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Category: Zac Efron

'Twilight,' Miley Cyrus, Jonas Brothers rock the Teen Choice Awards

August 9, 2009 |  9:33 pm

Giving out surf boards as trophies turned out to be appropriate at the Teen Choice Awards, where "Twilight," Miley Cyrus, Zac Efron and the Jonas Brothers rode waves of victories.

Jonas brothers teen choice awards news

"Twilight" won 11 of its 12 Teen Choice Awards nominations, even beating Oscar champ "Slumdog Millionaire" for best drama, Robert Pattinson crushed "Slumdog" star Dev Patel, and Kristen Stewart beat Freido Pinto in the performance races. "Twilight" also claimed more offbeat categories such as best romance, liplock, rumble, villain (Cam Giganget), fresh face female (Ashley Greene) and fresh face male (Taylor Lautner).

The Teen Choice Awards were held at Universal Studios' Gibson Amphitheatre and hosted by the Jonas Brothers, who performed "Much Better" and won five surf boards, including male red-carpet icons and breakout TV show ("Jonas").

Miley Cyrus performed "Party in the U.S.A." and claimed six kudos, including best comedy TV show ("Hannah Montana"), comedy actress, music/dance movie actress, hissy fit, music single ("The Climb") and summer song ("Before the Storm"). She also presented Britney Spears with the ultimate choice awards, crowing, "I'm a big fan of hers!"

"Gossip Girl" won a series prize plus surf boards for Chace Crawford, Leighton Meester and Ed Westwick as choice drama actor, actress and villain.

Zac Efron won best music/dance actor for "High School Musical 3" and comedy movie actor and rock-star moment for "17 Again."

There were also musical performances by Black Eyed Peas, and Sean Kingston. The awards show will air on Fox at 8 p.m. Monday night.


Photos: Red-carpet arrivals at Teen Choice Awards

Britney Spears is 'ultimate' pick of Teen Choice Awards

'Twilight' tops Teen Choice Awards with 12 nods; 'HSM 3' and 'Gossip Girl' at 10 apiece

Photo of Jonas Brothers by Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

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Can '17 Again' star Zac Efron ever win . . . a Golden Globe?

April 17, 2009 |  1:44 pm

Forget about Oscars. Let's ponder what potential Zac Efron has to win other awards ahead since it looks like his first post-"High School Musical" venture — "17 Again" — is destined to rule the box office this weekend. That means Zac Efron will probably be around for a while.

17 again Zac Efron

Zac Efron has so far won two Teen Choice Awards and a MTV Movie Award, all for being a breakout star, but he's never received a serious bid for acting. (Oh, cruel world!) Not unless you count the SAG ensemble nomination he got for being part of the "Hairspray" cast (they lost to "No Country for Old Men").

Last year, up at the Toronto Film Festival, Zac got great reviews from critics for his brief, serious role in "Me and Orson Welles," but the flick is still in the can without a release date.

"I'm definitely not the best actor in the world at this point," he tells USA Weekend. "But hopefully, with time and effort and smart decisions, that will change."

In its review of "17 Again," USA Today says, "Efron's acting range is limited, he has a genial charm and decent comic timing."

Observes the New York Times: "Although he can hit all the emotional notes in a scene, there is a level of calculation behind his performance and piercing blue eyes, a protective barrier or just self-consciousness that needs dismantling."

Photo: New Line Cinema


Expect Emmys to snub Zac Efron on 'Saturday Night Live'

Zac Efron named breakthrough performer by theater owners

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Will 'High School Musical 4' be a real winner too?

March 4, 2009 |  2:12 pm

When the "High School Musical" franchise was launched on the Disney Channel, the first few installments did fairly well in the awards derby. The dance-a-thons got tripped up, though, when part three headed to movie theaters as a feature film, forsaking a first run on cable TV like the first two parts. It earned $250 million worldwide, but didn't fare well with awards.

"High School Musical 4" will return to TV and — yikes — not star Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens. Curiously, it may not even include Kenny Ortega, the director of the first three installments. Word is still out on that. Writer Peter Barsocchini will pick up his pen again, though, and its original producers will return.


According to the Disney news release, new stars will be cast as leads and "High School Musical 4" will feature a love triangle "set against the cross-town rivalry between the East High Wildcats and West High Knights."

The original "High School Musical" was nominated for six primetime Emmys and won two. It beat "Dancing With the Stars" for best choreography and tied HBO's "I Have Tourette's but Tourette's Doesn't Have Me" for best children's program. It also won best children's programming at the awards bestowed by the Television Critics Assn.

