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2012 Oscars: The Nominees Offer Up Their Thoughts

Posted Wednesday January 25, 2012 12:01 AM GMT

With the 84th Annual Academy Awards announcing the nominees for this year's ceremony earlier today (January 24), trophy hopefuls including Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep and Rooney Mara have since offered up comment on being among the esteemed contenders.

Set to be hosted by Billy Crystal on February 26th, the Oscars find Martin Scorsese's "Hugo" leading the field with 11 nods while the acclaimed French silent film "The Artist" follows closely behind with 10.

As for the reactions from the nominees, their thoughts on being in the elite field are as follows:

Michelle Williams: "I am so grateful to be acknowledged by the Academy for my work, which was made possible by the support of our director Simon Curtis and the camaraderie of a terrific ensemble of actors – a special congratulations to Kenneth Branagh – and the fearless Harvey Weinstein. This role has been the challenge and privilege of a lifetime. I would like to think that the recognition our film has received by the Academy is a testament to Marilyn's legacy."

Martin Scorsese: "I am deeply honored to have been nominated by the Academy for my work on Hugo. Every picture is a challenge, and this one - where I was working with 3D, HD and Sacha Baron Cohen for the first time - was no exception. It's a wonderful feeling to know that you've been recognized by the people in your industry. I congratulate my fellow nominees. It's an impressive list, and I'm in excellent company."

Brad Pitt: "This is an extraordinary honor. I am dizzy with joy… and caffeine. Considering both films, Moneyball and The Tree of Life, nearly didn't make it to the screen, this is especially sweet. And I'd like to thank all the artisans and craftsmen who gave their best to each film. I am especially over the moon for Jonah (and the other Moneyballers acknowledged today), Terry Malick and the tribute this is to Billy Beane and the Oakland A's organization. My congratulations to all the nominees…pancakes for everyone."

Jean Dujardin: "I am so grateful to the Academy for this recognition. I can't help but stop and think about how incredible this journey has been. From filming on a Hollywood soundstage to the moment I received this wonderful news this morning, I'm so humbled to be amongst such distinguished and talented people. I share this honor with my friend and director, Michel Hazanavicius. It is his beautiful film that has led me here today. I also share this with the brilliant cast and crew."

Rooney Mara: "I knew it was happening this morning I just didn't want to wake up for it because I wasn't expecting it. I was really surprised and excited."

Kenneth Branagh: "It was a rare honor to play Sir Laurence Olivier. To be recognized by the Academy for doing so is overwhelming. I'm absolutely thrilled."

Meryl Streep: "I am honored to be in company with such beautiful artists, and touched deeply by my fellow actors for their generosity in giving me this acknowledgment."

Viola Davis: "The key to a great performance is surrounding yourself with talent and getting over your ego. One thing everybody gave up was their egos when they got on the set, and I think that showed in the final product."

Christopher Plummer: "It's a shot in the arm for a young kid of 82 to receive an Academy Award nomination this morning. My gratitude to writer/director Michael Mills, the Academy, and to everyone involved with Beginners."

Octavia Spencer: "I am never presumptuous because these sorts of things are beyond our control and I didn't want to be set up for disappointment," Spencer told Variety. "A lot of us actually went to dinner last night and slept over and wanted to be together when we found out, so in case we didn't get that call we wanted to be nice and hungover."

Glenn Close: "I am thrilled for Janet, I am thrilled for our incomparable hair and makeup team. It might be my sixth but it feels like my first. Bravo team Nobbs."

Berenice Bejo: "I'm overjoyed and filled with happiness. I can't believe that a year ago I was learning how to tap dance and today I am nominated for an Academy Award. It was a thrill to work on a project as ambitious as The Artist and I am happy to share this moment with our visionary director, Michel Hazanavicius."

Gary Oldman: "This afternoon in Berlin I have learned that I was nominated for an Academy Award in the category of Best Actor. You may have heard this before, but it has never been truer than it is for me today, it is extremely humbling, gratifying, and delightful to have your work recognized by the Academy, and to join the celebrated ranks of previous nominees and colleagues. Amazing."