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<p>Will &quot;Drive&quot; show up in tomorrow's Golden Globe nominations?</p>

Will "Drive" show up in tomorrow's Golden Globe nominations?

Credit: Film District

Guessing the Globes

We predict 'The Artist' to come out tops in tomorrow's Golden Globe nods

We offered you a space to share your Screen Actors' Guild and Golden Globe predictions yesterday -- but since the majority of you had only SAG on the brain then, here's another chance for you to spitball the Globes list. They're always a fun lot predict, mostly because of the comedy/musical categories: even with a stronger field of industry favorites in the running this year, there's still plenty of room for them to throw in a star-baiting head-scratcher. Julia Roberts in "Larry Crowne?" Johnny Depp in "The Rum Diary?" Take your pick.

I've set the ball rolling with my own predictions across all their film categories. One doesn't need a crystal ball to tell that "The Artist" is set to have another strong morning: I'm expecting it to top the list with six nods, while the Best Drama category looks rather modest by comparison. Will "War Horse," "Hugo" and "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" bounce back after being totally blanked in today's SAG list? And why do I have a funny feeling that "Drive" could spring a surprise here? Take a look at my best guesses after the jump, and share yours in the comments.

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<p>Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers</p>

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

Credit: AP Photo

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers set 2012 tour stops, including Jazz Fest

Band will play Europe for the first time in 20 years

Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers’ 2012 tour will include stops at New Orleans’ Jazz & Heritage Festival, as well as England’s Isle of Wight Festival.

The outing starts April 19 at the 1st Bank Center in Broomfield, Colo., before moving south to Jazz Fest on April 28. Check out more Jazz Fest headliners here.

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<p>Tom Cruise as Stacee Jaxx in &quot;Rock of Ages&quot;</p>

Tom Cruise as Stacee Jaxx in "Rock of Ages"

Credit: Warner Bros.

Watch: 5 things we learned from the 'Rock of Ages' trailer

How's Tom Cruise, who are the new enemies and where the hell is Bryan Cranston?

The first trailer for the Hollywood makeover of Broadway musical and '80s metal music driver "Rock of Ages" has arrived. Adam Shankman -- who brought "Hairspray" to the big-screen in 2007 -- is at the helm, and has revealed plot points and actual hairspray in this early glimpse.

Below are five things we've gleaned from the preview of "Rock of Ages," due June 1 next year:

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"Ned Bruha: Skunk Whisperer"

 "Ned Bruha: Skunk Whisperer"

Credit: Animal Planet

Can you pick out the fake reality TV show on this list?

It might be harder than you think

The other day I stumbled across Animal Planet's "Ned Bruha: Skunk Whisperer," and thought, man, who doesn't get a reality TV show these days? I'm not saying Ned and his loyal staff aren't interesting, but it seems, now that reality TV has mined the wealthy wives, the D-list celebrities and every permutation of cop out there, TV series are being handed out to anyone with a pulse and semi-gainful employment. I may need to ask my mailman when he's going to be on TV, or maybe check in with my plumber to see if I need to add him to my DVR keywords. 

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<p>Ernie and Cindy of &quot;The Amazing Race&quot;</p>
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Ernie and Cindy of "The Amazing Race"

Credit: CBS

HitFix Interview: Ernie & Cindy talk 'The Amazing Race'

This season's champs discuss their winning run and plans for the million
Congratulations to Ernie Halvorsen and Cindy Chiang, the winners of the 19th installment of "The Amazing Race."
It was a wire-to-wire victory for the engaged couple, who snagged a useful Express Pass by winning the Race's first Leg and snagged a million bucks by winning the Race's last Leg. 
Well, it was kinda "wire-to-wire."
In-between, Ernie & Cindy only won a single Leg and they needed to utilize a U-Turn to get that victory. But even without individual triumphs, they stayed in the chase by always remaining with the lead pack. Through the entire season, they never finished worse than fifth, a record of impressive consistency that paid dividends when Snowboarders Andy & Tommy, the season's dominant team, were eliminated in the season's penultimate episode.
Ernie & Cindy responded by running an error-free concluding Leg in Atlanta, reaching Phil Keoghan at the final Pit Stop with room to spare.
Clip through for our full interview, discussing their in-Race pre-marital counseling, the closeness of this season's teams and the altruistic hopes for their winnings...
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<p>Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope in &quot;Parks and Recreation.&quot;</p>

Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope in "Parks and Recreation."

