Oscars news: Secrets behind ‘Interstellar,’ ‘The Hobbit’ cast as you’ve never seen them, …

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Anne Thompson reports on a fascinating conversation with her dinner companion at Tuesday’s American Cinematheque Ball honoring Matthew McConaughey, star of the upcoming “Interstellar“:  “CalTech astrophysicist Kip Thorne worked closely with Christopher Nolan and his VFX people to create a scientifically realistic wormhole and black hole so that the film’s use of relative time would be as accurate as possible. Thompson on Hollywood

As Esther Zuckerman observes, “John Goodman has some words for Mark Wahlberg in the teaser for their upcoming film ‘The Gambler,’ and since it’s a red-band teaser, it’s probably evident that the words aren’t exactly pretty. (Get ready for a lot of “f–k yous” to be uttered.)” EW

Oscars predictions update: Experts still backing ‘Boyhood,’ Michael Keaton, Julianne Moore, …

Jason Hughes teases Air New Zealand’s “The Most Epic Safety Video Ever Made,” which features the folks from “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.” As he writes, “Who wouldn’t want to learn airplane safety guidelines from Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood), Radagast the Brown (Sylvester McCoy), the dwarf Fili (Dean O’Gorman),  special effects guru and Weta Workshops co-founder Richard Taylor and director Peter Jackson himself?” The Wrap

Prefacing his chat with “The Theory of Everything” screenwriter Anthony McCracken, Mike Fleming notes, “It has been 16 years since McCarten was moved by Stephen Hawking’s publication of the groundbreaking 1998 book ‘A Brief History Of Time.’ It is a full decade since he approached Jane Hawking after publication of her memoir, Traveling To Infinity: My Life With Stephen, which McCarten recognized as an empathetic access point to the Hawking story that wasn’t present in the physicist’s science-heavy text.” Deadline

Sean O’Connell uses the three different covers of this week’s EW featuring the stars of “Into the Woods” to analyze this upcoming Oscar contender: “It has the potential to be one of the biggest movies of the holiday season, a musical adaptation of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Tony Award-winning show that brings together an A-list ensemble (and prepares for a possible Oscar run). But while we have been reporting on the snippets of information tied to Into the Woods, we really haven’t seen much from its mega-watt stars – and the fairy tale characters that they plan to play on screen. At least, until now.” Cinema Blend

Oscars flashback: How smart or stupid were Experts at this point last year? 

Matt Patches sat down with Ruben Ostlund to talk about his serio-comic film “Force Majeure,” which is Sweden’s entry into the Best Foreign Film Oscar race. “The writer-director turned to YouTube for doses of reality. If someone captured an event or action or pang of emotion on camera and uploaded to the Internet, then it happened in real life.” In Contention

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has announced that Emma Baehr has become its Director of Awards, a new role that oversees all five of BAFTA’s London-based ceremonies including November’s British Academy Children’s Awards and next February’s EE British Academy Film Awards. BAFTA

15 hottest forums posts: ‘Fury’ reax, Meryl Streep in supporting, Grammy predictions, and …

The Academy  and the New York University Orphan Film Symposium will present this year’s installment of “The Real Indies: A Close Look At Orphan Films,” a two-day screening series on Friday, October 31, and Saturday, November 1, at the Academy Theater in New York City.  The series serves as an opportunity to re-discover and re-appreciate orphan films – rarely seen, previously neglected cinematic works deserving preservation and revival. Oscars

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