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January 10, 2013

Oscars 2013: ‘Hobbit,’ ‘Skyfall’ nab noms, no ‘Dark Knight Rises’

Posted in: Movies

Surprise visitors arrive at Bilbo Baggins' home in "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." (Warner Bros.)

Surprise visitors arrive at Bilbo Baggins’ home in “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.” (Warner Bros.)

The 85th Academy Award nominations managed to offer some surprises Thursday morning — industry pundits were buzzing about the omission from the best director competition of Ben Affleck for “Argo” and Kathryn Bigelow for “Zero Dark Thirty” — but fans of fantastic entertainment had reason to cheer.

Unless, of course, you were rooting for an Oscar for “The Dark Knight Rises.”

While “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” “Skyfall” and “Django Unchained” all earned multiple nominations in a variety of categories, the final installment in Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy was not recognized, despite the critical acclaim that met the film when it was released in July.

OSCARS 2013: Full coverage

Happier news greeted Tim Burton today, with the filmmaker’s black-and-white 3D stop-motion love letter to childhood and Universal monster movies, “Frankenweenie,” leading the pack in the animated feature category.

Victor, voiced by Charlie Tahan, and his pet Sparky in a scene from "Frankenweenie." (Disney)

Victor, voiced by Charlie Tahan, and his pet Sparky in a scene from “Frankenweenie.” (Disney)

The movie, a full-length update of a short film Burton made in 1984, will compete against the similarly spooky but sweet “ParaNorman,” Pixar’s Scotland-set warrior princess adventure “Brave,” the video game send-up “Wreck-It Ralph” and Aardman Animations’ “The Pirates! Band of Misfits.” (It’s also worth noting that the race includes three stop-motion movies, suggesting a real passion for the format among the voting members of the movie academy.)

” ‘Frankenweenie’ is a very personal film for me,” Burton said in a statement issued Thursday. “The idea of telling a feature-length version was in the back of my mind for many years. Stop-motion was the perfect medium for this project, and one I’ve always loved for its expressiveness and dimensionality. I’ve worked with so many incredible artists: animators, cast members, set builders and puppet makers, all who have helped bring this film to life one frame at a time. I’m so honored that the Academy has recognized this film as one of its nominees.”

PHOTOS: Top Oscar nominees

On the decidedly less family-friendly front, Quentin Tarantino’s blood-soaked western “Django Unchained” was nominated for best picture, best original screenplay, sound editing, cinematography and supporting actor, with Christoph Waltz recognized for his turn as the bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz. Waltz won in the category for Tarantino’s 2009 film “Inglourious Basterds.”

“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” earned a total of three nominations for its production design, makeup and visual effects. In the latter category, it will compete against “The Avengers,” “Prometheus” and “Snow White and the Huntsman,” as well as Ang Lee’s 3D literary adaptation “Life of Pi.”

Daniel Craig as James Bond in "Skyfall." (Sony)

Daniel Craig as James Bond in “Skyfall.” (Sony)

Sam Mendes’ James Bond film “Skyfall” was nominated in five categories — sound mixing, sound editing, best original song, score and cinematography.

In the costume design category, both of 2012′s fairy tales about the fairest of them all, “Snow White and the Huntsman” and “Mirror Mirror,” were nominated, with Colleen Atwood and Eiko Ishioka recognized for each respective production. Ishioka receives her honor posthumously — the revered costumer passed way from pancreatic cancer in January of last year at the age of 73.

– Gina McIntyre

Follow us on Twitter: @LATHeroComplex

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Michael Keaton on the joys of ‘Beetlejuice’

Tim Burton on his ‘weird mental process’

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VIDEO: Looking back on Tim Burton’s films


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