BEVERLY HILLS: The following is a basket of facts about the

nominations for the 78th annual Academy Awards.

• Legendary US movie composer John Williams earned two nominations for best original score for Memoirs of a Geisha and Munich, making him the most nominated musician in Oscars history with 45 nods. The nominations also make him the second most-nominated person in Academy Awards history after Walt Disney (59 nods).

• Taiwanese director Ang Lee, 51, whose Brokeback Mountain led this year’s nominations, received his first Oscar nod for 2000’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, which was nominated for best director and best picture, among a total of 10 nominations. Crouching Tiger eventually took home four Oscars, for art direction, cinematography, foreign language film and music.

• A total of 14 of this year’s nominees are first-time Academy Award nominees, while six have previously been on the shortlist for cinema’s highest honours.

Of those six, four ultimately won Oscars: William Hurt for playing a gay leading character in Kiss Of the Spider Woman (1985), Judi Dench for best supporting actress in 1998’s Shakespeare In Love, Charlize Theron for best actress in Monster (2003) and Frances McDormand for best actress in Fargo (1996).

• George Clooney made Oscars history by becoming the first filmmaker ever to be nominated for best director and in an acting category for different films in the same year. Clooney, 44, won his directing nod for Good Night, And Good Luck, and as best supporting actor for Syriana.

• This year marks the first time since the best animated feature category was introduced in 2002 that none of the nominees were produced primarily by computer-generated imagery. The three films up for the award this year are: Howl’s Moving Castle by Hayao Miyazaki, Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride and Nick Park and Steve Box’s Wallace and Gromit in the Curse of the Were-Rabbit.

• The 2006 nominations mark the first time in 25 years that the same five films were shortlisted for both best picture and best director. The last time Academy members chose not to split their nominations over the two categories was in 1981, when Chariots of Fire ended up winning best picture while Reds won best director.