At the Teen Choice Awards, the original "High School Musical" won best TV comedy/musical show, Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens won best chemistry. However, in the individual category for best breakout stars,  Zac beat Vanessa! But, hey, he also clobbered Miley Cyrus ("Hannah Montana"), so he wasn't just picking on poor Vanessa!

One year later, "High School Musical 2" was nominated for best children's program at the Emmys again, but got clobbered by "Nick News With Linda Ellerbee" and HBO's "Classical Baby." Its only other nomination was for best choreography, but it lost to "So You Think You Can Dance."

At the Kids' Choice Awards, part two nabbed only one nomination: best TV movie, which it won, beating "Life Is Not a Fairy Tale: The Fantasia Barrino Story" and "Jump In," a Disney Channel film about a wannabe boxer who leaps into a jump-rope competition while chasing a girl.

Director Kenny Ortega won the Directors Guild of America Award for the first installment, but "High School Musical 2" lost to "Jump In!"

At TCA, part two lost best children's programming to the educational cartoon show "WordGirl" on PBS.

When "High School Musical 3: Senior Year" came out, it competed for film awards, not TV, since it was a feature release. The only kudos nibble it got was from a crafts guild, the Motion Picture Sound Editors, which nominated it in a category for musicals. It lost to "Mamma Mia!"

Photos: Disney


Zac Efron named breakthrough performer of the year by theater owners

Can "High School Musical 3" graduate to movie awards?

Will Zac Efron wow Oscars viewers?

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Zac Efron named breakthrough performer by theater owners

February 27, 2009 | 12:11 pm

Zac Efron is being recognized by movie theater owners as the breakthrough performer of the year. This is a new award from ShoWest which bills itself as "the most prestigious and longest running convention and trade show for the cinema exhibition and distribution community." While Zac Efron first came toZac_efron_high_school_musical  fame on TV's "High School Musical," he was featured in the big-screen third installment of this franchise last fall. And now Zac Efron is about to carry his first film with the time-traveling comedy "17 Again."

The trade fair has been handing out various kudos to stars since 1978 when it named Henry Winkler as male star of the year and Mark Hamill as the male star of tomorrow. While Winkler was a hot TV commodity as the Fonz on No. 1-rated "Happy Days," his film career failed to flourish. Neither "Heroes," a 1977 road movie with Sally Field, nor 1978's "The One and Only," a Carl Reiner comedy about wrestling, made much money. And Hamill never escaped the stigma of "Star Wars" much like 2005 honoree Hayden Christensen.

ShoWest has had mixed success at predicting which up-and-comers will have staying power. This year Chris Pine, who plays Captain Kirk in the new "Star Trek" reboot from J.J. Abrams, is being honored. Among the male stars of tomorrow who succeeded were: Johnny Depp (1990); Brad Pitt (1992); Will Smith (1995); and Matt Damon (1998). And those that did not live up to their potential include: David Keith (1983); Stephen Dorff (1992); Giovanni Ribisi (1999), and Brandon Routh (2006).


Will Miley Cyrus, Beyonce, Zac Efron and Rob Pattinson wow Oscars' viewers?

Toronto Film Festival update: Slugfest over 'Slumdog' | Oscars buzz for Kristin Scott Thomas | Zac Efron 'excellent' in 'Orson Welles'

Photo: Disney

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Week in Review - Oscars Edition: Predictions for every race | Telecast details | Nominees cursed and blessed | Quizzes galore

February 22, 2009 |  2:26 am


Gold Derby's gutsy, 100% accurate Oscars predictions

Gold Derby odds on the top Oscars races

Experts predict who'll win the Oscars

Sean Penn and Mickey Rourke in a real heavyweight bout

Can Meryl Streep beat Kate Winslet at the Oscars?

Rookie pundit needs a new Oscars crystal ball



Will Rob Pattinson sing with Mary Poppins at the Oscars?

Will Miley Cyrus, Beyonce, Zac Efron and Rob Pattinson wow Oscars' viewers?

'Twilight' star Robert Pattinson will be an Oscars presenter

Some Oscars TV ads still for sale — only $1.4 million a pop!

Oscars are the Emmys' biggest winner


Sneak Peek: See Hugh Jackman warming up his Oscar act

Can Hugh Jackman continue the Oscars' love affair with Emmys?


Heath Ledger's ultimate joke on the Oscars?

