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Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Oscars Central: Screenplay predictions

Well, I've finally sent my editor my predictions for all of the major Oscars categories... but you'll have to wait for this Friday's print edition of the Seattle Gay News to see who I picked for best actor & actress, supporting actor & actress, and director & picture. Meanwhile, let's take a gander at two of my favorite categories, Adapted and Original Screenplays.

Adapted Screenplay nominees: Brokeback Mountain, Capote, The Constant Gardener, A History of Violence, and Munich.

Who will win: The screenplay categories are usually great indicators of which film is likely to win best picture. Makes sense: the basis for a good movie is a good script, and vice versa -- the proof of a good script is a good movie. But this year all of the films nominated for best picture have a screenplay nom as well. This means we have to go with the awards history, and none of the 2005 films received more awards for its screenplay than Brokeback Mountain (including the all-important Writers' Guild award).

Who should win: Those who've read Annie E. Proulx's short story Brokeback Mountain have said that the movie is a faithful adaptation. I'm in love with the movie's pacing: the time spent introducing us to Ennis and Jack, developing their love story, and fleshing out their lives. The perfect marriage of story and narrative detail!

Who was robbed: This year saw a lot of interesting movies based on fictional works, but my favorite by far was Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang, a very loose adaptation of Brett Halliday's noir novel Bodies are Where You Find Them. Writer-Director Shane Black used a ton of noir signatures, including chapter titles taken straight from Raymond Chandler books, and my favorite trick: having the narrator talking directly to the audience. I thought it was pure fun.

Original Screenplay nominees: Crash, Good Night, and Good Luck, Match Point, The Squid and the Whale, and Syriana.

Who will win: Just as Brokeback has already won most of the awards for Adapted Screenplay, this year's little engine that could -- aka Crash -- took home more Original Screenplay awards than any other. While many argue that the storylines intersect unrealistically, a la some whacked out Six Degrees scenario, I have to say I that I love it when characters discover some hidden relationship. I love it even more when only the audience discovers those relationships. Between that and the way the movie handled the topic of racism, Crash was easily this summer's most talked about film. I think it spurred even more dialogue than Brokeback.

Who should win: While Crash was certainly in my top ten films, I really, really want the award to go to Noah Baumbach's The Squid and the Whale. This small movie is about the dynamics of a family going through a divorce, and it sure hit home for me. I was fidgeting in my seat when Walt (Jesse Eisenberg, Roger Dodger) told his parents (Laura Linney and Jeff Daniels, robbed-robbed-robbed!) that he had, in fact, written the song "Hey You" (from Pink Floyd's biggest album, The Wall), and I was downright squirming when he performed it at his high school talent show. Bravo for the most underrated film of the year!

Who was robbed: One month after the nominations were released and I am still in shock that The 40-Year-Old Virgin received zilch, nada, nothing from the Academy. Judd Apatow and Steve Carrell deserve an award for making this movie charming instead of sleazy and juvenile. Oh it's got its share of sleaze - it's just not juvenile sleaze. When you rent this one make sure you watch the extras.

Stay tuned to this blog for more predictions during this crazy pre-Oscar week! And drop by the SGN Oscars shindig at Manray (516 E. Pine) this Sunday, "Ain't No Brokeback Mountain High Enough." The party starts at 5:00 pm!

Brokeback Mountain photo courtesy of Focus Features; Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang photo courtesy of Warner Brothers; Crash photo courtesy of Lions Gate Films; and The 40-Year-Old Virgin photo courtesy of Universal Pictures.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Support Gay youth

Tickets for the 2nd Annual Gay-Straight Alliance Banquet & Awards Ceremony are now available online at BrownPaperTickets.com or by phone (toll-free) at 1-800-838-3006.

The GSA Banquet and Awards Ceremony are part of the Washington State GSA Network, a program of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) Puget Sound. Eight awards are given each year to GSAs, GSA leaders and educators in recognition of their courageous work to promote tolerance and end homophobia.

