Canada will be well represented come Oscar Sunday, when nominees like composer Howard Shore (for Hugo), Christopher Plummer and the makers of Monsieur Lazhar compete in their respective categories.
This year, the neighbor up north has 18 nominees, with Plummer, a Toronto native, as the only performer up for an Oscar. The 82-year-old is nominated for his work in Beginners in the Best Supporting Actor category, a prize he took home at the Golden Globes in January.
Monsieur Lazhar, directed by Philippe Falardeau of Quebec, is nominated for Best Foreign Language Film, along with the picture's producers Luc Dery and Kim McCraw. The nomination is the second for Dery, whose film Incendies competed in the same category at the 2011 Oscars (the film lost out to Denmark's In a Better World).
Two Canadian films will be competing in the Best Animated Short Film Category. Wild Life, courtesy of Amanda Forbis and Wendy Tilby, is up for the prize, as is Patrick Doyon's Sunday/Dimanche. Both films were actually backed by the National Film Board of Canada, which has produced 12 Academy Award winning films since forming in 1939.
They encourage experimentation. They encourage unconventional stories. Because they're not market-driven, there are different constraints, Forbis recently told the LA Times.
On Thursday, the nominees (sans Plummer) were invited for a luncheon hosted by Canadian Consul General David Fransen, who is based in Los Angeles.
Click through for photos of the nominees at the luncheon, held at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel.
The 84th Academy Awards, hosted by Billy Crystal, is on Sunday at 7 p.m. EST, live from the theater formerly known as the Kodak.