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Introduction

Everybody’s doing it — lamenting that it’s all too much, too soon, even as the industry’s second go-round at coping with a compressed Oscar calendar remains well shy of the midpoint. Still, stamina is rewarded, as nights out are awash with the visible stars and scintillating cinema that make this season the year’s most vibrant and exciting. In this issue, dedicated solely to Academy Awards, we present topics aimed at bringing context and insight to the season ahead.

Other content includes:

Turning glimmer to gold


Contrary to many things in American life, the Oscars can’t be bought. But they can be wooed. The long slog of Academy campaigning approaches its first milestone this week (“Thanksgiving is the new Christmas,” more than one wag has noted), but the publicity engines have been revving since August.

Political platforms nothing new for Oscarcast
In 1978 and 1979, three major studio movies dealing with U.S. involvement in Vietnam, — “Coming Home,” “The Deer Hunter” and “Apocalypse Now” — received best picture nominations (“Hunter” won). But it was probably during the Vietnam years that politics and celluloid became inextricably linked.

Buzz biz hits prime season


Hours before sunrise Jan. 25, dozens of satellite trucks will huddle around the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences building on Wilshire Boulevard, waiting to beam the breaking story across the globe.

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