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January 19, 2009

Joaquin Phoenix raps, rolls


While there was already a soft launch of his new hip-hop career right here in our own Los Angeles environs several weeks back, Joaquin Phoenix has chosen to hit the Vegas strip for the official kickoff.

And by the way, does anyone believe any of this for one moment?

The two-time Oscar nominee (for "Walk the Line" and "Gladiator") made noise about quitting his acting career and turning full-time to music. Or some facsimile thereof. 

Evidence: This video shot Friday night at Lavo. In it, you'll see the bulked-up, Grizzly Adams-bearded Phoenix doing his best hobo impression, complete with incomprehensible yammerings, "dancing" and a tumble at the end

Phoenix's pal Casey Affleck is chronicling the unlikely move from acting to rapping, and Diddy's reportedly working with Phoenix on a record. Again, we're all being punk'd, right? 

In the meantime, it'll likely provide us with some unintentional entertainment. Expect us to follow this to its disingenuous conclusion.


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Oscar Contenders

  • So "The Dark Knight" didn't make it into the final five after all, never mind that critical and popular support. Let's just call the comic-inspired mega-hit "The Biggest Snubee."

    Here are the best picture contenders in a race that, two weeks away from the Oscars, seems to be a foregone conclusion ("Slumdog") unless there's a come-from-behind possibility ("The Reader" anyone?)

    "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," with Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett; the politically timely "Milk;" rags-to-riches fairy tale, "Slumdog Millionaire," Holocaust best-seller-based drama "The Reader," and Watergate-era biopic "Frost/Nixon."

    Could "Button" and "Slumdog" split the vote, allowing another film to take the prize? Doesn't seem likely. After having clung to "Button" for months as what we thought would be the Academy voters' top vhoice, our money's now on "Slumdog." Momentum can't be ignored.

    Watch this blog for updates, ephemera and all manner of postulating.

Picture this

  • Mmmmm, chocolate Oscar. Not every star will walk away from the 81st annual Academy Awards with a trophy, but if they hit the high-profile Governor's Ball they can have pastry chef Sherry Yard's gold-dusted candy version. Also on the menu from celeb chef Wolfgang Puck is tuna tartare in sesame miso cones, chopped Chino Farms vegetable salad with ginger soy vinaigrette, Maine lobster and caviar. Serve it up! (Getty Images)

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