However, missing from the festivities at the Beverly Hilton Hotel will be: Oscars' lead actor contender Brad Pitt, who is busy promoting "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" overseas; his gal pal, lead actress contender Angelina Jolie ("Changeling"), who has gone along for the ride; New York-based Meryl Streep, who just equalled Katharine Hepburn's record dozen lead-actress nods with this bid for "Doubt" (she has a record tally of 15 Oscars noms overall — she was also MIA from this luncheon two years ago when nomm'd for "The Devil Wears Prada"); and Streep's co-star, supporting actor contender Philip Seymour Hoffman.
All five directing nominees — Danny Boyle, Stephen Daldry, David Fincher, Ron Howard and Gus Van Sant — are scheduled to attend, as are many of the Academy Award nominees in the other 18 races. Look for the historic group photo here Monday afternoon.
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Photo: Los Angeles Times