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The last couple of days of the year were pretty electric for Martin Scorsese, Leonardo DiCaprio and "The Wolf of Wall Street." The perception out there was that they — particularly DiCaprio, who hopped on the phone with a number of outlets on Monday (including this one) — were backed into a corner and needed to defend their film against an array of accusations. The studio probably wanted the bad press tapered, but whatever the case, it's been a bumpy road this holiday for a film some consider unequivocally the year's best, others consider an abomination.
But here at the beginning of the year, whether Oscar and guild nominations are in the film's future or not, there will be tribute love for the two creative forces from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Paired up, DiCaprio and Scorsese will receive the fest's Cinema Vanguard Award on Thursday, Feb. 6 at the historic Arlington Theatre.
One of the year's most complex achievements in film editing, I think, is one likely to go unrecognized at Oscar time: Eric Zumbrunnen's meticulous cutting of "Her," which goes a long way toward creating a convincing character and a relationship -- more or less literally -- out of thin air. In the last part of the LA Times's excellent "Five Days of 'Her'" series, Zumbrunnen discusses the challenges the film posed, notably the tricky process of replacing a key performance in post-production, as well as the decision over whether or not to feature a physical representation of Scarlett Johansson's Samantha on screen. Fascinating stuff. [LA Times]
"Key & Peele," binge-watching and Walter White are out for 2014
The Washington Post's annual "In/Out" list claims that "Orange is the New Black" is the new "In" show, and that "Broad City" is in while "Key & Peele" is out. Also in: "SNL's new black woman."
Presenting the 2014 TV Calendar
When will your favorite shows return this winter?
"Sherlock's" return watched by a whopping 9.2 million UK viewers
That's 7.5 million more viewers compared to the very first episode. PLUS: Read Steven Moffat's interview with Benedict Cumberbatch, and Cumberbatch's parents made a cameo.
Will there be a "Wolf of Wall Street" reality show?
Jordan Belfort, whose story inspired the Martin Scorsese film, is shopping an "uplifting" reality project.
Louis CK tells Jerry Seinfeld he imagines himself doing "Louie" for "7 or 8 years tops"
In a prematurely released clip from "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee," Louis CK also reveals he co-wrote Season 4 with legendary comedian Stephen Wright.
RIP "Fresh Prince's" Uncle Phil
James Avery, 68, a classically trained actor who will forever be known for his role in the Will Smith NBC sitcom, died of complications from heart surgery on Tuesday. PLUS: Watch the best of Uncle Phil.
NBC announcers fail to recognize "The Voice" contestants on Rose Parade float
Al Roker and Hoda Kotb did, however, know whom winner Tessanne Chin was.
"New Year's Eve With Carson Daly" comedian mocks Pearl Harbor survivors
Said Natasha Leggero: "It sucks that the only survivors of Pearl Harbor are being mocked by the only food they can still chew."
Investigation Discovery gives Jerry Springer a "Tabloid" show
Springer's one-hour show will delve into bizarre larger-than-life stories that can't be made up.
Obama has been working his way through "Breaking Bad," "Boardwalk Empire" and "Game of Thrones"
In fact, the president has been trying to avoid "Breaking Bad" spoilers. PLUS: Why Obama's TV habits are troubling.
Watch Stephen Colbert's brief cameo in "The Hobbit" sequel
He is a "Laketown Spy."
Aaron Sorkin slams report that he and Olivia Munn are at odds on "The Newsroom" set
"The story bears no resemblance to reality," Sorkin said, referring to a RadarOnline report claiming that Munn had a "know it all" attitude on set. "Olivia is a perfect cast member who is loved and respected by the entire cast, by the crew and the producers, by HBO and especially by me."
Luke Grimes exits "True Blood" over creative differences
The actor didn't like the direction of his James character.
David Simon's next project: A musical about The Pogues?
"The Wire" and "Treme" honcho clarifies reports of a planned musical devoted to the Celtic punk band.
Watch a preview of AMC's Revolutionary War drama
"Turn: America's First Spy Ring" debuts in 2014.
"SNL" will be made available to Chinese viewers
The NBC hit will be available on a popular online video service.
Vince Gilligan: "Better Call Saul" will be a prequel, "by and large"
"But the wonderful thing about the fractured chronology we employed on 'Breaking Bad' for many years," he adds, "is the audience will not be thrown by us jumping around in time. So it's possible that we may indeed do that, and we'll see the past and perhaps the future."
ABC will start restricting access to full TV show episodes online
Starting Jan. 6, only Hulu Plus and cable subscribers can access shows the next day. Others will have to wait a week.
