Science fiction got some decent representation as the 2015 Academy Award nominations were unveiled this morning.
Mad Max: Fury Road led the way with 10 nominations, second only to the dozen scooped up by the period adventure The Revenant. The fourth movie about the post-apocalyptic road warrior earned nominations for Best Picture, Best Director (George Miller, his first nomination ever), Visual Effects, Editing, Production Design, Makeup and Hairstyling, Sound Mixing, Sound Editing, Cinematography and Costume Design. No Oscar love for either Charlize Theron or Tom Hardy for the movie, although the latter is up for Best Supporting Actor for his role in The Revenant.
As for The Martian, it scored nods for Best Picture, Best Actor (Matt Damon), Best Adapted Screenplay (Drew Goddard), Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects and Production Design, but Ridley Scott was passed over for Best Director.
The last time two sci-fi pictures both made it into the Best Picture category was 2013, when Gravity and Her were nominated (neither won).
Star Wars: The Force Awakens did not land any major nominations -- unlike the 1977 original, which received 10, including Best Picture -- and had to settle for Visual Effects, Editing, Sound Mixing, Sound Editing and a nice nod to John Williams for Best Original Score.
In other categories, the great Ex Machina scored for Best Original Screenplay (we would have preferred seeing Alicia Vikander get a Best Actress or Supporting Actress nomination too, but whatever), while Inside Out leads the Best Animated Feature pack and the far-future World of Tomorrow made the list for Best Animated Short Film.
Our takeaway from all this? It's pretty incredible to see Mad Max: Fury Road, the fourth entry in what has been until now a cult franchise, receive so much recognition for the amazing piece of cinema that it is. It's also nice to see sci-fi solidly spoken for with the 10 and 7 nominations for Mad Max and The Martian, respectively, even if both are long shots to win the big prize. A Best Picture upset by Mad Max over favorites The Revenant and Spotlight would be truly shocking, but once again it looks like the genre will have to settle for a seat or two at the table -- just not at the head.
The 88th Academy Awards will take place on Feb. 28 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood and will be televised live by ABC at 7 p.m. ET/ 4 p.m. PT.
(via The Wrap)