A Heath Ledger win (and you can count on it) will mean more now that “The Dark Knight” and director Chris Nolan were snubbed. A look at the top six Academy Awards categories. The show is Feb. 22.

Best Picture: “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” “Frost/Nixon,” “Milk,” “The Reader,” “Slumdog Millionaire.”

Surprise: “The Reader” instead of “The Dark Knight” or “Doubt” Pick: “Slumdog Millionaire” (10 noms) over “Benjamin Button” (13 noms)
Spoiler: “The Reader”

Actor: Richard Jenkins, “The Visitor”; Frank Langella, “Frost/Nixon”; Sean Penn, “Milk”; Brad Pitt, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”; Mickey Rourke, “The Wrestler.”

Surprise: Jenkins instead of Clint Eastwood (“Gran Torino”)
Pick: Rourke over Penn
Spoiler: Pitt

Actress: Anne Hathaway, “Rachel Getting Married”; Angelina Jolie, “Changeling”; Melissa Leo, “Frozen River”; Meryl Streep, “Doubt”; Kate Winslet, “The Reader.”

Surprise: Leo instead of Golden Globe winner Sally Hawkins (“Happy-Go-Lucky”)
Pick: Winslet
Spoiler: Streep

Supporting Actor: Josh Brolin, “Milk”; Robert Downey Jr., “Tropic Thunder”; Philip Seymour Hoffman, “Doubt”; Heath Ledger, “The Dark Knight”; Michael Shannon, “Revolutionary Road.”

(Mild) Surprise: Shannon instead of Dev Patel (“Slumdog Millionaire”)
Pick: Ledger
Spoiler: none

Supporting Actress: Amy Adams, “Doubt”; Penelope Cruz, “Vicky Cristina Barcelona”; Viola Davis, “Doubt”; Taraji P. Henson, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”; Marisa Tomei, “The Wrestler.”

Surprise: Adams instead of Winslett (“The Reader”), which was honored as a lead role
Pick: Cruz
Spoiler: Tomei

Director: David Fincher, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”; Ron Howard, “Frost/Nixon”; Gus Van Sant, “Milk”; Stephen Daldry, “The Reader”; Danny Boyle, “Slumdog Millionaire.”

Surprise: Daldry instead of Christopher Nolan (“The Dark Knight”)
Pick: Boyle over Fincher
Spoiler: Van Sant