If the lack of diversity in the actor and director categories remains the elephant in the room, the Academy's entries in its top category do represent a bracing range of approaches and intentions.
Variety will present its inaugural kudos for below-the-line pros at the 30th edition of the Santa Barbara Intl. Film Festival in February.
See which stars hit the style mark at the 21st Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.
Take innovative world-premiering cinema, add some snow, swag and a whole lot of star power (by way of Brad Pitt, Nicole Kidman and James Franco, for starters) and welcome to Sundance 2015.