Two Wisconsin natives land Oscar nominations

WAUWATOSA/MEQUON (WITI) -- Oscar nominations were announced on Thursday morning, January 16th -- and as it turns out, two men from the Milwaukee area have been nominated!

One is from Wauwatosa, and the other is from Mequon. One is a journalist and the other a writer. Upon learning of their nominations -- both called their parents back home in Wisconsin.

Minutes after the Oscar nominations for Best Documentary Feature were read, a phone rang in Wauwatosa, as Jeremy Scahill shared his joy with his mom, Lisa.

"My mom is the first person that I called. She's always the first person that I call about everything -- good or bad. She was like jumping up and down and going crazy. It was just surreal," Scahill said.

The investigative journalist and Wauwatosa East High School graduate admits he was stunned by the nomination for "Dirty Wars."

The film exposes covert operations carried out by the U.S. in places like Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia.

"I just got back from Egypt and Lebanon where we're showing the film and it premiered in various European capitals. It was in Milwaukee at the Downer Theater," Scahill said.

Scahill lives in Brooklyn, but still calls Milwaukee one of his favorite cities.

"I was just in Milwaukee we took my dad to the Packers season opener," Scahill said.

Scahill says he couldn't resist wearing a subtle tribute to his home state during his interview with FOX6!

Scahill won't be the only nominee with Milwaukee ties on Oscar night.

Mequon native John Ridley will also be there for penning the screenplay "12 Years A Slave."

The film is based on the true story of a man kidnapped and sold into slavery.

Ridley's parents tell FOX6 News their son's nomination is no fluke -- that the Homestead High School grad has built a body of work, and they're happy his persistence has paid off.

It sounds like both of these men have long careers ahead of them.

Scahill says he's working on launching a new media organization with NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden.