Gold Derby Nuggets: January 10

Dixon Gaines wonders why nobody objected to the race-blind casting in “The Social Network.” After recapping the hubbub over “The Last Airbender” using Caucasian actors to play cartoon characters that were Asian or Inuit, he notes that there has “been nary a peep over the casting of Andrew Garfield in the role of Facebook founder Eduardo Saverin, a Brazilian, and of Max Minghella in the role of Divya Narendra, an Indian American? If anything, I figure this would be more of a cause to protest; after all, these are real people who actually exist, not a pack of magic cartoon characters that seem ethnic. And while both Garfield and Minghella have dark features, I’m not sure they’d ever be mistaken for a Brazilian or, particularly in the case of Minghella, an Indian.” MOVIELINE

Jeff Wells imagines the Oscar pundits in the roles of “12 Angry Men” who are a jury struggling to deliver the right verdict. For Jeff, “The jury votes favoring the Latino kid who may have stabbed his father — an initially guilty-seeming figure — gradually tipped in his favor in the same way that votes for ‘The Social Network,’ which didn’t seem like a very likely Oscar winner because of the lack of empathy and heart and all that, is gradually winning over initial disbelievers.”  HOLLYWOOD ELSEWHERE

Reporting from the Palm Springs filmfest, Steve Pond recaps Saturday’s awards gala: “Instead of being chosen by a secret vote, they’re the product of negotiations and jockeying between studios and publicists anxious to showcase their contenders in front of what one wag called ‘just another precinct,’ and a festival that needs big names to attract the town’s moneyed elite to its annual fundraising event. So ‘The Social Network’ got an award for its ensemble cast, and ‘The King’s Speech’ and ‘Black Swan’ got some visibility because Colin Firth and Natalie Portman received the Desert Palm Achievement Awards for Actor and Actress, and ‘The Fighter’ director David O. Russell was named Director of the Year – which didn’t stop two other directors from also getting kudos, ‘127 Hours’ helmer Danny Boyle receiving the Sonny Bono Visionary Award and actor/writer/director Ben Affleck taking home the Chairman’s Award.” THE ODDS

Joel and Ethan Coen chatted with Tim Appelo about “True Grit,” their first $100 milliion movie. On the surprising box office success, the brothers said, “You’re in a business where people are constantly being surprised. Movies with big stars and real straightahead genre movies fail, and other things where people go out on a limb do great.” They commiserated with the relative failures of other December releases, commenting, “Again, we’ve been on both sides of that. We’ve come up with three lemons.”  THR

On the latest installment of their podcast “Oscar Talk,” Jeff Wells and Sasha Stone (Awards Daily) welcome another awards blogger, Scott Feinberg, for a freewheeling conversation. As Jeff recaps, “we banked into a discussion of ‘Social Network’ Oscar-pundit denial and an examination of this curious psychology and Feinberg’s contention that ‘there is no generic Oscar-type movie anymore.” HOLLYWOOD ELSEWHERE

Key members of the Kennedy family put pressure on the History Channel to yank the eight-part mini-series on the political dynasty reports Matthew Belloni. Caroline Kennedy is said to have lobbied TV exec Anne Sweeney while Maria Shriver expressed her concerns to outgoing Peacock net suits Jeff Zucker and Jeff Gaspin. The show could still end up on another American outlet, much as “The Reagans” did when it bounced from CBS to Showtime back in 2004. THR

Jim Carrey knocked it out of the park hosting “SNL” this weekend for only the second time says Kate Stanhope. “He tapped into the manic energy and physical comedy that defined his early career. Carrey was game for anything, including proposing to an already married audience member during his monologue and wearing a black tutu for an off-the-wall parody of ballerina thriller ‘Black Swan.'” Could Carrey reap his first-ever Emmy bid as a Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for his efforts? TV GUIDE

Tim Stack has the scoop that Oscar champ Gywneth Paltrow (“Shakespeare in Love”) is returning to “Glee” for two more episodes after her well-received appearance earlier this season which may earn her a Guest Actress in a Comedy Series nomination. As show creator Ryan Murphy told Tim, “Gwyneth is coming back for two episodes. She’s coming back specifically to date Will [Matthew Morrison]. Those two have become really good friends in real life and had really good chemistry. She’s coming back as a sex education teacher. Gwyneth and I are emailing, talking every week: What are we gonna sing? We’re trying to do something fantastic. So she’ll be  [in episodes] 15 and 16. She comes back [to film] in January and she’s with us for three and a half weeks I think.” ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY

The first LA Times music producers roundtable takes place on Jan. 15 at the Grammy Museum at L.A. Live. Music critic Ann Powers will moderate a publc conversation with Alex Da Kid, Ari Levine and RedOne about their work with the likes of Lady Gaga, Bruno Mars, Eminem, B.o.B and Cee Lo Green. AWARDS TRACKER

First, Gregory Maguire‘s novel “Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West” begat the legit tuner “Wicked” which has been SRO for seven years on Broadway and toured the world as well. Now comes word that  ABC and Salma Hayek — who had great success with “Ugly Betty” — are developing a miniseries based on the book. Emmy champ Erik Jendresen (“Band of Brothers”) is writing the eight-hour miniseries. PLAYBILL

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