ByDane Bossey, writer at
The Name is Bossey. Dane Bossey.
Dane Bossey

The 87th annual Academy Awards are coming up, and in honor of the award show that is held in the highest prestige, I'll be telling you how the Oscars aren't just for movies.

And the nominees this year are!

three out of eight are based on books
three out of eight are based on books

The Theory of Everything, American Sniper, Imitation Game, Gone Girl, Still Alice, Foxcatcher, Wild, and Inherent Vice are all Oscar nominated movies that were based on books! Three of these are nominated for Best Picture. But this is nothing new considering since Lord of the Rings: Return of the King won in 2004 seven Best Picture Winners have been based on books, including Ten Years a Slave, Argo, No Country for Old Men, and Slumdog Millionaire!

Some of the Greatest Films of all time are based on books!

The Godfather, Forrest Gump, No Country for Old Men, Gone with the Wind, Midnight Cowboy, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Kramer vs. Kramer, Out of Africa, A Beautiful Mind, Dances With Wolves, Million Dollar Baby, and Schindler's List all won for best picture and they are all based on books!

Oh, the Horror!

Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lector
Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lector

Horror fans often feel snubbed when the Oscars roll around, but that doesn't mean they never bring home the little gold man! The Exorcist, Bram Stoker's Dracula, Jaws, Silence of the Lambs, Jurassic Park, and Sleepy Hollow have all won Academy Awards. What do these movies have in common? That's right, they are all based on books! Silence of the Lambs, based on the novel by Thomas Harris, is the only Horror movie to ever take home Best Picture.

Do kids read anymore? Or do they just wait for the movie?

Even your kids favorite movies are adapted from print! Big Hero 6 is based on a comic book, How to Train Your Dragon 2 is based on a series of books by Cressida Cowell, and Box Trolls is based on "Here Be Monsters" by Alan Snow (shown above). The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, also known as The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, is based on a 10th century Japanese Folktale. They are all nominated for Best Animated Picture this year. Maybe if the Lego Movie was based on a book instead of a popular kids toy it would have been nominated for more than best original song. Perhaps the sequel will have more Oscar nominations.

Angelina Jolie's return

Angelina Jolie had a big year in 2014 and while it didn't translate into a 2015 Oscar nomination for her personally, her movies are up for awards! Jolie made her directing debut with the film Unbroken which is based on the novel by Laura Hillenbrand (shown above), and she also starred as the title character in Disney's Maleficent. Unbroken is up for Best Cinematography, Sound Editing, and Sound Mixing while Maleficent is up for Best Costume Design. Maleficent is based off of the fairy tale "Sleeping Beauty". She doesn't seem to happy about being snubbed for best director.

Jolie's reaction to being snubbed by the Academy
Jolie's reaction to being snubbed by the Academy

Oscars with capes would be cool!

Much like the horror and comedy genres, Superhero films seem to always be left out in the cold (Why isn't Vin Diesel nominated for best supporting actor! hehe). But if you are a big superhero fan like me I have some good news. There are a few superhero movies nominated for Oscars in 2015. Guardians of the Galaxy , X-men: Days of Future Past, and Captain America: Winter Soldier will be battling it out in the Best Visual Effects category. Guardians of the Galaxy will also be up for Best Makeup and Hairstyling. While they aren't novels, there's a reason they are called comic books.

Middle Earth will not be denied!

It wouldn't be Oscar season unless Peter Jackson's adaption of J.R.R. Tolkien's work was up for an award! While the Hobbit films haven't had nearly as much success as The Lord of the Rings films which won a staggering seventeen Oscars, the three Hobbit movies have all been nominated in at least one category. The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies is nominated for Best Sound Editing.

By category

Here's a look at all the nominees for movies that are based off of books in 2015.

Best Picture:

American Sniper, Theory of Everything, Imitation Games

Best Actor in a Leading Role:

Bradley Cooper - American Sniper, Benidict Cumberbatch - The Imitation Game, Eddie Redmayne - The Theory of Everything, Steve Carrel - Foxcatcher

Best Actress in a leading Role:

Felicity Jones - The Theory of Everthing, Reese Witherspoon - Wild, Rosmaund Pike - Gone Girl, Julianne Moore - Still Alice

Best Supporting Actor:

Mark Ruffalo - Foxcatcher

Best Supporting Actress:

Laura Dern - Wild, Keira Knightly - The Imitation Game

Honorable Mention: Merly Streep is nominated for her performance in "Into The Woods" and while it is not a book, it is not an original screenplay either. It is based off a broadway musical not a book.

Best Animated Picture:

Big Hero 6, How to Train Your Dragon 2, The Boxtrolls

Honorable Mention: The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

Best Cinematography:


Best Costume Design:

Inherent Vice, Maleficent

Honorable Mention: Into The Woods


The Imitation Game, Foxcatcher

Film Editing:

American Sniper, The Imitation Game

Makeup and Hairstyling:

Guardians of the Galaxy, Foxcatcher

Best Original Score:

The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything

Production Design:

The Imitation Game

Honorable Mention: Into the Woods

Sound Editing:

American Sniper, The Hobbit: Battle of Five Armies, Unbroken

Sound Mixing:

American Sniper, Unbroken

Visual Effects:

Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain America Winter Soldier, X-men Days of Future Past

Best Adapted Screenplay:

American Sniper, The imitation Game, Inherent Vice, The Theory of Everything

Best Original Screenplay:


You may be wondering how an original screenplay is based on a book. Foxcatcher is based off the memoir by Mark Schultz and Dave Thomas, but Sony Pictures Classics award campaign team decided the film be deemed an original screenplay. It seems like Whiplash and Foxcatcher should switch spots, but hey, it's not up to me.

And so you see my friends, Oscars are just as much about books as they are about movies, because without books to inspire movies so many great movies wouldn't exist! Think about your favorite movie of all time. Is it based on a book? What about your favorite movie this year? Your favorite scary movie? Your favorite kid movie? So many great movies are based on even better books!

Thanks for reading, and let me know what you think in the comments!


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