This year, the event will be held on Friday, May 19th, at the IKEA Performing Arts Center at Renton High School. Guests will enjoy live entertainment, a catered meal, and a silent auction.

Click here for tickets!

SGN presents Oscar Party 2006 at Manray Video Bar



Seattle Gay News, Manray Video Bar and Gay City invite you to our "Ain't No Brokeback Mountain High Enough" Oscar Party 2006 on Sunday, March 5. Location and start time are Manray Video Bar (514 East Pine) at 5:00 pm.

Watch the awards on mulitiple TV screens, cheer your favorite films onto victory and win prizes that include a two-night stay at MarQueen Hotel, Landmark Theatre movie passes, "Brokeback Mountain" and "King Kong" gift packages, Easy Street Records gift package, official film soundtracks, and more.

Lily Armani, appearing as Joan Rivers, will host the event. Original cocktails and drink specials by Absolut. No cover charge. Twenty-one and over admitted. Friends and other fun socialites welcome.

Join an enthusiastic crowd of gay film fans and lots of proud Brokebackers this Sunday evening at Manray!

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Oscars Central: Walk the Line to DVD next week

No, your eyes and ears weren't deceiving you. Those were commercials for the Walk the Line DVD you saw this weekend, and VideoETA confirms it: instead of an iffy June release to the home market, the Oscar-nominated film (actor, actress, costume, editing and sound mixing) has a definite date of February 28th. That's the same release date as Pride & Prejudice.... get out your hankies!

Stay tuned for more predictions -- tonight, if the ladies don't skate well -- and pick up next week's print edition for my Oscar low-down.

Walk the Line image courtesy 20th Century Fox.

Friday, February 17, 2006

SGN presents She Wants Revenge at Neumo's, March 12


The Seattle Gay News proudly presents She Wants Revenge at Neumo's on Sunday, March 12. The LA-based dance-goth duo, consisting of Adam Braven (aka Adam 12) and Justin Warfield, just released their self-titled debut that contains the smash hit "These Things". The second single from the album, "Tear You Apart", will likely draw more fans to their cool, punk-electronic sound.

She Wants Revenge's concert at Neumos's, co-presented by the Seattle Gay News and 107.7 The End, is completely sold out. But stay glued to the SGN because we may have an extra pair of tickets to give away to the show in the coming weeks. The SGN is currently spinning the music video for "These Things" at our weekly club night, "Alternative Tuesdays", at Manray Video Bar (514 E. Pine). Look for a concert preview of She Wants Revenge in the March 10 issue of the SGN.


Photo of She Wants Revenge, courtesy of Geffen Records.

Oscars Central: Catch 'em while you can!

A few weeks back I told y'all when the nominated films were coming out on DVD. Here's a reminder:


Howl's Moving Castle This Hiyao Miyazaki gem is back in Seattle at the Crest. Just goes to show how some films can return to the big screen, where they belong, just in time for a reminder about why they should win ... oops, I think we'll cover that in one of my predictions blogs. If you don't catch Howl here, you'll have to wait until March 7th to see it on DVD.

North Country comes to DVD next week Tuesday, February 21st.

As reported in Oscars Central last week, documentary nominee Darwin's Nightmare has its Seattle premier at the Northwest Film Forum starting next Friday, February 24th, and plays through March 2nd.

It's looking like Landmark's Varsity Theatre will be featuring the 2005 Academy Award Nominated Short Films, also beginning Friday the 24th. This is a great opportunity to see flicks that otherwise won't make the rounds ... although they might come back through at Bumbershoot's One Reel Festival of short films. But don't hold your breath.

Pride and Prejudice is also playing at the Crest. Why is this surprising? Because it's been in theaters since November and it comes out on DVD on February 28th.

Foreign Film Nominees Most of the foreign films will be showing up at a Landmark Theatre soon: Don't Tell (Italy), Joyeux Noel (France), Sophie Scholl: The Final Days (Germany) and Tsotsi (South Africa) are all listed on Landmark's Coming Soon page. Palestine's Paradise Now made the Landmark rounds back in November; it arrives on DVD March 21.

