When the casts of "Pineapple Express" and "Tropic Thunder" assembled, they likely weren't dreaming of their awards speeches.
Despite the outlandishness of the two comedies, each was honored this morning when Golden Globes nominations were announced.
James Franco is up for best actor in a comedy or musical for his stoner performance in "Pineapple Express." Robert Downey Jr. and Tom Cruise were nominated for best supporting actor for their performances in the raunchy "Tropic Thunder."
Franco and Cruise likely expected their awards chances to come from other, more serious films. Cruise stars as a Adolf Hitler assassin Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg in the soon-to-be-released "Valkyrie." Franco co-stars in the lauded "Milk," a performance for which he was already nominated for an Independent Spirit award.
By splitting awards between drama and musical or comedy, the Globes give more attention to comedies than other awards. Still, Franco's perpetually high performance was the most purely laugh-seeking among his fellow nominees: Javier Bardem ("Vicky Cristina Barcelona"), Dustin Hoffman ("Last Chance Harvey") and Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson (both for "In Bruges").
The nominations for the over-the-top "Tropic Thunder" were even more unusual. Cruise and Downey Jr. are up against the dramatic performances of Heath Ledger ("The Dark Knight"), Philip Seymour Hoffman ("Doubt") and Ralph Fiennes ("The Duchess").
Downey Jr. has drawn acclaim for his portrayal of a white actor playing a black action hero in "Tropic Thunder." In the film, Cruise plays a dirty-dancing movie mogul in the mold of Viacom chairman Sumner Redstone.
Franco won a Golden Globe in 2002 for his performance in the made-for-TV movie "James Dean." Cruise has won three Globes for performances in "Born on the Fourth of July," "Jerry Maguire" and "Magnolia." Downey Jr. previously won a Globe for his performance on "Ally McBeal" and shared in the ensemble award for 1993's "Short Cuts."