The seemingly unstoppable hit The Producers [pictured] managed to snare the largest number of Tony Award nominations ever this morning at 8:30am, when it received 15 nominations. That’s when the nominees for the 55th Antoinette Perry Awards were announced in a press conference featuring Eric McCormack (of TV’s Will and Grace), now starring in The Music Man, and Reba McIntire, now starring in Annie Get Your Gun.

Given the unprecedented amount of publicity and excitement generated by The Producers, any awards speculation is doomed to center on how many wins that show will finally earn. For the record, thanks to multiple nominations, it cannot win 15 Tony Awards. Both Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick, for example, are nominated in the best actor in a musical category, and Roger Bart, Gary Beach, and Brad Oscar are all tapped for best-featured musical actor nods. (Unless, that is, in the statistically nearly impossible event of a three-way tie). Still, the smart money is on a huge Producers sweep when the awards are held on Sunday, June 3.

Nevertheless, there were some surprises in the design categories. David Rockwell was omitted for his hilarious scenic design of The Rocky Horror Show. Surprisingly, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, despite poor reviews, earned two nominations, for Heidi Ettinger’s scenery and Kenneth Posner’s lighting. Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer were cited for the innovative lighting design of Jane Eyre, but both scenic designer John Napier and costumer designer Andreane Neofitou were ignored.

As always, straight plays were generally ignored in the design categories, with only Bob Crowley’s scenery and costumes for The Invention of Love earning citations. Other well-designed straight plays from the last year, including The Man Who Came to Dinner, Design for Living, and Judgment at Nuremberg, to name three, were totally ignored. And The Tony Awards continue to ignore sound designers, flatly refusing to consider them worthy of any award at all.

Happier news came from two special awards to those who have provided crucial historical documentation of the New York Theatre: Betty Corwin, founder of the Theatre on Film and Tape Collection at Lincoln Center, and Theatre World, for decades the yearbook of Broadway, Off Broadway, and Off Off Broadway.

A complete list of nominees follows:

BEST SCENIC DESIGN :
Bob Crowley, The Invention of Love
Heidi Ettinger, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Douglas W. Schmidt, 42nd Street
Robin Wagner, The Producers

BEST COSTUME DESIGN :
Theoni V. Aldredge, Follies
Roger Kirk, 42nd Street
William Ivey Long, The Producers
David C. Woolard, The Rocky Horror Show

BEST LIGHTING DESIGN :
Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer, Jane Eyre
Paul Gallo, 42nd Street
Peter Kaczorowski, The Producers
Kenneth Posner, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

BEST PLAY:
Proof
King Hedley II
The Invention of Love
The Tale of the Allergist's Wife

BEST MUSICAL:
The Producers
The Full Monty
A Class Act
Jane Eyre

BEST REVIVAL OF A MUSICAL:
42nd Street
Follies
Bells Are Ringing
The Rocky Horror Show

BEST REVIVAL OF A PLAY:
The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe
Betrayal
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
The Best Man

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEADING ACTOR IN A PLAY:
Richard Easton, The Invention of Love
Brian Stokes Mitchell, King Hedley II
Gary Sinise, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
Sean Campion, Stones in His Pockets
Conleth Hill, Stones in His Pockets

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEADING ACTRESS IN A PLAY :
Mary-Louise Parker, Proof
Linda Lavin, The Tale of the Allergist's Wife
Juliette Binoche, Betrayal
Jean Smart, The Man Who Came to Dinner
Leslie Uggams, King Hedley II

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEADING ACTOR IN A MUSICAL :
Nathan Lane, The Producers
Matthew Broderick, The Producers
Tom Hewitt, The Rocky Horror Show
Patrick Wilson, The Full Monty
Kevin Chamberlin, Seussical

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEADING ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL:
Randy Graff, A Class Act
Christine Ebersole, 42nd Street
Faith Prince, Bells Are Ringing
Marla Schaffel, Jane Eyre
Blythe Danner, Follies

BEST DIRECTION OF A PLAY :
Daniel Sullivan, Proof
Jack O'Brien, The Invention of Love
Marion McClinton, King Hedley II
Ian McElhinney, Stones in His Pockets

BEST DIRECTION OF A MUSICAL :
Susan Stroman, The Producers
Jack O'Brien, The Full Monty
Christopher Ashley, The Rocky Horror Show
Mark Bramble, 42nd Street

BEST BOOK OF A MUSICAL:
Mel Brooks and Tom Meehan, The Producers
Terrence McNally, The Full Monty
John Caird, Jane Eyre
Lonny Price and Linda Klein, A Class Act

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE:
Mel Brooks, The Producers
Ed Kleban, A Class Act
David Yazbek, The Full Monty
Paul Gordon and John Caird, Jane Eyre

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A FEATURED ACTOR IN A PLAY :
Charles Brown, King Hedley II
Larry Bryggman, Proof
Michael Hayden, Judgment at Nuremberg
Robert Sean Leonard, The Invention of Love
Ben Shenkman, Proof

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A FEATURED ACTRESS IN A PLAY:
Michele Lee, The Tale of the Allergist's Wife
Viola Davis, King Hedley II
Johanna Day, Proof
Penny Fuller, The Dinner Party
Marthe Keller, Judgment at Nuremberg

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A FEATURED ACTOR IN A MUSICAL :
Gary Beach, The Producers
Roger Bart, The Producers
Andre DeShields, The Full Monty
John Ellison Conlee, The Full Monty
Brad Oscar, The Producers

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A FEATURED ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL:
Cady Huffman, The Producers
Polly Bergen, Follies
Kate Levering, 42nd Street
Mary Testa, 42nd Street
Kathleen Freeman, The Full Monty

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY:
Jerry Mitchell, The Full Monty
Jim Moore, George Pinney and John Vanderkloff, Blast!
Randy Skinner, 42nd Street
Susan Stroman, The Producers

BEST ORCHESTRATIONS:
Doug Besterman, The Producers
Larry Hochman, A Class Act
Jonathan Tunick, Follies
Harold Wheeler, The Full Monty

For information on Entertainment Design Tony Rewards marketing opportunities, go to the ED July preview.