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Monday Roundup: AMC's best picture showcase; Cameron on space travel; London Film Fest dates

Photo_37_hiresWhat's that, dear reader? The Oscars are less than a month away, and you say you still haven't seen all of the best picture nominees? Well, fear not: AMC Entertainment wants to bring you up to speed with its best picture showcase.

The annual national event, which screens all of the nominees in a single day, is actually split into two separate days this year (Feb. 27 and March 6) to accommodate all 10 films in the category. The full schedule of films -- including which four will run with the special Feb. 27 screening of "Avatar" in 3D (in selected theaters) -- will be released today, so check the site for times and locations. Oh, and to sweeten the deal, they'll throw in a large popcorn with unlimited refills -- in short, how a Saturday should be spent.

And while we're on the subject of "Avatar" (which is pretty much every day on the Circuit), here's an op-ed piece from the Washington Post by director James Cameron on the current state of NASA and space exploration.

Cameron, who served on the agency's Advisory Council from 2003 to 2005 (did you know?), outlines the financial problems that faced the U.S. space program but ends on a positive note by stating that President Obama's current budget for NASA will allow for private industry to fund space exploration -- which might lead not only to jet packs for everyone (like on the Jetsons!), but also the chance for directors with serious financial clout (like Mr. Cameron) to shoot their future projects in outer space. It's not that far-fetched an idea, and I mean, if you're gonna top "Avatar," that's your only likely venue. 

And last but not least, what are you doing from Oct. 13 to 28 of this year? If your answer is, "Oh, nothing, really,"  you might consider attending the 54th BFI London Film Festival. The venerable event has just announced its dates, with a full schedule slated for September. Mark your calendars accordingly, and hey, why not call your travel agent now?

-- Paul Gaita

Photo: "Avatar." Credit: 20th Century Fox

More from The Envelope:

Is "Avatar" a message movie? Absolutely, says James Cameron

Oscar experts agree: Jeff Bridges will win best actor

Notes on the town: Cameron gets busy, Oscar voters tell secrets


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This marathon is serious business. And it may be the only way I would ever check out "The Blind Side." Ugh. Either way, I am pretty excited about the fact that AMC gave us free passes to giveaway to the 2010 Best Picture Showcase! Check it out: http://scene-stealers.com/giveaways/win-free-passes-to-amcs-best-picture-showcase/



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