After a week away, you look around the movie world and ask yourself what, exactly is news? Casting? Gossip? Deals? Or something less immediate? I mean, Wesley Snipes is getting indicted for tax fraud -- but when was the last time Snipes had a project that didn't go straight-to-video? Or, for another example, David Fincher's Zodiac will be the first film ever - or, more appropriately, the first movie ever --to incorporate an all-digital workflow -- shot and edited without a speck of tape. That's interesting, and a sea change in the industry -- but it's not exactly sexy. Or the fact that Terrence Howard is joining Robert Downey Jr. in Iron Man -- which strikes me as weird, nearly suicidal casting in both cases. (Back when Nick Cassavetes was slated to direct Iron Man, I joked that what with the character's history of alcoholism, what I really wanted to see was John Cassavetes' Iron Man --ideally starring Ben Gazarra, and focusing just on character stuff. Is that what Favreau's going for?)

And while I was away, it feels like someone dropped a flag and started Oscar season -- this week alone Flags of our Fathers and Little Children open in the Bay Area; Infamous and The Queen have already done so; there's a screening of Fur tomorrow. Add in a few minor things to keep life interesting -- like being in a 6.7 quake on Sunday morning and making it to the last seat on the last flight out of Kona afterwards -- and I'm a little discombobulated. So what was your biggest news in the last week? And are you looking forward to any end-of-year Oscar contenders?