By Daniel Howat
The nominations for the 94th Academy Awards finally arrived yesterday, so you know what that means? It’s time for our annual collection of interesting stats, pieces of trivia, and records set by this year’s nominations. This may not live up to the groundbreaking year of diversity we saw at last year’s Oscars. However, there are still plenty of incredible moments to celebrate among these nominees, along with potential records to look forward to among the winners.
Please take a look at our comprehensive list of as much trivia as we could gather from the 2022 Oscar nominations.
OVERALL STATS & TRIVIA
- Eligibility for the 94th Academy Awards ran from March 1st, 2021, to December 31st, 2021, marking the first time the eligibility period was less than a year.
- With his new nominations for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay, Kenneth Branagh (“Belfast“) has now received nominations in a record seven unique categories: Picture, Director, Adapted Screenplay, Original Screenplay, Actor, Supporting Actor, and Live Action Short Film. George Clooney and Walt Disney previously held the record with six categories.
- “Flee” is the first film nominated for Documentary Feature, International Feature, and Animated Feature.
- “Flee” is the first documentary nominated for Best Animated Feature and the second animated film nominated for Best International Feature. It is the fifth documentary nominated for Best International Feature, following “Waltz with Bashir,” “The Missing Picture,” “Honeyland,” and “Collective.”
- With “Flee,” this is also the third year in a row where a film was nominated for both Documentary Feature and International Feature. This had never happened before 2019.
- “Flee” is the first documentary since “Woodstock” (1971) to receive more than two nominations
- This is the first time more than three CGI animated films were nominated for Best Animated Feature in the same year.
- “Licorice Pizza” is the first movie nominated for only Best Picture, Director, and Screenplay since “12 Angry Men” in 1957.
BEST PICTURE STATS & TRIVIA
- Leonardo DiCaprio (“Don’t Look Up“) now has ten credited appearances in Best Picture nominees, tied for the second-most of any actor with Jack Nicholson. Robert De Niro holds the record with eleven Best Picture nominees.
- Cate Blanchett (“Don’t Look Up” and “Nightmare Alley“) now has nine credited appearances in Best Picture nominees, the most of any actress, surpassing Olivia de Havilland’s eight.
- Steven Spielberg (“West Side Story“) extends his record with the most nominations in Best Picture, with eleven.
- “West Side Story” is Spielberg’s twelfth directorial effort nominated for Best Picture, the second-most of any director. William Wyler directed thirteen Best Picture nominees.
- Jane Campion is the third woman to direct two Best Picture nominees, “The Piano” and “The Power of the Dog.” Kathryn Bigelow was the first to do this with “The Hurt Locker” and “Zero Dark Thirty,” and Greta Gerwig was the second with “Lady Bird” and “Little Women.”
- With “The Power of the Dog” and “CODA,” this is the third year with two female-directed Best Picture nominees. This previously happened in 2010 and 2020.
- “King Richard” is the tenth film by a black director (Reinaldo Marcus Green) to be nominated for Best Picture.
- Will Smith (“King Richard“) is the ninth person nominated for producing and acting in the same film. The previous people to accomplish this: Warren Beatty, Kevin Costner, Clint Eastwood, Denzel Washington, Brad Pitt, Bradley Cooper, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Frances McDormand, who is the only person to win both categories last year for “Nomadland.”
- “Drive My Car” is the first Japanese film nominated for Best Picture and the thirteenth non-English language film nominated for Best Picture. Teruhisa Yamamoto is also the first Japanese producer nominated for Best Picture.
- This is also the fourth year in a row with a non-English language film nominated in Best Picture. The previous record was two in a row from 1972-1973.
- “Belfast” is the fifth black and white film nominated for Best Picture this century, following “Good Night, and Good Luck,” “The Artist,” “Nebraska,” “Roma,” and “Mank.”
- Timothée Chalamet (“Dune“) joins Saoirse Ronan as the only actors to appear in five Best Picture nominees before age 27.
BEST DIRECTOR STATS & TRIVIA
- Jane Campion (“The Power of the Dog“) is the first female nominated twice for Best Director. She would be the third woman to win Best Director if she wins, following Kathryn Bigelow and Chloe Zhao.
- Steven Spielberg (“West Side Story“) is now the first person nominated for Best Director in six individual decades, from the 1970s to the 2020s. Martin Scorsese previously held the record of five decades.
- “West Side Story” is Spielberg’s eighth nomination in Best Director, making him the third most-nominated director in the category, tying Billy Wilder. Only Martin Scorsese (9) and William Wyler (10) have more.
