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News Nuggets: Watch the new teaser trailer today for 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens'

20 hours ago

The much-anticipated teaser trailer for "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" debuts today in select theaters and on iTunes. The 88 seconds of footage will be for the seventh chapter of the "Star Wars" saga which will hit the big screen in December, 2015. The sequel is directed by J.J. Abrams and reunites original stars Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, and Carrie Fisher 30 years after "Return of the Jedi." Newcomers include Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong'o, John Boyega, and Daisy Ridley. The Wrap -Break- "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1" is already off to a good start for the long Thanksgiving holiday weekend. The Jennifer Lawrence sequel made $14.6 million on Wednesday alone, bringing the overall domestic take to $157.6 milion in its first week. Newcomer "Penguins of Madagascar" drew $6.3 million Wednesday and is expected to rack up $42 million by Sunday night. "Horrible Bosses 2" with Jason Bateman and Jason S...' »


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'The Imitation Game' will be nominated for six Oscars, Experts say

21 hours ago

Ten weeks after wowing the Toronto film festival and winning the audience award, "The Imitation Game" arrives in theaters Friday. Buoyed by strong reviews (scoring 85% at RottenTomatoes), this showcase for Emmy champ Benedict Cumberbatch" ("Sherlock") should do well in limited release this weekend.  -Break- See how our 26 Oscar Experts rank contenders in all top categories Collectively, our 26 Oscar Experts predict it will score six nominations: Best Picture, Actor (Cumberbatch), Supporting Actress (Keira Knightley), Adapted Screenplay, Costume Design and Production Design.  "The Imitation Game" is one of just five films to make the cut with all 26 of our Oscarologists in their lists of Best Picture nominees. The others are: "Birdman," "Boyhood," "Selma" and "The Theory of Everything."  Right now, we're not predicting that "The Imitation Gam...' »


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Oscars news: Behind the scenes of 'The Imitation Game,' Best Picture breakdown

22 hours ago

. Anne Thompson introduces a must-read interview thus: "Look up the credits of 'The Imitation Game' and you will see that the producing team of Ido Ostrowsky and Nora Grossman have not produced any other movies. And yet the first time out of the gate their period British biopic of Enigma codebreaker Alan Turing is the Weinstein Co.'s top dog in this year's awards race, and could earn Benedict Cumberbatch his first Oscar nomination. Toh -Break- Oscar experts: Eddie Redmayne narrows Michael Keaton lead, 'Selma' cracks top five In a provocative piece, Kyle Buchanan writes: "This movie year has been packed with women doing wonderful work, and though those performances might not all have come in conventionally Oscar-worthy movies and will therefore likely be overlooked by the Academy, that doesn't mean they aren't worthy. If the Oscars would simply deign to include these eight terrific women (all of »


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'Unbroken': Last Oscars mystery will soon be solved

27 November 2014 11:27 PM, PST

On Sunday and Monday, media pundits will see the last of the major Oscar contenders – "Unbroken" – and we will finally have a good sense of the race. Currently, the 26 Oscarologists at Gold Derby are thus split on what will win Best Picture: 14 for "Boyhood," 7 for "Unbroken," 3 for "Selma" and 2 for "Birdman." -Break- "Unbroken" could soon jump ahead based upon its pedigree, which makes it look like the ultimate made-for-Oscars movie. Like "12 Years a Slave" and "A Beautiful Mind," it tells the real-life story of someone who triumphs over extreme adversity – in this case Louie Zamperini, a former Olympic track star who survives a plane crash, gets lost at sea for 47 days and then endures two and a half years locked up in Japanese Pow camps during World War II. The fact that it's directed by past Oscar champ Angelina Jolie ("Girl, In..."' »


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Oscars news: Chris Rock ranks his 'Top Five,' Richard Linklater ('Boyhood') feted

27 November 2014 3:42 AM, PST

. Jeff Labrecuqe chats with Chris Rock about "Top Five," in which "he plays a movie star whose already-fading career is about to crumble on the day he’s being interviewed by a savvy New York Times reporter ­(Rosario Dawson) about his comedy career, his ambitious new Oscar-bait movie about the Haitian revolution, and his imminent nuptials to a reality star. She accompanies him to his old neighborhood, where he and his friends kill time arguing about their top five rappers. 'What are the normal ­conversations—not the contrived romantic-­comedy conversations—that happen when you get a bunch of old friends together?' Rock says, describing the scene." EW -Break- Oscar experts: Eddie Redmayne narrows Michael Keaton lead, 'Selma' cracks top five Richard Linklater, our frontrunner for Best Director at the Oscars, is to be feted at the Palm Springs filmfest. The director of "Boyhood," which we tip to »