Remember: Keep checking back for my educated Oscars guesses, and pick up a print copy of the March 3rd Seattle Gay News for my preductions in the major categories.

Howl's Moving Castle photo courtesy of Studio Ghibli/Disney Pictures

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Oscars Central: Let the predictions begin!

With the attention Willie Nelson's been receiving for his non-Brokeback release, "Cowboys Are Frequently, Secretly (Fond of Each Other)", and with the Grammys newly minted, it seems fitting to kick off the Oscars Central predix with music. I'm going with the "what should win, what will win & who was robbed" pattern for all of my predictions - and you're welcome to chime in if you disagree! Here goes something:

Best Song Nominees: "In the Deep," from Crash; "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp," from Hustle & Flow; and "Travelin' Thru," from Transamerica.

What should win: As much as I loved Dolly Parton's warbling at the end of Transamerica, and as moved as I was by most of the musical choices in Crash, you know - by process of elimination - what song I can't get out of my head. Granted, I only saw Hustle & Flow a few weeks ago, but I see the title "It's Hard Out Here..." and I'm already humming "...for a pimp." Even the song title does a great job of encapsulating the movie, but the best thing is that, since H&F is about a Memphis pimp trying to get into the music business, the song is actually part of the plot and not just something thrown over the end credits.

What will win: "In the Deep" is a pretty safe choice, and also a deserving song. I'm betting voters will shy away from making these Oscars appear totally LGBT, thus eliminating "Travelin' Thru." And do you really think a song with the word "Pimp" in it's title is going to win? Besides, another song from H&F won at the Golden Globes (one without the word "pimp," and one that star Terrence Howard co-wrote).

Who was robbed: I took a look at the Academy's list of eligible songs, and as amusing as it would have been to see a performance of Harry Potter's "Do the Hippogriff" (by Robin Williams maybe?), I would have been even more thrilled to see the cast of The Producers on stage to perform "There's Nothing Like a Show on Broadway." It would have been nice to see Mel Brooks get one more award for this show.

Best Score Nominees: Brokeback Mountain, The Constant Gardener, Memoirs of a Geisha, Munich and Pride and Prejudice.

What should win: Hands down, the most effective and personal score among the nominated flicks is the one for Brokeback Mountain. I still remember the stark guitar instrumental interludes - yup, there they go in my head, replacing "It's Hard Out Here..." - by composer Gustavo Santaolalla, whereas I can't recall a thing about any of the other nominees. Bingo.

What will win: The Academy will probably follow the Critics' Choice and Golden Globe Awards and give it to John Williams for Memoirs of a Geisha. Hmmph. Like he has room for another statuette on his mantle.

Who was robbed: Mark Isham for the haunting, evocative score for Crash. I know it's sappy to keep repeating how moving this film was, but as good as the acting and script were Crash wouldn't have had one quarter of the - pardon the pun - impact if the score hadn't carried the themes through. Isham's perfect choices propelled this movie into the Best Picture stratosphere.

That's it for now ... I'll be back with another category (or two) in a bit. And remember to pick up a print copy of March 3rd's SGN for my Oscar predictions in major categories. Now get out there and watch some great movies!

Hustle & Flow soundtrack image courtesy of Atlantic/WEA; Crash soundtrack image courtesy of Superb Records.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Brokeback costumes up for auction

From Variety -- The Children's Charity of Southern California:

Collectors of movie memorabilia now have the opportunity, starting today, to own two of the shirts so memorably worn by the Academy Award-nominated stars of this year's biggest hit Best Picture Academy Award nominee, BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN. This 10-day charity auction benefiting Variety -- The Children's Charity of Southern California will launch on Friday, February 10 at 5pm (PST). The auction will end at 5pm (PST) on Monday, February 20.

These are the men's shirts, originally selected by BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN costume designer Marit Allen and director Ang Lee, that have become iconic pieces of film history in the most Academy Award-nominated film of the year. The 2 (two) shirts are worn early in the film by Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger) and Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal), in the portion of the story set in 1963, and then are seen again as the epic love story nears closure many years later.


