Oscar nominations 2023: Key takeaways and the full list of nominees

Oscar nominations have been announced
Oscar nominations have been announced   -   Copyright  Searchlight, Focus Features, A24, Universal Pictures, Reuters
By David Mouriquand

The 2023 Oscar nominations have been announced, and Dadaist multiverse action comedy Everything Everywhere All At Once leads the pack with a total of 11 nominations. 

As well as nods for Best Film and Best Director (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert), Everything Everywhere All At Once has scored nominations for Michelle Yeoh (Best Actress), Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu (both battling it out for Best Supporting Actress), Ke Huy Quan (Best Supporting Actor), original screenplay, editing, original song, original score and costume design. 

Close behind is Edward Berger’s devastating Netflix war drama All Quiet on the Western Front and Martin McDonagh’s black comedy The Banshees of Inisherin, who are both up for nine awards. 

Here's the final tally: 

  • Everything Everywhere All At Once – 11
  • All Quiet on the Western FrontThe Banshees of Inisherin – 9
  • Elvis – 8
  • The Fabelmans – 7
  • Top Gun: Maverick & Tár – 6
  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – 5
  • Avatar: The Way of Water – 4

Scroll down for the full list of nominees, and here are the key takeaways from this year's nominations:

The luck of the Irish

Searchlight Pictures
Colin Farrell in The Banshees of InisherinSearchlight Pictures

Luck doesn't have anything to do with it, as the nominations have highlighted quite to what extent Irish films and performances have shone brightest in the past year. 

The Banshees of Inisherin, directed by Martin McDonagh, which won big at this year's Golden Globes, has produced four acting nominees: Colin Farrell (Best Actor), Brendan Gleeson, Barry Keoghan (Best Supporting Actor) and Kerry Condon (Best Supporting Actress).

Elsewhere, Paul Mescal got a surprise (and hugely deserved) nomination for his role as a father grappling with how to raise his daughter in Charlotte Wells' stunning film Aftersun - a nomination which edged out the likes of Tom Cruise and Tom Hanks - while Colm Bairéad's The Quiet Girl was nominated for Best International Film.

No female directors

MUBI
Charlotte Wells' AftersunMUBI

Rather predictably, all of the nominees for Best Director this year are male.

Martin McDonagh (The Banshees of Inisherin), Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert (Everything Everywhere All at Once), Steven Spielberg (The Fabelmans), Todd Field (Tár) and Ruben Östlund (Triangle of Sadness) are all deserving nominees, but female directors such as Sarah Polley (Women Talking), Gina Prince-Bythewood (The Woman King) and Charlotte Wells (Aftersun) could have easily made the cut. 

As a reminder, the Oscars has been improving over the years, as the two most recent winners of the category were women: Chloé Zhao (Nomadland) in 2021 and Jane Campion (The Power of the Dog) in 2022. 

Still, at least one nod would have been nice this year...

Shock nominations

Momentum
Andrea Riseborough in To LeslieMomentum

Aside from the great news of Paul Mescal’s nomination, two other noms caused a few gasps and cheers.

Brian Tyree Henry was an unexpected shout in the Best Supporting Actor category, for his role in Lila Neugebauer’s Jennifer-Lawrence-starring film Causeway. The psychological drama, which premiered in Toronto last year, has largely gone under the radar, despite landing Tyree Henry nominations at the 28th Critics’ Choice Awards and Best Supporting Performance at the 38th Independent Spirit Awards.

Elsewhere, Andrea Riseborough scored a surprise nomination for her intense performance in To Leslie, in which she plays an alcoholic mother who wins the lottery but squanders the money. The actress made a very late break for it in the race with a grassroots campaign which has paid off. Several Hollywood A-listers, including Susan Sarandon and Charlize Theron, got behind the film and championed her performance.

As for Ruben Östlund's Triangle of Sadness bagging Best Picture and Best Director nominations - we're thrilled. His Palme d’Or-winning satire has gone gangbusters over the past year and it’s great to see it on the shortlist. 

Snubs wise, we're a little sad that France's Saint Omer, Denmark's Holy Spider or South Korea's Decision to Leave didn't make the shortlist for Best Internation Feature - but what a joy to see EO representing Poland - one of the two donkeys that made us weep in cinemas alongside Jenny in The Banshees of Inisherin

First time for everything

Marvel - Disney
Angela Bassett in Black Panther: Wakanda ForeverMarvel - Disney

This year's nominations saw two major firsts. 

