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The Daily Dish Awards Season

Get to Know the Performers Nominated for Their First-Ever Oscar

Justin Timberlake and Lin-Manuel Miranda are among this year's Academy Awards first-timers.

By Tamara Palmer

The nominees for the 89th Academy Awards were announced on Tuesday, which created a very cool First-Timers Club of songwriters, actors, actresses, directors, and screenwriters in the process. Here's a primer on the freshest talent hoping to make Oscar their new roommate:

The Actors

Andrew Garfield

He's been a superhero since 2012, when he appeared in the first of two Spider-Man movies, but Andrew Garfield's turn as a war medic and conscientious objector in Mel Gibson's Hacksaw Ridge has brought him his first chance at Best Actor Oscar glory. He'll next appear in a crime thriller called Under The Silver Lake and as a paralyzed man in Breathe.

Mahershala Ali

His role as a father figure in Moonlight has earned Mahershala Ali a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination as well as a Critic's Choice Award. His extensive resume includes both film and television projects including popular Netflix series House of Cards and Luke Cage and the Oscar-nominated film Hidden Figures.

Lucas Hedges

Lucas Hedges, who just turned 20 a few weeks ago, is this year's youngest Academy Awards nominee. He's vying for Best Supporting Actor for Manchester By The Sea, in which he plays a teenager who has just lost his dad. You might also recognize him from previous roles in Moonrise Kingdom and The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Dev Patel

Dev Patel first made hearts swoon in Slumdog Millionaire, which took home eight Academy Awards in 2009. Although the film received many accolades and praise, it's his role in the international drama Lion that earned Dev his first solo nomination, for Best Supporting Actor.

The Actresses

Ruth Negga

Born in Ethiopia and raised in Ireland, Ruth Negga is now globally known for her stunning role in Loving, which has given her a nod in the Best Actress category. She's also an emerging fashion icon lauded for mastering the art of ladylike style.

Isabelle Huppert

Acclaimed French star Isabelle Huppert has graced the big screen for almost 50 years, which prepared her valiantly for the difficult lead role in Elle, a psychological thriller that delves into rape and rape fantasies for which she has earned a Best Actress nomination and a Golden Globe Award.

Naomie Harris

Naomie's role as a drug-addicted and abusive mother in the drama Moonlight has earned the London-born star a chance at winning Best Supporting Actress. She also played Winnie Mandela in 2013's Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom and has lent her voice to next year's new Jungle Book.

The Director

Barry Jenkins

The Miami-born director and writer debuted on the silver screen with 2008's Medicine for Melancholy and followed it with last year's Moonlight, which has been recognized in eight categories this year, including Best Director. Barry announced that a future directorial project will be a film about a Hasidic Jew called A Contract With God.

The Screenwriters

Tarell Alvin McCraney

Moonlight is based off of the play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue, which McCraney wrote as a semi-autobiographical piece. "It’s a palpable snapshot of memories and dreams that is difficult to sit through,” he admitted to Los Angeles TimesHe and director Barry Jenkins share a nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay.

August Wilson

Playwright August Wilson (who passed away from liver cancer in 2005) won a Pulitzer Prize for Fences in 1987 (and again in 1990 for The Piano Lesson). His enduring work is now in the running for Best Adapted Screenplay for the cinematic version, which stars Viola Davis and Denzel Washington (who also directed it).

The Songwriters

Lin-Manuel Miranda

The OG Hamilton homeboy, who already has an Emmy, a Grammy, and a Tony, is hoping to win the Oscar for Best Original Song for the inspirational "How Far I'll Go," which was sung by Alessia Cara for the Disney feature film Moana. If he wins, he will be the youngest person to achieve the rarified EGOT status (and only the 13th overall).

Justin Timberlake

Justin Timberlake is no stranger to winning awards — especially Grammys. He's actually got nine of those. But this is the singer and songwriter's first Oscar nomination, earned for his infectious contribution to "Can't Stop The Feeling!" from the movie Trolls. Fun fact: If Justin wins, it will be the second Academy Award for a Memphis-born songwriter — Three 6 Mafia's "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" from Hustle & Flow took home the honors in 2006.

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