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Beware: 'Theory of Everything' is a serious, secret Oscars threat

26 November 2014 9:51 PM, PST

When looking over the Best Picture predictions of 25 Oscar experts at Gold Derby, don't take most of their rankings too seriously. Only four of us have "The Theory of Everything" listed as a major threat to win – that is, we have it ranked in our top three: Scott Feinberg (Hollywood Reporter), Matt Atchity (Rotten Tomatoes), Susan Wloszczyna (RogerEbert.com) and me. Everybody else is crazy. -Break- The reason I think it's a hefty Oscar player: "The Theory of Everything" is one of only six top movies in this year's derby that grip people so powerfully that they actively root for it. Others include "Boyhood," "Birdman," "Selma" among films with a realistic chance to win Best Picture and "Whiplash" and "Into the Woods" among those with a better shot at other top categories. Verdict is still out on "Unbroken" because we pundits don't get to see it unt »


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'Survivor' shockers: How many hidden Immunity idols were played at Tribal Council?

26 November 2014 9:06 PM, PST

"Survivor: San Juan del Sur" made up for its lack of hidden Immunity idols being played at Tribal Council this season when not one, but two castaways gave up their idols Wednesday night. And both players -- Jon Misch and Keith Nale -- ended up needing to play them, or else they would have been voted out. That meant "Two and a Half Men" enthusiast/chicken nugget-eating champ Wes Nale got his torch snuffed with only two votes cast against him. Gold Derby readers were notably shocked with this outcome, as the young Louisiana firefighter only had 8/1 odds of going home according to our exclusive "Survivor" racetrack odds. All of our users who correctly predicted Wes' elimination earned game points based on the odds they locked in throughout the week in our "Survivor" prediction contest. -Break- Psst: Here's how to predict reality TV shows and win bragging rights And prizes! »


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Golden Globe winners for Best Film Drama Actress have 50/50 chance at Oscar

26 November 2014 8:23 PM, PST

The Golden Globes have given separate awards for dramas and musicals/comedies since the 1950s, but even though the Oscars tend to favor dramatic performances, only about half of all Golden Globe winners for Best Film Drama Actress are subsequently crowned by the academy. -Break- Why so serious? Golden Globes and Oscars love dramatic men Click here to start entering your predictions in 10 Golden Globe categories for film, or use our easy drag-and-drop menu below to get started. Your predictions determine our racetrack odds, and you can keep editing them right up until the day Golden Globe nominations are announced. You score points based on how accurately predict the nominees (you get more points if you correctly predict a long-shot candidate before anyone else does), and if you're one of our most accurate predictors, you'll be included next year among our elite Top 24 Users, who have even greater influence over our odds. »

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Mike Leigh tells brutal truth about the real 'Mr. Turner': 'I'm not Hollywood' (Podcast)'

26 November 2014 6:15 PM, PST

As Mike Leigh's new film "Mr. Turner" reveals, famous British painter J.M.W. Turner was an infamous human being. Even though he was widely perceived to be a refined aristocrat of the early 19th century, he was also vulgar, selfish and cruel. Hollywood biopics usually paint their subjects in heroic light, but the only place you'll find a golden glow in "Mr. Turner" is around the signature sunsets and burning Parliament buildings so celebrated in his paintings. Why does Leigh risk turning off moviegoers by delivering such a brutally harsh portrayal of the artist in "Mr. Turner"? -Break- "It's not in my nature to do that," Leigh tells Gold Derby editor Tom O'Neil in their podcast chat. (Tune in below.) "I couldn't do that if I wanted to, really. I'm not Hollywood. It's an independent European film. It's got nothing to do with Hollywood." Listen to their audio podcast below. »


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Lisa Kudrow: Return of 'The Comeback' is a 'dream come true' (Podcast)

26 November 2014 3:22 PM, PST

"It's like a dream come true," said Lisa Kudrow during her chat with Gold Derby editor Tom O'Neil about the return of cult comedy hit "The Comeback" to HBO. Listen to their audio podcast below. Has Kudrow's character Valerie Cherish learned anything in the nine years since we last saw her? "You know, I think she's a fraction better. But a fraction. Because no one completely changes into another human being. She gets it now. -Break- Vote now: Strongman Dell Toledo has 15/2 odds of dying next on 'Ahs: Freak Show' "She's a decent person, [but] I think she can't help but be self-absorbed," she adds. "Whatever that damage is, we haven't fully explored yet. That whole thing also just about having to be nice and positive, it's also for herself to keep going ... if she's gonna stay in this game." Kudrow reveals that the original British "The Office"..."' »


