Cate Blanchett scores Oscar nomination
Cate Blanchett, three designers and an animation supervisor lead a strong Australian charge at the Academy Awards this year.
As well Blanchett, who has been nominated for best actress for her role in Blue Jasmine, two-time Oscar winner Catherine Martin has been nominated twice again for The Great Gatsby - for best costumes and best production design with set designer Beverly Dunn.
Michael Wilkinson, an Australian who has worked on such big Hollywood movies as Terminator Salvation, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn and Man of Steel since leaving for the US a decade ago, has been nominated for the costumes on American Hustle.
Animation supervisor David Clayton, who has been working in New Zealand on The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King and worked on King Kong and Avatar, is up for visual effects on The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.
Leading the nominations for 86th awards with 10 were American Hustle, David O. Russell’s crime caper about the FBI recruiting con artists to trap corrupt politicians, and Gravity, Alfonso Cuaron’s bold 3D action sci-fi movie about two astronauts stranded in space.
Steve McQueen’s drama 12 Years A Slave, about a man kidnapped into slavery in the 1840s, has nine nominations.
All three movies are up for best picture against Captain Phillips, Dallas Buyers Club, Her, Nebraska, Philomena and The Wolf of Wall Street, with 12 Years A Slave considered the favourite.
Best director is between Cuaron for Gravity, McQueen for 12 Years A Slave, Russell for American Hustle, Martin Scorsese for The Wolf of Wall Street and Alexander Payne for Nebraska.
After universal acclaim and a strong of lead-up prizes, Blanchett will go into the awards as favourite to win her second Oscar - her first was for The Aviator – for playing a faded New York socialite in Blue Jasmine.
She is up against Amy Adams (American Hustle), Sandra Bullock (Gravity), Judi Dench (Philomena) and Meryl Streep (August: Osage County).
Joining Blanchett as the country’s most prolific Oscar nominee with six is Martin, who has won twice for Moulin Rouge so far.
The designer, who is married to director Baz Luhrmann, has been nominated previously for art direction-set direction on Romeo + Juliet and costumes on Australia.
Garry Maddox, SMH.COM.AU
Kelly Osbourne takes aim at columnist
Kelly Osbourne has sparked a new war of words with a British reality TV star-turned magazine columnist after she attacked her mum’s looks.
Katie Hopkins, a former contestant on Britain’s The Apprentice, took aim at Sharon Osbourne’s cosmetically enhanced features when she suggested the TV talent show judge would need to ‘‘bulk buy plastic’’ if she wanted to maintain her look.
The remark upset her daughter, who took to Twitter to attack Hopkins, calling her ‘‘a hypocritical vile human that is addicted 2 (sic) attention,’’ and adding, ‘‘Don’t you ever talk about my mother again!’’
actually made my night that @KTHopkins considerers herself a lady when I think of her a desperate sad old bitter child is what comes to mind— Kelly Osbourne (@KellyOsbourne) January 16, 2014
The Twitter feud went into overdrive when Hopkins fired back, suggesting Osbourne was only successful because she’s the daughter of famous parents, and it turned downright nasty.
Kate Moss celebrates 40th birthday
British supermodel Kate Moss celebrated her 40th birthday - and more than half a lifetime in the public eye - on Thursday.
Moss, who was spotted in an airport aged 14, has graced thousands of covers and walked down countless catwalks since a photo shoot in style magazine The Face made her a star.
Her waifish looks, party lifestyle, and a string of celebrity partners, including Johnny Depp and Pete Doherty, have kept her in the headlines for years and she has worked with almost every major fashion designer.
Earlier in January she posed in bunny ears for the cover of Playboy magazine.
The Croydon-born catwalk star featured in 18 pages of the January-February issue of the racy magazine, as well as the cover, to celebrate her birthday.
In 2011, she married rocker Jamie Hince in a star-studded ceremony in a rural Cotswolds village, with former partner Jefferson Hack - the father of her daughter Lila - among the guests.
Leto: I needed time out from acting
Oscar nominee Jared Leto believes his six-year hiatus from the industry has made him a better actor.
The 42-year-old recently returned to the big screen in Dallas Buyers Club, where he plays a transgender woman battling HIV called Rayon.
The actor won a Golden Globe for the role, which has earned him widespread praise, and has now scored an Oscar nod in the best supporting actor category.
I am absolutely blown away by this incredible nomination. - http://t.co/CSunSabGfY— JARED LETO (@JaredLeto) January 16, 2014
Leto believes that focusing on his music has made him a better actor.
‘‘I think I needed to go away in order to have something to say again,’’ he said to Variety magazine.
‘‘I have largely made independent films, small films, and these movies can break your heart. You’re not just putting your work into them, you’re pouring your heart and soul. And when they don’t meet expectations, it can break your heart and your spirit.’’
Jim Parsons buys Twilight stars’ lovenest
The Big Bang Theory star Jim Parsons has bought the house Twilight couple Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart once called home.
The British hunk sold the property in Los Feliz, California for $US6.3 million ($A7.09 million) earlier in January, and now it has emerged that Parsons was the buyer.
Pattinson bought the pad, known as the Seyler House, in August 2011, according to RealEstalker.com.
The place has had a string of famous owners, including actors Tim Curry and Noah Wylie, and moviemaker Robert Luketic.
Parsons’s new neighbours will include fellow TV star Jesse Tyler Ferguson, who recently moved into Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale’s former home, and Red Hot Chili Peppers star Flea.
From "Twilight" to "Big Bang Theory," Robert Pattinson's Los Feliz home is going to Jim Parsons for $6.375 million. http://t.co/Ikw8FgMmWT— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) January 15, 2014