2018 Oscar Nominations: Biggest Surprises and Snubs

Who snuck into the race and who went home empty handed?

Oscar Nominations Surprises and Snubs
Fox Searchlight’s ‘The Shape of Water.’ Dennis Berardi/Mr. X/Fox Searchlight

OK, has everyone recovered from the initial rush that accompanied the Oscar nominations? Does anyone need another minute to collect themselves? Good, because we’re about to rile you right back up again with our list of the biggest surprises and snubs in the main eight categories.

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Take a deep breath, make sure your Twitter browser is open, so you can send out ALL CAPS #OscarNoms hot takes, and let’s do this.

Best Original Screenplay

The Big Sick
Get Out
Lady Bird
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Surprises: Nothing glaring. The awards circuit has certainly shown a bit more love to Three Billboards than general audiences have but not to an egregious level. For the most part, this is a solid collection of deserving original stories.

Snubs: Again, nothing glaring. Considering Christopher Nolan had originally wanted to shoot Dunkirk without a script at all, those banging the drum for the impressively made World War II epic may want to think again.

Best Adapted Screenplay

Call Me by Your Name
The Disaster Artist
Molly’s Game

Surprises: Logan is the first live-action superhero movie ever nominated for its script, a testament to how far the genre has come over the last 20 years. If you ask us, it’s deserving of this honor.

Snubs: Not sure which film we’d kick out, but it’s hard to believe in today’s day and age that The Post didn’t score a nomination. Attacks on the media, the fight for truth. Seems right up the Hollywood Academy’s alley.

Best Supporting Actor

Sam Rockwell (Three Billboards)
Willem Dafoe (The Florida Project)
Woody Harrelson (Three Billboards)
Richard Jenkins (The Shape of Water)
Christopher Plummer (All the Money in the World)

Surprises: We were all a bit shocked when Christopher Plummer scored a Golden Globes nomination after just nine days of re-shoots on All the Money in the World. While his story of replacing Kevin Spacey and Ridley Scott somehow still meeting the release date is a great one, it does beg the question: is this more of a narrative nomination?

Snubs: Michael Stuhlbarg was robbed, plain and simple. With all due respect to his Call Me by Your Name co-star Armie Hammer, 2017 belonged to Stuhlbarg like no other. It’s a damn shame that the Academy failed to recognize that.

Best Supporting Actress

Allison Janney (I, Tonya)
Laurie Metcalf (Lady Bird)
Mary J. Blige (Mudbound)
Lesley Manville (Phantom Thread)
Octavia Spencer (The Shape of Water)

Surprises: Mary J. Blige was very good in Mudbound, a film we felt deserved more love, but her character simply wasn’t a big enough part of the story to make a serious impact. At best, she was the sixth or seventh lead.

Snubs: It’s not a slam dunk snub, as there were quite a few deserving candidates this year, but Holly Hunter’s fiercely protective and weight-of-the-world mother in The Big Sick was a delight.

Best Actor

Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour)
Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name)
Daniel Day-Lewis (Phantom Thread)
Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out)
Denzel Washington (Roman J. Israel Esq.)

Surprises: Denzel Washington is a Mount Rushmore actor, but Roman J. Isarel, Esq. didn’t exactly connect with audiences (49 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, 58/100 on Metacritic) and was hardly seen (less than $12 million domestically).

Snubs: You could make a case that Tom Hanks, who hasn’t been nominated in 18 years, deserved a nod for The Post. James Franco seemed on pace for a nomination before he was hit with multiple sexual harassment allegations.

Best Actress

Frances McDormand (Three Billboards)
Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird)
Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water)
Margot Robbie (I, Tonya)
Meryl Streep (The Post)

Surprises: None. This field has been set ever since The Post screened for critics in December. This is one of the deepest categories of the year and one of the rare instances where every single performance needs to be seen.

Snubs: We can’t argue with the final field, but we understand if you want to clamor for Jessica Chastain in Molly’s Game.

Best Director

Christopher Nolan (Dunkirk)
Guillermo del Toro (The Shape of Water)
Jordan Peele (Get Out)
Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird)
Paul Thomas Anderson (Phantom Thread)

Surprises: Two rookie filmmakers, Jordan Peele and Greta Gerwig, notch directing noms in their first outing. Not a bad way to kickoff a career, especially when Get Out and Lady Bird were two of the most original and successful films of the year.

Snubs: Luca Guadagnino’s work on Call Me by Your Name, one of the five best movies of the year, should have been rewarded with some Oscars love. This year, we’d have taken Guadagnino over Paul Thomas Anderson.

Best Picture

The Shape of Water
Lady Bird
Get Out
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Call Me by Your Name
Darkest Hour
Phantom Thread
The Post

Surprises: Phantom Thread was somewhat on the bubble heading into awards season and didn’t score a Best Picture nomination from the Golden Globes or a SAG ensemble nod. Somewhat surprising to see it sneak into the race here, though it has all the trappings of an Academy prestige favorite.

Snubs: Overall, 2017 was a somewhat down year for movies with no clear “great” frontrunners emerging. As such, it’s understandable if you’re disappointed that The Florida Project and I, Tonya were not nominated.

2018 Oscar Nominations: Biggest Surprises and Snubs