow.

  • Goon

    RDJ is the stupidest nomination.

  • Mason

    I think this year, more than in recent memory, seems to have a lot of repeat nominees in the acting categories. Three or four of the five are the usual suspects like Pitt, Winslet, Hoffman, Amy Adams, Tomei, Streep, Hathaway, Jolie, Ledger. There’s a few first-timers like Richard Jenkins, which I agree with. I have not seen The Wrestler, but with all the talk its getting, I was surprised it didn’t get a best picture nom. And there’s always that curiosity of an actor getting mis-categorized. Was Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s Role in Doubt really a supporting one?

  • Goon

    every best pic nom got a directing nod as well, usually theres one movie that gets best pic or best director thats not on the other.

    The Wrestler was one of the best reviewed movies of the year and it didnt crack through, yet the Reader barely hovered over 60% on Rottentomatoes, and a lot of the good reviews where 3/5 ‘meh’ reviews – quite a chasm between critics and the Academy, which only accentuates the Oscar baiting of the Reader even more.

  • I’m actually glad that Angelina Jolie is nominated for Best Actress. Not sure if she replaces Sally Hawkins, but if so, I’m okay with that.

    They could have at least thrown TDK a bone for screenplay (like they did for Wall-E), although I don’t know if it would be considered original or adapted.

  • Theman

    This was a snub, Not only did the dark Knight Make more money. It also got better Reviews than all of the best picture nods except Slumdog. Bullshit. The Reader? the fucking Reader?

  • Goon

    just because a movie got better reviews than the Reader doesnt mean its a snub. around 50 – 60 movies got better reviews. Wendy and Lucy, the Wrestler, Rachel Getting Married, and more. So if anything less well reviewed than the Reader is a snub, well Dark Knight is going to have to get in line behind a lot of great films.

  • Are you kidding me? TDK definitely didn’t get snubbed. If anything, it’s gotten TOO much.

  • Bas

    Strictly speaking on TDK, I think the nominations are spot-on: supporting actor for Heath, cinematography for Wally Pfister’s great imax-work and one for the fantastic old-school visual effects. I’ll be surprised if they don’t win all three of those.

  • Bob The Slob

    no wrestler for best picture? Academy Awards = NOTHING.

  • Make your pick for the biggest Oscar snub
    http://www.awardsandhonors.com/polls.html

  • ZoleZ

    Biggest snub: James Newton Howard And Hans Zimmer’s Score for The Dark Knight.

  • Brett

    “Are you kidding me? TDK definitely didn’t get snubbed. If anything, it’s gotten TOO much.”

    Too much? How do you work that one out? All 3 nominations are thoroughly deserved.

  • Steven C.

    The Dark Knight got totally fucked, it should have been nominated for best picture, but the academy just didn’t have the balls to nominate a comic book movie in the category.

    What a fucking disappointment.

  • Liz

    Springsteen not getting a nomination is my biggest disappointment in this list, but I’m so indifferent to the movies nominated that I don’t have anything to root for or, conversely, anything to root against. Looks like we’ll be having a relatively boring Oscar party.

  • Connor

    I dunno, I can’t say I’m suprised Dark Knight didn’t get a best picture nomination. If anything i would have liked to see it get a best direction nom, as usual though direction and best picture go hand in hand.

  • Goon

    anyone who thinks it had a chance of being nominated is being very naive.

    anyone who seriously thinks it should have been nominated didn’t see enough movies, and even though i dont like all of them, i would bet probably didn’t see all the films that were actually nominated either.

  • Alex

    The Reader & Benjamin Button didn’t even make RottenTomatoes’ Top 100 films of 2008 list whereas The Wrestler and The Dark Knight are in the top 50.

  • “The Dark Knight got totally fucked, it should have been nominated for best picture, but the academy just didn’t have the balls to nominate a comic book movie in the category.”

    Or it just wasn’t that good of a movie.

  • Dale

    No, they really didn’t have the balls to nominate a comic book movie. They hardly ever can even bring themselves to nominate a fantasy/sci-fi. Even Button, a rare exception, barely qualifies as it never makes use of its fantasy element, it might as well be about the life of an ordinary orphaned guy. Whether TDK was good or not, the stick up their butts is so big, a comic book movie would be out of the question.

  • Alex

    Or it just wasn’t that good of a movie.

    Posted by Falsk on January 22nd, 2009

    Says who? You? TDK was critically acclaimed.

    94% on RottenTomatoes from 263 reviews, that’s quite an achievement.

  • So your telling me that robert downey jr can get nominated for tropic thunder, but the dark knight can’t get nominated for best picture? AND NO VISUAL EFFECTS FOR SPEED RACER! bullshit.

  • Goon

    “didn’t even make RottenTomatoes’ Top 100 films of 2008 list”

    the % on Rottentomatoes itself doesnt mean shit, you have to look at what the people are rating the high % movies on RT. I don’t see people running around saying that Hellboy II and Iron Man were snubbed, but they had almost the same Rottentomatoes ratings. So did Kung Fu Panda.

    This is turning into a fanboy bullshit thinig already, where fanboys saw ‘one of theirs’ get enough recognition that by not pandering to them for an awards show they normally skip anyways, that they’ve somehow been spat in the face.

    On one hand, when you nominate the fucking Reader, its very easy to say Dark Knight was ‘snubbed’, but so then was ‘the Wrestler’, ‘Wall-E’, ‘Wendy & Lucy’, ‘Doubt’, ‘the Visitor’ and countless other good to great films.

    I know enough about the Oscars to understand why the Wrestler didn’t get nominated by those specific voters. I know enough why they nominate shit like The Reader. By the Oscars own historical standards of what they do and don’t nominate, the only movie that truly got snubbed for best picture that they normally go for was probably “Doubt”.

