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    Your literary guide to the 2022 Oscar nominations.

    Eliza Smith

    February 8, 2022, 1:13pm

    As the Hub’s fearless leader Emily Temple wrote in the innocent days of 2017, “Hollywood would basically be irrelevant without books.” And while much has changed over the past five years, that statement, at least, still stands: the 94th Academy Award nominations were announced today, and by our count, 50 percent of the Best Picture nominations are (arguably) based on books and plays (you bet your bottom dollar we’re counting plays—xoxo, playwrights). Notably, the Cinematography and Production Design categories are 100 percent literary, proving that good writing makes for the best visuals, and The Power of the Dog (based on Thomas Savage’s 1967 novel) got the most love, receiving 12 nominations across 11 categories (followed by Dune, with 10 nominations across 10 categories).

    If you’re going to be a Smug Book Reader during the awards ceremony on March 27, you (might) have some reading to do. Here’s your guide to all the Oscar hopefuls—with literary offerings in bold.

    Best Picture

    Don’t Look Up
    Drive My Car (based on Haruki Murakami’s short story “Drive My Car” from the 2014 collection Men Without Women)
    Dune (based on Dune by Frank Herbert)
    King Richard
    Licorice Pizza
    Nightmare Alley (based on Nightmare Alley by William Lindsay Gresham)  
    The Power of the Dog (based on The Power of the Dog by Thomas Savage)  
    West Side Story (based on the musical West Side Story by Jerome Robbins and inspired by Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare)

    Denzel Washington as Macbeth

    Actor in a Leading Role

    Javier Bardem, Being the Ricardos
    Benedict Cumberbatch, The Power of the Dog
    Andrew Garfield, Tick, Tick…Boom! (based on the musical tick, tick… BOOM! by Jonathan Larson)
    Will Smith, King Richard
    Denzel Washington, The Tragedy of Macbeth (based on Macbeth by William Shakespeare)

    Actress in a Leading Role

    Jessica Chastain, The Eyes of Tammy Faye
    Olivia Colman, The Lost Daughter (based on The Lost Daughter by Elena Ferrante)
    Penelope Cruz, Parallel Mothers
    Nicole Kidman, Being the Ricardos
    Kristen Stewart, Spencer

    Actor in a Supporting Role

    Ciarán Hinds, Belfast
    Troy Kotsur, CODA
    Jesse Plemons, The Power of the Dog
    J.K. Simmons, Being the Ricardos
    Kodi Smit-McPhee, The Power of the Dog  

    Aunjanue Ellis in King Richard

    Actress in a Supporting Role

    Jessie Buckley, The Lost Daughter  
    Ariana DeBose, West Side Story
    Judi Dench, Belfast
    Kirsten Dunst, The Power of the Dog  
    Aunjanue Ellis, King Richard

    Power of the Dog


    Kenneth Branagh, Belfast
    Ryusuke Hamaguchi, Drive My Car
    Paul Thomas Anderson, Licorice Pizza
    Jane Campion, The Power of the Dog
    Steven Spielberg, West Side Story 


    Documentary (Feature)

    Summer of Soul
    Writing With Fire (not an adaptation, but it IS a story about the journalists running the Dalit women-led newspaper Khabar Lahariya, so it deserves a flag)

    Documentary (Short Subject)

    Lead Me Home
    The Queen of Basketball
    Three Songs of Benazir
    When We Were Bullies 


    Animated Feature Film

    The Mitchells vs. the Machines
    Raya and the Last Dragon

    the worst person in the world

    International Feature Film

    Drive My Car (Japan)
    Flee (Denmark)
    The Hand of God (Italy)
    Yaana (Bhutan)
    The Worst Person in the World (Norway)



    Nightmare Alley
    The Power of the Dog
    The Tragedy of Macbeth
    West Side Story

    tick tick boom

    Film Editing

    Don’t Look Up
    King Richard
    The Power of the Dog
    Tick, Tick…Boom!


    Music (Original Score)

    Don’t Look Up
    Parallel Mothers
    The Power of the Dog

    Music (Original Song)
    “Be Alive,” King Richard, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter, Dixson
    “Dos Oroguitos,” Encanto, Lin-Manuel Miranda
    “Down to Joy,” Belfast, Van Morrison
    “No Time To Die,” No Time To Die, Billie Eilish, Finneas O’Connell (borderline—based on Ian Fleming’s James Bond series, most closely inspired by On Her Majesty’s Secret Service)
    “Somehow You Do,” Four Good Days, Diane Warren (borderline—based on a 2016 Washington Post article “How’s Amanda? A Story of Truth, Lies and an American Addiction” by Eli Saslow

    Production Design

    Nightmare Alley
    The Power of the Dog
    The Tragedy of Macbeth
    West Side Story

    Costume Design

    Cruella (borderline—based on the character of Cruella from The 101 Dalmatians by Dodie Smith)
    Nightmare Alley
    West Side Story

    house of gucci

    Makeup and Hairstyling

    Coming 2 America
    The Eyes of Tammy Faye
    House of Gucci (based on The House of Gucci by Sara G. Forden)


    Sound Editing

    No Time To Die
    The Power of the Dog
    West Side Story


    Visual Effects

    Free Guy

    No Time To Die
    Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (borderline—based on Marvel’s Shang-Chi character created by Steve Englehart and artist Jim Starlin)
    Spider-Man: No Way Home (borderline—based on Marvel’s Spider-Man character, created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko)

    affairs of the art

    Short Film (Live Action)

    Ala Kachuu – Take and Run
    The Dress
    The Long Goodbye
    On My Mind
    Please Hold

    Short Film (Animated)

    Affairs of the Art
    Robin Robin
    The Windshield Wiper

    the lost daughter

    Screenplay (Adapted)

    Drive My Car
    The Lost Daughter
    The Power of the Dog

    Screenplay (Original)

    Don’t Look Up
    King Richard
    Licorice Pizza
    The Worst Person in the World

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