Heath Ledger's family plans to take his Oscar, which should go to Matilda if he wins!

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie could be latest couple cursed at the Oscars

Will Brad Pitt lose best actor due to Oscars' Slap the Stud Syndrome?

Will the Babe Factor help Kate Winslet in a close Oscars contest with Meryl Streep?

Watch out, Mickey Rourke: Indie Spirit is Oscar's consolation prize

Penelope Cruz: 'Whatever happens, I will probably have a few beers and I don't drink!'

No 'Doubt' Viola Davis could win at Oscars for portraying a long-suffering wife


'Slumdog Millionaire' isn't doomed at the Oscars just because its actors got snubbed

The Oscars' best picture usually = big picture

Could 'Curious Case of Benjamin Button' suffer the worst shut-out in Oscars history?

No, there is no bias against foreigners at the Oscars

Here's why there will be an Oscars upset for best foreign film


Did 'Ben-Hur' deserve to win best picture at the Oscars?


Quiz: Which actor had the most Oscar bids in a row?

Quiz: Which Bette Davis flick suffered the worst Oscars' shut-out?

Quiz: Who turned down Jodie Foster's Oscar-winning role in 'Lambs'?

Quiz: Who won an Oscar on her birthday?

Quiz: Which Oscar-winning role was not gay?

Quiz: How much does an Oscar cost to make?

Quiz: Which movies won for writing, directing and acting, but failed to win best picture?

Illustration by Ty Wilson

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Will Rob Pattinson sing with Mary Poppins at the Oscars?

February 21, 2009 |  8:41 am

Be honest. This same devilish thought — or one quite similar — crossed your mind when you heard the leaks about all of the heartthrob hipsters who'll be part of the Oscars show this Sunday! Rob Lowe wasn't known for his singing chops when he was enlisted by producer Allan Carr ("Grease," "Grease 2," "Can't Stop the Music," "Where the Boys Are '84") to perform "Proud Mary" with Snow White at the 1989 ceremony, resulting in the most disastrous, ridiculed and infamous production number in Oscars history.

"Twilight" star Rob Pattinson seems a bit similar in chiseled profile to Lowe, doesn't he? And this year's producers Bill Condon and Laurence Mark have socko reputations, just like Carr, for mounting spectacular musical productions ("Dreamgirls").

Memo to Bill and Larry: Sorry for this snarky post. Couldn't resist. Admit it: You chuckled.

Oh, come on! None of us are really worried. At the very least we're sure you'd have the good taste and smarts to have Mary Poppins sing and dance with Zac Efron.

Will Miley Cyrus, Beyonce, Zac Efron and Rob Pattinson wow Oscars' viewers?

February 18, 2009 |  8:40 am

This year's Oscars are being touted as "The Biggest Movie Event of the Year" in ads running on ABC, a trailer directed by the Oscar-nominated John Singleton ("Boyz N the Hood"), and both online and in print. Can the show live up to all this hype?

First-time Oscar-cast producers Bill Condon and Larry Mark's last collaboration was "Dreamgirls" — the 2006 socko stage-to-screen adaptation of a 25-year-old Broadway musical — so this dynamic duo has proven they can inject new life into an old show. As details continue to be revealed, we know the following:


• There will be a red carpet — despite rumors to the contrary — filled with many of this year's nominees and guests. However, certain star presenters will skip that stroll so they can sneak in the back door and make a surprise appearance later onstage at the Kodak Theatre. But it's no surprise that some of the hottest stars of today will be there — Robert Pattinson and Vanessa Hudgens ("Twilight"), Zac Efron ("High School Musical"), Miley Cyrus ("Hannah Montana"), Amanda Seyfried ("Mamma Mia!") and Beyonce Knowles. Their appearances were leaked in the last few days.

• Host Hugh Jackman will appear in a musical number staged by his "Australia" director Baz Luhrmann. And no worries on that front — Jackman won the 2004 Tony Award for playing singer-songwriter Peter Allen (himself a 1982 Oscar winner for his work on the theme for "Arthur"). Jackman also picked up an Emmy in 2005 for hosting that 2004 Tony-cast (he also emceed that show in '03 and '05).

• The stage has been completely reconfigured by the building's architect, David Rockwell, to evoke a nightclub, with the orchestra as a backdrop, a circular platform extending out into the theater and the audience grouped around this. The set, such as it is, will evolve through the evening, with changes being made on camera. "The look of the theater is very different," Hugh Jackman told the Associated Press. "It's more like the nightclub of your dreams. It's very intimate."

