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Taking questions for 2/10 Oscar Talk

Offer up your burning queries

Alright, you know the drill. Rifle off your need-to-knows and we'll address as many as we can on Friday's podcast. I believe we're going to try and discuss the live action and animated shorts, perhaps the doc features. Anyway, a few categories will be covered in detail. Have at it!

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<p>Sigur R&oacute;s</p>

Sigur Rós

Sigur Rós announces first live show in four years: more to come?

Icelandic band headlining Bestival in England

Sigur Ros has made first contact in terms of a new tour today, as they announce they'll be headlining the Bestival festival in England this summer and plan to hit the road in 2012.

The Icelandic dream-rockers will head to the Isle of Wight for a Sept. 9 show, confirming their first live performance in four years. And, apparently, "their only show in the UK in 2012."

"We’ll be announcing more tour dates soon – sign up to our mailing list to get the news first," the band posted on their site.

The band was last out to support 2008's "Med Sud I Eyrum Vid Spilum Endalaust," though they released a new film last year, "Inni," which was just lovely. Not quite as lovely as 2007's "Heima," which is practically experiential in illustrating the power of Sigur Ros' live show. I was taken with Jonsi's solo stint in support of "Go" two years ago, and I imagine that this forthcoming 2012 tour will have the same stunning visual clout, particularly as it seems Sigur Ros' fandom continues to grow through exposure in television and movie placements, like in Cameron Crowe's "We Bought a Zoo."

The Cure, Bjork and PJ Harvey headed up Bestival last year.

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<p>Someone's menacing more lovely Spanish ladies in 'REC 3:&nbsp;GENESIS,' one of the movies announced today for the Midnighters section of this year's SXSW&nbsp;Festival in Austin.</p>

Someone's menacing more lovely Spanish ladies in 'REC 3: GENESIS,' one of the movies announced today for the Midnighters section of this year's SXSW Festival in Austin.

Credit: SXSW

SXSW rounds out its 2012 slate with Midnights including 'Rec 3' and 'V/H/S'

Clive Owen, Paul Giamatti, Jessica Biel... and Nazis on the moon?

Last week, we featured the announcement of much of SXSW's feature programming, but noted that they still hadn't announced the Midnights section.

Now that they have, I think it's safe to say that SXSW plans to blow your ass off this year.  And I mean surgically and precisely.  They are programming an aggressively wild line-up, some of which I've seen, some of which I haven't.  They've also announced shorts in a wide array of categories, filling out what are frequently some of the most exciting parts of a festival in terms of finding new voices.  You add this batch of titles to what we'd already heard, and it's looking like a great year for one of my favorite fests, starting on March 9 with "The Cabin In The Woods."

There are eleven Midnighters this year.  I've linked back to my reviews of a few of them, but I'm curious to see all eleven as they work together on audiences.  "REC 3" is a pretty big get for SXSW, but honestly, the title that excites me most is "Iron Sky."  This is a great example of a crowd-sourced piece of art that has been nurtured along from initial joke to trailer to feature film, and if it works, it's going to be something a lot of people have helped happen.  Great to see that "John Dies At The End" and "V/H/S" are going to screen for Austin crowds.  Both films almost feel custom-designed for these audiences.  

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<p>Daft Punk</p>

Daft Punk

Credit: AP Photo

Daft Punk teams with Chic's Nile Rodgers for new material

Upcoming album will be the duo's first since 2005

The enigmatic electronic duo Daft Punk are reportedly ready to make some long-overdue new music, and will be working with the funkiest of the funky to make it happen. The twosome are teaming with Chic mastermind Nile Rodgers on an upcoming album.

Known for crushing the dancefloor (and epic live shows) with their hits "One More Time," "Digital Love" and the Kanye-friendly "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger," the pioneering Frenchies (human names: Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter) haven't released a proper studio album since 2005's "Human After All," although they scored the 2010 film "Tron: Legacy."

Rodgers told Daft Punk fan site Fasterlouder.com, "We were just jamming at my house, but it’s gonna be proper and real... They came over to my today around breakfast time and it's now evening. I basically had to almost kick them out. We were having so much fun just in an informal setting that we decided to make it formal. And it's very formal. It's gonna be amazing."

Perhaps best known for "Le Freak," Chic's "Good Times" was borrowed by Daft Punk for their hit "Around the World."

Rodgers has previously helped such musical titans as Madonna and David Bowi get in touch with their disco-R&B side, and seems like a match made in dancefloor heaven. He is also a guest on Adam Lambert's upcoming album.

Are you excited to hear the collaboration?

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<p>&quot;True Romance&quot; alums Gary Oldman&nbsp;(left)&nbsp;and Brad&nbsp;Pitt mingle backstage at Monday's Nominees Luncheon.</p>

"True Romance" alums Gary Oldman (left) and Brad Pitt mingle backstage at Monday's Nominees Luncheon.

Credit: AP Photo/Chris Pizzello

Pulling for you, Gary

'Tinker, Tailor' star Gary Oldman hits the circuit with the Best Actor field in flux

Gary Oldman is back in town and hitting the press rounds hard on behalf of his first-ever Oscar nomination for "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy." And though I'm fairly resigned to Jean Dujardin turning the trick with Oscar as he did with SAG, I can't help but wonder -- or perhaps merely hope -- if things are in such a state of flux within the Best Actor category that a guy like Oldman has a decent shot.

Roth's piece on Brad Pitt's press rounds and a window of opportunity in the field was fair enough as it pertains to his chances. After all, Pitt's a big-time celebrity who doesn't rest on his laurels and is heavily involved, constructively, on the production side of things. And he turned out one of his best performances to date in "Moneyball."

