While the AMPAS is focusing itself on the 2013 Academy Awards this coming Sunday, February 24, the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films decided to announce the nominees for the 39th annual Saturn Awards on Wednesday. In movie categories, Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" leads the pack with a total of nine nods.
The first chapter in the "Hobbit" trilogy is up for the coveted Best Fantasy Film award, competing with such films as "Life of Pi", "The Amazing Spider-Man", "Snow White and the Huntsman", "Ted" and "Ruby Sparks". The New Zealand-based film is also up for Best Actor (Martin Freeman), Best Supporting Actor (Ian McKellen), and Best Direction (Peter Jackson) and five other awards.
Trailing behind "Hobbit" is "Life of Pi" with eight nominations in total. In addition to Best Fantasy Film award, the Oscar-nominated shipwreck drama is up for Best Diretion for Ang Lee. Its Indian lead actor Suraj Sharma, meanwhile, is nominated for Best Performance by a Younger Actor prize. His competitors include the likes of Chloe Moretz ("Dark Shadows") and Oscar nominee Quvenzhane Wallis ("Beasts of the Southern Wild").
"Skyfall" bags seven nods in total. The twenty-third James Bond movie is set to compete in the Best Action/Adventure Film category alongside "The Bourne Legacy", "The Dark Knight Rises", "Django Unchained", "Les Miserables" and "Taken 2". Its lead actor Daniel Craig is up for Best Actor award, while his co-star Javier Bardem is one of the strongest contenders in Best Supporting Actor category.
Fanboy and cult favorites such as "The Avengers", "The Dark Knight Rises" and "Prometheus" also score multiple nominations at the awards. Some other Oscar baits like "Les Miserables", "Django", "Argo" and "Zero Dark Thirty (2012)" are additionally set to compete with a handful of 2012's box office giants.
The diversity of films which are nominated at this year's Saturns underscores "the ways in which genre filmmaking has expanded beyond its roots as niche entertainment," says the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films in its announcement.
The winners will be revealed sometime in June. The exact date and location for the awards ceremony will be confirmed in the coming weeks.
The 39th Saturn Awards Nominations: Best Science Fiction Film: