Nine-year-old Quvenzhané Wallis, star of Beasts Of the Southern Wild, is the youngest ever nominee for Best Actress in a Leading Role. (The former youngest Best Actress nominee was Keisha Castle-Hughes, who was nominated for Whale Rider when she was 13; Shirley Temple won something called the Academy Juvenile Award in 1935, when she was 6 years old.)
Quvenzhané, who was was five years old when she auditioned for the role of Hush Puppy, tells the AP that when she found out about the nomination, she had mixed emotions: "I woke up, and (my mother) said, ‘You've been nominated! You're nominated!' I was like, ‘Oh my God!' But it was on the inside. It wasn't on the outside."
The truth is, she is not entirely sure what the fuss is about:
Admittedly, Quvenzhané has never watched an Oscar telecast. ("Whenever they said you might make it to the Oscars, I was like, ‘Who's Oscar? I don't know Oscar,'" she says.) When asked who she wants to meet at the star-studded ceremony, her answer is "everyone from the Disney Channel and Nickelodeon — but not Nick at Nite."
That said, she knows something awesome is happening: "It makes me feel excited," she told Entertainment Tonight. "It makes me feel special too."
The Beasts director describes Quvenzhané, who would like to be an "actress-dentist" when she's older, as "poised and fearless." She also seems incredibly practical, which is why she most likely won't be wearing a long gown to the Academy Awards: "I might step on it," she explains.