We're not sure how the Oscars managed to overlook ''Spider-Man,'' ''Barbershop,'' ''8 Mile,'' and ''The Ring'' as Best Picture candidates alongside ''The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers,'' but the folks at MTV have rescued those movies from awards oblivion by nominating them all for the top category in its 12th annual Movie Awards. The race for the golden popcorn buckets is shaping up as a showdown between ''Spider-Man'' and ''Two Towers,'' with both fan favorites nominated for five buckets each.
''Spider-Man'''s Tobey Maguire will face off against ''Two Towers''' Viggo Mortensen for Best Male Performance. Kirsten Dunst is up for Best Female Performance, and her upside-down liplock with Maguire seems a shoo-in for Best Kiss. Willem Dafoe's Green Goblin is up for Best Villain. On the ''Rings''-side, the battle at Helms Deep is up for Best Action Sequence, and Elijah Wood, Sean Astin, and Gollum earned a nomination for Best On-Screen Team. Thanks in part to Gollum, the awards introduce a new category this year: Best Virtual Performance, whose computer-generated nominees also include Yoda (''Star Wars: Episode II -- Attack of the Clones''), Scooby-Doo, Kangaroo Jack, and Dobby (''Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets'').
Other multiple nominees include ''Austin Powers in Goldmember,'' ''Barbershop,'' ''Daredevil,'' ''8 Mile,'' ''Jackass: The Movie,'' and ''Star Wars: Episode II -- Attack of the Clones,'' with three nods apiece. The awards show will be taped May 31 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles and will air on MTV on June 5.
''The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers''
Best Male Performance
Leonardo DiCaprio, ''Catch Me If You Can''
Vin Diesel, ''XXX''
Eminem, ''8 Mile''
Tobey Maguire, ''Spider-Man''
Viggo Mortensen, ''The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers''
Best Female Performance
Halle Berry, ''Die Another Day''
Kirsten Dunst, ''Spider-Man''
Kate Hudson, ''How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days''
Queen Latifah, ''Chicago''
Reese Witherspoon, ''Sweet Home Alabama''
Daveigh Chase (Samara Morgan), ''The Ring''
Willem Dafoe (Norman Osbourne/Green Goblin), ''Spider-Man''
Daniel Day-Lewis (Bill the Butcher), Gangs of New York''
Colin Farrell (Bullseye), ''Daredevil''
Mike Myers (Goldmember), ''Austin Powers in Goldmember''
Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner, ''Daredevil''
Nick Cannon and Zoe Saldana, ''Drumline''
Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz, ''Gangs of New York''
Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst, ''Spider-Man''
Adam Sandler and Emily Watson, ''Punch-Drunk Love''
Best Action Sequence
Collision on Highway 23, ''Final Destination 2''
The Battle for Helms Deep, ''The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers''
The Escape, ''Minority Report''
The Arena Conflict, ''Star Wars: Episode II -- Attack of the Clones''
Fann Wong versus the Palace Guards, ''Shanghai Knights''
Jet Li versus the Ultimate Fighters, ''Cradle 2 the Grave''
Johnny Knoxville versus Butterbean, ''Jackass: The Movie''
Yoda versus Christopher Lee, ''Star Wars: Episode II -- Attack of the Clones''