The Shape of Water, Get Out, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri dominated, but there were other surprises as well.
The nominations for the 90th Academy Awards, announced Tuesday, rewarded a robust group of Best Picture contenders, including The Shape of Water, Dunkirk, Lady Bird, Get Out, Phantom Thread, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. Notably competing in the top category are genres often snubbed by the Oscars, such as horror and teen coming-of-age comedies. In a politically charged year for the country, the film industry’s biggest awards body gravitated toward movies with defined points of view, told by established artists (Guillermo del Toro, Christopher Nolan) and newer directors (Greta Gerwig, Jordan Peele) with a strong presence behind the camera.
The Shape of Water (with 13 nominations) and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (with seven nominations) are the nominal frontrunners in the Best Picture field. But this remains a relatively wide-open Oscar race with strong pockets of support for almost every nominee. As nearly all of the “precursor” awards (such as the Golden Globes, the Critics’ Choice Awards, and most of the guild awards) have already happened, the next few weeks will be defined by internal campaigning, which could concentrate backlash on a more polarizing contender like Three Billboards (which has drawn controversy for its muddled portrayal of police brutality).