The stars woke up early Thursday (December 15), hoping to hear their names when the nominations for the 69th annual Golden Globes were announced. Without many front-runners in the major categories, the Globe nominations gave one of the first serious indications of how the Academy Awards will play out in February. "The Artist," with six nominations, and "The Descendants" and "The Help," with five each, cemented their place at the top of the Best Picture race.
"The Artist," the silent, black-and-white tribute to old Hollywood, wowed audiences during the festival circuit and earned the most nods. In addition to its nomination for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy, both Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo walked away with acting nominations for their mostly silent roles. Writer/director Michel Hazanavicius earned mentions for both of his duties on the film.
The big surprise from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association ended up being "Ides of March," the George Clooney-directed political drama that found mild success with critics but fell behind in the early weeks of awards season. It scored four nominations in all.
Also on the board with four total nominations was "Moneyball," the true-life drama about the changing world of baseball starring Brad Pitt. Pitt earned a nomination for Best Lead Actor - Drama, while co-star Jonah Hill earned a Supporting Actor nod. "Moneyball" also racked up nominations for Best Motion Picture - Drama and for the screenplay written by Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan Chervin.
Two of Hollywood's biggest stars repeated with two nominations in major categories. "The Ides of March" co-stars Ryan Gosling and Clooney both doubled up on awards. Gosling snagged leading actor nods in both the drama and comedy categories for "The Ides of March" and "Crazy, Stupid, Love," which surprised by not getting a Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy nomination. Clooney also walked away with two, one for his directing efforts with "The Ides of March" and one for his lead role in "The Descendants."
"Bridesmaids" earned a nomination in the Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy category. Actress (and co-writer) Kristen Wiig scored a nomination for Best Actress - Musical or Comedy, but co-star Melissa McCarthy, the awards favorite from the film, failed to capture the HFPA's attention for Supporting Actress.
A potential awards dark horse, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2" had gained some momentum with an extensive "For Your Consideration" ad campaign, but the HFPA didn't hand out any awards to the blockbuster series' final chapter, as some had predicted.
For television, the biggest story may be the shakeup in both of the Best Series categories. New series dominated both categories, taking up seven of the 10 spots with nominations for "American Horror Story," "Boss," "Game of Thrones," "Homeland," "Enlightened," "Episodes" and "New Girl." "Breaking Bad," a critical favorite, went unrecognized, aside from Bryan Cranston's lead actor nomination. Former awards mainstay "The Office" received no nominations.
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