June 24, 2009

10 films to get best picture Oscar nods

Ten movies will be nominated in the best picture category at next year's Oscars, it was announced Wednesday at a press conference in Beverly Hills, Calif.

The 82nd Academy Awards are to be presented March 7, 2010.

After more than six decades, the Academy is returning to some of its earlier roots, when a wider field competed for the top award of the year, said Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Sid Ganis. The final outcome, of course, will be the same -- one best picture winner -- but the race to the finish line will feature 10, not just five, great movies from 2009.

For more than a decade during the Academy's earlier years, the best picture category welcomed more than five films; for nine years there were 10 nominees, the Academy noted in a news release. The 16th Academy Awards -- 1943 -- was the last year to include a field of that size; 'Casablanca' was named best picture. In 1931-32, there were eight nominees and in 1934 and 1935 there were 12 nominees.

Having 10 best picture nominees is going to allow Academy voters to recognize and include some of the fantastic movies that often show up in the other Oscar categories, but have been squeezed out of the race for the top prize, added Ganis. I can't wait to see what that list of 10 looks like when the nominees are announced in February.