Auction site: www.ebay.com/varietyskids

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

Oscars Central: Documentary nominee at NW Film Forum Feb 24 - Mar 2


Darwin's Nightmare, Oscar-nominated for best documentary feature, has its Seattle premiere at the Northwest Film Forum Friday, February 24 through Thursday, March 2. If you remember, my last Oscars Central blog gave the lowdown on nominees' theatrical and dvd release dates, and many of the feature documentaries and foreign flicks were conspicuously absent. Well, here's your chance!

NWFF provided a blurb on Darwin's Nightmare:

Feeling more like a sci-fi/horror film than a documentary, DARWIN'S NIGHTMARE is the tale of two relentless killing machines: the Nile Perch which, over the course of a few decades, ate through everything that used to live in Tanzania's Lake Victoria; and the foreign capitalists who introduced that non-native fish in order to sell it to European consumers. Losing out to both of these were the local Tanzanians who once lived off the lake's bounty, and now, literally, are left with bones and rotting carcasses. Ex-Soviet cargo planes come daily to collect the latest catch in exchange for their incoming cargo of Kalashnikovs and ammunitions for the uncounted wars of Africa. This booming multinational industry of food and weapons has created an ungodly globalized alliance on the shores of the world's biggest tropical lake: an army of young fishermen, Indian factory owners, African ministers, EU-commissioners, Russian pilots and Tanzanian prostitutes.

The film will be playing at 7:00 and 9:00 pm each night. NW Film Forum is located at 1515 12th Avenue. To purchase tickets online or for more info visit their website at www.nwfilmforum.org.

Photo courtesy Northwest Film Forum

Live from Gay Whistler Ski Week - Wednesday

I'm about to leave the frosty mountains of Whistler and Blackcomb, and I'm bummed because the sun is blazing and the ski conditions are grand. Not to mention, hundreds of gay skiiers and snowboarders are up on the slopes right now partaking of the fun and thrill. But the Seattle Gay News only committed to coverage for the first half of Gay Whistler Ski Week, so let me set up the rest of the week for anyone who is heading up here or still thinking about it.

Tonight's apres-ski social is at Bear Foot Bistro, and a masque/rave party is planned for late-night at Maxx Fish. Incidentally, I was at Maxx Fish last night and there were lots and lots of hot gay boys there, from Seattle and Montreal and the US East Coast, and a big group is expected to arrive today from the Bay Area. It was cool to see these gay snow-types come together, mingle, talk about skiing and snowboarding, and dance to great music.

Tommorow's schedule includes on and off-mountain lunches, an apres-ski social at the Telus Conference Centre and a late-night concert with Canadian notable Kim Kuzma. The gay ski week committee has been raving about Kuzma, talking about her as some big recording artist. I personally have never heard of her and can't fathom paying $39 to see her live. So, I recommend instead hanging out at the various bars - most of them with cover charges - and mingling with the locals and other gay men who just want to cocktail and dance.

Friday's activities include a guided ski tour of Blackcomb, on and off-mountain lunches, apres-ski at the Telus Conference Centre, and a pub crawl that costs $40 but admits you into three of the busiest bars at Whistler Village (Savage Beagle, Moe Joe's, Maxx Fish).

Saturday's events are a guided ski tour of Whistler, on and off-mountain lunches, apres-ski at the conference centre and a big late-night dance/party at the conference centre as well.

Sunday is the final day of Gay Whistler Ski Week, and it features a brunch at Aubergine Grill and an apres-ski at Dubh Linn Irish Pub.

Three other GLBT events taking place this week are a wine and spa social at the lesbian-owned Solarice Spa, on Friday. I had a massage there yesterday and it was heavenly. Ask for Chris, a martial arts specialist off duty, who is amazing with his hands. There's also a martini party at the Hilton, with money being raised for AIDS Vancouver, and "The L Party" for women at Maxx Fish. The latter two events take place on Saturday.

