Alfonso Cuaron's 3-D space adventure "Gravity," as well as "12 Years a Slave" and "American Hustle" are among the nominees for the annual Academy Awards.
Alfonso Cuarón’s space thriller “Gravity” continues in successful run this award season, garnering 10 Academy Award nominations.
The 3-D space odyssey shares the lead with the con-artist comedy “American Hustle” and the historical epic “12 Years a Slave,” trailing closely with nine nominations.
The nominations, announced Thursday morning in Beverly Hills, Calif., set up an apparent three-way race between three very different films, all of which were nominated for best picture.
Joining them in the best picture category are “Captain Phillips,” “Dallas Buyers Club,” “Her,” “Nebraska,” “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Philomena.”
The most notable omission by the academy was Tom Hanks, whose lead performance in "Captain Phillips" was widely considered a shoo-in. Robert Redford, expected by many to be nominated for the shipwreck drama "All Is Lost," also missed out on a best actor nod. Redford has never won an acting Oscar.
Also skipped over was Lee Daniels' "The Butler," which featured highly-acclaimed performances by Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey.
The best actor nominees are Chiwetel Ejiofor ("12 Years a Slave"), Bruce Dern ("Nebraska"), Leonardo DiCaprio ("The Wolf of Wall Street"), Matthew McConaughey ("Dallas Buyers Club") and Christian Bale ("American Hustle")
Disney's making-of "Mary Poppins" tale "Saving Mr. Banks" also failed to land either a best picture nomination or a best actress nod for Emma Thompson.
The best actress nominees are Amy Adams ("American Hustle"), Cate Blanchett ("Blue Jasmine"), Sandra Bullock ("Gravity"), Judi Dench ("Philomena") and Meryl Streep ("August: Osage County").
With her nomination, Streep pads her record for most acting nominations. This is her 18th nod, including three wins, the last for 2011's "The Iron Lady."
Cuarón's film also received nominations for directing, cinematography, film editing, original score, production design, sound editing, sound mixing, and visual effects.
Martin Scorsese's "The Wolf of Wall Street" came into Thursday as one of the biggest question marks of an awards season that has often left many guessing. The nearly three-hour Wall Street extravaganza of money, sex and drugs became a lightning rod of debate, with many questioning whether it glamorized the infamous trader Jordan Belfort.
But "The Wolf of Wall Street" landed big nominations: best picture, best actor (DiCaprio), best director (Scorsese, his eighth for directing) and best supporting actor (Jonah Hill).
Also doing well Thursday were Spike Jonze's futuristic romance "Her" (five nominations, including best original screenplay for Jonze), and Alexander Payne's black-and-white road trip "Nebraska" (six nominations, including best director for Payne).
One of the day's biggest winners was the 27-year-old producer Megan Ellison, the daughter of billionaire Larry Ellison. Her Annapurna Pictures produced two of the best-picture nominees ("American Hustle" and "Her") as well as the Wong Kar-Wai martial arts drama "The Grandmaster." She celebrated by tweeting "17!" — the total nominations her films received.
Though historically the most-nominated films have taken home best picture, that's not been the case in recent years. Six of the last 10 years the most-nominated film hasn't triumphed in the end, including last year when Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln," with 12 nominations, was beaten by Ben Affleck's "Argo."
The 86th annual Academy Awards will take place March 2, with Ellen DeGeneres hosting for the second time.
Based on reporting by the Associated Press.