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James Cameron's 'Avatar' has become the largest-grossing movie of all time, but will that translate into Oscar gold?
James Cameron's 'Avatar' has become the largest-grossing movie of all time, but will that translate into Oscar gold?

Oscar nominees revealed

'Avatar' and 'The Hurt Locker' lead with nine nominations each, followed by 'Inglourious Basterds' with eight and 'Precious' with six.

Will Avatar rule the roost at this year's Academy Awards or will The Hurt Locker, a low-budget masterpiece directed by Katherine Bigelow, the former wife of Avatar director James Cameron, walk away with the Best Picture Oscar? The nominees for this year's awards were announced late today (5.30am PST/5.30pm Abu Dhabi) and the race is now on to garner votes before the March 7 Academy Awards ceremony, the culmination of an awards season that began in December when the critics' associations began issuing their picks and pans for the year. Oscar prognosticators often look to the awards given by the various trade unions and the Golden Globes as indications of who will walk off with the granddaddy of all movie prizes. But this year the results have been mixed. The Golden Globe for best drama was awarded to Avatar by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association but that organisation's voting members are not likely to be members of the Academy, the body whose votes are the only ones that count come Oscar time. The Producers Guild, the Directors Guild and the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), whose members are more likely to be Academy members as well, chose to recognise other films with their year-end awards. Also, with Oscar's best picture nominees increased from five to 10 for the first time this year, the quest for the top Oscar will be more of a horse race than ever before. Here is a list of films and artists in the major categories for an Oscar statuette this year. Best Actress Sandra Bullock, "The Blind Side"; Helen Mirren, "The Last Station" Carey Mulligan, "An Education" Gabourey Sidibe, "Precious: Based on the Novel `Push' By Sapphire" Meryl Streep, "Julie & Julia". Best Supporting Actress Penelope Cruz, "Nine" Vera Farmiga, "Up in the Air" Maggie Gyllenhaal, "Crazy Heart" Anna Kendrick, "Up in the Air" Mo'Nique, "Precious" Best Supporting Actor Matt Damon, "Invictus" Woody Harrelson, "The Messenger" Christopher Plummer, "The Last Station" Stanley Tucci, "The Lovely Bones" Christoph Waltz, "Inglourious Basterds" Best Actor Jeff Bridges -- "Crazy Heart" George Clooney -- "Up in the Air" Colin Firth -- "A Single Man" Morgan Freeman -- "Invictus" Jeremy Renner -- "The Hurt Locker" Best Director Kathryn Bigelow -- "The Hurt Locker" James Cameron -- "Avatar" Quentin Tarantino -- "Inglourious Basterds" Jason Reitman -- "Up in the Air" Lee Daniels -- "Precious" Best Picture "The Hurt Locker" "Avatar" "The Blind Side" "District 9" "An Education" "Inglourious Basterds" "Up in the Air" "Precious" "A Serious Man" "Up" Best Animated Feature "Coraline" "Fantastic Mr. Fox" "The Princess and the Frog" "The Secret of Kells" "Up"

Best Director James Cameron, "Avatar" Kathryn Bigelow, "The Hurt Locker" Quentin Tarantino, "Inglourious Basterds" Lee Daniels, "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" Jason Reitman, "Up in the Air" Foreign Language Film "Ajami", Israel; "El Secreto de Sus Ojos", Argentina "The Milk of Sorrow", Peru "Un Prophete", France; "The White Ribbon", Germany Adapted Screenplay Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell, "District 9" Nick Hornby, "An Education" Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci, Tony Roche, "In the Loop" Geoffrey Fletcher, "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner, "Up in the Air" Original Screenplay Mark Boal, "The Hurt Locker" Quentin Tarantino, "Inglourious Basterds" Alessandro Camon and Oren Moverman, "The Messenger" Joel Coen and Ethan Coen, "A Serious Man" Bob Peterson, Pete Docter, Tom McCarthy, "Up" Art Direction "Avatar" "The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus," "Nine" "Sherlock Holmes" "The Young Victoria" Cinematography "Avatar" "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" "The Hurt Locker" "Inglourious Basterds" "The White Ribbon" Sound Mixing "Avatar" "The Hurt Locker" "Inglourious Basterds" "Star Trek" "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" Sound Editing "Avatar" "The Hurt Locker" "Inglourious Basterds" "Star Trek" "Up" Original Score "Avatar", James Horner "Fantastic Mr. Fox", Alexandre Desplat "The Hurt Locker", Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders "Sherlock Holmes", Hans Zimmer "Up" Michael Giacchino. Original Song "Almost There" from "The Princess and the Frog", Randy Newman "Down in New Orleans" from "The Princess and the Frog", Randy Newman "Loin de Paname" from "Paris 36", Reinhardt Wagner and Frank Thomas "Take It All" from "Nine", Maury Yeston "The Weary Kind (Theme from Crazy Heart)" from "Crazy Heart", Ryan Bingham and T Bone Burnett. Costume "Bright Star" "Coco Before Chanel" "The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus" "Nine" "The Young Victoria" Documentary Feature "Burma VJ" "The Cove" "Food, Inc." "The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers" "Which Way Home" Documentary (short subject) "China's Unnatural Disaster: The Tears of Sichuan Province", "The Last Campaign of Governor Booth Gardner" "The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant" "Music by Prudence" "Rabbit a la Berlin" Film Editing "Avatar" "District 9" "The Hurt Locker" "Inglourious Basterds" "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" Makeup "Il Divo" "Star Trek" "The Young Victoria" Animated Short Film "French Roast" "Granny O'Grimm's Sleeping Beauty" "The Lady and the Reaper (La Dama y la Muerte)" "Logorama" "A Matter of Loaf and Death" Live Action Short Film "The Door" "Instead of Abracadabra" "Kavi" "Miracle Fish, "The New Tenants" Visual Effects "Avatar" "District 9" "Star Trek"

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