At long last, it’s the beginning of the end. Balloting for the Oscars begins today, with a Feb. 19 deadline.

— The Academy and Gallery1988 commissioned a small group of young
international artists to create original screen prints inspired by this
year’s nine nominees for best picture
. Above, “Django Unchained” by Mark Englert.

— Michael Cieply of the New York Times looks at the history of the In Memoriam segment at the Oscars.

— Melena Ryzik of the Times also has Tony Kushner’s response to Connecticut congressman Joe Courtney’s complaint about the depiction in “Lincoln” of how the state’s representatives voted on the 13th Amendment. Bottom line: Kushner argues they are faithful to the spirit of what happened, if not every letter.

— “Argo” was named film of the year by the U.K. Regional Film Critics.

— Charlize Theron will
be awarded the Honorary Chair of this year’s Cinema for Peace Gala on Saturday at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Berlin.

— Theo Von, host of “Prime Time in no Time” on Yahoo!, will host the 50th annual ICG Publicists Awards Luncheon.

— Headline from Hollywood & Swine: “Academy Members Demand Best Picture Nominations Be Increased to 50 in Effort to Get More DVD Screeners.”