- Kenneth Branagh now has the second-longest gap between Best Director nominations, with 32 years. Only John Huston has a bigger nomination gap at 33 years. Coincidentally, the third-longest gap in the category is Jane Campion, at 28 years.
- Ryûsuke Hamaguchi (“Drive My Car“) is the third Japanese director nominated for Best Director, following Hiroshi Teshigahara and Akira Kurosawa.
- “Dune” scored ten nominations but was overlooked for Best Director. Only two films have more nominations (eleven) without a Best Director nomination: “The Pride of the Yankees” and “The Color Purple.” Similarly, two other films received ten nominations without a Director nomination: “Anne of a Thousand Days” and “Airport.”
ACTING STATS & TRIVIA
- This is the first time since 1981 without a first-time nominee in Best Actor.
- Only two leading performances were from Best Picture nominees, Will Smith, and Benedict Cumberbatch. This has never happened in the expanded era. The last time fewer leading performances were from Best Picture nominees was in 2007 when Helen Mirren was nominated for “The Queen.”
- None of the nominees for Best Actress are from Best Picture nominated films. The last time this happened was in 2005, when there were only five Best Picture nominees.
- No Best Actress nominee was nominated at all of the major precursors: BAFTA, Golden Globes, Critics Choice and SAG. This is the first time this has happened since the start of the SAG Awards in 1995.
- This is the first time since 1987 the Best Actress lineup has not contained a BAFTA nominee for Best Actress in the same year.
- Denzel Washington (“The Tragedy of Macbeth“) received his tenth Oscar nomination, making him the most-nominated black person in Academy history.
- With nine acting nominations, Denzel now has the third most acting nominations for a male actor, tied with Al Pacino, Paul Newman, and Spencer Tracy. Only Laurence Olivier (10) and Jack Nicholson (12) have more acting nominations.
- Washington has now been nominated across five decades consecutively, matching the feat accomplished by Laurence Olivier, Michael Caine, Jack Nicholson, Meryl Streep, and Frances McDormand.
- Judi Dench is the third oldest acting nominee in Academy history, and the second oldest female nominee, at 87 years, 61 days. Above her are Gloria Stuart (87 years, 221 days) and Christopher Plummer (88 years, 41 days).
- With nominations for Kristen Stewart (“Spencer“) and Ariana DeBose (“West Side Story“), this is the first time two openly queer performers were nominated for acting Oscars in the same year.
- Ariana DeBose (“West Side Story“) is the second Afro-Latina nominated for an acting Oscar, following Rosie Perez.
- DeBose is nominated for playing Anita in “West Side Story,” the same role that won Rita Moreno her Academy Award for the 1961 version of “West Side Story.” If DeBose wins, it would be the first time two women won Oscars for playing the same role.
- DeBose is also the third Oscar-nominated member of the original cast of “Hamilton,” following Lin-Manuel Miranda and Leslie Odom, Jr.
- Jessie Buckley and Olivia Colman (“The Lost Daughter“) are both nominated for playing the same character in the same film. This has happened twice before: Kate Winslet and Gloria Stuart in “Titanic,” and Kate Winslet and Judi Dench in “Iris.”
- Troy Kotsur (“CODA“) is the second deaf person and first deaf man to receive an acting nomination. His co-star from “CODA,” Marlee Matlin, was the first deaf person nominated and the only deaf Oscar-winner to date for her role in “Children of a Lesser God.”
- With both Kodi Smit-McPhee and Jesse Plemmons (“The Power of the Dog“) nominated, this is the third year in a row with double nominees from the same film in Best Supporting Actor, after “Judas and the Black Messiah” last year and “The Irishman” in 2019. This has never happened three years in a row before.
- “The Power of the Dog” is the first film to score four acting nominations at the Oscars without receiving a SAG nomination for Best Ensemble.
- Penélope Cruz (“Parallel Mothers“) and Javier Bardem (“Being The Ricardos“) are the fourth married couple nominated for acting Oscars in the same year and the first since 1964. Kirsten Dunst and Jesse Plemmons are also nominated for “The Power of the Dog,” but they are engaged, not married. The previous couples nominated were Vivien Leigh (“Gone With The Wind”) & Laurence Olivier (“Wuthering Heights”), Elizabeth Taylor & Richard Burton (“Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”), Rachel Roberts (“The Sporting Life”) & Rex Harrison (“Cleopatra”).
SCREENPLAY STATS & TRIVIA
- This is the first year since 2000 without a “lone screenplay nominee,” which is a film nominated for Best Original or Adapted Screenplay and no other awards.
