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<p>Dave Matthews band 2012 tour promo</p>

Dave Matthews band 2012 tour promo

Dave Matthews Band sets first summer tour in two years

New Steve Lillywhite-produced album also coming in 2012

After taking most of last summer off,  Dave Matthews Band will return for its first full North American summer tour in two years. Plus, the group will have a new Steve Lillywhite-produced album out in 2012 as well.

The 2012 tour starts May 18 at Cynthia Wood Mitchell Pavilion in Woodlands, Texas and end Sept. 9 at Mountain View, Calif.’s Shoreline Amphitheater. Among the opening acts  on various dates are Brandi Carlile, The Avett Brothers, The Head and the Heart, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and Fitz and the Tantrums.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>A scene from &quot;Real Steel&quot;</p>

A scene from "Real Steel"

Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

Oscar Guide 2011: Best Visual Effects

'Harry Potter,' 'Hugo,' 'Real Steel,' 'Apes' and 'Transformers' square 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.)

After gradually reducing finalists from 15 to 10 to five, the visual effects branch made room for four blockbusters this year – three of them from franchises – as well as the nominations leader. This is hardly the sort of lineup that could be considered shocking. Still, another Best Picture contender was left off, while the fourth entries in three other franchises came up short, as did one additional summer blockbuster.

The race for the win is probably between the Best Picture nominee and two of the franchise blockbusters that are going down in the history books for very different reasons. But while this one seems like an easy category to pick, it could be more of a race than you'd expect.

The nominees are…

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"Private Practice"

 "Private Practice"

Credit: ABC

HitFix Interview: A.J. Langer talks about 'Private Practice' and her 'So-Called Life'

Her character will be the focus of a crossover with 'Grey's Anatomy'

It may be hard to visualize scruffy teen Rayanne Graff of "My So-Called Life" all grown up, but A.J. Langer has been playing Erica Warner, a mom suffering from a brain tumor, on "Private Practice" this season. The role will get a double-series punch as part of a special, two-hour "Practice" crossover with "Grey's Anatomy" on Thursday (starting at 9 p.m. on ABC). I spoke with Langer about her unexpected role, why she put acting on hold for four years and why she doesn't mind if she's always associated with a fictional rebellious teen.

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<p>Dax Shepard and Craig T. Nelson in &quot;Parenthood.&quot;</p>

Dax Shepard and Craig T. Nelson in "Parenthood."

Credit: NBC

'Parenthood' - 'Tough Love': Mind your own business?

It's a particularly nosy week for the Bravermans

A review of last night's "Parenthood" coming up just as soon as I start all my best talks with "Hey, man!"...

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<p>Max Greenfield, Zooey Deschanel and Ryan Kwanten in &quot;New Girl.&quot;</p>

Max Greenfield, Zooey Deschanel and Ryan Kwanten in "New Girl."

Credit: FOX

'New Girl' - 'Valentine's Day': I feel twirly, oh so twirly

Jess seeks a one-night stand, Nick visits Julia's office and Winston goes to a girls night in

A review of last night's "New Girl" coming up just as soon as I play guitar in an alt-country ska band...

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<p>A scene from&nbsp;&quot;Moneyball&quot;</p>

A scene from "Moneyball"

Credit: Columbia Pictures

The top 10 shots of 2011: part two

Wrapping up the year in individual film images

In case you missed part one of this year's shots column, be sure to catch up before diving into the final five here today.

I glanced back at some prior lists yesterday for formatting reasons and was surprised to note that my closing commentary on the 2010 collective was remarkably similar to the sentiments I conveyed yesterday, namely the notion that a year thin on striking singular images makes my appreciation of the work that much stronger because of what goes into digging them up. Interesting.

Regardless, last year I was remiss in leaving out a few honorable mentions, which had been a bit of a tradition, so before getting to today's run-down and the top five shots of 2011, let's take a quick look at a few of the images that just missed making the cut.