Let me recommend a terrific, low-cost dining spot. It's called Splitz Grill. I had the lemon-garlic basted grilled chicken burger and I got to choose my own veggies to put in it. It was only $7.95 (Canadian), and for another buck you can get a slice of bacon. Also, Hot Buns Bakery has fantastic fresh pastries and good coffee (ask for the bold vs. mild roast).

Okay, gotta go to check out of my hotel (the Adara - which is fabulous and hip) and catch my ride to Vancouver. It's been great doing this for you. If you can't join the fun this year, think about 2007.

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Live from Gay Whistler Ski Week - Tuesday

If you're headed up to Whistler or thinking about it, expect to see lots of hot guys up here. This aside from fresh snow, great ski conditions and incredibly beautiful weather.

I just left a hopping apres-ski social at Maxx Fish, where members of Seattle Ski Buddies are about to join a standing-room-only crowd in feasting their eyes on a group of go-go dancers. Cocktails and watching fit, half-dressed men dance in a bar after a day of skiing and snowboarding? Works for me! Although, I'm headed to the tube park for a bit of evening snow intertubing with a friend from SoCal. A late night party is scheduled at Buffalo Bills. There are snow-types here from all parts of the US, Canada and world.

Tomorrow's agenda includes a naked ski run, beginning at 1:00 pm. Talk about poles! There's also on and off-mountain lunches planned, an apres-ski social at Bear Foot Bistro and a masque/rave late night party at Maxx Fish. Besides snow-type stuff, you can check out a rock climbing gym, have coffee and dig into good reading material at various coffee shops and bakeries, or find a place in the village to cruise the sexy skiiers and snowboarders. That's a sport all its own.

I had a fantastic massage today at the lesbian-owned Solarice spa, and I can't believe I'm following that up with intertubing down a mountain. But, you gotta have fun! So if you're headed up here or want to, visit www.gaywhistler.com for updates and details on this week's event. I'm at Whistler through tomorrow, then headed back to Vancouver to rest my tired self. Accomodation recommendations in Vancouver are the Opus Hotel (www.opushotel.com) or the Sandman Suites on Davie (www.sandmanhotels.com), and at Whistler I suggest the Adara Hotel (www.adarahotel.com) or the Pan Pacific Whistler Village Centre (www.whistlervc.panpacific.com).

Monday, February 6, 2006

Live from Gay Whistler Ski Week - Monday

The weather was absolutely fabulous up here at Whistler/Blackcomb today! And the gay boys, and a few girls, are beginning to collect for what's expected to be a fun, exciting week. In just minutes, a western gay night will start at Buffalo Bills. I find the locals, who I'll refer to as Whistlers, to be quite friendly and helpful.

For those who haven't been to Whistler, it's a two hour drive or bus ride from downtown Vancouver. Whistler Village, where the majority of hotels are located is where most gay visitors are staying. It's a small resort town, but filled with great boutiques, specialty restaurants, cafes and of course, ski equipment rental and sales shops.

Whistler is pricey, and skiing as a sport isn't cheap so expect to spend some cash. But you can cut costs in several ways, most notably by eating in vs. eating out. The IGA grocery store has everything you need, fresh produce, meats, prepared food, bakery, and it even has a Pizza Hut inside that offers $4.79 personal pan pizzas. You'll also find McDonalds, KFC and Starbucks here. I ran into two gay couples at the IGA who taught me something new about bananas. Hmmm...

Besides skiing (I'm actually not a ski lover), you can roam around and shop, go to a movie ("Brokeback Mountain", "Capote", "Good Night, and Good Luck"" are all playing here), visit the library, go for scenic walks, go ziptreking (an outdoor activity for anyone not afraid of heights), OR you can cruise the hot looking men - straight, gay and everything in between. I'm smitten at the moment with a young Australian attendant working in my hotel. By the way, there are a lot of young Australian men here - and they're all beautiful and friendly.

On tomorrow's agenda, aside from snow activities, is an after-ski social at Maxx Fish and a late night party at a yet-to-be announced location.

