13th Annual Critics' Choice Awards
A half hour before The 13th Annual Critics' Choice Awards began, only a handful of celebrities had walked the red carpet, leaving reporters concerned that the writer's strike had struck again. Fortunately, a swarm of A-list actors including Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, George Clooney and Queen Latifah arrived with just a few minutes to spare. The biggest surprise of the night? Katie Holmes (in Lanvin) magically appeared on stage to bestow the Best Comedy award to the indie hit Juno before pulling a disappearing act. Fortunately, the other VIP guests stuck around to celebrate the year's best films.
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt
During the low key ceremony, a goateed Brad Pitt stayed close to lady love Angelina Jolie, who was among the nominees for Best Actress thanks to her moving portrayal of journalist Marianne Pearl in A Might Heart. Does the actress consider this role her best performance to date? "It meant a lot to me," the screen siren (in Dolce amp Gabbana) told reporters.
Queen Latifah, Elijah Kelley and Nikki Blonsky
The cast of Hairspray followed up their win at the Palm Springs Film Festival by taking home the award for Best Ensemble Performance. After doing a victory dance onstage, Queen Latifah (in Marina Rinaldi), Elijah Kelley and Nikki Blonsky (in Igigi) entertained the troops in the press room. "It smells like feet in here," joked Latifah, before teasingly referring to Blonsky-who also took home the trophy for Best Young Actress-as a "diva."
"Sorry! It's a live show! I've got to run," said George Clooney, giving a quick thumbs up before dashing inside to catch the show. Asked what hair products he used to maintain his perfect coif, Clooney proclaimed that he was going au natural. "Nothing, man!" the dashing actor, who presented the inaugural Joel Siegel Award to his Ocean's Thirteen co-star, Don Cheadle, declared.
Casey Affleck and Don Cheadle
How did it feel for Don Cheadle to receive the Joel Siegel Award-presented to him for his humanitarian work-from buddy George Clooney? "The fact that he only charged me $1500 was respectable. Matt amp#91;Damonamp#93; was around $2500 and Denzel amp#91;Washingtonamp#93; wanted a number I won't even repeat," joked Cheadle, who also received congratulations from Casey Affleck. "It's great. George is someone I've worked with on-screen, but we’ve done things for the cause. It’s great to have an ally."
Snoop Dogg and Feist
Perhaps the most bizarre pairing of the night was newly-minted reality star Snoop Dogg and musician Feist, who posed together inside the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium before the show got underway. "We wanted to see a great award show now, baby," Snoop explained.
Having won her share of awards for her role in the small screen hit, The Closer, Kyra Sedgwick was among the VIP crowd who celebrated wins by Amy Ryan, Daniel Day Lewis and Nikki Blonsky. Sedgwick did walk away with a style victory, ranking at the top of the night's best dressed list in a flame red Oscar de la Renta frock.
D.L. Hughley and Javier Bardem
No Country for Old Men star Javier Bardem took the ribbing by host D.L. Hughley with a smile. Bardem's good mood probably had something to do with the fact that his film scored more awards than any other in contention, including a Best Supporting Actor with his name on it.