Laurie Metcalf joins CBS' "The McCarthys" pilot
In a casting that's in 2nd position to HBO's "Getting On," Metcalf will play the wife of Jack McGee and the mother of Joey McIntyre.
Jimmy Kimmel ends the "Worst Contest Ever" during the Fiesta Bowl
Watch Kimmel surprise a fan during last night's game.
"Game of Thrones" was the most pirated show of 2013; "Breaking Bad" No. 2
"The Walking Dead" came in 4th, while "The Big Bang Theory" was the 4th-most illegally downloaded show.
Robin Roberts comes out
The "GMA" star thanked her longtime girlfriend in a Facebook post.
"New Girl" releases a new cast poster
This one features Damon Wayans Jr.
"Survivors" Boston Rob and Amber are expecting their 4th child
Rob Mariano announced the news on Twitter, saying: "My wife Amber is so hot, I can't keep my hands off her."
Angela Lansbury named a dame of the British empire
The "Murder, She Wrote" star was among a number of women to receive this year's honor, including the co-creator of "Gavin and Stacey" and a star of Britain's "The Apprentice."
Rachel Nichols gets engaged
The "Continuum" and former "Alias" star is set to tie the knot with boyfriend Michael Kershaw.
Former "Even Stevens" star Christy Romano weds
Romano wed her longtime boyfriend on New Year's Eve.
Ex-"Sopranos" actor implicated in the killing of a police officer gets parole
Lillo Brancato Jr. was originally sentenced to 10 years in prison.
"Bones" star TJ Thyne gets engaged
Thyne popped the question while vacationing in Germany.
Woman claims the biggest prize in "The Price is Right" history
Sheree Heil's winning totals $170,345.
Kaley Cuoco is a married woman
"The Big Bang Theory" star had the "Greatest night of my entire life," getting married in a pink gown on New Year's Eve.
The cable channel where you can watch "Beverly Hills 90210" reruns signed off at the end of 2013. It's being replaced by Disney Junior.
Marvel Studios must be a great place to work these days. They've got one of the best winning streaks in town, both creatively and commercially, and they're reaching a point where they can start to take more chances and try some things that would have been impossible earlier.
I kind of love that "Big Hero 6" image we've got at the top of this story, with Hiro Hamada and his robot Baymax sitting on top of a blimp looking down at the foggy San Fransokyo. Whether it's the fully-animated "Big Hero 6" or the Netflix experiment with "Jessica Jones" and "Daredevil," it's obvious that Disney is willing to try new things, and no project that they have right now better exemplifies that than James Gunn's "Guardians Of The Galaxy."
There's a new image that they've released today that gives us a good look at the five main characters in the movie. Zoe Saldana plays Gamora, a character who has some direct ties to the film's two main villains, Ronan The Accuser (Lee Pace) and the visually-arresting Nebula (Karen Gillan). Chris Pratt, poised to become a giant movie star to my kids and their peers thanks to this movie, "The LEGO Movie" and "Jurassic World" all in a short period of time, plays Peter Quill, aka Star Lord. Quill is the lead in the film, and as a human being who has been taken to the far side of the galaxy to grow up, he is very much in search of some sense of home.
Want a resolution to ring in 2014? Learn Gary Busey's approach to language, which really makes every sentence a lot more fun. In this exclusive clip from "Oprah: Where Are They Now?" (airing Friday, Jan. 3 at 9:00 p.m. ET on OWN), catch up with the Oscar nominee and learn some of his definitions for words like "fun," "shame" and more. English has never been so awesome!
It's been a pretty good year to be Angela Lansbury -- or Dame Angela Lansbury, should you now wish to address her as such. The 88-year-old actress is the most prominent film-related name on the annual New Year Honors list -- titles and citations presented by Queen Elizabeth II to those deemed worthy in any number of areas. For her services to the arts, Lansbury has been declared a DBE -- or Dame Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, if you want to get wordy about it.
With Emmanuel Lubezki almost certain to take the Best Cinematography Oscar for "Gravity," few will argue that he's well past due the award -- but many will take issue with the technical implications of such FX-integrated work being recognized in such a fashion. It's an issue that now surfaces on a near-annual basis (wins for "Avatar" and "Life of Pi," in particular, caused a stir), and filmmaker Jamie Stuart thinks it's time "to redefine what constitutes cinematography." Part of that movement, he says, should be to divide the Oscar into two awards: "one for conventional live-action cinematography, and another for CGI-based filmmaking," much as black-and-white and color work was recognized separately until 1967. He's not the first to advocate such a change. What do you think? [Indiewire]