Grammy Central: Best Female Pop Vocal Performance

About 48 hours to go before the big night! This is the last category being highlighted before the ceremony. You can check out my prediction and picks for Album, Record and Song of the Year, plus Best New Artist in this week's issue of the Seattle Gay News. The link is below. I'll do a last-minute update and preview on Wednesday.

http://sgn.org/sgnnews34_05/page21.cfm

I've had a great time doing this for you. Keep track of the Oscars race with my fab co-writer Lorelei Quenzer right here. Here's a look at an always-close race.

Best Female Pop Vocal Performance

It's Like That - Mariah Carey
Since U Been Gone - Kelly Clarkson
Good is Good - Sheryl Crow
I Will Not Be Broken - Bonnie Raitt
Hollaback Girl - Gwen Stefani

This is a closely watched category each year, and this time around it features the top three selling female artists of 2005 in an all-out catfight, Mariah Carey, Kelly Clarkson and Gwen Stefani. Missing from the list are Madonna and Fiona Apple.

My prediction is that it's too close to call between Carey, Stefani and Clarkson. Grammy voters usually reward younger artists here (Norah Jones, Christina Aguilera, Nelly Furtado), so that bodes well for the latter two. Carey, riding on a hugely successful year, may get a boost from voters who feel 5 million copies sold of "The Emancipation of Mimi" has to be recognized outside of the major races.

My personal pick is Kelly Clarkson. Plain and simple, as the category title suggests, it's the best performance turned in of these five respected contenders.

Sunday, February 5, 2006

Live from Gay Whistler Ski Week

Greetings from Whistler, BC! The Seattle Gay News joins a small group of gay press-media representatives covering the festivities, including Genre, Diva and Gay.com. I will be up here through Wednesday morning, providing you with as much information as I can on the current and upcoming agenda.

The bus ride from downtown Vancouver to Whistler was about two hours and quite scenic. It's so beautiful in these parts! I met a very nice gay couple from Birmingham, Alabama on the bus ride to Whistler, and at least a dozen gay skiers and fun-seekers were on our bus as well.

A welcome party at the Telus Conference Center is under way and a post-reception takes place at Buffalo Bills. The gay boys thus far are, as you'd expect from avid and novice skier and snowboarder-types, fit and easy on the eye.

Tomorrow, asides from snow activities, there are on-mountain and off-mountain lunches for gay visitors and an after-ski social at Monk's Grill. The weather is gorgeous - the snow is terrific - and the party action is just heating up. If you plan on heading up here or want to, visit www.gaywhistler.com for hotel information. I recommend the newly opened, splashy-cool Adara Hotel. (604) 905-4009.

Off to party and meet the skiers! Type to ya later.

Saturday, February 4, 2006

Grammy Central: Best Pop Vocal Album

In case you haven't heard, Madonna is scheduled to perform at Wednesday's Grammy Awards ceremony with Gorillaz. Joining them on the performers lineup are Coldplay, U2 with Mary J. Blige, Kanye West, Mariah Carey with Hezekiah Walker and the Love Fellowship Choir, John Legend, Ciara, Keith Urban, Faith Hill and many more.

Here's a look at another exciting race going into Wednesday night.

Best Pop Vocal Album

Extraordinary Machine - Fiona Apple
Breakaway - Kelly Clarkson
Wildflower - Sheryl Crow
Chaos and Creation in the Backyard - Paul McCartney
Love.Angel.Music.Baby - Gwen Stefani

What an interesting category. Paul McCartney vs. Fiona Apple vs. Kelly Clarkson Wow! Not to mention a pair of new and veteran Grammy darlings, Stefani and Crow.

My prediction is that Paul McCartney will win, if only because he's performing on the program and Grammy voters love to honor rock dinosaurs. He's also nominated for Album of the Year, as is Gwen Stefani, which gives him a nice lift.

My personal pick is Kelly Clarkson. I'd love to see Fiona Apple win for her torchy rock collection, but I actually think she belongs in a different category. Clarkson's terrific pop standout is fueled by four major hits, all of them ear-pleasing, and she defined herself as a force in the music world to be reckoned with long after her "Idol" days.

