The nominees for the 19th annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards have been released and are pretty much as expected. The leaders of the pack are two of the years' most anticipated films, each boosting an ensemble cast and a unique story.

Steve McQueen's '12 Years A Slave' and David O. Russell's 'American Hustle' have garnered an impressive 13 nominations each, the Broadcast Film Critics Association announced on Monday (Dec 15th).

Chiwetel Ejiofor
Chiwetel Ejiofor as Solomon Northup in '12 Years A Slave'

'12 Years A Slave' has been nominated for Best Picture, Best Actor for Chiwetel Ejiofor, Best Supporting Actor for Michael Fassbender, Best Supporting Actress for Lupita Nyong'o, Best Acting Ensemble, Best Director for Steve McQueen, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction, Best Editing, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup and Best Score for Hans Zimmer.

Upon doing the rounds at this year's film festivals, the historical drama was awarded after receiving positive reviews from critics for a real and raw portrayal of a horrific mark on American history.

Watch the '12 Years A Slave' trailer here

The film is an adaptation of Solomon Northup's account of his kidnap and subsequent sale into slavery until his rescue twelve years later. It depicts Northup's journey into the slave trade, where he went from being a freeman living in New York, to a plantation slave in New Orleans between 1841 and 1853.

British actor Chiwetel Ejiofor, who plays Solomon Northup, was heavily praised by audiences for this role, as was Michael Fassbender's portrayal of the brutal slave trader 'Edwin Epps'. The cast list also includes huge Hollywood star such as Brad Pitt, Paul Giamatti, Paul Dano, Benedict Cumberbatch and Alfre Woodard.

Michael Fassbender
Michael Fassbender in '12 Years A Slave'

See next page for 'American Hustle'