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Ann Dowd on her silent 'Leftovers' role: 'You better get your act together, girl' [Exclusive Video]

26 November 2014 3:15 PM, PST

"There is no bag of tricks. You better get your act together, girl," said "The Leftovers" star Ann Dowd in our recent video chat (watch it below) about the challenge of playing a woman who doesn't speak. Her character, Patti Levin, leads the Guilty Remnant, a cult whose members have taken a vow of silence following the disappearance of two-percent of the world's population. "It was a tremendous learning experience," Dowd adds of shooting scenes without dialogue. "Don't walk onto that set if you don't know what you want … It takes the nonsense right out of it." -Break- Justin Theroux ('The Leftovers') on benefits of not knowing what comes next Do you think Dowd's taciturn performance will earn her a Golden Globe nomination for Best TV Supporting Actress? Click here to make your predictions in all Golden Globe TV races, or use our drag-and-drop menu at the bottom »


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Finn Wittrock ('Ahs: Freak Show') on crazy Dandy, underwear scenes and potential Season 5

26 November 2014 3:02 PM, PST

On "American Horror Story: Freak Show," Finn Wittrock plays deranged serial killer-in-training Dandy Mott, one of the season's most popular characters. Humbly, he says he feels very much like a newcomer on the FX hit that includes such regular series mega-stars as Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates and Frances Conroy.  "The first few episodes didn't seem real," he tells Gold Derby in our webcam chat (watch below). "Are they gonna find out that I'm still here? I mean, this isn't right, right? They're gonna fire me at some point."  -Break- Wittrock says that the cast and crew welcomed him with open arms. But with the current season winding down (they're about to start production on the final episode of the season), would Wittrock be interested in coming back for Season 5 of the franchise next year if creator Ryan Murphy asked him? Vote now: Strongman Dell Toledo has 15/2 odds of »


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Finn Wittrock ('Ahs: Freak Show') on playing crazy, underwear scenes and potential Season 5

26 November 2014 3:02 PM, PST

On "American Horror Story: Freak Show," Finn Wittrock plays deranged serial killer-in-training Dandy Mott, one of the season's most popular characters. Humbly, he says he feels very much like a newcomer on the FX hit that includes such regular series mega-stars as Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates and Frances Conroy.  "The first few episodes didn't seem real," he tells Gold Derby in our webcam chat (watch below). "Are they gonna find out that I'm still here? I mean, this isn't right, right? They're gonna fire me at some point."  Wittrock says that the cast and crew welcomed him with open arms. But with the current season winding down (they're about to start production on the final episode of the season), would Wittrock be interested in coming back for Season 5 of the franchise next year if creator Ryan Murphy asked him? -Break- Vote now: Strongman Dell Toledo has 15/2 odds of »


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Richard Jenkins on 'connecting' with Frances McDormand in 'Olive Kitteridge' [Exclusive Video]

26 November 2014 11:48 AM, PST

"The more I worked on it, the more I thought of my mom," admits Richard Jenkins about his performance as the beleaguered, loving husband of the title character in the HBO miniseries "Olive Kitteridge." As he explained during our webcam chat (watch below): "It wasn't intentional. It just kept coming back to me that this man is kind of like my mom. She was a very sweet, patient, understanding woman. Henry kind of became her." -Break- Do you think Jenkins will earn a Golden Globe nomination for Best TV Movie/Limited Series Actor? Click here to enter your own predictions for this category and all of the Golden Globe top races, or use our easy drag-and-drop menu at the bottom of this post to get started. Your predictions determine our racetrack odds and you can keep editing them right up until the day Globe nominations are announced. You score »


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'The Amazing Race' contest leader predicts elimination of Amy & Maya next

26 November 2014 11:31 AM, PST

"I don't want to be here anymore!" cries Amy DeJong during CBS's preview of Friday's all new "The Amazing Race" episode, titled "You're Taking My Tan Off." (Watch the trailer below.) Amy and Maya have 14/5 odds of being eliminated next according to Gold Derby's exclusive racetrack odds, but what does last week's contest leader Chavel Dixon (Couch Potato) think? Gold Derby sat down with Dixon to talk about how he knew Timothy and Te Jay would be eliminated last week, who he thinks is going home next, and who he's predicting to win Season 25. -Break- Psst: Here's how to predict reality TV shows and win bragging rights And prizes! Why did you predict Timothy and Te Jay to be eliminated? I picked them to be eliminated mainly because they came in last on the last leg but were saved by the non-elimination leg. Usually, teams have a hard time coming »


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Let's give thanks for the top 10 Thanksgiving TV episodes of all time'

