ALEXANDRIA  (AP) — Alexandria native John Hawkes is up for an Academy Award for best supporting actor.

Hawkes was nominated for his role in "Winter's Bone." He plays a sympathetic backwoods tough guy trying to help his niece find her drug-dealing father in the Ozarks.

Hawkes attended St. Cloud State University, then moved to Austin, Texas, where he pursued a career as a musician and actor. He landed in Los Angeles and has had roles in the HBO series "Deadwood" and in movies including "The Perfect Storm" and "American Gangster."

"Winter's Bone" also received Oscar nominations for best picture, best actress for 20-year-old Jennifer Lawrence, and best adapted screenplay.

Hawkes was honored with a special screening of "Winter's Bone" in Alexandria last July.

The Oscars will be televised Feb. 27.

(Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)