Lupita Nyong’o, Chiwetel Ejiofor, ’12 Years a Slave’ Score Oscar Nominations
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The 2014 Academy Award nominations have been announced and 12 Years a Slave continues to lead awards season nabbing several Oscar nods fresh off their Best Picture Golden Globe win

Chiwetel Ejiofor nabbed a nomination in the Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Drama category. The British actor has said that his portrayal of Soloman Northup was one of the most difficult roles of his career.

The movie’s other standout performer, and ESSENCE’s Black Women In Hollywood Breakthrough honoree, Lupita Nyong’o also nabbed a nomination for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for her role as Patsey in the film.

The historical drama also nabbed a nomination for Best Motion Picture. It’s set to go up against American  Hustle, Nebraska, Captain Philips, Philomena, Dallas Buyers Club, Gravity, The Wolf of Wall Street and Her.

Overall, 12 Years a Slave nabbed nine nominations. Here are the remaining: Best Supporting Actor (Michael Fassbender), Best Director (Steve McQueen), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Costume, Best Production Design and Best Film Editing.

Captain Phillps co-star Barkhad Abdi also recieved a nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his breakout role as Muse, the leader of a band of Somali pirates who seize a mechant vessel.

Additionally, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom picked up a nod for Best Original Song “Ordinary Love” performed by U2. The song is up against Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” from Despicable Me 2 which, also recieved a nominaiton in that category.

Both 12 Years a Slave and Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom have already taken home top awards from the NAACP Image Awards, BAFTA, Critics Choice Awards, and the Spirit Awards. But after last weekend’s Golden Globes upset (out of a total nine nominations, only one award was won) we’re holding our Oscar excitement until those coveted statues are handed out.

The Academy Awards will air on March 2nd at 7 p.m. ET on ABC. Stay tuned for more information about our coverage of the event.

Click here for a complete list of nominations.