Author Hugh Nissenson (b.1933) died on December 13. Nissenson was the author of numerous non-genre works and worked as a reporter, covering Adolph Eichmann’s 1961 trial for Commentary. His 2001 novel The Song of the Earth was a science fiction novel and a nominee for the James Tiptree, Jr. Award. His short story “Forcing the End” appeared in Jack Dann’s anthology More Wandering Stars.
Rosemary Wolfe (b.1931), the wife of author Gene Wolfe, died on December 14.
Actress Joan Fontaine (b. Joan de Beauvoir de Havilland 1917) died on December 15. Best known for her role in Rebecca, she appeared in episodes of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, the anthology series Alcoa Presents: One Step Beyond, and the film The Witches. Her sister was actress Olivia de Haviland.
Actor Peter O’Toole (b.1923) died on December 14. O’Toole was best known for his roles as T.E. Lawrence in Lawrence of Arabia and two very different portrayals of King Henry II in Becket and The Lion in Winter. Some of his genre films included Stardust, Supergirl, High Spirits, Creator, and episodes of The Ray Bradbury Theater. He also played a British lord who thought he was Jesus in The Ruling Class.
China landed the Chang’e 3 probe on the Moon at Sinus Iridium on December 14 at 8:11 a.m. EST. The probe carries the lunar rover Yutu and makes China the third country, along with the US and the Soviet Union, the successfully send probes to the Moon. This is the first soft landing on the moon since the Soviet Union’s Luna 24 landed in 1976. China launched Chang’e 3 on December 2 and it has been in Lunar orbit since December 7.
John Klima has announced that he will cease publication of his magazine Electric Velocipede with the current issue, citing “outstanding money owed me that just isn’t coming.” Electric Velocipede won a Hugo Award for Best Fanzine in 2009 and received four World Fantasy Award nominations (along with one more for one of their stories).
The Golden Globe Nominations were released on December 12. The 2014 Golden Globes are presented by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and will air live on NBC January 12 at a ceremony hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Categories with nominees of genre interest are listed below.
Best Motion Picture – Drama
- 12 Years a Slave
- Captain Phillips
Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama
- Cate Blanchett for Blue Jasmine
- Sandra Bullock for Gravity
- Judi Dench for Philomena
- Emma Thompson for Saving Mr Banks
- Kate Winslet for Labor Day
Best Animated Feature Film
- The Croods
- Despicable Me 2
Best Director – Motion Picture
- Alfonso Cuaron for Gravity
- Paul Greengrass for Captain Phillips
- Steve McQueen for 12 Years A Slave
- Alexander Payne for Nebraska
- David O. Russell for American Hustle
Best Original Score – Motion Picture
- Alex Ebert for All Is Lost
- Alex Heffes for Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom
- Steven Price for Gravity
- John Williams for The Book Thief
- Hans Zimmer for 12 Years A Slave
Best Original Song – Motion Picture
- “Atlas,” from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Music & Lyrics by: Chris Martin, Guy Berryman, Jonny Buckland, Will Champion
- “Let It Go,” from Frozen, Music & Lyrics by: Kristen Anderson Lopez, Robert Lopez
- “Ordinary Love,” from Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, Music by: Bono, The Edge, Adam Clayton, Larry Mullen, Jr., Brian Burton; Lyrics by: Bono
- “Please Mr Kennedy,” from Inside Llewyn Davis, Music & Lyrics by: Ed Rush, George Cromarty, T Bone Burnett, Justin Timberlake, Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
- “Sweeter Than Fiction,” from One Chance, Music & Lyricss by: Taylor Swift, Jack Antonoff
Best Television Series – Comedy or Musical
- The Big Bang Theory
- Brooklyn Nine-Nine
- Modern Family
- Parks and Recreation
Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical
- Jason Bateman for Arrested Development
- Don Cheadle for House Of Lies
- Michael J. Fox for The Michael J. Fox Show
- Jim Parsons for The Big Bang Theory
- Andy Samberg for Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Best Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
- American Horror Story: Coven
- Behind the Candelabra
- Dancing on the Edge
- Top of the Lake
- The White Queen
Best Performance by an Actress in a Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
- Helena Bonham Carter for Burton & Taylor
- Rebecca Ferguson for The White Queen
- Jessica Lange for American Horror Story: Coven
- Helen Mirren for Phil Spector
- Elisabeth Moss for Top of the Lake
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
- Jacqueline Bisset for Dancing On The Edge
- Janet McTeer for The White Queen
- Hayden Panettiere for Nashville
- Monica Potter for Parenthood
- Sofia Vergara for Modern Family
Actor Don Mitchell (b.1943) died on December 8. Mitchell may be best known for his role as Mark Sanger on Ironside, but also had several appearances in genre work, including the television shows Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, and Wonder Woman. He also appeared in the film Scream Blacula Scream.
The Carl Brandon Society has announced the winners of their 2011 awards, which will be presented at Arisia in January 2014. The Parallax Award is presented for SF created by a someone who identifies as a person of color. The Kindred Award is presented for works dealing with issues of race and ethnicity. The society is named for a fictitious sf fan created as a hoax by Terry Carr and Peter Graham in the 1950s.
- Parallax Award: Smoketown, by Tenea D. Johnson
- Kindred Award: Redwood and Wildfire, by Andrea Hairston
Dina Benadon and Brent Young recently purchased the home in which Walt Disney was born in Chicago and are trying to restore it and turn it into a museum. The house was built by Disney’s father and Disney lived their from his birth in 1901 until 1905. Benadon and Young are trying to raise $500,000 through Kickstarter to achieve their goal.