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In "Nebraska," Dern plays a taciturn Montana man who believes he's won a mailing sweepstakes. He's been unusually forthright about his honest enjoyment in being back in the spotlight with "Nebraska," which was also nominated for Payne's screenplay and June Squibb's supporting performance.
"He's eating it up. He's having a ball," Payne said of Dern. "It's a new start for him at this point in his career and he's chomping at the bit to act. He's got a lot to give, that guy."
Though the Globes are known for their idiosyncratic choices (last year "Salmon Fishing in the Yemen" received three curious nominations), their 2013 picks contained few oddities.
Most notably shutout was "Lee Daniels' The Butler," the civil rights history told through a long-serving White House butler played by Forest Whitaker. Oprah Winfrey has been considered a favorite among supporting actresses. Also denied were hopefuls "Fruitvale Station" and "Prisoners."
Among the nominees included many big names (Cate Blanchett, "Blue Jasmine"; Judi Dench, "Philomena"; Tom Hanks, "Captain Phillips"; Kate Winslet, "Labor Day," Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts, "August: Osage County," Joaquin Phoenix, "Her"; Matthew McConaughey, "Dallas Buyers Club," Julia Louis-Dreyfus, "Enough Said," Emma Thompson, "Saving Mr. Banks) and some fresh faces (Barkhad Abdi, "Captain Phillips"; Jared Leto, "Dallas Buyers Club"; Greta Gerwig, "Frances Ha"; Oscar Isaac, "Inside Llewyn Davis").
"Joel and Ethan have completely changed my life," the 33-year-old Isaac, who plays guitar and sings in the film, said of the Coens. "There's a reason why that happens to so many actors who are involved in their movies."
Gerwig, who plays a young, meandering New York dancer in "Frances Ha," said: "When the phone rang this morning, I silenced it and I thought, UGH, who do I owe money to?"
The last film of 2013 to screen, Scorsese's three-hour financial industry extravaganza had been one of the biggest question marks this awards season. After being snubbed Wednesday by the Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations, it earned a nomination for Leonardo DiCaprio's performance as an out-of-control Wall Street trader, along with the best picture nomination.
The awards and their boozy telecast are known for a desire to attract stars, even if their films aren't quite up to snuff. (It will be a long time before the HFPA, a collection of about 85 largely freelance journalists, lives down its nominations for Johnny Depp's "The Tourist.") This year's ceremony on Jan. 12 will again be hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who led last year's broadcast to 19.7 million viewers, a significant bump for the Globes. They often serve as a preamble to the more prestigious Oscars, which will be held March 2.