The Dark Knight, Christian Bale

Warner Bros. Pictures

Maybe fans should have seen it coming, The Dark Knight, after all, does not have a happy ending.

The genre-busting Batman movie, a critical and popular favorite that earned more money in Hollywood history than all but one film and, up until today's Oscar nominations, spent award season being lauded as one of the Industry's top films, was denied a shot at the prize of prizes: Best Picture.

Also turned away: Dark Knight filmmaker Christopher Nolan, shut out of the directing and writing categories.

The Dark Knight did earn eight overall nominations, including one for the late Heath Ledger, but it didn't earn the respect that its studio and at least one grassroots fan campaign sought.

Others coming up short: WALL-E, which desired a Best Picture slot, but made do with an Animated Feature nomination; Kate Winslet, who was nominated for The Reader, but was unable to become a double nominee for Revolutionary Road; Bruce Springsteen, a Golden Globes winner for The Wrestler's title song, a non-factor in the Original Song race (and, no, Miley Cyrus' Bolt song wasn't nominated, either).

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