© 2024 Michigan State University Board of Trustees
Public Media from Michigan State University
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
TECHNOTE: 90.5 FM and AM870 reception

2016 Oscar Nominations Are Announced: 'The Revenant,' 'Mad Max' Get Most Nods

Actor John Krasinski and Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Cheryl Boone Isaacs announce the nominees for best performance by an actor in a leading role Thursday.
Kevin Winter
Getty Images
Actor John Krasinski and Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Cheryl Boone Isaacs announce the nominees for best performance by an actor in a leading role Thursday.

The competitors in the 2016 Oscars race were announced Thursday, in an event that was live-streamed from California. The winners will be announced on Feb. 28.

The most nominations went to The Revenant, with 12, followed by Mad Max: Fury Road, with 10. The Martian was cited seven times, and Carol, Bridge of Spies and Spotlight were each nominated six times.

The runaway hit of the season, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, was nominated for five Academy Awards, for its original score and in technical categories.

We have a a brief rundown of some of the top categories below. You can also see the full list of nominees at the Academy Awards website.

For the second straight year, the Oscars nominations lack any people of color in the 20 acting slots. And as happened last year, critics are using the hashtags #OscarNoms and #OscarsSoWhite to channel their disappointment.

We do see that Mexican director Alejandro Iñárritu, who won an Oscar last year for Birdman, is up for the prize again this year, for The Revenant.

But for the second year in a row, no black actor or actress was nominated for an Oscar. And unlike last year, when Selma competed for best picture, no black faces are featured in what the academy is calling the top films of 2015.

This year, only Straight Outta Compton, which was nominated for best original screenplay, ranks as a film with prominent black roles that's also up for a major award. And while Sylvester Stallone was nominated for his supporting role in Creed, the film's star, Michael B. Jordan, and director, Ryan Coogler, both of whom are black, were shut out.

That situation has led some to note that in honoring two films that center on black characters — two of the year's most popular movies — the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences chose to recognize only white contributors. (Compton screenwriters Jonathan Herman and Andrea Berloff are white).

On social media, many are saying that the academy overlooked actors Idris Elba (Beasts of No Nation) and Will Smith (Concussion), who were nominated for, respectively, a Screen Actors Guild Award and a Golden Globe. Neither was included on the 2016 Oscars list.

Highlights from the Nominations:

Best Picture

The Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett - Carol
Brie Larson - Room
Jennifer Lawrence - Joy
Charlotte Rampling - 45 Years
Saorise Ronan - Brooklyn

Best Actor

Bryan Cranston - Trumbo
Matt Damon - The Martian
Leonardo DiCaprio - The Revenant
Michael Fassbender - Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne - The Danish Girl


Adam McKay - The Big Short
George Miller - Mad Max: Fury Road
Alejandro G. Inarritu - The Revenant
Lenny Abrahamson - Room
Tom McCarthy - Spotlight

Best Supporting Actress

Jennifer Jason Leigh - The Hateful Eight
Rooney Mara - Carol
Rachel McAdams - Spotlight
Alicia Vikander - The Danish Girl
Kate Winslet - Steve Jobs

Best Supporting Actor

Christian Bale - The Big Short
Tom Hardy - The Revenant
Mark Ruffalo - Spotlight
Mark Rylance - Bridge of Spies
Sylvester Stallone - Creed

Animated Feature Film

Boy and the World
Inside Out
Shaun the Sheep Movie
When Marnie Was There

Original Screenplay

Bridge of Spies
Ex Machina
Inside Out
Straight Outta Compton


The Hateful Eight
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Revenant

Original Song

"Earned It" - Fifty Shades of Grey
"Manta Ray" - Racing Extinction
"Simple Song #3" - Youth
"Til It Happens To You" - The Hunting Ground
"Writing's On The Wall" - Spectre

Foreign Language Film

Embrace of the Serpent - Colombia
Mustang - France
Son of Saul - Hungary
Theeh - Jordan
A War - Denmark

Documentary Feature

Cartel Land
The Look of Silence
What Happened, Miss Simone?
Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight for Freedom

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Bill Chappell is a writer and editor on the News Desk in the heart of NPR's newsroom in Washington, D.C.
To help strengthen our local reporting as WKAR's fiscal year ends, we need 75 new or upgraded sustainers by June 30th. Become a new monthly donor or increase your donation to support the trustworthy journalism you'll rely on before Election Day. Donate now.