The Best Supporting Actress nomination for Angela Bassett's performance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever marks the first ever acting nod for a Marvel film. The first Black Panther movie was nominated for Best Picture in 2019, but no actor has ever been nominated for an Oscar for a role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Until now.

Also, for the first time in 87 years (by our calculations), all the Best Actor nominees - Austin Butler (Elvis), Colin Farrell (The Banshees of Inisherin), Brendan Fraser (The Whale), Paul Mescal (Aftersun) and Bill Nighy (Living) - are first timers.

Speaking of records...

The sequels record

Paramount Pictures
Tom Cruise in Top Gun: MaverickParamount Pictures

The 2023 shortlist sees the largest number of sequels ever nominated for Best Picture in a single year: Two.

Hardly huge, granted, but it’s worth noting.

Top Gun: Maverick and Avatar: The Way of Water join just eight sequels which have been nominated for Best Picture: Broadway Melody of 1936 (the follow-up to The Broadway Melody), The Godfather Part II, The Godfather Part III, Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The Bells of St. Mary's (the sequel to the 1944 winner, Going My Way), Toy Story 3, and Mad Max: Fury Road.

Only two sequels have won a Best Picture Oscar: The Godfather Part II and Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. And despite their nominations, both Top Gun: Maverick and Avatar: The Way of Water face some strong competition this year if they are to add themselves to that list. We wouldn't bet on it.  

Cate Blanchett's soon-to-be third Oscar?

Focus Features
Cate Blanchett in TárFocus Features

At this point, it’s just a fact: Cate Blanchett is incapable of giving a bad performance. She’s already won Best Supporting Actress in 2007 for The Aviator and Best Actress in 2014 for Blue Jasmine.

And considering that all of the five Best Actress Oscar nominations she has had over the years were for films in which she’s played the titular role - Elizabeth (1999) - Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2008) - Blue Jasmine (2014) - Carol (2016), her nomination for Tár – in which she plays fictional composer Lydia Tár – is hardly surprising but completely deserved. 

It could win her her third Oscar, joining Ingrid Bergman (Gaslight, Anastasia, Murder on the Orient Express), Meryl Streep (Kramer vs. Kramer, Sophie's Choice, The Iron Lady) and Frances McDormand (Fargo, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, Nomadland) as the fourth actress to ever win three Oscars. 

Katharine Hepburn still holds the record with 4 Oscars (Morning Glory, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, The Lion in Winter, On Golden Pond). 

An (un)predictable outcome for Best Feature?

Universal Pictures - Searchlight Pictures
The Fabelmans (left) and The Banshees of Inisherin (right) seem to standout are the two main frontrunners for Best PictureUniversal Pictures - Searchlight Pictures

Putting aside Avatar: The Way of Water, the shortlist for Best Feature is an impressive one this year and all bets are off.

There are various arguments to be made for which film could be the frontrunner.

Sure, Everything Everywhere All At Once leads with the number of nominations, but could the inventively bonkers comedy be too much for the Academy when it comes to the big night? It's a daring take on the ubiquitous multiverse subgenre that’s brimming with boundless ideas and madcap flourishes; it might prove to be too out-there for voters.

Women Talking seems to be too divisive (and is the only film directed by a woman - Sarah Polley - in the shortlist), Elvis too mainstream, and Top Gun: Maverick - despite its runaway success at the box office this year - probably an unlikely winner.

It would be too much to ask for Tood Field's breahtakingly excellent Tár - which scored a pleasantly unexpected six nominations in total - to nab the Golden Baldie, but it could be the dark horse. And despite winning the top prize at Cannes and raking up the gongs at the European Film Awards last year, Ruben Östlund's Triangle of Sadness would be a surprise win.

All Quiet on the Western Front has recently moved ahead of the field and last week became the most-nominated film at the BAFTA Awards. It could very well be the outlier to keep an eye on, one which doubtlessly cost the underperforming Babylon a nomination. 

Which leaves us with Steven Spielberg’s autobiographical drama The Fabelmans and Martin McDonagh’s dark comedy The Banshees of Inisherin as your best bets for the top prize come 12 March.

