Oscar surprises: Amy Adams missing among nominees

Amy Adams as a linguist trying to decipher visiting aliens’ language in “Arrival.” The film earned eight Oscar nominations, but not one for its star.  

Paramount Pictures

Amy Adams, the Golden Globe-, BAFTA- and Screen Actors Guild Award-nominated star of “Arrival,” was not among the select group of actors nominated for an Academy Award this morning -- a shock considering the movie itself was nominated for eight Oscars, including Best Picture, a rare achievement for a science fiction film.

While there were few surprises from this morning’s announcement, there were notable achievements that went unheralded, particularly in the acting categories. The past year has been lukewarm in terms of film quality overall, but 2016 saw a tremendous number of rich performances that, in any other year, might have gone for the Oscar gold.

Among them: Colin Farrell,” The Lobster”; Michael Keaton, “The Founder”; Tom Hanks, “Sully”; Adam Driver, “Paterson”; Joel Edgerton, “Loving”; Chris Pine, “Hell or High Water”; Jake Gyllenhaal, “Nocturnal Animals”; Paul Dano, “Swiss Army Man”; Peter Simonischek, “Toni Erdmann”; Daniel Radcliffe, “Imperium,” and Dave Johns, “I, Daniel Blake.”

In the Best Supporting Actor category, notable absences were Hugh Grant and Simon Helberg from “Florence Foster Jenkins”; Stephen Lang, “Don’t Breathe”; Alan Rickman, “Eye in the Sky”; Sam Neill, “Hunt for the Wilderpeople”; Ben Foster, “Hell or High Water”; John Goodman, “10 Cloverfield Lane”; Daniel Radcliffe, “Swiss Army Man”; and Jeremy Irons, “The Man Who Knew Infinity.”

The Best Actress nominees, while all deserving, could have been tinkered with a bit. The great Isabelle Huppert is nominated for the film “Elle,” but her greater performance was in “Things to Come.” 

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Annette Bening with Lucas Jade Zumann in “20th Century Women.”

A24

Also missing, besides Adams, are Annette Bening, “20th Century Women”; Sandra Huller, “Toni Erdmann”; Sonia Braga, “Aquarius”; Jessica Chastain, “Miss Sloane”; Kate Beckinsale, “Love & Friendship”; Taraji P. Henson, “Hidden Figures”; and Hailee Steinfeld, “The Edge of Seventeen.”

The absences in the Best Supporting Actress category include Greta Gerwig, “20th Century Women”; Helen Mirren,” Eye in the Sky”; Golshifteh Farahani, “Paterson”; and Kristen Stewart, Lily Gladstone and Laura Dern from “Certain Women.”

The German film “Toni Erdmann” received a nomination in the Best Foreign Language Film category, but writer-director Maren Ade was excluded from both directing and screenwriting categories. Other directors missing: Martin Scorsese (“Silence”), David MacKenzie (“Hell or High Water”), Ken Loach (“I, Daniel Blake”), Denzel Washington (“Fences”), Tom Ford (“Nocturnal Animals”), Garth Davis (“Lion”), Theodore Melfi (“Hidden Figures”), and Pablo Larrain (for both “Jackie” and “Neruda”).

It was a great year for non-fiction, but the Best Documentary Feature category could only hold five nominees, so “Cameraperson,” “Tower,” “The Witness,” “Weiner,” “Command and Control”, “Gleason” and “Hooligan Sparrow” are just a few of the shortlisted films that didn’t make it.  

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“The Handmaiden” is a suspenseful tale about a couple of con artists, a beautiful aristocratic woman and a love affair. 

Magnolia Pictures

Missing from the technical credits are some shockers: the sumptuous South Korean erotic thriller “The Handmaiden” came up empty in the costume and production design categories; and “Rogue One,” while copping nominations in visual effects and sound, was not honored in production design, costume, cinematography and editing categories. 

Composer Johann Johannsson’s ethereal sounds for “Arrival” did not make it among the Best Original Score nominees.

The eight-hour-long “O.J.: Made in America” -- nominated in the Best Documentary category -- didn’t convince editors, nor did “Silence,” “Lion,” “Deadpool” or “Manchester by the Sea.”

And the cinematographers’ branch turned its sights away from “Hail Caesar!,” “Knight of Cups,” “The Neon Demon,” “Hell or High Water,” “Hacksaw Ridge,” “Rules Don’t Apply,” “Jackie” and “The Witch.”

And missing from the Best Picture category? Critical and popular favorites “The Lobster,” “Captain Fantastic,” “Don’t Breathe,” “Florence Foster Jenkins,” “Deadpool,” “Silence,” “Sully,” “The Birth of a Nation,” “The Jungle Book,” “Loving,” “I, Daniel Blake,” “Loving,” “Toni Erdmann,” “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” “20th Century Women” and “Zootopia.”

The 89th Annual Academy Awards will be presented on Sunday, February 26, at the Dolby Theatre in Beverly Hills, and broadcast on ABC.

  • David Morgan

    David Morgan is a senior editor at CBSNews.com and cbssundaymorning.com.