Golden Globes: Steven Spielberg's Lincoln leads nominations

Lincoln Steven Spielberg's presidential drama Lincoln leads the pack for best film drama. Click through to see the four other films in the category
Ben Affleck Iran hostage crisis thriller, Argo received five nominations including best director for Ben Affleck, best screenplay and best supporting actor for Alan Arkin
 Jamie Foxx and Christoph Waltz Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino's western, tied with Argo to receive five nominations. The film stars Jamie Foxx, along with Christoph Waltz and Leonardo DiCaprio, who were both nominated for best supporting actor
Zero Dark Thirty There were four nominations for Oscar-winning director Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty, based on the American hunt for Osama bin Laden
Life of Pi Ang Lee's shipwreck story Life of Pi rounded off the nominations for best motion picture drama. The Golden Globes, organised by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association will be held on January 13 in Beverly Hills

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Steven Spielberg's presidential biopic Lincoln is the frontrunner at this year's Golden Globe nominations.

It is up for seven prizes, including best actor for Daniel Day-Lewis, best director for Spielberg, and best film drama.

In the latter category, it competes with Ben Affleck's thriller Argo and Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained, both of which have five nominations.

The winners will be announced in Los Angeles on 13 January, 2013.

There are also nominations for three British Dames - Helen Mirren, Maggie Smith and Judi Dench, as well as TV nods to Downton Abbey, The Hour and Sherlock.

Bond theme

In the drama actor category, British star Day-Lewis is shortlisted alongside Richard Gere, John Hawkes, Denzel Washington and Joaquin Phoenix, for The Master.

Phoenix shared the best actor prize with his co-star Philip Seymour Hoffman at the recent Venice Film Festival, but the elder actor has been demoted to the supporting actor category at the Globes.

Start Quote

It's great that they shine a spotlight on the genre. Musicals aren't made very often because they're very risky”

End Quote Les Mis director Tom Hooper

Nominations for best actress are led by Jessica Chastain, who plays a CIA agent on the hunt for Osama Bin Laden in Zero Dark Thirty.

She is joined on the shortlist by Marion Cotillard, Naomi Watts and British stars Rachel Weisz and Dame Helen Mirren, who stars in Hitchcock, which documents the making of Psycho.

The film adaptation of stage hit Les Miserables, by British director Tom Hooper, has four nominations. It is in the running for best film - musical or comedy, while stars Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway both get acting nods.

Hooper, who won an Oscar for The King's Speech in 2010, told the BBC the nominations were a "testament" to the film's production crew, "who were largely London-based".

"It's a great moment for the industry there," he added.

However, Hooper himself missed out on the shortlist for best director.

Instead, Ben Affleck, Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, Kathryn Bigelow and Ang Lee - who filmed the "unfilmable" novel Life Of Pi - all made the cut.

This is the first time Affleck has been named in the category, but his counterparts are all former nominees, with Lee and Spielberg going on to win twice.

A scene from Argo Affleck (r) is also nominated as best director

Voted for by members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the Golden Globes are an important precursor to the Oscars.

Last year's winners included Meryl Streep, Octavia Spencer, Jean Dujardin and Christopher Plummer - all of whom went on to receive Academy Awards in the main acting categories.

One notable difference of opinion in recent years came over The Hurt Locker.

The Globes overlooked Kathryn Bigelow in the best director category, giving the prize to her former husband, James Cameron, for Avatar. A month later, the decision was reversed at the Oscars, where Bigelow became the first woman ever to win the best director award.

Darker tones

Another of the big differences between the two ceremonies is the spilt between "drama" and "musical or comedy" in the main categories, meaning the Globes can lavish praise on lighter films which may miss out at the Oscars.

Megan Fox, Ed Helms and Jessica Alba Megan Fox, Ed Helms and Jessica Alba announced the nominations

The category has darker tones this year, however, with the inclusion of Les Miserables and Silver Linings Playbook, a comedy with a strong focus on mental health problems.

On the other hand, romantic drama Salmon Fishing In The Yemen unexpectedly received three nominations in the category, with British stars Ewan McGregor and Emily Blunt up for best actor and actress.

Another British contender is pop star Adele, nominated for best original song for her title track from the Bond film Skyfall.

She is up against Suddenly from Les Miserables, as well as songs from The Hunger Games, Act of Valor and Stand Up Guys, which features a song from Bon Jovi.

In the foreign language category, Amour - the winner of the Palme d'Or in Cannes - is up against A Royal Affair from Denmark, Untouchable from France, Rust & Bone and Kon-Tiki.

Analysis

The Golden Globes are overstated as an Oscar predictor. I don't think separating drama from comedy and musicals is that useful in a year where you have a very strong musical.

Les Miserables feels like the most traditional best picture winner at the Oscars, but the Globes put it in the musical category, so you can't tell whether it could beat Lincoln, Life of Pi or Argo at the Oscars.

In terms of best actor, I think if Daniel Day-Lewis doesn't get it, then there is something wrong with the world. Jessica Chastain should win best actress because she is terrific in Zero Dark Thirty.

It's interesting not to see The Hobbit anywhere there which I think people will be disappointed by. I think in the Oscars, too, it is going to do better in the technical categories.

The Golden Globes also recognises achievements in television and there are some notable successes for British shows and actors.

Downton Abbey's Michelle Dockery is nominated for best actress in a TV miniseries, while her co-star Dame Maggie Smith is nominated in the supporting actress category.

"This continued run of success for Downton in the US awards demonstrates the affection for the show in America and shows that British writing, acting and production can match the very best of Hollywood," said the show's executive producer Gareth Neame.

BBC One newsroom drama The Hour, comedy series Episodes - starring Friends actor Matt Le Blanc - and Benedict Cumberbatch's portrayal of Sherlock Holmes are all in the running for prizes.

Damian Lewis, the British-born star of Homeland is up against Boardwalk Empire's Steve Buscemi in the shortlist for best actor in a TV drama.

Hosting duo

Amanda Nevill, CEO of the British Film Institute, said: "With nominations for British films and talent spread across so many categories at this year's Golden Globes, the UK's world class film industry, talent and skills are once again in the global spotlight."

Claire Danes is up for best actress for Homeland, having won the award last year. But the winner of the best actor last year, Kelsey Grammar saw his show Boss cancelled after series two.

Also nominated are Bryan Cranston, Jeff Daniels and Mad Men's John Hamm.

After being hosted for three years by Ricky Gervais, this year's Golden Globes will be hosted by comedy actresses Amy Poehler and Tina Fey.

Both are up for the TV comedy actress prize, for their shows Parks and Recreation and 30 Rock.

It has already been announced that Silence of the Lambs actress Jodie Foster will receive the Cecil B DeMille Award for lifetime achievement at January's event, held in the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

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