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The AFI Fest closed last night with the "world premiere" (even if the NYFF let the cat out of the bag weeks ago) of "Lincoln," but not before handing out some awards. And the big winner was... well, Scandinavia. Swedish immigrant drama "Eat Sleep Die" took the Grand Jury Prize, and the superb Danish thriller "A Hijacking" (see my Variety review) took the Audience Award in the New Auteurs section, but the big winner from an Oscar perspective was Denmark's foreign-language submission "A Royal Affair," which underlined its serious contender status by taking the World Cinema Audience Award. Not many were paying attention when it won two prizes at Berlin in February, but this smart historical romance has grown in stature ever since. It wasn't the only foreign Oscar hopeful to take a gong: Kenya's first-ever entry, "Nairobi Half Life" was also rewarded. [AFI Fest]
How Virginia, home state of one Mr. Kris Tapley, got a boost from the filming of "Lincoln." [LA Times]
Still on "Lincoln," which I haven't seen yet, Zach Baron writes one of the most interesting pieces I've read on it so far: "It's Spielberg doing Sorkin." [Grantland]
Noting that almost half of last year's Best Picture nominees failed to secure screenplay nominations, Jon Weisman wonders if the categories are as wedded as they used to be. [Variety]
The Makeup and Hair Stylists Guild -- one of the few that doesn't feel the need for its own award -- celebrates its 75th anniversary. [Below the Line]
Everything: Academy Awards
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