Oscars: Shortlists for 95th Academy Awards Unveiled

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Tuesday unveiled its shortlists for the 2023 Oscars in 10 categories, including documentary and international features as well as documentary short subject, makeup and hairstyling, original score, original song, animated short, live-action short, sound and visual effects.

Fifteen international features advanced, out of the films from 92 countries and regions that were eligible. The list includes Close (Belgium), Decision to Leave (South Korea), All Quiet on the Western Front (Germany), Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s Bardo (Mexico) and Joyland, which gives Pakistan its first shortlisted film in the category.

India’s international entry, Last Film Show, also made that list, while another Indian film, RRR, made the shortlist for its energetic song “Naatu Naatu.” All Quiet on the Western Front was additionally shortlisted for makeup and hairstyling, score, sound and VFX.

This year, 144 documentary features were eligible, and 15 advanced, including All That Breathes, Fire of Love and Moonage Daydream (which additionally made the shortlist in the sound category). Among the more surprising omissions was Mars Rover doc Good Night Oppy. Members of the Documentary Branch vote to determine the shortlist and the nominees for documentary feature and well as documentary short (15 films were shortlisted from 98 qualified shorts).

Fifteen scores advanced out of 147 eligible titles; members of the music branch vote to determine the shortlist and the nominees. The list includes several past Oscar winners, including five-time Oscar winner John Williams for The Fablemans (with 53 nominations, Williams is the most-nominated living individual), Ludwig Göransson for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever; Hildur Gudnadóttir for Sarah Polley’s Women Talking (her second film, Todd Field’s Tár, didn’t make it through this round); and Alexandre Desplat for Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (Pinocchio was additionally shortlisted for its song “Ciao Papa” and its sound.)

Meanwhile, 15 songs will advance among the 81 eligible tunes, with members of the Music Branch also selecting these nominees. The shortlist includes star power from the likes of Rihanna, for “Lift Me Up” from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever; Lady Gaga, for “Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick; and Taylor Swift, for “Carolina” from Where the Crawdads Sing.

The Sound Branch, which selects the shortlisted movies and nominees in the sound category, reinstated its bake-off and shortlist a year ago. Branch members will be able to view excerpts from each of the 10 shortlisted films beginning Jan. 12 in the San Francisco Bay area, followed by New York, London and Los Angeles.

Among the individuals to watch is two-time Oscar winner Andy Nelson, who with 22 Academy Award nominations holds the record for the most noms in the sound category and is currently tied with Randy Newman for the third-most noms among living persons. This year, his sound work is shortlisted in three movies: Babylon, The Batman and Elvis.

The VFX shortlist, selected by the VFX branch executive committee, includes presumed frontrunner Avatar: The Way of Water and nine additional movies, including Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and Top Gun: Maverick. The 10 shortlisted titles will be featured in the VFX branches’ Jan. 14 bake-off, involving excerpts from the movies and interviews with the contenders, before branch members vote on the five nominees.

The Academy’s Makeup Artists and Hairstylists Branch will additionally participate in a bake-off, slated for Jan. 15, during which branch members are invited to view excerpts and interviews with the artists from each of the 10 shortlisted films.

The shortlists also include 15 live-action shorts (out of the 200 that qualified for consideration) and 15 animated shorts (81 qualified). Members of the Short Films and Feature Animation, Directors, Producers and Writers Branches vote to determine the shortlist and the nominees.


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