- Eric Roth (“Dune“) is now the fifth most-nominated screenwriter of all time, with six nominations, behind John Huston (8), Federico Fellini (8), Billy Wilder (12), and Woody Allen (16).
- Maggie Gyllenhaal (“The Lost Daughter“) is now the third woman to have received nominations for acting and screenwriting. Ruth Gordon and Emma Thompson are the only other women to achieve this.
- In Best Adapted Screenplay, Gyllenhaal is nominated for “The Lost Daughter,” Sian Heder for “CODA,” and Jane Campion for “The Power of the Dog,” making this the first time that three women were nominated as the solo screenwriters in Adapted Screenplay in the same year. This is only the third year with three films written by women nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay. This previously happened in 1986 and 1991.
- Jane Campion is the odds-on favorite to win Best Adapted Screenplay. This would make her the first woman to win both Best Adapted and Original Screenplay (“The Piano”).
- Ryusuke Hamaguchi and Takamasa Oe (“Drive My Car“) are the first Japanese nominees in Best Adapted Screenplay.
- “The Worst Person in the World” is the first Norwegian film nominated in any category outside of International Feature or Documentary Feature.
- Non-English language films received nominations in both Best Original Screenplay (“The Worst Person in the World“) and Best Adapted Screenplay (“Drive My Car“) for the first time since 2003.
CRAFT CATEGORIES STATS & TRIVIA
- Billie Eilish (“No Time to Die“) is the second-youngest nominee for Best Original Song at 20 years old. Markéta Irglová (“Once”) is the youngest at 19 years old.
- Eilish is only the second person born in the 21st century nominated for an Oscar after Quvenzhané Wallis (“Beasts of the Southern Wild”).
- Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell are the second brother-sister pair nominated for Best Original Song, after Lesley and Michael Gore for “Fame.”
- Riz Ahmed is nominated for Best Live Action Short Film for “The Long Goodbye.” He is the third person to receive both an acting nomination and Best Live Action Short Film, after Peter Sellers, Dyan Cannon, Kenneth Branagh, and Christine Lahti.
- Diane Warren (“Four Good Days“) extends her streak as the most Oscar-nominated woman without a win, with thirteen nominations. Thomas Newman and Greg P. Russell are the only other living people with more nominations and no wins than Warren.
- Daniel Sudick (“Spider-Man: No Way Home“) received his eleventh nomination for Best Visual Effects. He has now tied with re-recording mixer Rick Kline as the fourth-most-nominated living individual at the Academy Awards without a win.
- Sound mixer Andy Nelson (“West Side Story“) now has a record of twenty-two nominations in the sound categories. He is tied for the third most-nominated living individuals with Randy Newman. Woody Allen is in second place with twenty-four nominations, and John Williams is the most-nominated living person with fifty-two.
- Ari Wegner (“The Power of the Dog“) is the second woman nominated for Best Cinematography, following Rachel Morrison. Wegner was the first woman to receive a corresponding BAFTA nomination.
- Yvett Merino is the first Hispanic-American woman nominated for Best Animated Feature for producing “Encanto.”
- Carlos López Estrada joins Merino as the third and fourth people of Hispanic descent nominated in Animated Feature, following Jonas Rivera and Phil Lord.
- Germaine Franco is the first Latina nominated for Best Original Score for “Encanto.” She is also the eighth woman nominated for Best Original Score.
- “Encanto” is the first Disney animated film to receive a nomination for Best Score since “Mulan” in 1998, which was nominated for Best Original Musical or Comedy Score. Before the brief split between Musical or Comedy and Dramatic scores, the last Disney animated film nominated for Original Score was “The Lion King” in 1994.
- For “Coming 2 America,” Stacey Morris and Carla Farmer are the second-ever black nominees for Makeup & Hairstyling, following last year’s Mia Neal and Jameika Wilson (“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom“).
- If “Drive My Car” wins Best International Feature, it would be the second-longest film to win the category at 179 minutes. “War and Peace” currently holds that record at 431 minutes.
- “Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom” is the first Best International Feature nomination and submission for Bhutan.
- This is the first year since 2016 without someone nominated for both Original Song and an acting Oscar.
Congratulations to all of the record-setters among this year’s crop of nominees! We look forward to seeing even more records set by the potential winners. Keep an eye on Next Best Picture as we update you with predictions, trivia, statistics, and more.
Did we miss any notable stats or trivia? What was the most surprising piece of trivia for you? What records do you want to see broken next year? Let us know in the comments section below or on our Twitter account.
You can follow Daniel and hear more of his thoughts on the Oscars and Film on Twitter at @howatdk