The 79th Annual Academy Awards Contenders Announced

Dreamgirls picture

Musical drama "Dreamgirls" garnered most nominations yet got excluded from Best Picture slot.

Closer to the peak of the award season, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) has officially issued list of nominations for its prestigious Academy Awards, revealed by its President Sid Ganis and actress Salma Hayek yesterday, January 23, 2007 in Beverly Hills, California.

Though gave musical drama "Dreamgirls" eight nominations which thus made the flick the top scorer in the list, the organization surprisingly cast out the DreamWorks release from Best Picture slot, lining up "Babel", "The Departed", "Little Miss Sunshine", "The Queen", and "Letters from Iwo Jima" for the category instead.

Nevertheless, the Bill Condon-directed feature indeed left a significant mark in the competition as it amazingly struck three nods in Best Music (Song) race besides smoothly placing its two stars Eddie Murphy and Jennifer Hudson in the supporting acting categories.

Both encountering their first Oscar nomination, Murphy is facing against Alan Arkin of "Little Miss Sunshine", Jackie Earle Haley of "Little Children", Djimon Hounsou of "Blood Diamond", and Mark Wahlberg of "The Departed" while Hudson will vie for the honor alongside Cate Blanchett of "Notes on a Scandal", Abigail Breslin of "Little Miss Sunshine", plus Adriana Barraza and Rinko Kikuchi of "Babel."

Meanwhile, critics' favorites Forest Whitaker of "The Last King of Scotland" and Helen Mirren of "The Queen" delightfully made their way to land nomination in lead acting slot, together with the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, Ryan Gosling, Peter O'Toole, Will Smith, Judi Dench, Meryl Streep, Kate Winslet, and Penelope Cruz.

As for other movies, Mexico's "Pan's Labyrinth" fabulously swept six nominations altogether, notably that in Best Foreign Language Film of the Year with this year's BFCA Awards winners "Cars" and "An Inconvenient Truth" vying for the title of Best Animated Feature Film and Best Documentary Feature, respectively.

Complete list of nominees can be viewed on the award's official site at The ceremony honoring the winners is scheduled to take place at Kodak Theatre in Hollywood aired live by ABC on February 25, 2007 with Ellen DeGeneres as the host.



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