12 Years a Slave Earns Nine Oscar Nominations

Plus, Pharrell gets his first Academy Award nod.

Posted: 01/16/2014 09:00 AM EST
12 Years a Slave

The nominations for the 86th Annual Academy Awards were announced this morning and 12 Years a Slave is continuing its reign this awards season. The film was nominated for a whopping nine Academy Awards.

Chiwetel Ejiofor earned a Best Actor nomination for his portrayal of Solomon Northup.  Steve McQueen earned a Best Director nod and fashionista Lupita Nyong'o garnered a Best Supporting Actress nomination. Michael Fassbender is a Best Supporting Actor nominee and  12 Years a Slave also received a Best Picture nomination.  

If McQueen wins best director, he'll be the first Black director to win in that category — he is only the third to be nominated (John Singleton for in 1991 for Boyz n the Hood and Lee Daniels in 2009 for Precious).  

The film was also recognized in the Best Adapted Screenplay, Costume Design, Production Design and Film Editing categories. 12 Years a Slave was just one nomination shy of matching American Hustle's tally, which leads this year's nominations with 10.

Captain Phillips star Barkhad Abdi also nabbed his first nomination for his debut role as a Somali pirate. Musical genius Pharrell Williams earned a nomination in the Best Song category, for his ditty "Happy" from the animated film Despicable Me 2. Golden Globe winners U2 are also nominated in the category for their song "Ordinary Love" from Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.

On the nonfiction side, 20 Feet From Stardom is also in contention for Best Documentary. The film, about the lives of backup singers to some of the music industries biggest names, was one of the most popular docs of the year.

The year's other critically-lauded Black films — Lee Daniels' The Butler, Fruitvale Station and Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom — were shut out from nominations.

Other nominations include Jennifer Lawrence for Best Supporting Actress in American Hustle, Leonardo DiCaprio earned his fifth nomination for best actor for Wolf of Wall Street and Dallas Buyers Club was nominated for Best Picture and Best Supporting Actor for Jared Leto and Best Actor for Matthew McConaughey.

For a complete list of nominations, click here.

Hosted by Ellen Degeneres, the 86th Annual Academy Awards will air on March 2.

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(Photo:Jaap Buitendijk/Fox Searchlight Pictures)

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