"12 Years a Slave" is benefiting from the most Best Picture buzz as we approach Oscar night, although this is shaping up as one of those rare years when the award for Best Director will probably go to a different film, "Gravity." Look for "12 Years" to net only a trio of statuettes overall, with "Gravity" likely landing seven.
"12 Years a Slave" is the sort of elaborate historical drama the voters just love to recognize, as reflected in such past picks as "The King's Speech," "Gladiator," "Shakespeare in Love," "Titanic," "The English Patient," "Schindler's List," "Driving Miss Daisy," "The Last Emperor," "Amadeus" and "Out of Africa," to name a few. And since the Anglophilic Academy ostensibly is impressed by English accents, it will also help that "12 Years: is a British production.
Besides forecasting the winners, I also suggest which nominees in each category are actually the most deserving. Furthermore, because some great performances are invariably overlooked by the Academy entirely, I also point out some who should've at least been nominated.
Before the 2014 NAACP Image Awards officially kicked off, we were greeted by the sounds of Pharrell Williams' upbeat hit single, "Happy" coupled with a slew of famous Black celebrities grinning and bopping. One of them, actress Tika Sumpter, asked us during that opening segment, "Can you feel the energy?" We could and it carried throughout the night. Of course, we didn't necessarily need the cue to maintain the "happy" during the award show, though it was a nice touch.
Awards show host Anthony Anderson kept the energy going, noting off the bat that Blacks have "started at the bottom," yet we haven't stayed there — that we've only risen and will continue to. Anderson pointed to the recent cover of Vanity Fair's Hollywood issue, which has never had that many shades of Blackness. Ever. Anthony's jokes then shifted to the troubled white people of last year — Justin Bieber, Paula Deen, and Miley Cyrus.
Now, I agreed with Anthony when he said as far as Miley goes, "Stop twerking when you ain't got nothing to twerk." Still, I'm glad that as inclusive as the award's show was in terms of guest and honorees, those types of celebrities only got a few seconds of our attention.
Five outbreaks of norovirus – a common and highly contagious gastrointestinal virus – since Feb. 1 have prompted the Shelby County Health Department to encourage individuals to take the proper precautions and preventative measures.
Norovirus can spread very quickly from person to person in facilities such as daycare centers, hotels, nursing homes and schools. The virus is transmitted by:
Eating or drinking liquids that have been contaminated;
Touching contaminated surfaces or objects and then placing hands or fingers in eyes, mouth or nose;
Dear Lucy: I have a friend who has had back trouble for some 20 years following an accident. She has back pain and has gone to lots of doctors and is overweight from lack of exercise. She has now started exploring alternative therapies that she won't do. The problem is that she is so negative, whiney and mean and has nothing good to say about anything or anybody. I help her out a lot, travel with her and work hard to be her friend and support. But she really doesn't want to be well. She just wants to complain. I hate to desert her but it's making me sick! I am the only one left who caters to her and is there for her. Any ideas. – Pained
Dear Pained: I think this is about both of you. She has set her boundaries for healing and you need to set some boundaries for helping.
About her: Many of us have a low threshold for pain and it's worse when we have to live with it daily. It can make you irritable and short tempered. But there are lots of things out there for pain beyond drugs.
Jason Collins not only became the NBA's first active openly gay player Sunday afternoon by signing a 10-day contract with the Brooklyn Nets, but he also appeared in his first game against the Los Angeles Lakers later that same day, ESPN reports.
"I don't have time to really think about history right now," he told ESPN shortly after inking his short-term deal. "The pressure is playing in an NBA game tonight, and last time I played in an NBA game was last April," Collins said. "So I think that's enough pressure right there."
The 35-year-old center entered with 10:28 to go in the second quarter and received a round of applause from the Staples Center crowd.
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