DAVID GREENE, HOST:
The Academy Awards still do not have a host. And it's looking like there may not be one. But this morning in Beverly Hills, the nominations were announced. And Mandalit del Barco from the NPR West team here in LA is here to talk about the actors, directors and producers who got the call this morning. Hi, Mandalit.
MANDALIT DEL BARCO, BYLINE: Hi, David.
GREENE: OK, was there history made this morning?
DEL BARCO: There was. And here's a headline, David. "Marvel's 'Black Panther' Becomes The First Superhero Movie To Be Nominated For Best Picture."
GREENE: What a moment for the academy.
DEL BARCO: Yeah. The movie also got nominated for a total of seven. And maybe this is how the Black Panther feels about the Oscars.
(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "BLACK PANTHER")
CHADWICK BOSEMAN: (As T'Challa) What happens now determines what happens to the rest of the world.
GREENE: See what you did there.
DEL BARCO: (Laughter). Yeah. And, David, there is this also. Thirty years after his seminal "Do The Right Thing," Spike Lee has finally been nominated for best director.
DEL BARCO: Yeah. His "BlackkKlansman" has six nominations, including best picture. "Roma," Alfonso Cuaron's black-and-white film about his childhood in Mexico City, got 10 nominations - best picture, best foreign-language film. Cuaron is up for best director. And his two lead actresses made the list, Marina de Tavira for best supporting actress and first timer Yalitza Aparicio for best actress. And this is also Netflix's first best picture nomination.
GREENE: OK, here we are in 2019, and Netflix is up for best picture. That's amazing. All right. So who else is celebrating?
DEL BARCO: So the 18th-century drama "The Favourite" was also a favorite, with 10 nominations, including all three actresses, Rachel Weisz, Emma Stone and Olivia Colman, as well as best picture. "Bohemian Rhapsody," the Freddie Mercury biopic, is also up for best picture. Rami Malek, who plays Mercury, is up for best actor.
GREENE: A lot of fans are going to be happy about that.
DEL BARCO: Yeah. And the movie got three other nominations. "Green Book" is also up for best picture. And both actors, Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen, got nominations. And, as expected, "A Star Is Born" did well. It earned eight nominations for best picture and for its stars Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, as an actor and producer - but not as best director or for any of the songs he co-wrote. The duet they sang in the movie, "Shallow," is up for best original song.
(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "SHALLOW")
LADY GAGA: (Singing) I'm off the deep end, watch as I dive in. I'll never meet the ground.
GREENE: And there is our earworm for the rest of Tuesday.
DEL BARCO: (Laughter).
GREENE: All right.
DEL BARCO: Yeah, you know, another musical got multiple nominations, "Mary Poppins Returns," although Emily Blunt, who plays her, did not get one. And the animated "Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse" is a fan favorite and critical darling, so Marvel fans are having their Spidey senses activated.
GREENE: Sure are. OK, and another big question, who was snubbed this morning?
DEL BARCO: Well, as pretty much every year, no women were nominated for best director this time.
GREENE: Wow, yet again.
DEL BARCO: Yep. And there were no nominations at all for the hit "Crazy Rich Asians," which is crazy. And our listeners may be disappointed that the Mr. Rogers documentary, "Won't You Be My Neighbor?" didn't make the list.
GREENE: Oh, no.
DEL BARCO: Yeah. So NPR special correspondent Susan Stamberg, who was in it, will not be on the red carpet.
GREENE: Well, she's always on our red carpet.
DEL BARCO: That's true. But, you know, NPR legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg might be on that red carpet. She was in the documentary "RBG," about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. And we called Nina this morning to get her reaction.
NINA TOTENBERG, BYLINE: (Laughter) Well, whoopee, that's wonderful for the producers and directors of this movie, who did such a great job in depicting Justice Ginsburg and her work and how it changed the country for all of us.
GREENE: What is Nina going to wear at the Oscars? That's my question.
DEL BARCO: That's the big question, yes. I'll be there to capture it all for NPR listeners next month.
GREENE: Fabulous. NPR's Mandalit del Barco here at NPR West. Thanks, Mandalit.
DEL BARCO: Thanks, David. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.