La.-shot ‘Slave’, ‘Dallas’ score Oscar nominations

Two films shot in the New Orleans area, “12 Years a Slave” and “Dallas Buyers Club,” together received a total of 15 Oscar nominations Thursday.

“12 Years a Slave,” based on Solomon Northup’s 1853 book about his life as a slave in Louisiana, earned nine nominations, including best motion picture, best director, best actor and best supporting actress.

“Dallas Buyers Club,” a drama about AIDS-infected Texas electrician Ron Woodroof’s battles with the medical profession in the 1980s, received six nominations, including best picture, a best actor nomination for Matthew McConaughey and a best supporting actor nomination for Jared Leto.

“Dallas Buyers Club” also earned New Orleans makeup artist Robin Mathews a nomination in the best makeup and hairstyling category.

“I still feel like I just woke up and this is a dream,” Mathews said Thursday. “Waking up at five in the morning, I feel like maybe I’m not — is this real? This is crazy.”

“20 Feet from Stardom,” a documentary about backup singers that includes New Orleans native Merry Clayton, received a nomination for best documentary feature.

The 86th Academy Awards, featuring Metairie native Ellen DeGeneres as host, will be broadcast March 2 from the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.

The nine nominations “12 Years a Slave” received place it just behind the 10 nominations each given to the 1970s-set con-artist comedy “American Hustle” and space drama “Gravity.”

Sandra Bullock, a previous Oscar winner who owns a home in New Orleans, received a best actress nomination for her “Gravity” performance as a scientist adrift in space.

“12 Years a Slave” enters the Oscars race as a Golden Globe winner for best picture and a favorite of critics’ groups and industry groups Directors Guild of America, Screen Actors Guild and Producers Guild of America.

The New Orleans Film Festival presented the Louisiana premier of “12 Years a Slave” in October. Director Steve McQueen and cast members Chiwetel Ejiofor, Lupita Nuyong’o, Sarah Paulson and Alfre Woodard walked the red carpet before the film’s screening at the Civic Theatre.

“I’m extraordinarily happy for all the cast and crew of our ‘12 Years a Slave’ family,” McQueen said Thursday in a statement from Fox Searchlight. “This has been an amazing ride. To receive nine nominations from the Academy is testament to all of the hard work.”

“At no point during filming in the sweltering heat of New Orleans,” best actor nominee Ejiofor said in a statement, “did any of us ever foresee the journey this film would take us all on. … I am hugely grateful to the Academy for this great honor and, of course, to Solomon Northup for sharing his story through his breathtaking book.”

“I just really appreciate how people have responded to Solomon Northup’s story and his life,” said screenwriter John Ridley, a nominee for best adapted screenplay. “I’m just so happy for the whole crew and cast who brought Solomon’s memoir to the screen.”

Ridley based the screenplay on the LSU Press annotated edition of Northup’s slave narrative. The late Joseph Logsdon, a history professor at the University of New Orleans, and the late Sue Eakin, a history teacher at LSU in Alexandria, spent years verifying facts from Northup’s memoir prior to publication of their annotated edition in 1968.

“Without their work,” Logsdon’s daughter Dawn Logsdon said in an October interview with The Advocate, “it would probably have been dismissed as hearsay to a certain extent and challenged.”

Sometimes New Orleans resident Brad Pitt and his company, Plan B Entertainment, co-produced “Slave.” Pitt also plays a supporting role in the film.

McQueen, during his acceptance speech for best drama Sunday at the Golden Globes, said the movie would not have been made without Pitt’s support.

Plan B released a joint statement from producers Pitt, Jeremy Kleiner and Dede Gardner.

“Solomon Northup’s story is a testament to the endurance of both a man as well as narrative, for which movies were borne,” the statement says. “We feel so privileged to have had a small part in its telling. The lion’s share of credit goes to Steve McQueen, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Lupita Nyong’o, Michael Fassbender, John Ridley, Joe Walker, Patricia Norris, Adam Stockhausen, Alice Baker, and the cast and crew and the city of New Orleans, for whom resilience is a muscle — may we all learn it, before we need it.”

McConaughey’s best actor nomination for “Dallas Buyers Club” follows his Sunday Golden Globe win for best actor in a drama.

“I love working in an industry and craft that inspires me daily,” McConaughey said in a statement from Focus Features, “and allows me to tell stories that translate humanities and move people. I share this with the entire ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ family of filmmakers, cast, and crew — and the real-life Ron Woodroofs and Rayons who continue to fight and live with dignity.”

“What a beautiful way to continue the incredible adventure that has been ‘Dallas Buyers Club,’ ” director Jean-Marc Vallée said. “Today we all share a collective sense of pride as we have had the opportunity to spotlight a part of history that’s both beautiful and sometimes painful to remember.”