• The two dozen awards, along with the honorary Oscar to Jerry Lewis, will be presented in the context of a story that involves both the presenters and the nominees. Not sure what that means, but it sounds intriguing enough. So don't expect the usual scenario: one of the supporting awards bestowed in the first half-hour, followed by a long drought till the usual deluge of top awards in the last half-hour.

• Oscar nominee Queen Latifah ("Chicago") will croon "I'll Be Seeing You" during the "In Memoriam" tribute to those moviemakers we lost in the last year.

• Funnyman Bruce Vilanch — who has a pair of Emmys for helping write the 1991 and 1992 Oscarcasts — has been upped from mere gagmeister to serious contributor.

• And, finally, studios will get to showcase upcoming releases — such as the latest "Harry Potter" — in 10-second spots that will run on a split screen with the end credits.

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Which songs from 'High School Musical 3: Senior Year' will Oscars voters prefer?

November 21, 2008 | 11:53 am

There are so many strong songs in "High School Musical 3: Senior Year" that Disney doesn't know which ones to trumpet in their Oscar campaign for best song. Remember, the rules are different this year. While the Mouse House was able to score three nominations last year for tunes from "Enchanted," the most bids any one film can reap now is two. Theoretically, to keep things simple, the studio should inform voters which two songs those should be, but the best it can do is narrow the choices down to four.


These four songs are being officially campaigned for "High School Musical 3: Senior Year" — "Can I Have This Dance?" (written by Adam Anders and Nikki Hassman, sung by Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens), "I Want It All" (written by Matthew Gerrard and Robbie Nevil, sung by Ashley Tisdale and Lucas Grabeel), "A Night to Remember" (written by Matthew Gerrard and Robbie Nevil, sung by film cast) and "Scream" (written by Jamie Houston, sung by Zac Efron).

When I asked our message-board posters which song has the best shot to be nominated and win, I got a lot of cynical replies from snarky non-fans of the "High School Musical" franchise who harrumphed, "None!" Ah, well, others were more helpful.

Kams says, "My favorite song is 'I Want It All,' but, since I have seen the movie, I have the feeling that 'Can I Have This Dance?' will be nominated."

Dr. McPhearson agrees, adding, "'I Want It All' would be the easiest choice were I an Oscar voter: it references show-biz, paparazzi, and even makes a mention of Oscar (when Grabeel says, 'And the Oscar goes to...'). It is most likely going to be the nominated one, if any."

What do you think?

Photo: Disney

Can 'High School Musical 3' graduate to movie awards?

October 23, 2008 |  1:11 pm

While "High School Musical 3" may not hit the right notes with all of the movie critics this weekend, it is sure to do boffo business. Already this big-screen continuation of the small-screen hit franchise has generated huge advance ticket sales. And the inevitable comparisons are already being made with that ultimate high school musical "Grease," which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.


That blast from the past picked up five Golden Globe nominations for 1978. "Grease" lost the race for best comedy/musical picture to "Heaven Can Wait," whose star, Warren Beatty, edged out John Travolta as best actor. Screen newcomer Olivia Newton-John was bested by a pair of Oscar-winning veterans " Ellen Burstyn ("Same Time Next Year") and Maggie Smith ("California Suite"). And the two nominated songs from the film lost to the eventual Oscar winner, "Last Dance," from "Thank God It's Friday."

Five of the last seven Golden Globe winners for best musical or comedy have been tuners. Already this year "Mamma Mia!" has hit the mother lode of box-office gold, earning $143 million in the U.S. and $400 million more worldwide. Meryl Streep lent that frothy romp a certain gravitas and is sure to pick up a record-tying 22nd Golden Globe nod for her efforts. However, the Broadway show on which the movie was based came up short at the 2002 Tony Awards, losing all five of its bids, including best musical to "Thoroughly Modern Millie."

Continue reading »

Toronto Film Festival update: Slugfest over 'Slumdog' | Oscars buzz for Kristin Scott Thomas | Zac Efron 'excellent' in 'Orson Welles'

September 12, 2008 |  4:57 pm

Following up on our first recap of how potential Oscar contenders fared at the Toronto Film Festival, word continues to flow south from Hollywood north.