Credit: NBC

TV Top 10 of 2011: The best 10 returning shows

A great year for veteran series

Yesterday, we published my video essay on my favorite overall shows of 2011. Now it's time to present the first of two written lists, this one focusing on the best returning shows of the year. If you watched the video, you know that 9 of the 11 shows (there was a tie) were returning series, and that therefore there's not going to be much change to the returning shows list. Still, I add one show, get to expand a bit on my thoughts on some others, and also add a list of honorable mentions at the end.

Tomorrow, I'll deal with the new shows in a slightly different way, as there are lots of 2011 rookies I liked but few I loved.
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<p>Meryl Streep in &quot;Adaptation.&quot;</p>

Meryl Streep in "Adaptation."

Credit: Columbia Pictures

The Lists: Top 10 Meryl Streep performances

With 'The Iron Lady' on the way, we look back on the actress's career highlights

What is there left to say about Meryl Streep at this point that someone else hasn’t said already? At the age of 62, the actress who was already earning ‘all-time greatest’ citations decades earlier, has the career most of her contemporaries can only dream of.

Still in favor with critics, recently celebrated with a Kennedy Center honor and working like a demon, she is, even more remarkably, a bigger box-office draw than she ever was: pulling vast and varied audiences into the theater for such commercial juggernauts as “The Devil Wears Prada” and “Mamma Mia!,” she breaks every conceivable rule that has been established for middle-aged women in Hollywood. (One imagines Madeline Ashton, the vain, ageing, largely untalented leading lady she played nearly 20 years ago in “Death Becomes Her,” veritably seething with envy.)

She has, of course, broken her own record many times over to amass an astonishing 16 Oscar nominations: a 17th is undoubtedly on the way for her latest headlining role, as the reviled, long-serving British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in Phyllida Lloyd’s biopic “The Iron Lady.” The performance has already netted her a fifth New York Film Critics’ Circle Award – another rare distinction in a career not short of them, and an obvious subject for another installment of The Lists.

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<p>Sacha Baron Cohen's definitely got some serious beard going on in the first trailer for his new comedy 'The Dictator'</p>

Sacha Baron Cohen's definitely got some serious beard going on in the first trailer for his new comedy 'The Dictator'

Credit: Paramount Pictures

Watch: Sacha Baron Cohen returns to big character comedy in 'The Dictator' trailer

Can he and Larry Charles pull it off again?

I have a feeling "The Dictator" is going to be an important movie for Sacha Baron Cohen.

"Borat" was lightning in a bottle.  He'd been building up to that moment for a while, and 20th Century Fox did everything right in releasing the film.  They turned it into a moment where you had to see what it was, even if you didn't want to, just so you could be part of the conversation.

With "Bruno," there was an entirely different set of expectations placed on the film and its performance, and it was harder for Cohen to shoot because people were aware of him and aware of his techniques.  And while I think it's a very funny film, I also think there's only so far you can go in ambush comedy.  What makes me respect Cohen's work isn't the "gotcha" element of springing something on an unsuspecting person, but rather the depth of character work he does in creating these comic personas.

Lately, he's been taking roles in other people's movies, and he's doing very good work.  I liked him a lot in "Hugo," and I'm excited to see what he does with the character of Scotty in Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained."  The things I've heard about the work he's been doing on the Freddie Mercury film he's been trying to get made gives me real hope that it's going to be something special.

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<p>Louis CK&nbsp;in his &quot;Live at the Beacon Theater&quot;&nbsp;comedy special.</p>

Louis CK in his "Live at the Beacon Theater" comedy special.

Will Louis CK's download experiment be followed by others?

What's the future for independently produced and distributed content?

Over the weekend, Louis CK released his latest stand-up comedy special, "Louis CK: Live at the Beacon Theater," an hour of all-new material in which he talks about parenting, sex, God, the environment and more. It is, unsurprisingly, a very funny hour of entertainment, as you might expect by the man who currently stands at the top of the stand-up pyramid.

