Babel, Little Miss Sunshine, The Departed, The Queen and Clint but no Dreamgirls…do you love it, or do you LOVE it? I love. I love a LOT. And I LOVE Ryan Gosling’s recognition too. Slim chance against Forest Whitaker but still, it’s nice to know that sometimes, a performance with virtually NO campaign behind it can still earn a nod – can hardly believe it’s possible in the current Hollywood climate, non? The lock of the year? Has to be Jennifer Hudson – which means you DO NOT want to be on staff with Beyonce this morning. Bet your boob job she’s pullin’ out her weave… As for Eddie Murphy – looks to be a slamdunk on paper but I’d hold off on marking off that box on your ballet before seeing how the next few weeks unfold. Was talking to quite a few industry players at Sundance who are on top of the buzz and Alan Arkin from Little Miss Sunshine is “workin’ it” … HARD. Given Eddie’s less than stellar reputation and Alan’s body of work, I wouldn’t be surprised if he sneaks in for a steal. And will this be Martin’s year? Scorcese finally honoured? Well, I’m told it’ll happen only if Eastwood lets it be so – as it was a few years ago for Million Dollar Baby vs. Aviator. Everyone wants a piece of Clint, Clint has the clout, and if he lobbies for it underground through his cronies, Marty might be left off again. But only if he wants it bad enough…will keep you posted. By far however, to me at least, the most exciting race has to be Mirren vs Meryl – battle of the Silver Foxes…refreshing, non? Two mature ladies kickin’ it to the young’uns this year. Personally I’m pulling for Prada, not because I don’t adore Helen but because I didn’t adore The Queen. And finally, while it might look like the year is lacking in spice, praise Goddess for my Borat. Nominated for Adapted Screenplay, definitely not the favourite, but titillating enough just for his presence. Because as you all know now, Sacha Baron Cohen is The Hotness. Oscar live telecast February 25 – an eternity I’m sure for all you blubbering McGoslings. PS. Explanation behind Brad"s snub? Official word is the role was too small and his involvement with Babel as a Best Picture candidate, in addition to producing acknowledgement(yet to be determined) for The Departed was enough of an homage. But you can"t deny it"s a victory for the MiniVan Majority - the Angelina backlash is palpable ...which only means one thing: a red carpet redemption at the Kodak Theatre, during which time Mrs Pitt will probably be all teeth, lips, and tits - too bad really as I really do prefer my Angelina served bitch side up.