Clint Eastwood's war epic FLAGS OF OUR FATHERS, musical DREAMGIRLS and BABEL have emerged as early Oscars favourites after picking up 26 US Satellite Awards nominations between them.
The stunning Iwo Jima battle sequences in Eastwood's new film earned the project a string of technical nominations among it's 10-honour haul, while Dreamgirls picked up two Original Song nominations and nods for stars Jennifer Hudson and Beyonce Knowles.
Babel, which stars Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett, earned seven award nominations, but only RINKO KIKUCHI is named in the acting categories, securing a Best Supporting Actress honour for her role.
Leonardo Dicaprio earned two acting nominations - a Best Actor nod for BLOOD DIAMOND and a Best Supporting Actor honour for THE DEPARTED.
And controversy seems to have served Sacha Baron Cohen and Mel Gibson well - the British funnyman lands a Best Actor nod in the Comedy or Musical category, while Gibson's APOCALYPTO is among the Best Foreign Film nominees.
In the Satellite Awards' TV categories, acclaimed new drama STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP and the Salma Hayek-produced UGLY BETTY lead the way with four nominations apiece.
Secured for honours at the International Press Association gala on 17 December (06) are the cast of THE DEPARTED (Best Ensemble, Motion Picture), the cast of medical TV drama GREY'S ANATOMY (Best Ensemble, Television) and actor Martin Landau, who will be presented with the Satellite's Mary Pickford Award For Outstanding Artistic Contribution.
The full list of movie nominees is:
Actress In A Motion Picture, Drama
PENELOPE CRUZ - VOLVER
HELEN MIRREN - THE QUEEN
JUDY DENCH - NOTES ON A SCANDAL
GRETCHEN MOLL - THE NOTORIOUS BETTIE PAGE
MAGGIE GYLLENHAAL - SHERRYBABY
Actor In A Motion Picture, Drama
DEREK LUKE - CATCH A FIRE
JOSHUA JACKSON - AURORA BOREALIS
FOREST WHITAKER - THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND
RYAN GOSLING - HALF NELSON
PATRICK WILSON - LITTLE CHILDREN
LEONARDO DiCAPRIO - BLOOD DIAMOND
Actress In A Motion Picture, Comedy/Musical
TONI COLLETTE - LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE
JODIE WHITAKER - VENUS
BEYONCE KNOWLES - DREAMGIRLS
MERYL STREEP - The Devil Wears Prada
JULIE WALTERS - DRIVING LESSONS
ANNETTE BENING - RUNNING WITH SCISSORS
Actor In A Motion Picture, Comedy/Musical
JOSEPH CROSS - RUNNING WITH SCISSORS
AARON ECKHART - THANK YOU FOR SMOKING
SACHA BARON COHEN - BORAT: CULTURAL LEARNINGS OF AMERICA FOR MAKE BENEFIT GLORIOUS NATION OF KAZAKHSTAN
PETER O'TOOLE - VENUS
WILL FERRELL - Stranger Than Fiction
Actress In A Supporting Role
ABIGAIL BRESLIN - LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE
LILY TOMLIN - A PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION
BLYTHE DANNER - THE LAST KISS
RINKO KIKUCHI - BABEL
CATE BLANCHETT - NOTES ON A SCANDAL
JENNIFER HUDSON - DREAMGIRLS
Actor In A Supporting Role
DONALD SUTHERLAND - AURORA BOREALIS
ADAM BEACH - FLAGS OF OUR FATHERS
LEONARDO DiCAPRIO - THE DEPARTED
ALAN ARKIN - LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE
BRAD PITT - BABEL
JACK NICHOLSON - THE DEPARTED
Motion Picture, Drama
FLAGS OF OUR FATHERS
THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND
Motion Picture, Comedy/Musical
LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE
THANK YOU FOR SMOKING
THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA
STRANGER THAN FICTION
Motion Picture, Foreign Language
THE LIVES OF OTHERS (GERMANY)
CHANGING TIMES (FRANCE)
SYRIAN BRIDE (ISRAEL)
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