Fairly soon, the first formal contenders will start trickling into the race for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar, as individual national committees make their official selections and submit them to the Academy for consideration. It's a trickle that will swiftly turn into a flood as the submission deadline of October 1 nears. Last year, 71 countries entered the race -- an all-time record that could well be beaten this year. But in a race that's all but impossible to handicap at this stage -- dependent as it is on the whims and politics of different countries, rather than the Academy itself -- what are the films we're expecting to see in the mix?
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"The Walking Dead" unveils Season 4 poster
This "epic" poster will be unveiled at Comic-Con later this month.
Connie Britton teams with Planned Parenthood on a "What Would Tami Taylor Do?" T-shirt
The former "Friday Night Lights" star is lending her support to the T-shirt to raise money to fight a Texas measure that would restrict abortion across the state.
Kaley Cuoco dating "Superman"?
"The Big Bang Theory" star and Henry Cavill are an item, Us Weekly reports.
Lena Dunham: "Girls" provides me with free underwear every day
"Our costume dept has realized that if they want me in underwear they have to provide them," she tweeted. PLUS: Dunham admits she nearly bought a $24,000 couch.
ABC renews "Extreme Weight Loss"
The dieting reality show will be back for Season 4.
TLC's "Dance Moms" to spawn "Dance Kids"?
TLC will air the special "Dance Kids ATL" about young Atlanta dance students that could end up becoming a regular show.
NBC is developing a new sketch comedy show
The Peacock has begun a preliminary search for young talent for an "SNL"-like series that the network hopes will produce talent it could use on future shows.
Will the Coen brothers' "Inside Llewyn Davis" be a big awards player at the end of the year? CBS Films is sure positioning it for that but forget all of that, forget the Grand Prix win at Cannes, etc. I just really, really want to see this movie. A Coen film just feels like an oasis in every dreary film year, so while "The Lone Ranger" may be stinking up the multiplexes next weekend, remember, we have stuff like this coming around the corner.
It seems like just yesterday Ben Affleck was on stage at the Dolby Theatre accepting his Best Picture Oscar for "Argo" and one of the more dramatic awards seasons was drawing to a close. Since then we've had a refreshing handful of months away from the fray, but today, we're going to ruin all of that, just for a moment.
Last week Greg, Guy and I offered up our "for your consideration" Oscar picks from the year's first half that we'd like to see remembered come year's end. With that as a launching off point, and with today marking the actual mid-way point of 2013, let's really dig in. How has the year shaped up for awards hopefuls so far?
Ex-"Idol" winner Ruben Studdard joins "The Biggest Loser"
Ten years after his "American Idol" victory, "Velvet Teddy Bear" is returning to reality TV to compete in "The Biggest Loser's" 15th season.
Judge throws out 3 child molestation lawsuits filed against Elmo voice Kevin Clash
A judge decided today that the three accusers had filed their lawsuit after the statute of limitations had run out.
"Teen Mom" Farrah Abraham enters rehab
Abraham, who has entered a Florida rehab facility, says: "At this time in my life, I need to stay focused on the positive to get through all of the negative that a DUI has caused in my life."
Jayma Mays isn't done with "Glee"
Even though she's joined CBS sitcom "The Millers," Mays is expected to appear in a few "Glee" episodes next season.
Racism, homophobia, misogyny featured on this year's "Big Brother"
Is this season worse than previous seasons?
Jenna Elfman officially replaces Parker Pose on NBC's "Growing Up Fisher"
She'll play the wife of J.K. Simmons, who plays a blind dad.
Kyra Sedgwick chops off the end of 1 of her fingers
Kevin Bacon posted a photo of his wife in the hospital.
Watch the trailer for "Fleming," the miniseries about James Bond's creator starring Dominic Cooper
Cooper plays Ian Fleming in the BBC and Sky Atlantic miniseries.
Netflix picks up "New Girl" reruns
Season 1 episodes are available for streaming starting today.
Police seeking a "Simpsons" vandal
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Every month, HBO will put a new "Sopranos" season on HBO On Demand
Season 1 is available starting today, Season 2 in August, Season 3 in September -- all in the wake of James Gandolfini's death.
Nat Geo to air "The Secret Life Of Predators"
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Watch the "Dexter" Season 8 premiere on YouTube
Showtime has posted an edited version online for free.
Ex-MTV DJ Damien Fahey weds
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Brooke Hogan gets engaged to a Dallas Cowboy
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Yay, it's another episode about Teresa and Melissa not getting along! This is fresh and new, isn't it? Although it seems clear to me these two are never, ever going to be friends, much less friendly, that isn't stopping other people within in "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" universe from checking in, screaming encouragement at high volume, and finally tossing up their hands in disgust. I'm not sure if this is a noble effort or just a stupid one. Of course, it gives everyone something to do, so in that sense Teresa and Melissa are creating a cottage industry on the show. It's trickle down drama for everyone who might need it.
I've written at length about why I admire Gore Verbinski as a filmmaker, and I maintain that there are very few guys working in the blockbuster world who have his skill set when it comes to establishing and maintaining a sense of geography during an action scene. He's also great at laying out gags and paying them off, and I think he has constructed some truly marvelous moments over the years. While I agree that both of his "Pirates" sequels are overstuffed, the things that they are overstuffed with are so much fun that I don't care. All you need to do is look at the horrifying mess that is the fourth film to see how much Verbinski's touch matters with that material.
His last film, "Rango," revealed a true love for the Western genre, and a willingness to tweak that genre while also paying homage to it. I think "Rango" is a marvelous little movie, strange and surreal at times and visually witty from end to end. It served as a promising glimpse at what Verbinski might be up to with "The Lone Ranger," particularly with Johnny Depp attached to play Tonto.
To me, the mark of a good episode of "True Blood" (or really, any television show) is when you moan in frustration at the end of the episode instead of somewhere in the middle. With the former, you're disappointed that the episode is coming to an end, you're eager to find out what happens next (and none too happy about waiting a week to find out), and you've gotten so caught up in what's happening you haven't checked your watch. The latter hasn't happened, at least for me, in the first two episodes we've seen thus far this season. There have been too many scenes that seemed forced, too much exposition, too many moments that didn't ring true. While this episode wasn't without its flaws, it felt as if the show just might be getting back on track.
I posted my review of Showtime's "Ray Donovan" earlier in the week. Now it's your turn. For those of you who watched the pilot tonight (or viewed it online previously), what did you think? Do you buy Liev Schreiber as the most intimidating fixer in LA? Did the Hollywood satire seem funny or hacky? Was Jon Voight intimidating enough for you? How did you feel about the Marilyn Monroe moment? And will you watch again?
I didn't love the pilot, but it was by far the most successful of the five episodes I've seen, and each ensuing episode expanded the problems I had with the show. Definitely not one I'll be reviewing regularly, but maybe I'll check in after the fifth has aired to see if those of you who liked the pilot now share my concerns, or if you're still enjoying.
Have at it.
A quick review of the final season premiere of "Dexter" coming up just as soon as I get the bowling team back together...