If you thought that awards season was already pretty crazy, just get ready — now that the 2016 Oscar nominations have been revealed, expect the campaigns for movies and individuals to nab gold statues to go into overdrive. Sure, there's still seven weeks to go until the actual Academy Awards, but the announcement of nominees marks the start of the absolute craziness that's to come as movies like Room and Spotlight and actors like Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence vie for Hollywood's top prizes. And those are just the ones that have gotten a head start in campaigning all season long; some of the surprise Oscar nominations, like those for Straight Outta Compton and Brooklyn, are just now getting started on their hunts for Academy Awards.
It won't be an easy journey for anyone. There are so many great contenders for this year's Oscars that there's no one definite favorite in any category, unlike most years. The Revenant could steal Best Picture from Spotlight; Lawrence could win Best Actress, rather than Brie Larson or Cate Blanchett; DiCaprio might see his first Oscar win, but Michael Fassbender could take it instead. But the unpredictability just makes it more interesting, which is why it's great to see so many surprise nominees in this year's race. Below, here are some of the biggest ones from Thursday's announcement:
Straight Outta Compton For Best Original Screenplay
This is one happy surprise. Few people thought that Compton would get any Oscar noms, but the Academy chose to bestow upon it the honor of a well-deserved Best Original Screenplay nod. It may not be Best Picture or Best Director, but it's something, and totally worth celebrating.
Bryan Cranston For Best Actor
Although Cranston certainly had a shot at getting a Best Actor nom, that final fifth spot was a race between him and Johnny Depp. The Breaking Bad star prevailed, however, and nabbed the nomination.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens For Several Categories
Star Wars fans everywhere breathed a sigh of relief when the newest film landed nods in several technical categories, including Sound Editing and Visual Effects.
Rooney Mara And Alicia Vikander For Best Supporting Actress
Despite hopes by many that the two stars would land in the Best Actress category for their roles in Carol and The Danish Girl, respectively, both actors landed in Supporting.
Brooklyn For Best Picture
While I'm thrilled to see Brooklyn land a Best Picture nomination, chances were high that it'd only get nominated for Saoirse Ronan's lead performance. Sadly, it was at the expense of the equally-deserving Carol.
Sicario For Several Categories
What a pleasure it is to see the great but (until now) underrated Sicario land nominations for Sound Editing and Cinematography.
Adam McKay For Best Director
Who would've thought the Anchorman guy would go on to earn an Oscar nom for Best Director?
Images: Disney; Universal; Fox Searchlight; Lionsgate; Caroline Wurtzel/Bustle