However, it turns out the biggest drama of the 10-day fest may not even have unfolded on the big screen. NY Post critic Lou Lumenick and Chicago Sun Times scribe Roger Ebert had a real-life altercation during last Saturday's packed press screening of breakout hit "Slumdog Millionaire." Seems Lou was blocking Roger from seeing the subtitles and after Roger, being unable to speak due to ongoing health issues, tapped him on the shoulder a few times, Lou hit back. Ebert, who attended the fest despite his ongoing health problems, did not write about the incident till the New York Daily News ran with it. To read Roger's version of events, CLICK HERE (Lou has remained mum on the matter.)


As for the movie he was struggling to watch, Ebert called it "a leading contender for the all-important Audience Award, which is the closest thing the Toronto Film Festival has to a top prize. And an Oscar best picture nomination is a definite possibility." (Yes, Roger's right and remember, dear Gold Derby reader, I called this one earlier — HERE.) For Roger's full review of "Slumdog Millionaire" — CLICK HERE.

Over at AndTheWinnerIs blog, Scott Feinberg agrees that "Slumdog Millionaire" "unquestionably deserves to be an award winner" and posts a leisurely podcast chat with director Danny Boyle (CLICK HERE to give a listen).

At the Hollywood Reporter's Risky Biz Blog, Steven Zeitchik hails "Slumdog" as "one of the nuggets to emerge" from Toronto, but reports an issue that may cause an Oscar glitch: It's locked "in an interesting little give-and-take with the MPAA. The arbiter of ratings standards is considering giving the pic, which contains some visceral violent images but nothing even close to raunchy, an R rating, while Searchlight and Boyle are pushing hard for the PG-13."

Elsewhere at the Risky Biz Blog, Borys Kit reports that Mickey Rourke's performance does, indeed, live up to the hype in "The Wrestler." READ MORE.

Following the successful launch of her French-language pic "I've Loved You So Long" at Telluride, English beauty Kristin Scott Thomas continued to pile up the rave reviews in Toronto too. Jeff Wells of says, "She'll definitely land a best actress nomination, and she just might win, considering that she achieves so much in ILYSL with very little 'acting.'" He is equally enthusiastic about the film, calling it, "a landmark-level achievement" and putting it at the top of the year's best.

Ebert is more tempered in his response to the film: "An actor in the right role can be transforming, and be transformed. Consider Kristin Scott Thomas in 'I've Loved You So Long.' She is known to us as British, but effortlessly plays a mysterious French woman who returns from prison to her family after an absence that is only slowly revealed. This new French film by Philippe Claudel guards its secrets and focuses on their emotional aftermath." As such, Ebert thought, "With no expository dialogue to win us over, Scott Thomas does, anyway, but by sheer force of her personality. She's a possibility for an Oscar nomination."

Over at Gold Rush, T.L. Stanley weighed in on the Oscar odds of "The Hurt Locker" noting that, "as even Oscar pedigrees haven't been able to entice people to see recent dramas based on the most unpopular war since Vietnam, new player Summit will have its work cut out." Reporting for, Nancy Kriparos thought helmer Kathryn Bigelow delivers "an excellent film and probably the best I have seen thus far on the Iraq experience."

Anne Thompson of says Bigelow "has more talent and style and smarts than she does strong commercial sense. But perhaps because she was ready to prove her mettle, she went against the grain and did her own thing with 'The Hurt Locker,' financed independently." Watch Anne's flip-cam video chat with Bigelow HERE.

Edward Douglas of  passed judgment on courtroom drama "Nothing But the Truth" saying, "Kate Beckinsale gives the best performance of her career" and he thought this "may be one of Rod Lurie’s strongest film scripts that really pops due to such memorable performances from all involved." Douglas "expects the cast, particularly Beckinsale, and Lurie’s script to get a lot of attention in the next few months."

Douglas was also enthusiastic about "Me and Orson Welles" the latest from Richard Linklater with Zac Efron starring as a teenager cast in Orson Welles' 1937 radio production of "Julius Caesar." For Douglas, "Christian McKay, who plays Orson Welles (reprising the role he played in "Rosebud"), was excellent, as was the screenplay." In agreement was John Foote of, who thought, "McKay transforms himself into the tyrannical, mysterious Welles, capturing the man’s beautiful speaking voice, his cadences, his movement, and most brilliantly, his presence."

And count Foote among those disappointed with Viggo Mortensen in "Good." As he writes, "Never have I seen a film about the Holocaust and the rise of the Nazi party with such little emotion." And he thought Mortensen, "usually an actor of uncommon grace and intelligence, seems lost in the film.  Perhaps he too was not clear where the director was going, but he never seems connected to this role."


(Fox Searchlight, Sony Pictures Classics, Pinewood Studios)



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