Last night Clint Eastwood received the Modern Master Award at the Santa Barbara Film Festival. It is the festival’s highest honour and it was Sean Penn who presented. Sean owes a lot to Clint. Clint directed him in Mystic River which, as you know, brought Sean his Oscar. It was Clint’s campaigning that helped seal the deal. The two are tight. And, since Clint will not be vying for his own Best Actor statue on Oscar night, you can assume that he’s rooting for one of his boys. His influence, as demonstrated last time, will be key if Sean goes on to trump Mickey Rourke.

Sean is certainly spending a lot energy handshaking with the industry, putting in face time with the people who’ll be watching and voting. Seems like the gap, at this stage, is widening. Mickey has 3 weeks to make his moves…and not on actresses who play his daughters.

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