“Lee Daniels’ The Butler,” a New Orleans production that had been considered a candidate for awards upon its release in August, is noticeably absent from the Oscars nominations list.

Academy Awards nominations

BEST MOTION PICTURE — “12 Years a Slave,” “American Hustle,” “Captain Phillips,” “Dallas Buyers Club,” “Gravity,” “Her,” “Nebraska,” “Philomena,” “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

LEAD ACTOR — Christian Bale, “American Hustle”; Bruce Dern, “Nebraska”; Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Wolf of Wall Street”; Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”; Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club.”

LEAD ACTRESS — Amy Adams, “American Hustle”; Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”; Sandra Bullock, “Gravity”; Judi Dench, “Philomena”; and Meryl Streep, “August: Osage County.”

SUPPORTING ACTOR — Barkhad Abdi, “Captain Phillips”; Bradley Cooper, “American Hustle”; Michael Fassbender, “12 Years a Slave”; Jonah Hill, “The Wolf of Wall Street”; Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club.”

SUPPORTING ACTRESS — Sally Hawkins, “Blue Jasmine”; Jennifer Lawrence, “American Hustle”; Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave”; Julia Roberts, “August: Osage County”; June Squibb, “Nebraska.

DIRECTING — David O. Russell, “American Hustle”; Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity”; Alexander Payne, “Nebraska”; Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave”; Martin Scorsese, “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM — “The Broken Circle Breakdown,” Belgium; “The Great Beauty,” Italy; “The Hunt,” Denmark; “The Missing Picture,” Cambodia; “Omar,” Palestine.

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY — Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke, “Before Midnight”; Billy Ray, “Captain Phillips”; Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope, “Philomena”; John Ridley, “12 Years a Slave”; Terence Winter, “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY — Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell, “American Hustle”; Woody Allen, “Blue Jasmine”; Craig Borten & Melisa Wallack, “Dallas Buyers Club”; Spike Jonze, “Her”; Bob Nelson, “Nebraska.”

ANIMATED FEATURE FILM — “The Croods”; “Despicable Me 2”; “Ernest & Celestine”; “Frozen”; “The Wind Rises.”

PRODUCTION DESIGN — “American Hustle,” “Gravity,” “The Great Gatsby,” “Her,” “12 Years a Slave.”

CINEMATOGRAPHY — “The Grandmaster,” “Gravity,” “Inside Llewyn Davis,” “Nebraska,” “Prisoners.”

SOUND MIXING — “Captain Phillips,” “Gravity,” ‘’The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” “Inside Llewyn Davis,” “Lone Survivor.”

SOUND EDITING — “All Is Lost,” ‘’Captain Phillips,” ‘’Gravity,” “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” “Lone Survivor.”

ORIGINAL SCORE — “The Book Thief,” John Williams; “Gravity,” Steven Price; “Her,” William Butler and Owen Pallett; “Philomena,” Alexandre Desplat; “Saving Mr. Banks,” Thomas Newman.

ORIGINAL SONG — “Alone Yet Not Alone” from “Alone Yet Not Alone,” Bruce Broughton and Dennis Spiegel; “Happy” from “Despicable Me 2,” Pharrell Williams; “Let It Go” from “Frozen,” Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez; “The Moon Song” from “Her,” Karen O and Spike Jonze; “Ordinary Love” from “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom,” Paul Hewson, Dave Evans, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen.

COSTUME — “American Hustle,” “The Grandmaster,” “The Great Gatsby,” “The Invisible Woman,” “12 Years a Slave.”

DOCUMENTARY FEATURE — “The Act of Killing,” “Cutie and the Boxer,” “Dirty Wars,” “The Square,” “20 Feet from Stardom.”

DOCUMENTARY (SHORT SUBJECT) — “CaveDigger,” “Facing Fear,” “Karama Has No Walls,” “The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life,” “Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall.”

FILM EDITING — “American Hustle,” “Captain Phillips,” “Dallas Buyers Club,” “Gravity,” “12 Years a Slave.”

MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING — “Dallas Buyers Club,” ‘’Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa,” ‘’The Lone Ranger.”

ANIMATED SHORT FILM — “Feral,” ‘’Get a Horse!,” ‘’Mr. Hublot,” ‘’Possessions”, “Room on the Broom.”

LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM — “Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn’t Me),” “Avant Que De Tout Perdre (Just before Losing Everything),” “Helium,” “’Pitaako Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?),” “The Voorman Problem.”

VISUAL EFFECTS — “Gravity,” “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” “Iron Man 3,” “The Lone Ranger,” “Star Trek Into Darkness.”