26 November 2014 11:22 AM, PST

Over the years, television has produced many such memorable moments as family and friends gathering together to celebrate Thanksgiving. Here are my top 10 episodes to give thanks. -Break- 1. "The Bob Newhart Show" - "Over the River and Through the Woods" (1975) Bob (Bob Newhart), Jerry, Howard and Mr. Carlin get completely drunk while spending the holiday at Bob's apartment while Emily (Suzanne Pleshette) is visiting her family.  Enjoy special moments of ordering Chinese food for Thanksgiving. 2. "Bewitched" - "Samantha's Thankgiving to Remember" (1967) There's nothing more authentic than an original Thanksgiving with actual Pilgrims and Indians. Ironically, Darren (Dick York) is the one put on trial for being a witch and not Samantha (Elizabeth Montgomery). 15 hottest forums posts: Your Thanksgiving choices of worst film turkeys 3. "Saturday Night Live" - "Paul Simon/George Harrison..."' »


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Oscars calendar: Dates for critics' awards, National Board of Review and ...'

26 November 2014 9:30 AM, PST

After shifting into March to get out of the way of the 2014 Winter Olympics, the Oscars are heading back to February next year, with the 87th annual edition of these kudos to take place on Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015. In the 90 days leading up to Oscar Sunday, a slew of precursor prizes will be handed out. While the last of these will be the Indie Spirit Awards, which take place just 24 hours before the Oscars, those nominations were announced on Nov. 25. Prior to the Jan. 8 deadline for Oscar nomination ballots, the major critics groups will have weighed in with winners while the Golden Globes, SAG and Critics' Choice Awards will have announced nominations as will the following guilds (producers, writers, art directors, costume designers and editors).  Below, we detail these key dates.  -Break- Note: Winners events are in gold while nomination announcments are italicized.  Dec. 1 - New York Film Critics Circle Awards: Winners Announced. »

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Road to Oscars calendar packed with precursor prizes

26 November 2014 9:30 AM, PST

After shifting into March to get out of the way of the 2014 Winter Olympics, the Oscars are heading back to February next year, with the 87th annual edition of these kudos to take place on Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015. In the 90 days leading up to Oscar Sunday, a slew of precursor prizes will be handed out. While the last of these will be the Indie Spirit Awards, which take place just 24 hours before the Oscars, those nominations were announced on Nov. 25. Prior to the Jan. 8 deadline for Oscar nomination ballots, the major critics groups will have weighed in with winners while the Golden Globes, SAG and Critics' Choice Awards will have announced nominations as will the following guilds (producers, writers, art directors, costume designers and editors).  Below, we detail these key dates.  -Break- Note: Winners events are in gold while nomination announcments are italicized.  Dec. 1 - New York Film Critics Circle Awards: Winners Announced. »

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News Nuggets: Joni Mitchell shoots down Taylor Swift playing her in a biopic

26 November 2014 7:35 AM, PST

Legendary singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell shoots down the idea of current superstar Taylor Swift playing her in a biopic. Although Swift has expressed interest in playing the role, Mitchell says, "I squelched that! I said to the producer, 'All you've got is a girl with high cheekbones.'" Of the planned adaptation of Sheila Weller's "Girls Like Us," Mitchell adds, "It's just a lot of gossip, you don't have the great scenes. There's a lot of nonsense about me in books, assumptions, assumptions, assumptions."  Vulture -Break- Oscar winners Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon will soon be coming to television. The high profile "Big Little Lies" will be a limited series based on the book by Liane Moriarty. It is a subversive comedy about three mothers whose "apparently perfect lives unravel to the poin to murder. TV Hall of Famer David E. Kelley, who has helped his actors win 38 Emmys during his career, »


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Hey, J.K. Simmons: Watch out for Christoph Waltz in 'Big Eyes'

26 November 2014 6:28 AM, PST

Before it screened, Tim Burton's biopic “Big Eyes” was seen as a slam-dunk Oscar vehicle for Amy Adams. After all, Adams, who stars as painter Margaret Keane, has lost all five of her Oscar bids: four in supporting -- “Junebug” (2005), “Doubt” (2008), “The Fighter” (2010), and “The Master” (2012) -- and last year in lead (“American Hustle). However, now that this Weinstein Company film has unspooled, the buzz is all about Christoph Waltz who could well contend for his third Oscar in six years.  -Break- Oscar experts: Eddie Redmayne narrows Michael Keaton lead, 'Selma' cracks top five Waltz won Supporting Actor twice for his scene-stealing work in two Quentin Tarantino films -- “Inglorious Basterds” (2009) and “Django Unchained” (2012) -- which were also produced by Oscar wiz Harvey Weinstein. The actor brings this same winning combination of wry charm...' »


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