This year’s Oscar nominations are to be announced later today.
12 Years a Slave, Gravity and American Hustle all expected to be in the running for best picture.
But the rest of the shortlist is up for grabs, amidst one of the most competitive fields in years.
Experts predict a full slate of 10 nominees, with Dallas Buyers Club and Captain Phillips among frontrunners.
Actor Chris Hemsworth and Oscars chief Cheryl Boone Isaacs will reveal the list at 05:38 local time.
The announcement will be streamed live on this page, with coverage starting at 05:30.
12 Years a Slave, Steve McQueen’s hard-hitting historical drama, picked up the top honor at the Sunday’s Golden Globes, winning best film drama.
It is also the bookmakers’ favorite to win the Oscar for best picture, but David O. Russell’s crime caper American Hustle is rapidly closing in, after picking up three Globes, including best film in the comedy or musical category.
Its female stars Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence also picked up best actress and supporting actress prizes.
Jennifer Lawrence won the best actress Oscar last February for Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook and is generating a strong buzz this year in the supporting actress category for her scene-stealing role as Rosalyn, the unpredictable wife of conman Irving Rosenfeld, played by Christian Bale.
Gravity, the 3D film about astronauts stranded in space, picked up the prestigious best director Globe for Alfonso Cuaron, making him an Oscar frontrunner alongside Steve McQueen and David O. Russell.
Sandra Bullock is hotly tipped for a best actress nomination, while 12 Years a Slave‘s Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender and Lupita Nyong’o are all expected to get acting nods.
The best picture category can consist of anything between five and 10 films. For the past two years there have been nine films on the shortlist.
Among the hopefuls are Martin Scorsese’s stockbroker shocker The Wolf of Wall Street, sea piracy thriller Captain Phillips and Nebraska, Alexander Payne’s black and white film about a cantankerous old man on the trail of a dubious lottery win.
Also expected to pick up a nomination is Dallas Buyers Club, the true story of Texas electrician Ron Woodroof, played by Matthew McConaughey, who was diagnosed as HIV-positive in 1985 and given 30 days to live.
Although completely shut out of last week’s BAFTA nominations, Dallas Buyers Club is likely to fare better with the Academy’s 6,000 voters.
Matthew McConaughey was named best actor in a drama at the Globes while his co-star Jared Leto won the best supporting actor prize for his depiction of a transgender woman.
Bookies say Matthew McConaughey is closing in on Chiwetel Ejiofor in the race for the best actor Oscar.
Other names tipped to make the final cut are Robert Redford (All is Lost), Leonardo Di Caprio (The Wolf of Wall Street), Bruce Dern (Nebraska) and Tom Hanks (Captain Phillips).
Tom Hanks, already a double Oscar winner, might get two acting nominations this year, the second for playing Walt Disney in Saving Mr. Banks, a film about Disney’s attempts to turn Mary Poppins into a movie in the 1960s.
Cate Blanchett appears hard to beat for the best actress Oscar and is 1/8 favorite to pick up the award for her role as a New York socialite fallen on hard times in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine.
The best director shortlist could include Paul Greengrass and Steve McQueen.
The winners of the golden statuettes will be announced at the 86th Academy Awards on Sunday, March 2 at the Dolby Theatre at the Hollywood & Highland Center in Los Angeles. This year’s event is hosted by Ellen DeGeneres.
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