Martin Scorsese's Paris adventure "Hugo" leads the Academy Awards with 11 nominations, among them best picture and the latest director slot for the Oscar-winning filmmaker.
Also nominated for best picture Tuesday: the silent film "The Artist"; the family drama "The Descendants"; the Sept. 11 tale "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close"; the Deep South drama "The Help"; the romantic fantasy "Midnight in Paris"; the sports tale "Moneyball"; the family chronicle "The Tree of Life"; and the World War I epic "War Horse."
The nominations set up a best-picture showdown between the top films at the Golden Globes: best musical or comedy recipient "The Artist" and best drama winner "The Descendants."
"The Artist" ran second with 10 nominations, among them writing and directing nominations for French filmmaker Michel Hazanavicius, a best-actor honor for Jean Dujardin and a supporting-actress slot for Berenice Bejo.
Because of a rule change requiring films to receive a certain number of first-place votes, the best-picture field has only nine nominees rather than the 10 that were in the running the last two years.
Kristen Meinzer, The Takeaway's culture producer and Movie Date podcast host, said it was "a very surprising year for the Oscars — a silent movie and a children's movie" got the most nominations. And while she liked "Hugo" she thought it's nomination had more to do with Scorsese.
"His movie is a tribute to the film industry, and this nomination for him is a tribute to him since he hasn’t actually received a lot of Oscars up unilt now," she said.
Dujardin, who won the Globe for best actor in a musical or comedy as a silent-era star whose career goes kaput with the arrival of talking pictures, will be up against Globe dramatic actor winner George Clooney for "The Descendants," in which the Oscar-winning superstar plays a dad trying to hold his Hawaiian family together after a boating accident puts his wife in a coma.
Two-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep padded her record as the most-nominated actress, raising her total to 17 nominations, five more than Katharine Hepburn and Jack Nicholson, who are tied for second-place.
Here are the nominees in the other major categories.
Best Actor: Demian Bichir, "A Better Life"; George Clooney, “The Descendants”; Jean Dujardin, “The Artist”; Gary Oldman, "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy"; and Brad Pitt, "Moneyball."
Best Actress: Glenn Close, "Albert Nobbs"; Viola Davis, "The Help"; Rooney Mara, "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo"; Meryl Streep, "The Iron Lady"; Michelle Williams, "My Week With Marilyn."
Bes Supporting Actor: Kenneth Branagh, "My Week With Marilyn"; Jonah Hill, "Moneyball"; Nick Nolte, "Warrior"; Christopher Plummer, "Beginners"; Max von Sydow, "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close."
Best Supporting Actress: Berenice Bejo, "The Artist"; Jessica Chastain, "The Help"; Melissa McCarthy, "Bridesmaids"; Janet McTeer, "Albert Nobbs"; Octavia Spencer, "The Help."
Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius, "The Artist"; Alexander Payne, "The Descendants"; Martin Scorsese, "Hug"; Woody Allen, "Midnight in Paris"; Terrence Malick, "The Tree of Life."
Best Foreign Film: "Bullhead," "Footnote," "In Darkness," "Monsier Lazhar," "In Separation"
Best Adapted Screenplay: Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, "The Descendants"; John Logan, "Hugo"; George Clooney, Grant Heslov and Beau Willimon, "The Ides of March"; Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin and Stan Chervin, "Moneyball"; Bridget O'Connor and Peter Straughan, "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy."
Original Screenplay: Michel Hazanavicius, "The Artist"; Annie Mumolo and Kristen Wiig, "Bridesmaids"; J.C. Chandor, "Margin Call"; Woody Allen, "Midnight in Paris"; Asghar Faradic, "A Separation."
Documentary Feature: "Hell and Back Again," "If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front," "Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory," "Pina," "Undefeated."