2015 Oscar Nominations: ‘Birdman’ and ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ Lead with Nine

The Academy Award nominations were announced Thursday morning in Los Angeles.

 Alejandro González Iñárritu's picture "Birdman" will probably steal the show. Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s picture “Birdman” will probably steal the show. Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures

If Oscar 2015 nominations are any indication, the best Hollywood movies appear to be made not in Hollywood anymore. Following the lead of many major industries, the movie business has in effect outsourced what used to be its bread and butter.

“For if the Academy Awards have traditionally represented anything, it’s what the industry values: what the thousands of professionals, the insiders who make up the academy membership, think is the best cinematic work of the year,” writes The New York Times.

“But if you look at the nominations for the year 2014, both across the board and category by category, what is striking is how many of the big winners came from either the independent world, overseas or both. This is not a new development, but this year’s results spelled it out in big, bold letters,” the journal adds.

Thursday’s two big winners, “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and “Birdman” earned as many as nine nominations each, were independent films released by Fox’s specialty division, Fox Searchlight.

“Grand Budapest’s” director, Wes Anderson, is a true stalwart of the independent world, and the man who stands behind “Birdman” is Mexico’s Alejandro G. Iñárritu.

When you go further down the list of nominees, that trend can also be observed. “The Imitation Game,” released by the Weinstein Co. and directed by Norway’s Morten Tyldum, was nominated for eight categories, including a well deserved one for Tyldum himself.

Next came “Boyhood” with six nominations. The group that got five included “The Theory of Everything,” directed by the British James Marsh, and Sundance winner “Whiplash,” a film whose five nominations perhaps reflect the fact that its plot is easy to imagine as a 1930s or 1940s feature, maybe with John Garfield in the Miles Teller role.

“Sniper” is also the only thorough-going studio film to land one of the eight best picture nominations. Missing from that list were the likely candidates “Interstellar” (which got five mostly below-the-line nods), “Unbroken” and “Gone Girl,” the last of which managed only a nomination for star Rosamund Pike. It’s almost as if voters fled from anything with a big-studio imprimatur on it,” informs The Los Angeles Times.

Last year  “Gravity” appeared to be the biggest winner as its crew took home seven Oscars at the 86th annual Academy Awards, but it was adorable host Ellen DeGeneres that won over the A-list audience who constantly joked and even passed out pizza to the pretty people in attendance.

“12 Years a Slave” won the night’s biggest prize as it was title the best picture, howeverm, it was “Gravity” that got the most awards, grabbing all the technical awards, including best visual effects and sound editing.

Talented actor andsinger Jared Leto was also honoured as he won the title of best supporting actor for his perfect performance in “Dallas Buyers Club.”

The best supporting actress award was given to Lupita Nyong’o for her play in “12 Years a Slave,” and the actress, who won her first Oscar ever,  thanked her family and friends in an emotional speech.

Australian ntive-born Cate Blanchett was named the best actress for her role as the socialite unhinged by her husband’s financial crimes in Woody Allen’s “Blue Jasmine.” “Thank you so much Woody for casting me,” Blanchett said in her acceptance speech.

The tale of Nordic princesses, “Frozen,” took home best animated film award, a first one for Disney Animation Studios since the category was introduced twelve years ago.

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