Forget the Golden Globes; put aside your hopes and wishes for tonight’s People’s Choice Awards; sleep in and skip tomorrow’s Oscar nominations announcement, because we here at VH1 Celebrity have a much more important title to hand out this awards season: Best Facial Hair Performance in a Motion Picture. You know we’re not alone in pointing out how important beards, mutton chops, mustaches and scruff have been to 2012′s most critically acclaimed films: Can you even imagine Lincoln, Django Unchained, Argo, Les Miserables, Bernie or (god forbid) The Hobbit with clean-shaven stars?
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VH1 News polled the heavy hitters at the National Board of Review Awards on Tuesday night to see who the stars would nominate and the answers were predictably enthusiastic.
“I’m not worried about awards season, but I have been going for best beard,” Ben Affleck told us. “[Leonardo DiCaprio’s] got the best, probably, and Bradley [Cooper’s] got, like, the scruff, which doesn’t look like a beard-beard but you can’t discredit because it’s carefully calibrated.” Read more…
We are unabashedly excited about seeing The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey the second it hits theaters — it speaks to our eighth-grade selves as much as to the part of us that’s just nostalgic for nine years ago, when the last of the Lord of the Rings trilogy premiered. But we also are under no illusion that Peter Jackson’s latest trilogy is the most glamorous of star-powered events — let’s face it, J.R.R. Tolkien wasn’t exactly hell-bent on making beautiful women the center of attention in his books, and few of his heroes were much to look at either. And while we are super eager to return to Middle-earth and all its hobbitses and wizards and elves and dwarves, our shallow selves are also grateful to Jackson and company for making sure there’s some eye candy in the movies too.
At today’s world premiere of the movie in Wellington, New Zealand, it was Cate Blanchett — returning as elf queen Galadrial — and Evangeline Lilly — who plays Tauriel, an elf invented for the movies — who brought the token glamour to the red carpet. We love Evangeline’s new short hair-do, paired with her playfully sparkly dress (and damn, girl, those legs!). Cate appears to have some elfin magic in her IRL, because the actress has not aged a day in the past 10 years. Jackson, Elijah Wood, Martin Freeman, Andy Serkis were also on-hand to greet the costumed fans — and a couple of PETA protesters. Flip through the pics while you enjoy your second breakfasts!
We’re just starting to get excited for the epic epicness that will be Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit movies, but the latest news about the production may just put a damper on our Middle-earth love. Yesterday, PETA released info to The Associated Press alleging that 27 horses, sheep, goats and chickens had died during the production due to dangerous conditions at the farm where they were housed. PETA’s sources described hazardous bluffs and embankments that killed two horses, overcrowded stables, worm infestations that killed sheep and goats, and the mauling of chickens by out-of-control dogs on the property.
Jackson and company immediately defended themselves, saying that PETA didn’t check their sources. “To date, the only horse wranglers whose treatment of animals fell below the production’s standard of care seem to be the two wranglers who have chosen to level this new accusation on the eve of the premiere of the first Hobbit film and who were dismissed by the production over a year ago,” Jackson wrote on Facebook late last night.
Spokespeople for the production told the AP that there were two avoidable deaths of horses but other animals died of “natural causes.” Meanwhile, the American Humane Association — the folks that authorize the “no animals were harmed” statement in the credits of movies — claim that while it made sure none were harmed on the set, it had no control over what went on at the farm, which was 186 miles away. “We do not have either the jurisdiction or funding to extend that oversight to activities or conditions off set or before animals come under our protection,” said a statement, according to Deadline. So that’s not exactly a statement of support for The Hobbit. Read more…
Some of us love to pore over every fall movie preview we can get our hands on, reading reviews from Cannes and Toronto, marking our calendars with premiere dates and pre-ordering our tix on Fandango as soon as we can. For others, that sounds way too much like homework. That’s why we made this quick little guide to the top 10 flicks we’re dying to see, with the kind of blurb that won’t tax your short attention spans. And sure, we’re leaving out a whole bunch of Oscar contenders, guilty pleasures and interesting films we’ll eventually watch, but this is a list based on fandom, gut instinct and, yeah, intense crushes. Here they are in (order of premiere date):
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The Perks of Being a Wallflower: Logan Lerman will make you cry, you will wish Emma Watson and Ezra Miller were your best friends, and you will go home and hunt down your long-lost mixtapes. In select theaters September 21.
Pitch Perfect: No one does smart-talking like Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson is our new imaginary girlfriend, and we think Elizabeth Banks (who produced) can do no wrong. In theaters September 28.
Alex Cross: We can’t wait to see how Tyler Perry does with someone else’s lines … as a sexy detective, no less. And Matthew Fox’s weightloss is purely fascinating. In theaters October 19.
Skyfall: Daniel Craig is our weakness — and in this James Bond installment, we’ll get to see the skeleton in Q’s closet. Let’s forget Quantum of Solace ever happened. In theaters November 9.
Silver Linings Playbook: Jennifer Lawrence finally gets to have some fun in a movie, opposite Sexiest Man Alive Bradley Cooper, and they’re both playing mentally unstable people in a movie directed by possibly mentally unstable filmmaker David O. Russell. In theaters November 21. Read more…
IT’S HERE! Ok, not quite. Peter Jackson‘s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will only hit theatres on December 14, 2012, but the first trailer is out, and it looks epic. Lord of the Rings fans know that The Hobbit deals with the story of Bilbo Baggins (played by Martin Freeman in this film) and his quest to reclaim the Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor from the dragon Smaug. Sir Ian McKellan reprises his role as Gandalf the Grey, and Andy Serkis, Orlando Bloom, Elijah Wood and Cate Blanchett also makes appearances as Gollum, Legolas, Frodo and Galadriel, respectively. Evangeline Lilly and Luke Evans are also on board playing Tauriel and Bard.
The second Hobbit movie — The Hobbit: There and Back Again — will be out in 2013 and is also directed by Jackson. The film may have been released long after The Lord of the Rings trilogy hit cinemas, but the story is actually a prequel to LOTR. Just watch our inner nerds come out with this one.
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