The Fabelmans is a nostalgic - if overly saccharine - lookback at how one of Hollywood's most celebrated directors, as a teenager in the ’50s and early ’60s, launched himself as an obsessive filmmaker. The nomination for Best Director is Spielberg's eigth, and considering Hollywood loves a meta narrative about filmmaking and rarely misses an opportunity to pat itself on the back when it comes to films celebrating filmmaking, you shouldn't bet against it.

As for The Banshees of Inisherin, it's a funny and profound black comedy that doubles up as an examination of a disintegrating friendship set against the backdrop of the Irish Civil War. It's a break-up folktale that features all of the director-writer’s acerbic wit, pitch-perfect dialogue and acute observations when it comes to the knotty realities of relationships. It stands as The Fabelmans' most likely competitor.

The full list of nominees are: 

Best Picture

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Avatar: The Way of Water
  • The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Elvis
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • The Fabelmans
  • Tár
  • Top Gun: Maverick
  • Triangle of Sadness
  • Women Talking

Best Director

  • Martin McDonagh, The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • Steven Spielberg, The Fabelmans
  • Todd Field, Tár
  • Ruben Östlund, Triangle of Sadness

Best Actress

  • Cate Blanchett, Tár
  • Ana de Armas, Blonde
  • Andrea Riseborough, To Leslie
  • Michelle Williams, The Fabelmans
  • Michelle Yeoh, Everything Everywhere All at Once

Best Supporting Actress

  • Angela Bassett, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
  • Hong Chau, The Whale
  • Kerry Condon, The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Jamie Lee Curtis, Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • Stephanie Hsu, Everything Everywhere All at Once

Best Actor

  • Austin Butler, Elvis
  • Colin Farrell, The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Brendan Fraser, The Whale
  • Paul Mescal, Aftersun
  • Bill Nighy, Living

Best Supporting Actor

  • Brendan Gleeson, The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Brian Tyree Henry, Causeway
  • Judd Hirsch, The Fabelmans
  • Barry Keoghan, The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Ke Huy Quan, Everything Everywhere All at Once

Best Editing

  • The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Elvis
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • Tár
  • Top Gun: Maverick

Best Cinematography

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths
  • Elvis
  • Empire of Light
  • Tár

Best Original Screenplay

  • The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • The Fabelmans
  • Tár
  • Triangle of Sadness

Best Adapted Screenplay

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
  • Living
  • Top Gun: Maverick
  • Women Talking

Best Production Design

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Avatar: The Way of Water
  • Babylon
  • Elvis
  • The Fabelmans

Best Original Score

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Babylon
  • The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • The Fabelmans

Best Original Song

  • Applause, Tell It Like a Woman
  • Hold My Hand, Top Gun: Maverick
  • Lift Me Up, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
  • Naatu Naatu, RRR
  • This Is a Life, Everything Everywhere All at Once

Best Sound

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Avatar: The Way of Water
  • The Batman
  • Elvis
  • Top Gun: Maverick

Best Visual Effects

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Avatar: The Way of Water
  • The Batman
  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
  • Top Gun: Maverick

Best International Feature Film

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • Argentina, 1985
  • Close
  • EO
  • The Quiet Girl

Best Animated Feature

  • Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
  • Marcel the Shell with Shoes On
  • Puss in Boots: The Last Wish
  • The Sea Beast
  • Turning Red

Best Animated Short

  • The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse
  • The Flying Sailor
  • Ice Merchants
  • My Year of Dicks
  • An Ostrich Told Me the World Is Fake and I Think I Believe It

Best Live Action Short

  • An Irish Goodbye
  • Ivalu
  • Le Pupille
  • Nightride
  • The Red Suitcase

Best Documentary Feature

  • All That Breathes
  • All the Beauty and the Bloodshed
  • Fire of Love
  • A House Made of Splinters
  • Navalny

Best Documentary Short

  • The Elephant Whisperers
  • Haulout
  • How Do You Measure a Year?
  • The Martha Mitchell Effect
  • Stranger at the Gate

Best Costume Design

  • Babylon
  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
  • Elvis
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • Mrs Harris Goes to Paris

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

  • All Quiet on the Western Front
  • The Batman
  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
  • Elvis
  • The Whale

The 2023 Oscars will take place Sunday 12 March, at the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood. Jimmy Kimmel is back as the host, after previously leading the awards show in 2017 and 2018.