Thursday, February 2, 2006

Oscars Central: To rent or not (able) to rent?


So ... you've got your list of Oscar-nominated movies and your list of the films you haven't seen yet, and you know what? They're practically identical. Well, that's what happens when you stay holed up in your apartment during these long rainy months.

The good news: you can get a few of the nominated films on DVD, maybe even enough to convince yourself that you can make a prediction. At least in the Feature Animation and Documentary categories. The bad news: Most of the big films won't be out on DVD until after the awards ceremony, thus prolonging their hold on the box office. More bad news: one foreign film (Italy's Don't Tell) and two of the documentaries (Street Fight and Darwin's Nightmare) haven't been scheduled for DVD release. Street Fight and Don't Tell may not see the light of day in the US.

Sigh. Looks like you'll have to venture out of doors - however briefly - to see what you need to see by March 5th.

On DVD: Batman Begins, 1 nom; Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, 1 nom; Cinderella Man, 2 noms; The Constant Gardener, 4 noms; Crash, 6 noms; Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, 1 nom - documentary; Hustle & Flow, 2 noms; Junebug, 1 nom; March of the Penguins, 1 nom - documentary; Murderball, 1 nom - documentary; Tim Burton's Corpse Bride, 1 nom - animation; and War of the Worlds, 3 noms.

Coming to DVD before the Oscars: North Country, 2 noms, DVD 2/21; Pride and Prejudice, 4 noms, DVD 2/28; and Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, 1 nom - animation, DVD 2/7.

Opening in theaters before the Oscars are three of the feature foreign film nominees: Joyeux Noel, from France, opens 3/3; Sophie Scholl: The Final Days, from Germany, opens some time in February; and Tsotsi, from South Africa, opens on 2/24. It's not clear whether Seattle will get them immediately upon their theatrical release or if we'll have to wait. Guess it'll depend on which film wins.

Still in theaters: Brokeback Mountain, 8 noms, DVD in May; Capote, 5 noms, DVD 3/14; The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, 2 noms, DVD in April; Good Night, and Good Luck, 6 noms, DVD 3/14; King Kong, 4 noms, DVD in March; Match Point, 1 nom, DVD in May; Memoirs of a Geisha, 6 noms, DVD sometime in March; Mrs. Henderson Presents, 2 noms, DVD in April; Munich, 5 noms, DVD in May; The New World, 1 nom, no projected date for DVD; Pride and Prejudice, 4 noms, DVD 2/28; Syriana, 2 noms, DVD 4/11; Transamerica, 2 noms, DVD in May; and Walk the Line, 5 noms, DVD in June.

You can still catch it ... in Tacoma:
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, 1 nom, DVD 3/7; and The Squid and the Whale, 1 nom, DVD 3/21. Actually, if you're quick you can catch TS&TW at Queen Anne's Uptown tonight, but it leaves on Friday.

Coming to DVD after the Oscars
: all of the films still playing in theaters except Pride and Prejudice; A History of Violence, 2 noms, DVD 3/14; Howl's Moving Castle, 1 nom - animation, DVD 3/7; and Paradise Now, 1 nom - foreign, DVD 3/21.

Note: all DVD release dates are for Region 1 Formats.

North Country photo courtesy Warner Brothers Studios.

Shemekia Copeland performing one show Superbowl Sunday at Jazz Alley


In deference to Super Bowl Sunday - and our fabulous Seahawks - Jazz Alley has whittled its Sunday night lineup down to a single performance from the equally fabulous Shemekia Copeland. Instead of the previously scheduled 6:30 and 8:30 pm shows, Copeland will be taking the stage just once, at 7:30 pm.

Football's not really on my radar screen, but Shemekia Copeland is... check out my preview from last week's Seattle Gay News for the scoop. Going to a Super Bowl bust? Just don't fill up on the ubiquitous hot wings and beer at the XL party - save room in your tummy for a nice nosh and room in your ears for awesome blues and R&B. You can make your reservation by calling 206-441-9725.

Photo courtesy of www.shemekiacopeland.com; photo credit: Larry Busacca.