Oscar Nominees Gather for Pre-Awards Lunch
February 14, 2006

Hollywood's elite gathered for a star-powered luncheon in Hollywood Monday, and from seasoned superstar Joaquin Phoenix to nominee newcomer Keira Knightley, everyone was in high spirits in anticipation of the most celebrated night of the year!

Oscar's Class of 2006 will face some tough competition, as this year's nominees include some of the most talented actors ever. But the star rivalry was the last thing on everyone's minds as they soaked up the pre-festivity fun!

"The truth is this is all fun for me," George Clooney revealed. "I've never been here before, so it's all icing on the cake."

Screen beauties Reese Witherspoon and Charlize Theron were also on hand, and "Extra" caught Charlize reveling in her second Oscar nod in three years. "Somehow I got locked in the candy store, and nobody knows I'm there," she revealed. "And I'm having a really good time!"

All the nominees enjoyed the feast of fame, especially "Crash" nominee, Matt Dillon. "I have to say, Keira Knightley is about the most beautiful woman I've ever seen," he confessed.

But Keira didn't notice the fuss over her beauty; she's still on a natural high from being nominated at all. "I got woken up with my mom screaming and I have to say, I turned over and went back to sleep," she admitted. "I woke up three hours later giggling, going ‘Did that just happen?'"

The giddy actress also gave "Extra" the skinny on that nude photo shoot for Vanity Fair. And she's letting it be known that she doesn't bare it all! "I think there's quite a bit more to see," she said. "There are a lot of strategically placed arms. I think it's hilarious."

Aussie sensation Heath Ledger told us that meeting fellow Oscar-nominee Michelle Williams while making "Brokeback Mountain" together was even better than getting his Best Actor nomination. "That's the greatest thing I gained from this film, by far," he insisted.

And William Hurt, up for Best Supporting Actor in "A History of Violence" confirmed a wild story of thievery about the Oscar he won in 1985 for "Kiss of the Spider Woman" to "Extra's" Jerry Penacoli.

So is it true that it was stolen? "My home was being moved," he revealed. "I wasn't here and something happened."

Meanwhile, Emmy winner Felicity Huffman admitted that she's still in a spin over her Best Actress nomination for "Transamerica." "It's a dream come true," she said. "I wake up in the morning and go, ‘Yippee!'"

The "Desperate Housewife" also gave up a heads-up on her mega-hit TV series: "Well, I just had sex in an elevator. So how's that for a tidbit?"

Tidbits aside, the next time this band of Hollywood elite assembles, it will be at the Oscars! You can catch all the tears, laughs and yippees on ABC, March 5.

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