Oscars Snubs and Surprises: Greta Gerwig Shut Out for Directing ‘Barbie,’ Margot Robbie and Charles Melton Out of Acting Races Most Popular Must Read Sign Up for Variety Newsletters More From Our Brands Viral Watch

It wouldn’t be the Academy Award nominations without a few shockers mixed in, and this year was no exception. While some big names like Margot Robbie and Leonardo DiCaprio missed out on acting nominations, there were also some unexpected inclusions along the way.

Here, Variety breaks down the biggest snubs and surprises of the 2024 Oscar nominations.

SNUB: Margot Robbie and Greta Gerwig, “Barbie”
The powerhouse duo responsible for the biggest movie of the year found love in other categories – Robbie is included in the film’s best picture nomination as a producer and Gerwig saw her screenplay recognized. But Robbie ultimately missed on the competitive best actress lineup while Gerwig was shut out of director.

SURPRISE: America Ferrera, “Barbie”
Though it’s leading lady and director didn’t land nominations, Ferrera was able to score a supporting actress nod for her role in the megahit, despite missing out at SAG Awards and Golden Globes.

SNUB: Leonardo DiCaprio, “Killers of the Flower Moon”
The Oscar winner seemed like a sure thing since the premiere of “Killers” at Cannes last May. But after missing out on a SAG nomination, there were fears he would fail to show up on the best actor list for his acclaimed turn as Ernest Burkhart. Perhaps some voters were turned off by how unsympathetic his character came off, or he was just a victim of a wildly competitive category.

SNUB: The Actors of “May December”
Coming into the season, the trio of performances at the center of Todd Haynes’ latest film looked promising. Both lead Natalie Portman and supporting actress Julianne Moore were previous Oscar winners and supporting actor Charles Melton was considered a major breakthrough. In fact, Melton took home the Gotham Award over some stiff competition early on. Golden Globe, Spirit and Critics’ Choice noms followed – but then the cast was left out at SAG. Sadly, that foretold the Oscar nominations, in which all three actors were shut out.

SURPRISE: Sandra Hüller, “Anatomy of a Fall”
While Hüller has been buzzed about all season and many expected her to make the cut into best actress, the actor failed to register at the SAG Awards. But there’s clearly strong love for her movie, and she found herself nominated for best actress at the Oscars.

SURPRISE: Justine Triet “Anatomy of a Fall”
Among a murderer’s row of adventuresome and deserving filmmakers whose work was widely recognized across all of the Academy’s categories, Justine Triet nevertheless manages to be the big surprise in this category, even if her work is more than equal to that of her competitors. Triet creates an intense and provocative reality on screen as a celebrated writer attempts to clear her name for the murder of her father. It’s mesmerizing viewing, and should make for an equally mesmerizing race to this year’s Best Director Oscar.

SNUB: Eric Roth and Martin Scorsese, “Killers of the Flower Moon”
With 10 nominations, Martin Scorsese’s Osgae Nation murder mystery was well-represented this year, no pun intended. But the screenwriting duo of Scorsese and seven-time nominee Eric Roth went unrecognized for their transformation of what on the page was largely a police procedural into a multidimensional portrait of an indigenous community as its navigates the decimation of its people.

SURPRISE: Best Editing, “The Holdovers”
The other nominees in the editing category are all anything but a surprise, given either the established pedigree of the artisans responsible for them, or in the case of “Anatomy of a Fall,” the integral role that editing plays in navigating the complexities of a story whose sense of objective truth is constantly being re-evaluated. Kevin Tent’s work on “The Holdovers,” by comparison, is decidedly more understated, but perhaps it’s precisely its authenticity in recreating the sensibility, pacing and style of an actual 1970-set film (when it’s set) that earned it recognition here.

SNUB: “All of Us Strangers”
There was strong sentiment for this sensitive tale of a grown man who encounters his parents at the young age he last saw them, particularly for Andrew Haigh’s adapted screenplay and Andrew Scott’s beautiful lead performance. But the film was completely shut out of nominations.