Also unsurprisingly, given the circumstances behind the production of his great FX show "Louie," CK has used the special as an excuse to try out a new business model. "Live at the Beacon Theater" had no theatrical run, no DVD release, nor even a partnership with a large online media company. You simply go to CK's own website, spend the more-than-reasonable sum of 5 bucks, and you can download a copy of the special without any kind of restrictions as to what method you use to view it, how you want to copy it, or anything.

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10 shorts advance in Oscar's live action shorts race
Credit: AMPAS

10 shorts advance in Oscar's live action shorts race

Three to five nominees will be revealed on Jan 2r

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced this morning that 10 short films have advanced to the next round of voting for the 2012 Live Action Academy Award.  107 short films originally qualified and out of that pool the following 10 were selected.

"Je Pourrais Être Votre Grand-Mère (I Could Be Your Grandmother)," Bernard Tanguy, director-producer (Rézina Productions)

"Love at First Sight," Michael Davies, director and Sandra Gorel, producer (Spellbound Films)

"Pentecost," Peter McDonald, director (EMU Productions)

"Raju," Max Zähle, director and Stefan Gieren, producer (Hamburg Media School/Filmwerkstatt)

"The Road Home," Rahul Gandotra, director-producer and Ameenah Ayub, producer (London Film School)

"The Roar of the Sea," Ana Rocha Fernandes and Torsten Truscheit, directors (Niama Filmproduktion GmbH)

"Sailcloth," Elfar Adalsteins, director-producer (Berserk Films)

"The Shore," Terry George, director-producer (All Ashore Productions Limited"

"Time Freak," Andrew Bowler, director and Gigi Causey, producer (Team Toad)

"Tuba Atlantic," Hallvar Witzø, director (The Norwegian Film School/Den Norske Filmskolen)

At this point, the Academy's Short Films and Feature Animation Branch members will now review the finalists and select three to five nominees from among the 10 titles on the shortlist for nomination. Branch screenings will be held in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco next month.

The 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, at 5:30 AM, 8:30 AM PT.

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<p>&quot;The&nbsp;Tree of Life&quot;&nbsp;had the most notices with 11.</p>

"The Tree of Life" had the most notices with 11.

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

The 2011 Longlists

Widening the net in our annual year in review

With today's Screen Actors Guild announcement, we've officially moved onto the next stage of awards season, when the industry has its say and shares the spotlight a bit with the critics. I was happy to see that a few extraneous elements of the season (Demián Bichir, Jonah Hill) got some recognition and kept things fresh, because that's precisely why I decided to transition the annual "If I Had a Ballot" feature into something more thorough.

In its stead, The Longlists are just that: a series of lists in various categories featuring what I thought was the top echelon of each. I trotted out 10, rather than the Oscar-centric five, throughout.

If you missed it, Monday I wrote up my list of the year's 10 best films. Friday brings a final wrap-up with year-end superlatives in the categories below as well as a few others. And soon enough, it'll be 2012 and the year will officially be a memory. But the season will forge on.

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<p>Max von&nbsp;Sydow in Ingmar Bergman's &quot;The Seventh&nbsp;Seal&quot;</p>

Max von Sydow in Ingmar Bergman's "The Seventh Seal"

Credit: Janus Films

Max von Sydow remembers his relationship with director Ingmar Bergman

The actor recently commented on losing his long-time friend and mentor

Somehow the embargo on "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close" ended up extending at the last minute to the post-screening Q&A that accompanied last week's screening at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, a first, as far as I can recall. I couldn't even pass along this nugget, completely unrelated to the film.

Bizarre, I know, but I'll dig it up for you now in any case. I figure some comments made by Max von Sydow will be of some interest to cinephiles.

The line-up consisted of stars von Sydow, Thomas Horn and Sandra Bullock, as well as director Stephen Daldry and screenwriter Eric Roth. Daldry commandeered the Q&A from moderator Pete Hammond for a bit at one point and, amid discussion about where each of them were on 9/11 and considerations of grieving (ugh), he asked von Sydow about how he was able to handle the loss of long-time collaborator, mentor and friend, director Ingmar Bergman, in 2007.

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