‘Dunkirk’ has an uphill Oscar battle: It’d be the first Best Picture winner without acting or writing nominations in 85 years

‘Dunkirk’ has an uphill Oscar battle: It’d be the first Best Picture winner without acting or writing nominations in 85 years
The story of this year’s Oscar race is rules. Which long-standing rule awards pundits rely on to make predictions will be broken? All of the top five Best Picture contenders in our predictions have something missing — “The Shape of Water” doesn’t have the SAG ensemble nomination, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” doesn’t have a director nomination, “Lady Bird” and “Get Out” don’t have editing or any craft nominations, and “Dunkirk”? “Dunkirk” would have to break one of the longest stats. Christopher Nolan’s epic doesn’t have any acting or writing nominations and only two films have won Best Picture without either of them: “Wings” (1927/28) and “Grand Hotel” (1932).

That’s right, it hasn’t happened in 85 years. Even then, you can attribute the first two instances to the early days of the Oscars, when categories, rules and voting patterns were in flux. “Wings,” of course, was
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