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Oscars 2012: Brad Pitt won’t face himself in best picture race

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Brad Pitt can relax—he won’t be competing against himself in the best picture race. At least, not as a producer.

The actor already has been nominated as a producer of “Moneyball,” in which he stars, but on Friday the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences did not include Pitt as one of the four credited producers on the best picture selection “The Tree of Life,” in which he also stars.

When Oscar nominations were announced Tuesday morning, the academy said the “Tree of Life” credits had not been finalized. When the film was released theatrically, five producers were listed in its credits: Pitt, his business partner Dede Gardner, director Terrence Malick’s longtime collaborator Sarah Green, financier Bill Pohlad and Grant Hill, a veteran of Malick’s “The Thin Red Line.”

The academy, following standards set by the Producers Guild of America, typically limits best picture nominees to no more than three producers, a consequence of the producer stampede when 1998’s “Shakespeare in Love” won the top Oscar statuette.

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The academy’s producers branch, working in collaboration with its executive committee, said “The Tree of Life” represented a ‘rare and extraordinary circumstance” in which four producers could earn a credit. The academy determined that Gardner, Green, Pohlad and Hill would be eligible to collect the trophy should “Tree of Life” win.

When the nominations were announced, Pitt said he would be happy if Gardner was the sole representative from their company, Plan B Entertainment. “It’s a great problem,” he said of the potential of facing himself. “Pancakes for everybody.”

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--John Horn


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