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Oscars 2015: Who was snubbed?

From Selma to Roger Ebert, who was left off of this year's list of Academy Award nominees
By Joshua Rothkopf |

This morning at 5:30am PT, the Oscar nominations for the 87th Academy Awards were announced in Los Angeles. Gasps of surprise and hoots of applause met several categories—it was a roller-coaster ride. At the bottom of this post, you can find the complete list of nominees, but here are the five biggest surprises from this morning's news:

1. Jennifer Aniston's campaign comes to an end
The Cake star mounted a vigorous effect and the film itself is hardly as awful as some are saying. But Aniston failed to secure a slot in the Best Actress bracket, no doubt due to the perception that she was working too hard for a movie that's barely been seen by anyone (and has a mixed reaction at best). Her slot was taken by the eminently deserving Marion Cotillard for Two Days, One Night.

2. Everything is not awesome for The Lego Movie
The first big surprise of the day was the failure of the much-loved comedy to land a slot in the animated feature bracket—this after several critics groups shined a light on the film. No nomination. Shocking, when you consider the massive box-office haul and rapturous critical reception lavished on The Lego Movie. Meanwhile, we're thrilled about The Tale of the Princess Kaguya slipping into the bracket.

3. Life Itself, the Roger Ebert documentary, goes home without a nod
We know Hollywood hates critics, but shutting out the Roger Ebert doc—a frontrunner for eight months before Citizenfour dominated the conversation—seems unnecessarily cruel. Director Steve James is probably better prepared to deal with this than we realize: His Hoop Dreams didn't score a nomination either but has since gone on to become a classic.

4. It's not a good day for Selma
The much-heralded historical drama made it into the Best Picture bracket, but frontrunner David Oyewolo failed to secure a nomination for Best Actor (that whole category turned out weirdly—Jake Gyllenhaal didn't make it either). Meanwhile, Selma director Ava DuVernay will have to make Oscar history some other year: She would have been the first black woman nominated for Best Director, had it materialized.

5. No nomination for Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl script
This was a shocker for people who follow the field. Not only did Flynn take her own beloved novel and adapt it in a fresh way (one that triggered a wide public discussion), she did this on her first attempt at writing a screenplay. Gone Girl didn't do well this morning, with its original score falling to secure a nomination for Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. But leading actress Rosamund Pike is in, of course.

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