It hasn't been the best professional year for Pedro Almodóvar, with his sex comedy "I'm So Excited!" having opened to some of the chilliest reviews of his career, bypassing the festival circuit in the process. (Unsurprisingly, Spain will not be putting it forward for Oscar consideration.) But here's a silver lining: he'll receive the European Achievement in World Cinema Award at this year's European Film Awards in December. ("I'm So Excited!" is also eligible for those, though this award suggests they're not anticipating any big wins there.) “I am very thankful for this award," says the director. "From its creation, the European Film Academy has been very generous with me and my closest collaborators... I share with them the joy of this award.” Almodóvar has five previous EFA wins to his credit, most recently for "Volver" in 2006. [EFA]  

Veteran Oscar-winning screenwriter Robert Towne ("Chinatown") has joined the writing staff of "Mad Men" for the show's final season. [Variety]

Alex von Tunzelmann weighs up the historical accuracy of Ron Howard's "Rush": seems the bitter rivalry between its two protagonists was actually quite friendly. [The Guardian]

On the long road to getting Nelson Mandela's full life story in a feature film. [LA Times]

The Academy's planned Museum of Motion Pictures has received a $20 million donation from the Chinese owners of AMC. [Screen Daily]

Tim Robey counts down the 10 most inadvertently hilarious moments in "Diana." [The Telegraph]

Gregg Kilday wonders if the excess of awards hopefuls at Toronto this year led some too peak too early. (If they peaked at all?) [Hollywood Reporter]

Screenwriters Billy Ray ("The Hunger Games") and David Goyer ("The Dark Knight") were among those re-elected to the Writers' Guild of America board. [Variety

Why Hollywood needs more information on box office performance outside the theatrical realm. [New York Times]

Joey Magidson wonders if a lighter film might charm the Academy in the midst of such solemn contenders as "12 Years a Slave" and "Captain Phillips." [Scott Feinberg]