SNUB: Willem Dafoe, “Poor Things”
The beloved actor, a four-time Oscar nominee, was expected to score a nod for his tender turn as Emma Stone’s fatherly creator in “Poor Things,” particularly after landing a SAG Award nomination over co-star Mark Ruffalo. But in the end, it was Ruffalo who snagged a supporting actor nomination.

SURPRISE: Becky G’s “The Fire Inside” (from “Flamin’ Hot”)
Notwithstanding the resuscitation of Sophie Ellis-Bextor’s ineligible “Murder on the Dancefloor” from Emerald Fennell’s altogether ignored “Saltburn,” no movie-related song has occupied the pop space in 2023 more than Dua Lipa’s “Dance the Night.” That proved irrelevant — or maybe the Motion Picture Academy figured they’d given “Barbie” enough in this category — which meant Diane Warren’s “The Fire Inside,” performed by Becky G, earned her a fifteenth nomination. Will this mark her first win of a competitive Oscar, after receiving an honorary award in 2022? We’ll see.

SNUB: Best Documentary, “American Symphony”
Written, shot and directed by previous Oscar nominee Matthew Heineman, “American Symphony” enjoyed a seemingly unstoppable surge earlier in awards season as his film following a year in the life of musician Jon Batiste circulated among top-tier festivals around the world. Though Moses Bwayo and Christopher Sharp’s “Bobi Wine: The People’s President” is eminently deserving of a nomination for its portrait of the afrobeat musician’s transition into politics, the fact that it was recognized while Heineman wasn’t is, well, unexpected.

SNUB: Rosamund Pike and Emerald Fennell, “Saltburn”
Though some might say Emerald Fennell’s wicked tale of an outsider who insinuates himself into a wealthy family was always a long shot, the movie also had it’s fans. It also had a strong showing at the BAFTA Awards last week, giving more hope that there might be nods for supporting actress Rosamund Pike or Fennell’s original screenplay. But in the end, the film didn’t register with Oscar voters.

SNUB: Pedro Almodovar, “Strange Way of Life”
Pedro Almodovar has nine career nominations for his vivid, masterful body of work — including last year for “Parallel Mothers.” “Strange Way of Life” marks his second project directed in English, focused on a reunion of gunslingers after 25 years. Perhaps Wes Anderson’s “The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar,” the anchor of his series of Roald Dahl shorts, took the spot intended for the Oscar stalwart.

SURPRISE: John Williams for Best Score, “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny”
Perhaps it was a foregone conclusion given John Williams’ announcement that he’d be retiring from composing, but his return to the “Indiana Jones” franchise otherwise marks a big surprise in a year with a lot of distinctive and powerful film music. It’s not like he’s never been recognized before: the nod is his 54th career nominations, and would mark his sixth win.

SNUB: Daniel Pemberton for Best Score, “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse”
Given Williams’ recognition in this category — notwithstanding his position in the industry — the fact that “The Dial of Destiny” got nominated at least indicates that the Academy was taking genre films serious in 2023. So why not Daniel Pemberton’s groundbreaking work in “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse”? Not only did he work hand in hand with musician and producer Metro Boomin to create a fully-integrated hip-hop and r&b-themed soundtrack, but nimbly built a sonic backdrop for the film that perfectly encapsulates its reality-bending storyline.

SURPRISE: Animated Film, “Robot Dreams” and “Nimona”
Rather than nominate more high-profile animated features like Disney’s “Wish” or Netflix’s “Leo,” voters instead opted for the sci-fi comedy of “Nimona” (also from Netflix) and the Spanish-French “Robot Dreams.” Perhaps not a shocker to those in the know – both films are up for Annie Awards – they’re welcome inclusions in a strong year for animation.

SURPRISE: Best Cinematography, “El Conde”
Some prominent titles missed out on a cinematography nomination, including “Barbie” – though Rodrigo Prieto is still recognized in the category for “Killers of the Flower Moon.” But the great Edward Lachman landed his third nomination in the category for Pablo Larraín’s clever satire about a vampire eager to die.

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