But what about a guy like Oldman, who has worked with just about everyone in town and has been at the grind for decades? Not only is he a solid worker, but he offers up stunning portrayal after stunning portrayal, even in the most dubious of projects (many of which he's been forced to take on over the last 10 years or so).

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<p>Lady Gaga's &quot;Born This Way&quot;</p>

Lady Gaga's "Born This Way"

Predicting the 2012 Grammy Awards: Album of the Year

Is Adele a lock?

Album of the Year is the last award presented on the Grammy Awards telecast for good reason: it’s the fairest award of them all and the one that every artist dreams of winning  Here are the contenders for the 54th annual Grammy Awards, which will air Feb. 12 at 8 p.m. on CBS.

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<p>Chris Pratt in &quot;Moneyball.&quot;</p>

Chris Pratt in "Moneyball."

Credit: Columbia Pictures

Oscar Guide 2011: Best Sound Mixing

'Dragon Tattoo,' 'Hugo,' 'Moneyball,' 'Transformers' and 'War Horse' face off

(The Oscar Guide will be your chaperone through the Academy's 24 categories awarding excellence in film. A new installment will hit every weekday in the run-up to the Oscars on February 26, with the Best Picture finale on Saturday, February 25.)

This year, the sound category nominations were the ones I found hardest to predict -- I went a paltry 1-for-5 in the Best Sound Mixing category -- and even with the field narrowed to five, I'm not finding the picture any clearer. Part of the reason for that is the unusual disparity between the Academy's picks and those of the Cinema Audio Society. For the first time since 1999, they agreed on only two nominees, both Best Picture contenders that aren't brash sonic showcases: "Hugo" and "Moneyball."

For the other slots, the Academy's sound branch set about rectifying some of the more surprising CAS omissions: the guild did well to recognize the sleekly pulsating "Hanna," but the Academy stuck with more typically large-scale fare for the category in the shape of "War Horse" and "Transformers: Dark of the Moon." The final field is an eminently mainstream one, but pleasingly balanced between bombast and subtler notes.

The nominees are...

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<p>A detail from the offending campaign ad for Meryl Streep in &quot;The Iron Lady.&quot;</p>

A detail from the offending campaign ad for Meryl Streep in "The Iron Lady."

Credit: The Weinstein Company

Round-up: Does Weinstein's Streep ad toe the line... or cross it?

Also: Daniel Radcliffe on Oscar snobbery, and the case for Viola Davis

Oh, it wouldn't be the final stretch  of Oscar voting without a minor kerfuffle over some or other campaign strategy. The people ruffling feathers this time, you'll be shocked to hear, are The Weinstein Company, whose latest campaign effort for Meryl Streep comes close to breaking a selection of finicky rules and regulations, but naturally has a secure loophole in place. The ad, emailed to Hollywood Reporter subscribers (and therefore not directly to the Academy, cleverly enough), makes a big deal of the two-time winner's 29-year Oscar drought, stepping on the toes of an Academy rule forbidding ads to mention past awards, and to "extol the merits of a film... or an individual." (Really? Don't all ads do that?) Several AMPAS voters have felt moved to complain, but I don't see how this harmless stunt affects Streep's chances either way. [The Odds]

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<p>Jake Johnson and Zooey Deschanel in &quot;New Girl.&quot;</p>

Jake Johnson and Zooey Deschanel in "New Girl."

Credit: FOX

'New Girl' - 'Landlord': Send me on my way

Jess, Nick and Schmidt all struggle to read signals in an uncomfortable episode

A quick review of last night's "New Girl" coming up just as soon as I paint a sexually-charged zero gravity tea ceremony in my closet...

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<p>Mark Harmon and Muse Watson in the 200th episode of &quot;NCIS.&quot;</p>

Mark Harmon and Muse Watson in the 200th episode of "NCIS."

Credit: CBS

'NCIS' - 'Life Before His Eyes': It's a wonderful life, Gibbs

In the series' 200th episode, Gibbs gets to explore paths untaken

I don't write about "NCIS" all that often because, as entertaining as it is, it doesn't particularly lend itself to episode-by-episode analysis. But I thought the occasion of its 200th episode last night merited attention, and I have a few thoughts on "Life Before His Eyes" coming up just as soon as we combine our snooping...

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<p>Amber (Mae Whitman)&nbsp;got a &quot;Parenthood&quot;&nbsp;promotion.</p>

Amber (Mae Whitman) got a "Parenthood" promotion.

Credit: NBC

'Parenthood' - 'Politics': Moving out and moving in

Amber gets a promotion, Dr. Joe finds a house and Zoe makes a change

A review of last night's "Parenthood" coming up just as soon as I train for a year to hike Mt. Kilimanjaro...

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<p>Gary Oldman talks &quot;Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy&quot; and his nomination for best actor at this year's 84th Annual Academy Awards.</p>

Gary Oldman talks "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" and his nomination for best actor at this year's 84th Annual Academy Awards.

Gary Oldman on the honor of the Everest of Oscar, BAFTA and getting flowers from Tom Cruise

Which of the best actor nominees would let go of the Oscar first?

The Oscar nominations featured surprises that both enraged and excited film lovers around the world, but one nod that had Hollywood and moviegoers jumping for joy was the inclusion of Gary Oldman amongst the best actor field.  It's the first Academy Award nomination for an actor who should have found himself invited to the Kodak Theater long ago after stellar performances in films such as "The Contender," "JFK," "The Professional" and "Prick Up Your Ears."  I've been a fan of "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" since screening it in September and if the film couldn't crack the best picture field Oldman's recognition was the next best thing.

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