No Oscar nerves for Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio

No Oscar nerves for Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio

Forced to choose one, the smart money shifts now from Spotlight to The Revenant, which led all nominees Thursday with 12 and on Sunday picked up the Golden Globe for Best Picture, Drama.

Organizers of the annual Academy Awards are facing another backlash after no black actors were nominated for an Oscar for the second straight year.

But absences were also stuck on repeat.

Actress Jada Pinkett Smith, the wife of Concussion actor Will Smith, debated boycotting next months Oscars.

It should be fun to hear how all this filters through the mind of Chris Rock, when he hosts the show. "Champagne and Mezcal will run tonight!", said the director ahead of its premiere here. Exhibit B: "Room" - about a boy and his mother living as hostages of an abuser - with nominations for best actress, (Brie Larson), best director (Lenny Abrahamson) and best picture.

There was some doubt about DiCaprio's chances to win Best Actor with The Revenant, which is austere of both dialogue and story, but as the season wore on and no serious challenger emerged, the tide turned: Why not Leo? "Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara's performances were simply unbelievable, and it's a shame their film got shut out of the Best Picture category".

The Oscars may choose up to 10 films for best picture. His stiffest competition is seen as acclaimed theater actor Mark Rylance for "Bridge of Spies".

The president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has responded to the glaring lack of diversity among this year's Oscar nominees. "It's a little disappointing, right?" she said when asked about the issue. "Talking gets to the doing, and we are going to do".

There are always snubs, and this year the talk is about racial bias.

Looking at this year's nomination with seasoned eyes I can clearly see the obvious picks for some categories, however others look to have some competition. "I was not expecting it... especially at this time in my life".

Alongside DiCaprio, the nominees for best actor are: Matt Damon ("The Martian"), Michael Fassbender ("Steve Jobs"), Eddie Redmayne ("The Danish Girl") and Bryan Cranston ("Trumbo"). No best actor nomination for Johnny Depp in "Black Mass", for those keeping score in Boston. Many expected a nomination for Ridley Scott to match the seven that his movie, the much-loved "The Martian", had elsewhere.

"It was thrilling", said McKay, who made a pre-dawn party to watch the nominations.

And, yes, "Star Wars: The Force Awakens", the year's biggest movie - and now all-time domestic box office champ - scored a measly five nominations, four in technical categories and one for John Williams's indestructible score.

"The Revenant" was released in Britain on Friday, after opening in the United States on January 8.

He said this morning, "I am so grateful to the Academy for their recognition of this film".

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