Steve Pond reports that the children of Judy Garland — Liza Minnelli, Lorna Luft, and Joey Luft — will be part of this Sunday’s Oscar tribute to “The Wizard of Oz.” The legendary film was released in 1939 and is celebrating its 75th anniversary. Academy Awards producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan confirmed the news today on Twitter without revealing any details. While Garland never actually won an Oscar, Minnelli prevailed as Best Actress for “Cabaret” in 1972. The Wrap.
Paul Sheehan‘s Gold Derby story on Monday gives you the complete list of Oscar presenters for Sunday’s ceremony. Pete Hammond says that the producers have developed a theme that promises to be what they call “entertaining and emotional” with a salute to heroes (real life, fictional, and animated). He is glad that old Hollywood is “not completely forgotten” by such presenters as Kim Novak and Sidney Poitier. He adds, “Can you imagine that moment if he (Poitier) were to present to ‘12 Years a Slave“? The Oscars needs moments like that.” Deadline.
Comedy writer, director, and actor Harold Ramis dies at age 69 in Chicago. His resume includes “Animal House,” “Stripes,” “Caddyshack,” “National Lampoon’s Vacation,” “Ghostbusters,” and “Groundhog Day.” His co-star in “Ghostbusters,” Dan Aykroyd said, “Deeply saddened to hear of the passing of my brilliant, gifted, funny friend, co-writer, performer and teacher. May he now get the answers he was always seeking.” Variety.
The 9th annual “Jimmy Kimmel Live” post-Oscars special will feature two-time Academy Awards champ Kevin Spacey as its main guest. Spacey will be a presenter on the Oscars across the street from the Kimmel studio in Hollywood and will then make his way over for the live special. Special pre-recorded cameo appearances will be made by Ellen DeGeneres, Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Martin Scorsese, Chris Hemsworth, Liam Hemsworth, Christoph Waltz, Ben Kingsley, Mandy Patinkin, Abbie Cornish, Barkhad Abdi, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Seth Rogen, Morgan Freeman, Andy Garcia, Adam Driver, Queen Latifah, Gary Oldman, and Anjelica Huston. TV by the Numbers.
Nickelodeon announces the nominees for their 27th annual Kids’ Choice Awards. Competing for Best Picture are “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” “Iron Man 3,” “Oz the Great and Powerful,” and “The Smurfs 2.” TV nominees are “The Big Bang Theory,” “Good Luck Charlie,” “Jessie,” and “Sam and Cat.” Notable music nominees are Lady Gaga, Selena Gomez, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, One Direction, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Justin Timberlake, and Pharrell Williams. Hollywood Reporter.
Rebecca Keegan interviews AMPAS CEO Dawn Hudson and President Cheryl Boone Isaacs just days before the Oscars ceremony. Among many topics, they discuss the ceremony itself, the $300 million museum project, and how the Academy membership is continually striving to bring in more minorities and women as members. L.A. Times.
With the news that “Piers Morgan Tonight” is ending in March on CNN, Amos Barshad touts Jay Leno for the primetime slot. Leno ended his longtime run as “The Tonight Show” host earlier this month and is seemingly available. CNN kingpin Jeff Zucker was a former boss at NBC and certainly knows Leno very well. He says, “Have Leno put on the suspenders and truly become Larry King” with an interview show and a little bit of topical humor. Grantland.
If you’re trying to win the Oscar prediction contest, Guy Lodge offers his thoughts on the tightly contested race for Best Film Editing. The recent victory by “Captain Phillips” at the ACE guild awards should not have been a surprise since “thrillers and tension exercises are frequently favored by voters in this category” (see “Argo,” “The Bourne Ultimatum,” and “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”) “Gravity” remains a frontrunner to many, but the ACE win is something to consider. HitFix.