• Roger Friedman reports, "the combined ages of the Hollywood elite who celebrated Quentin Tarantino’s 'Inglourious Basterds' for lunch on Wednesday was about a thousand. Famed B-movie director Roger Corman, 95-year-old legend Norman Lloyd (Dr. Auschlander from 'St. Elsewhere') and Oscar winner Martin Landau hosted the lunch at the equally old and similarly robust Musso and Frank in Hollywood. The event was sponsored by Insignia Productions’ Ranee Bartolacci and organized by Tarantino fan Norah Lawlor of Lawlor Media in New York. The other guests were people who know their Oscar movies: Cloris Leachman, Ron Howard, Jacqueline Bissett, plus Karen Black, John Milius, Tom Skerritt, Irwin Winkler, JoBeth Williams, Michael Nouri, Ron Perlman, Wayne Kramer, Bruce Davison, Frank Capra Jr, Ron Yerxa, Jon Voight, and the ever popular Norby Walters." SHOWBIZ 411
• And warns Pete Hammond, "Don't tell Harvey Weinstein it's a two-horse race and his movie isn't one of those ponies. 'We're going to win best picture. This is the movie people love and it's Quentin's time. We are going for it and we are gonna get it,' Weinstein told me Tuesday night at carmaker Audi's celebration of the eight Oscar nominations for 'Inglourious Basterds.' 'Look, best director may be a question -- and you can quote me on that -- but we won the SAG award for best ensemble, actors are the biggest branch in the academy and they love the movie.' Perhaps he's using 'Crash' as an inspiration, which in 2004 was able to stop the tide of precursor awards for "Brokeback Mountain" by upsetting at SAG." NOTES ON A SEASON
• Sandra Bullock sat down for an in-depth conversation with Charlie Rose for his public TV talk show. In this compelling 30-minute interview, Bullock discusses the surprising success of "The Blind Side," her thoughts on her first Oscar nomination, and her admiration for category rival Meryl Streep. PBS
• Dave Karger intros the second of six video chats thus: "Missy Schwartz and I take a closer look at the Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress races. Is Sandra Bullock the most brilliant Oscar campaigner ever? Can anyone really challenge Mo'Nique for the win?" ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
• Reporting on the revamped Oscars, Andrew Hampp writes, "Janet Weiss, the Academy's director of marketing, wanted to embrace the unique format of this year's telecast in all of the awards show's marketing, thus the tagline, 'You've never seen Oscar like this.' The controversial expansion of the Best Picture slot was the initial impetus behind the decision." To that end, the academy streamed the nomination announcement live online for the first time and has both a Facebook page and an upcoming iPhone app. "For a really conservative organization, we're trying to push the envelope into new media and new strategies," Ms. Weiss said. "We're giving people a peek behind the curtain, and hopefully they'll see the Oscars is more relevant for them today." ADVERTISING AGE
• Indeed, after keeping the presenters a secret till the Oscars aired last year, this year the academy is hyping the bold-faced names who will be appearing. First up are the three living winners of last year's acting Oscars: leads Sean Penn ("Milk") and Kate Winslet ("The Reader") and supporting champ Penelope Cruz ("Vicky Christina Barcelona"). Tradition has been that each of the previous year's winners presents the Oscar the following year across gender lines in their category. Cruz was expected to be at the Oscars anyway as she is a nominee for "Nine."
• A report suggests Alec Baldwin's ex-wife Oscar champ Kim Basinger ("L.A. Confidential") could have been behind the media circus that sprung up following his late night visit to the emergency room Thursday. "Basinger, the buddy said, is jealous that Baldwin is co-hosting the Academy Awards next month and is using their daughter, Ireland, to rain on his parade. 'She's not not going to let that go by,' the pal said." NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
• While AMC is running a movie marathon of the best picture nominees nationwide, Melena Ryzik says "New Yorkers with a more pointed interest in this year’s race can check out the IFC Theater’s “Bigelow vs. Cameron” midnight series, starting Feb. 26, in which the formerly married directors and current Oscar contenders trade weekend screenings,. 'Can Bigelow’s Angela Bassett in 'Strange Days' take down femme action icon Sigourney Weaver in Cameron’s 'Aliens'?,' the news release asks. 'And will Cameron’s uber-80s juggernaut 'The Terminator' survive the indie rabbit punch of Bigelow’s redneck bloodsuckers in 'Near Dark'?' Seems like a fair fight." THE CARPETBAGGER
• Vanessa Redgrave is to be feted with a Fellowship -- the BAFTA equivalent of an honorary Oscar -- at the awardsfest on Feb. 21 in London. In making the announcement, David Parfitt, Chair of the Academy said: "We are absolutely thrilled to be awarding the fellowship to Vanessa. She is a hugely talented and respected actress who has served as an inspiration to the British film industry." And said Vanessa Redgrave: "I’m truly delighted, it’s such an honour to be recognised in this way. Looking through the list of past recipients shows what a wonderful accolade this is, and the fact that Alfred Hitchcock was the very first recipient makes it even more special, as my father (Michael Redgrave) made his first film with him." BAFTA
• MTV is moving the VMAs (Kanye) westward this year and the 27th annual edition of the awards will air live from Los Angeles on Sunday Sept. 12. And the 19th airing of the MTV movie kudos is now set for Sunday June 6 from the Gibson Amphitheater at Universal City. As per the announcement, "Emmy Award winner Mark Burnett returns for the fourth year in a row to executive produce the 2010 MTV Movie Awards, where movie megastars will vie for the golden popcorn in award categories as only MTV could create them including Best Kiss, Best Fight” and Best Comedic Performance. For the second time in Movie Awards history, the final 2010 nominees in addition to the winners, will be decided by the MTV fans."
Top photo: "Inglorious Basterds" poster. Credit: The Weinstein Co.
Middle photo: Academy Awards statuettes. Credit: AMPAS
Bottom photo: Vanessa Redgrave. Credit: BAFTA