  • Goon

    one of the most hilarious side effects though of this nom list is that the Reader is now probably the most detested film of the year, mostly by people who haven’t seen it :P

    TDK saw it as the clear evidence this was ‘rigged’ against them or something, and people who actually saw the movie hate it because if they actually dragged their ass to it, they know how many countless other great movies could have taken that spot.

  • Let’s talk about the real upset here… nevermind “The Wrestler”, “Rock Me Sexy Jesus” didn’t get nominated for Best Original Song!

  • Colin

    I enjoyed the Dark Knight when I saw it in IMAX over the summer, and have watched it a few more times since it’s hit Blu-Ray. It’s a good film, but I honestly can’t comprehend the fanboy whining over its so-called “snub”.

    It simply wasn’t the best film of the year, or even among them. Furthermore, who among you would actually expect it to win if it WAS nominated? Would hearing “Milk” ring out when the envelope is opened really be preferable to this? I get the impression a nomination would only have postponed the inevitable fanboy bitching a few weeks.

    I saw 23 films last year, and while the Dark Knight did make my top 10 list, most of the nominated films I preferred to Christopher Nolan’s.

    This is something I want to know. Would it have been an honor “just to be nominated?” or is it Dark Knight for Best Picture or bust?

    Because if you seriously think Batman was the best film of 2008, more power to you. But its conspicuous absence from the best picture category has nothing to do with the testicular fortitude of the academy, it’s an opinion every bit as valid as your own. There’s no power play against comic book films taking place behind closed doors, rather, the voters didn’t think it qualified as 2008’s greatest cinematic achievement.

  • Colin

    In all seriousness, though, the Wrestler was snubbed.

  • Speaking of the s-word, why aren’t the list of short nominees that no one’s seen up there? I’ve only managed to get a hold of Oktopi and Presto (for obvious reasons) and have no way of finding the others (thus far).

    Will XBox Live be doing $2 downloads again this year? Because that would be awesome.

  • Bob The Slob

    the dark knight got SNUBBED!!! my life is over!!!! Some how I have to deal with all the changes that will inevitably be made to the post-oscar DVD release…you know where they intentionally make it worse because of the snubbing. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO WHY!!!!!

  • Goon

    the fanboys are trying to turn an awards show run by hollywood snobs and executives into soccer, believing that since they turned out in droves to a very good comic book movie, that they should be recognized. its almost as much just a nomination and pandering the fan as it is recognition of the movie. they want their nerd culture stamp of approval from the hollywood elites.

    well grow up. you don’t see the idiot Twilight mall brats saying their pop culture phenomenon of choice was left out and they’ve been dissed.

    or maybe they are. i try to keep out of malls. teenagers that make themselves visible are the worst kind of teenagers.

  • I can’t believe Film Junk’s unanimous best movie of the year wasn’t nominated for best picture by either the Golden Globes or the Oscars! Has that ever happened in Film Junk history before?

    I still think Film Junk was paid off by Mickey Rourke (or Darren Aronofsky).

    Seriously, maybe the Academy still had the bad taste from The Fountain in their mouths? Ha ha. (I enjoyed The Fountain, but I’m pretentious.)

  • Bob The Slob

    I vote that Randy “The Ram” Robinson RAM-JAMs an oscar statue during the ceremony if he doesn’t win. Who’s with me?

  • KK

    Ok, so I’ve looked at everyone’s comments so far and I’m a little bemused by it all. I am extremely grateful that the academy nominated Heath Ledger because playing the Joker was no easy task to begin with and the way he did it was beyond twisted. This particular nomination is an extremely well deserved one and I hope he wins.

    As for the Dark Knight getting snubbed. It was certainly one of my favorite movies of the year and certainly one of the most successful. However, the academy has never been known to pic comic book story lines for the top honors. The reason being they prefer to focus on more ‘reality’ based story lines. Hence the noms for the Best Picture category.

    I’m a comic book fan myself and can honestly say that while I did indulge in some wishful thinking with regards to TDK getting nominated, I am in no way disappointed or surprised. The Academy is not looking to reward escapism. It is looking to reward realism. That’s all it comes down to at the end of the day. Honestly, if Titanic hadn’t been based on real life events, then it would never have won. And that’s the truth. Love stories, sci-fi and other such categories are just not what the Academy is after.

    Nonetheless, TDK was kick ass!!!! :)

    And as an Indian, I have to say “GO A.R. REHMAN!!!! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!!!!!”

    Sorry, I couldn’t help myself. :)

  • Mane

    One last thing:
    Wendy and Lucy should have been nominated. That was a good movie.

  • TDK got snubbed cos the people who were doing the voting thing were like 60 years old , so of course they wouldnt like some film based on a comic!

  • swarez

    Age has nothing to do with it. TDK got a shit load of nominations but fan boys bitch about the absence of the Best Picture cause they want “their” genre to vindicated. Like it matters. What does it matter that it wasn’t nominated for Best Picture?
    You all know how the Oscars works and yet you lose your shit every time when a film you like doesn’t get the votes.
    Could it be because the film wasn’t the best of the year?

  • Luminator

    Of course the age of the Academy members is a factor; the notion that the Academy shows no bias is a very naive position. So the nerds want some due respect–they’re entitled to it. Batman is an inherently silly franchise and yet Nolan turned it into a real movie. It’s only a question of justice–unfair discrimination in the voting process should be considered unacceptable. The fact that there’s a separate category for animation when a good portion of the other nominated films are comprised of animation is an example of their archaic thinking.