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<p>Uggie at the 2011 Golden Globe Awards in January.</p>

Uggie at the 2011 Golden Globe Awards in January.

Credit: AP Photo/Matt Sayles

Round-up: Uggie finally gets a bone

Also: Mourning 'Contagion,' and the decade-later Oscar vote

Whether you've been delighted or irritated by the publicity machine surrounding him, you'd have to agree that few stars this season have been run quite as ragged in their promotional duties as Uggie: in his position as official mascot for "The Artist," the adorable 10 year-old Jack Russell has been carted around from one red carpet do to another, performed tricks on demand, conducted interviews, with nothing but an unnamed shaking disease for his pains. Well, after months of helping his cohorts win awards, he received one of his own on the weekend: inevitably, Uggie took the Best Dog in a Theatrical Film prize at the Golden Collar Awards, beating, among others, his own performance in "Water for Elephants." Well deserved, boy. Now, go play. [The Odds]

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<p>Matthias Schoenaerts in best foreign language film nominee &quot;Bullhead.&quot;</p>

Matthias Schoenaerts in best foreign language film nominee "Bullhead."

Credit: Almo Drafthouse Films

'Bullhead' director says don't spoil the secret of his Oscar nominated thriller

Could this foreign language film nominee upset 'A Separation'?

When I first spoke to Michael Roskam six weeks ago, an Oscar nomination for his feature film debut was still nothing more than a fleeting dream.  The filmmaker's thriller "Bullhead" had played some notable festivals since debuting at the Berlin Film Festival in February of 2011, but a best foreign language film nomination? Even after being selected to represent his native Belgium in this year's competition, it seemed during our conversation like Roskam was just enjoying the ride and hardly expected anything more. That all changed on January 24 when "Bullhead" became the first Belgian film nominated since "Everybody Famous!" in 2001 and the seventh overall since 1971.

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<p>Damon Herriman as Dewey Crowe on &quot;Justified.&quot;</p>

Damon Herriman as Dewey Crowe on "Justified."

Credit: FX

'Justified' - 'Thick As Mud': End times for Dewey Crowe?

The series' biggest punching bag gets the spotlight in a terrific episode

A review of tonight's "Justified" coming up just as soon as I knock over a fluff-and-fold...

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<p>Jeff Goldblum, Lea Michele and Brian Stokes Mitchell of &quot;Glee&quot;</p>
<div id="myEventWatcherDiv" style="display:none;">&nbsp;</div>

Jeff Goldblum, Lea Michele and Brian Stokes Mitchell of "Glee"

Credit: FOX

Recap: 'Glee' - 'Heart'

An episode that aims for past greatness but only wades through its current muddiness
Look, that wasn’t horrible. Sure, FOX isn’t going to use that sentence as a pull quote anytime soon in its advertising. But “Heart” worked in intermittent spurts, cutting through the narrative clutter and usual silliness to produce some solid musical moments. As an episode of television, it was as bad as the show has been all season. But there were a few things that weren’t intolerable. (Again: not a good pull quote.)
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<p>A.J. (Shaun Parkes)&nbsp;on &quot;The River.&quot;</p>

A.J. (Shaun Parkes) on "The River."

Credit: ABC

'The River' - 'Los Ciegos': Eye of the camera

The Magus crew begins to go blind thanks to a native ritual

A few quick thoughts on tonight's "The River" coming up just as soon as I find a nice eco-hotel...

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<p>Courteney Cox and Josh Hopkins in a scene from the &quot;Cougar Town&quot;&nbsp;season premiere.</p>

Courteney Cox and Josh Hopkins in a scene from the "Cougar Town" season premiere.

Credit: ABC

'Cougar Town' - 'Ain't Love Strange': A perfectly predictable proposal?

Jules wants to be surprising, Ellie is afraid of her son, and Travis makes a move

"Cougar Town" is back for its third season. I offered a reminder yesterday that the show has nothing to do with its stupid title any more, and I have a review of the season premiere coming up just as soon as I throw my Too Creepy flag...

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