Lincoln scored 12 nominations for the 85th Academy Awards, making it the frontrunner in a crowded field when nominations were announced this morning. The film about the 16th president is up for Best Picture, Best Actor (Daniel Day-Lewis), Best Supporting Actress (Sally Field) and Best Director for Steven Spielberg, along with several technical awards. Following close behind was Ang Lee’s Life of Pi with 11 nods.
Meanwhile, Silver Linings Playbook had a surprisingly strong showing, garnering eight nominations. It nabbed Best Picture, Best Actor (Bradley Cooper), Best Actress (Jennifer Lawrence), Best Supporting Actor (Robert De Niro), Best Supporting Actress (Jacki Weaver) and Best Director for David O. Russell.
This year, due to the Academy's recent rule change, there are nine films in the Best Picture category. Fleshing out the category alongside Lincoln and Silver Linings Playbook are Argo, Zero Dark Thirty, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Django Unchained, Les Misérables, Amour and Life of Pi.
While the Best Picture nods offered few surprises, the same can’t be said of the Best Director category. Ben Affleck (Argo), Kathryn Bigelow (Zero Dark Thirty) and Tom Hooper (Les Misérables) were all snubbed, allowing Michael Haneke (Amour), Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild) and David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook) to sneak in alongside Spielberg and Lee.
Affleck was also shut out of the Best Actor category, where both Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook) and Hugh Jackman (Les Misérables) picked up their first Oscar nominations. Rounding out the category were Day-Lewis (Lincoln), Denzel Washington (Flight) and Joaquin Phoenix (The Master).
Meanwhile, the Best Actress field was just as much of a mixed bag, with Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty), Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook), Naomi Watts (The Impossible), Emmanuelle Riva (Amour) and Quvenzhane Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) all picking up nods. Of note, Riva, 85, is the oldest actress ever nominated, while Wallis is the youngest at age nine.
In the Best Song category, the nominees are: "Before My Time" from Chasing Ice, "Everybody Needs a Best Friend" from Ted, "Pi's Lullaby" from Life of Pi, "Skyfall" from Skyfall and "Suddenly" from Les Misérables.
In other notable news, Searching for Sugar Man, the documentary that looks for answers about the disappearance of musician Rodriguez, garnered a spot in the Best Documentary Feature race.
The nominees were announced Thursday morning in Los Angeles by Emma Stone and this year's Oscars host Seth MacFarlane (only the second host to do so; the first being Charlton Heston in 1972). Winners will be announced at the 85th Academy Awards ceremony on February 24th in Los Angeles. See a full list of all the Oscar nominees here.