With 13 nominations, including best film, best director for Jean-Pierre Jeunet and best actress for Audrey Tautou, Amelie leads the race for the 27th Cesar Awards, the French equivalent of the Academy Awards, to be presented on March 2.

Jean-Pierre Jeunet's chart-topping title (9 million-plus French admissions), which has become the highest-grossing French-language film ever in the US, clocking nearly $30m at the tills, has also received nine nominations for the British Academy Awards.

In the Cesars best film category, Amelie will be competing with Jacques Audiard's Sur Mes Levres (Read My Lips) which garnered nine nominations including best actor for Vincent Cassel and best actress for Emmanuelle Devos, in a tie with Francois Dupeyron's La Chambre Des Officiers (The Officer's Ward) (a surprise since the Cannes title had a lukewarm career in France).

Other titles in the best film category include Coline Serreau's Chaos (nominated five times) and Francois Ozon's Sous Le Sable (Under The Sand), both also competing in the best actress category (Dominique Frot and Charlotte Rampling, respectively).

For the best actress crown, Tautou, Devos, Frot and Rampling will be also be competing with Isabelle Huppert (for Michael Haneke's La Pianiste) a strong contender since the actress has already been nominated 10 times.

Also vying for the best actor award will be Eric Caravaca (The Officer's Ward), Andre Dussolier (Tanguy) also nominated in the best supporting actor category for The Officer's Ward, Jacques Dutronc (C'est La Vie) and Michel Bouquet (Comment J'ai Tue Mon Pere/How I Killed My Father).

Nominees in the best foreign film category include Joel Coen's The Man Who Wasn't There, Nanni Moretti's La Stanza Del Figlio (The Son's Room), Baz Luhrmann's Moulin Rouge, David Lynch's Mulholland Drive and David Soderbergh's Traffic.

Cesar nominations in full

Best film
The Officer's Ward - Francois Dupeyron
Chaos - Colline Serreau
Amelie - Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Under The Sand - Francois Ozon
Read My Lips - Jacques Audiard

Best director
Jacques Audiard - Read My Lips
Patrice Chereau - Intimacy
Francois Dupeyron - The Officers' Ward
Jean-Pierre Jeunet - Amelie
Francois Ozon - Under The Sand

Best actor
Michel Bouquet - How I Killed My Father
Eric Caravaca - The Officers's Ward
Vincent Cassel - Read My Lips
Andre Dussollier - Tanguy
Jacques Dutronc - C'est la Vie

Best actress
Emmanuel Devos - Read My Lips
Catherine Frot - Chaos
Isabelle Huppert - The Pianist
Charlotte Ramping - Under The Sand
Audrey Tautou - Amelie

Best supporting actor
Jamel Debbouze - Amelie
Rufus -Amelie
Andre Dussollier - The Officers's Ward
Edouard Baer - Betty Fisher And Other Stories
Jean-Paul Roussillon - The Girl From Paris (Une Hirondelle A Fait Le Printemps

Best supporting actress
Isabelle Nanty - Amelie
Line Renaud - Chaos
Nicole Garcia Betty Fisher And Other Stories
Noemie Lvovsky - My Wife Is An Actress (Ma Femme Est Une Actrice)
Annie Girardot - The Pianist

Best male newcomer
Gregori Derangère - The Officers's Ward
Jean-Michel Portal - The Officers's Ward
Eric Berger - Tanguy
Stefano Cassetti - Roberto Succo
Robinson Stevenin - Mauvais Genres

Best female newcomer
Helène Fillières - Reines d'Un Jour
Marion Cotillard - Les Jolies Choses
Helène De Fougerolles - Va Savoir
Rachida Brakni - Chaos
Isild Le Besco - Roberto Succo

Best foreign film
Moulin Rouge - Baz Luhrmann
Traffic - Steven Soderbergh
The Son's Room - Nanni Moretti
Mulholland Drive - David Lynch
The Man Who Wasn't There - Joel Coen

Best screenplay (original or adapted)
Amelie - Jean-Pierre Jeunet / Guillaume Laurant
The Officers's Ward - Francois Dupeyron
Chaos - Coline Serreau
Read My Lips - Jacques Audiard / Tonino Benacquista
No Man's Land - Danis Tanovic

Best first work of fiction
My Wife Is An Actress - Yvan Attal
Le Peuple Migrateur - Jacques Cluzaud / Michel Debats / Jacques Perrin
Gregoire Moulin Contre l'humanite - Artus de Penguern
No Man's Land - Danis Tanovic
The Girl From Paris - Christian Carion

Best short film
La Pomme, La Figue Et L'amande - Joel Brisse
Au Premier Dimanche D'aout - Florence Miailhe
Des Morceaux De Ma Femme - Frederic Pelle
Millevaches - Pierre Vinour
Les Filles Du Douze - Pascale Breton

Best music
Amelie - Yann Tiersen
Brotherhood Of The Wolf - Joseph LoDuca
Le Peuple Migrateur - Bruno Coulais
Read My Lips - Alexandre Desplat

Best cinematography
Amelie - Bruno Delbonnel
The Officers's Ward - Tetsuo Nagata
Read My Lips - Mathieu Vadepied

Best design
Amelie - Aline Bonetto
Brotherhood Of The Wolf Guy-Claude François
The Lady And The Duke - Antoine Fontaine

Best sound
Amelie - Vincent Arnardi / Gerard Hardy / Jean Umansky
Brotherhood Of The Wolf - Cyril Holtz / Jean-Paul Mugel
Read My Lips - Cyril Holtz / Pascal Villard

Best Editing
Amelie - Herve Schneid
Le Peuple Migrateur - Marie-Josèphe Yoyotte
Read My Lips - Juliette Welfling

Best costume
Amelie - Madeline Fontaine
Brotherhood Of The Wolf - Dominique Borg
The Officers's Ward - Catherine Bouchard
The Lady And The Duke Pierre-Jean Larroque