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Wednesday June 23rd, 2021 2:29AM

Riz Ahmed, Leslie Odom Jr, others react to Oscar nominations

By The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Reactions from some of the nominees for the 93rd Academy Awards:

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“I owe Sam everything for this role. I leaned into Sam Cooke’s signature confidence and signature swagger to make this believable. There were plenty of places that I felt like I might not measure up. But in those moments, I would reach for Sam’s confidence, because he knew how to measure up. There were times, there were moments that it felt like bringing him so close helped me find some of that magic in myself.” — Leslie Odom Jr., nominated for best supporting actor for his role as Sam Cooke in “One Night in Miami,” in an interview.

“When you hear your own name it’s a weird feeling, I just quietly gave thanks and felt some gratitude ... but when I heard (fellow nominees including Paul Raci and Darius Marder) I was punching the air and jumping up and down in my bed and screaming! This really felt like a family affair.” — Riz Ahmed, nominated for best actor for “Sound of Metal,” in an interview.

“Wow Wa We Waa! Thank you to the Academy for this honor! I really can’t believe this — to hear my name in the company of these remarkable women and their breathtaking performances is a dream come true! I am so grateful to Sacha Baron Cohen and my “Borat” family and congratulations to them for their adapted screenplay nomination." — Maria Bakalova, nominated for best supporting actress for “Borat,” in a statement.

“It feels exactly the way you think it does. It feels great. It doesn’t get old ... As a writer this is hard for me to say but I’m beginning to think the performance of the cast may have something to do with the quality of the film. Showing up for work in the morning I felt like I was getting tossed the keys to a Formula One race car and as long as I didn’t put the car in the wall, these actors were going to win.” — Aaron Sorkin, director and screenwriter of “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” nominated in six categories including best picture, in an interview.

“Oh, no, never, ever even dreamt about it. No, it was just other side of the world, that story. So not to me.” — Yuh-Jung Youn, nominated for best supporting actress for “Minari,” said in an interview after arriving in Vancouver, Canada, and beginning a quarantine period.

“Never going to stop crying,” Emerald Fennell, nominated for best director and best original screenplay for “Promising Young Woman,” which also received nods for best picture and best actress, on Twitter.

“It was a complete surprise. We were in the middle of talking about something else because we, of course, never, ever saw that coming and that created more sort of a sense of ecstasy and and the element of celebration escalated drastically. ... It’s midday here and I’ve already had my share of champagne, bubbles are good to start with. It accelerates things. And yes, I’ll have some drinks tonight.” — Thomas Vinterberg on his nomination for best director for “Another Round,” which was also nominated for best international feature film, in an interview.

“We are up in the mountains at Lake Arrowhead expecting a snowstorm this morning. This was especially a great day to wake up (early) ... There's kind of a moment when you see your movie appear that you were hoping for it but there it is, and you can't believe it, and its an incredibly satisfying rewarding thing that you hope that everybody on the team got up also to experience. This is the first time I have directed a feature so any kind of acknowledgment is really a wonderful honor… (Late screenwriter) Audrey Wells wrote a story knowing she would not live to see this movie, she put her heart and soul into this to communicate a message that was perfect for the world at this time … I am still amazed that I was given the opportunity to direct it.” — Glen Keane, director of “Over the Moon,” nominated for best animated feature, in an interview.

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