Do you feel it in the air? If you're anywhere near Hollywood, Beverly Hills or pretty much any part of Los Angeles, the party heat is on. It's the beginning of the movie awards season run, and everyone who is a contender is out and about, as fetes of all types are stacking up.
And while some are straight-up actual awards, like the BAFTA Britannia Awards that were held at the Beverly Hilton on November 9, others are simply celebrations designed to help to add style to the stars' looks during this hectic time. That's why the new Blow N' Go! LA hair salon celebrated its grand opening on November 6 and Ermenegildo Zegna chose November 7 to christen their new Rodeo Drive shop in Beverly Hills; everyone has to look good on the red carpet, dontcha know?
Gerard Butler attended the Zegna fete, but he probably won't be getting any nominations for “Olympus Has Fallen,” which released back in March 2013. But since a sequel, “London Has Fallen,” has already been announced, he'll still be able to afford those pricey bespoke suits offered on the second floor. Two-time Oscar nominee Jeremy Renner made that scene, too; and while his 2013 starring role in “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters” isn't going to win him any prizes, the buzz is hot on his next flick, “American Hustle.
The A-list continued to make the rounds on November 8, as the AFI Fest 2013 Presented by Audi went into high gear. George Clooney led the charge into the newly renovated TCL Chinese Theater, where “August: Osage County” had a star-studded unspooling. Clooney and Grant Heslov produced the intense film based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Tracy Letts; they joined stars Juliette Lewis, Dermot Mulroney, Misty Upham, Julianne Nicholson and Chris Cooper for the unspooling.
Those prizes, presented by British Academy of Film and Television Arts Los Angeles, drew even more famous faces – and many of the season's serious awards contenders. From the night's award winners including Idris Elba, Sacha Baron Cohen, Sir Ben Kingsley, Kathryn Bigelow and Benedict Cumberbatch to hot stars like Chiwetel Ejiofor, Lupita Nyong'o, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Sean Penn, Sigourney Weaver and Salma Hayek, it was a presage of all the awards events soon to come, including the Golden Globes, Critics' Choice Movie Awards, SAG Awards and more, all leading up to the Academy Awards, coming up on March 2, 2014.
To be in the know heading into Oscar season, be sure to see the films likely to receive Best Actor nods for these men, all starring in fact-based stories: Chiwetel Ejiofor for “12 Years a Slave,” Idris Elba for “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom,” Matthew McConaughey for “Dallas Buyers Club” and Tom Hanks for “Saving Mr. Banks.” Watch this column for more predictions as the season continues!
Follow Jenny Peters and Spywitness on Twitter at @jennpeters.