No one's more shocked than Barkhad Abdi USATODAY

BARKHAD-ABDIThink 12 Years a Slave newcomer Lupita Nyong'o is overwhelmed? Try Barkhad Abdi, a former Minnesota-based Somali limousine driver who answered a Captain Phillips casting call and wound up with an Oscar nomination for best supporting actor on Thursday.
The nomination has "been crazy, in a good way. It was just so exciting," says Abdi. "I'm really humbled and honored and really happy about the nomination. I still cannot comprehend it fully."
The actor says he has "no idea" who his date will be to the big show, and upon hearing his name this morning, "that's when I got stuck for a few minutes. Even though I was kind of expecting it (thanks to prognosticators), when my name was called it was shocking."
Abdi's first congratulatory call was from "my little sister," he says. He hasn't had a chance to speak with director Paul Greengrass or co-star Tom Hanks. "Not yet. My phone was dead all morning," thanks to rounds of press calls.
His next job? "I am debating that. There are scripts that I'm reading," he says. And working with Tom Hanks left him with a good lesson: "My main takeaway was, you work your hardest no matter how big you get," says Abdi. Hanks' best advice on surviving awards season? "He told me to be myself, and go with it."

USATODAY

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