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Critic's Choice Movie Awards: Hollywood second most important night in movies

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The Broadcast Film Critics Association's 18th Annual Critics Choice Movie Awards kicks off the 2013 awards season Thursday, January 10th when it airs live on the CW network.

The awards, held this year at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, also occurs the same day as the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences announces their Oscar nominees.

Traditionally, the BFCA and Academy members tend to vote alike for films and film performances, making the nominees - and often times the winners - in both groups virtually the same.

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Jessica Chastain and Emma Stone at last year's CCMA's.

Huffington Post blogger and BFCA member Zorianna Kit sat down with BFCA president Joey Berlin - who co-founded the organization in 1995 and executive produces the CCMAs - to talk about what audiences can expect from this year's awards ceremony.

ZORIANNA KIT: For the past several years the CCMA's aired on VH1. Is it big deal to go from a cable channel to a major network?

JOEY BERLIN: Yes. The Critics Choice Movie Awards is very successful in Hollywood and a very important part of the movie awards season. We're thrilled to be on a broadcast network where millions more people will have a chance to watch it.

ZORIANNA KIT: The CW network target audience is 18 to 34, which is a relatively young audience. Will they care about movie awards put on by film critics?

JOEY BERLIN: We definitely think so. The movie going audience is the same demographic as the CW audience and we are always covering comedies, action and horror movies as well as the kinds of movies that are honored by the motion picture academy. This year we've also added new movie categories that we think are consistent with what we do as critics, which is to tell viewers the best way to invest their movie dollars.

ZORIANNA KIT: What are those categories?

JOEY BERLIN: We've been giving out best comedy and best action movie awards for a long time, but this year we've giving out best actor and actress in an action movie and best actor and actress in a comedy. And we're giving out for the first time best sci-fi/horror movie.

ZORIANNA KIT: Why was it important to add these categories alongside the traditional ones?

JOEY BERLIN: We're not the (film) industry, we're the critics. We speak to our audience all year round and our audience cares about popular categories. That's why we actually have our first fan voted category ever this year. It's Favorite Film Franchise, which people have been voting by the millions online.

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Charlize Theron with her mother Gerta at the CCMA's last year.

ZORIANNA KIT: Judd Apatow will be receiving a brand new inaugural award Thursday night during the live telecast. What is it?

JOEY BERLIN: It's a special award, the Louis XIII Genius Award. It will be presented to him by Rebel Wilson. It recognizes genius and artistic excellence over a course of a series of films or career. Judd has certainly shown his genius. If you look at his credits as a writer, director, producer - most comedies of the last decade are his. We're proud to honor that and we think that's going to be fun for the viewers to see.

ZORIANNA KIT: The CCMA's are on the same night as the Oscar nominations which occur that Thursday morning at the crack of dawn. Is that a good or a bad thing?

JOEY BERLIN: We think it's a really great fit. Everybody is going be talking about the Oscar nominations. And then that night viewers will be able to see the nominees out in their finery for the first time at the CCMA's, which will be their first awards competition that really counts. The gold standard will always be the Academy Awards. But the day that the Academy Awards are announced and the critics immediately weigh in with their choices, it becomes the second most important day in the movie business (after the Oscars).

ZORIANNA KIT: With virtually every CCMA nominee confirmed to attend the awards, and with many of them being newly crowned Oscar nominees, it's going to be a long day for many of the stars!

JOEY BERLIN: It is going be a long day, that's for sure. But we'll have lots of coffee on hand!

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Michelle Williams and Busy Phillips at CCMA 2012