Fan Fare

Entertainment behind the scenes

Last chance at Oscar glory!

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oscarWith little time left until Hollywood’s big show, this could be your last chance to put in your picks on all those Oscars.

Will “Slumdog Millionaire” take home the Golden Boy for best movie, as is widely expected?

Can Mickey Rourke wrestle the best actor Academy Award away from Sean Penn, or might veteran Frank Langella slip in with a victory? And what happened to Brad Pitt?

Does veteran Meryl Streep have the clout to overpower British sweetheart Kate Winslet for best actress. Weigh-in now.

‘Practical’ black’s back at Calvin Klein

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winslet3Listen up, all you Oscar fashion watchers.

Black is back in a big way because “it’s practical,” New York designer Francisco Costa told Reuters after his fall Calvin Klein Women’s runway show at New York Fashion Week, which ended on Friday. Black is also among the “in” colors for gowns on the red carpet this year and will very likely make a major appearance at the Oscars on Sunday. Kate Winslet already has been showing a penchant for black during Hollywood’s awards season.

Actress Kate Beckinsale, in a skintight black leather dress, was among thebeckinsale celebrities who packed the Calvin Klein showroom this week to see Costa’s fall collection of  tailored coats and sculptured dresses. Many had asymmetrical hems. The horsehair boots and shoes featured high rectangular heels that were open in the middle.

High hopes for Hugh at Sunday’s Oscars

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The choice of Hugh Jackman to host the Oscars on Sunday has generated plenty of talk, because he is no comedian and Hollywood is wondering how a song-and-dance man like Jackman will fare at the high-pressure job, which usually goes to funny men and women such as Billy Crystal, Jon Stewart or Whoopi Goldberg.hugh-jackman1

But average folks on the Web think the Australian actor will do just fine. In a poll on celebrity news site PopEater.com, 85 percent of respondents think he will do either “great” or “OK”. Only 15 percent of the 31,000 respondents expect Jackman will be “terrible” at hosting the Oscars.

Name your favorite in the Oscar movie race.

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boyleAfter months of watching movies, listening to punditry and seeing critics’ picks, the Oscar race has rounded the final corner and is in the home stretch. Nomination ballots are due at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences this week, and the world’s top film awards will be given out on Sunday, Feb. 22, in Hollywood.

Most Oscar watchers favor ”Slumdog Millionaire” to take the best motion picture award and its director Danny Boyle to win the directing trophy. Danny gives it the thumbs up. After all, ”Slumdog” has scooped up nearly every other award in sight this Oscar season, and it is clearly a crowd pleaser with an overall U.S. box office slowly inching upward to the $100 milion mark.penn

Wolverine slashes through TV, in 60-second bits

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Hugh Jackman will host the Oscars on Feb. 22, but before he dons a tuxedo for that job, the multi-talented actor will hit television screens as comic book favorite Wolverine.hugh-jackman

Jackman will star on the Fox channel in a series of three, 60-second spots that together form a storyline tied to the movie “X-Men Origins: Wolverine,” Fox said on Thursday. The movie comes out on May 1.

The dreams of lesser known Oscar nominees

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It is a certainty that Oscar nominees like Sean Penn, Penelope Cruz, Robert Downey, Jr., and Brad Pitt shannonwill garner the major media spotlight at the world’s top film industry awards on Feb. 22.

But on Monday, at the annual Oscar nominees luncheon, a few of the lesser known stars got the chance to share their thoughts and feelings with reporters about being nominated, and they are some of the best stories to tell.

Is a show of “risks” enough to save the Oscars?

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Oscar organizers are promising a show filled with “risks” by changing the old formula of a comedianrourke4 telling jokes and film award winners getting all teary when they accept the world’s top film honors. But will ”risk” be enough.

Stung by competition from other awards shows and simply more channels on TV, the Oscars in recent years have seen an almost steady decline in viewership to 32 million last year — the lowest audience ever — from 39.9 million in 2007.

Bollywood, meet Hollywood

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SAGAWARDS/Six months ago, most of Hollywood’s actors had probably never heard of the all-Indian cast members in the rag-to-riches tale “Slumdog Millionaire” by British director Danny Boyle. And then, on Sunday, the Screen Actors Guild chose them as the best film ensemble cast of the year — an award that is dear to actors because it comes from actors, arguably the toughest critics of their own craft.

Although “Slumdog” is a favorite to win best picture at the Oscars next month after winning at SAG, the Producers Guild and the Golden Globes, the SAG award came as a surprise to the four Indian actors who collected it. Anil Kapoor, a veteran Bollywood actor, said “it was overwhelming to be nominated, but to win this is unbelievable.”

Would Kate Winslet win awards for her speeches?

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British actress Kate Winslet keeps picking up awards for her 2008 film roles and admits she is struggling with her acceptance speeches.

On Sunday, she won best supporting actress from the Screen Actors Guild for her role as a German woman with a Nazi past in “The Reader,” adding to her double win at the Golden Globes a few weeks ago.

Clint Eastwood’s “Gran Torino”: Oscar roadkill

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It was perhaps the biggest snub of the Oscar nominations, actor/director Clint Eastwood’s “Gran USA/Torino” was overlooked by voters at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences with no — zero — nominations. Or, was it?

(For a slideshow of nominees, click here, and for a list of nominees, click here.)

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