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Monday, 26 March, 2001, 01:08 GMT 02:08 UK
Hopes and fears at the Oscars
Julie Walters arrives with Jamie Bell
Julie Walters arrives with Jamie Bell at the Oscars
British actress Julie Walters has arrived at the Academy Awards saying Oscar day was like a "mixture of Christmas and getting married".

Walters, who has been nominated for best supporting actress for Billy Elliot, said: "I'm not nervous, I'm happy and relaxed, because I don't expect to win."

I am out of my mind to be here

Laura Linney
Julia Roberts, hot favourite for the best actress award, said she and her family had spent the day together being "silly and doing acrobatics".

Her boyfriend Benjamin Bratt said Roberts had not prepared her acceptance speech.

"I think that is amazing given what comes out of her mouth some times," he said.

Juliette Binoche said she would be very surprised if she were to win and beat Julia Roberts to the best actress award.

Laura Linney, best actress nominee for You Can Count On Me, said: "I am out of my mind to be here.

Chow Yun Fat
Chow Yun Fat arrives at the Oscars
"It is chaotic and exciting and I am so proud to be here."

The actress arrived with the author Armistead Maupin, the writer of the celebrated Tales of the City series of books.

Tom Hanks, in line for a third best actor nomination, gave little away, saying: "My bow tie is going to be driving me nuts."

Chow Yun Fat, the star of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, which has 10 Oscar nominations, was among the first to arrive.

He explained the appeal of the film to the BBC's David Willis, saying: "It's a wonderful love story and full of beautiful scenery. People have really fall in love with the film.

"Ang Lee is an incredible director."

Best supporting actor nominee Joaquin Phoenix, who played Russell Crowe's nemesis in Gladiator, said his nomination was the "pinnacle of his career".

He said: "It is just very exciting, like the world series. It is difficult to explain."

He said Gladiator was a hard to film to make but "working with a great director and cast helped".

Joan Allen is nominated for her performance in The Contender
Hollywood couple Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas arrived hand in hand and both are presenting awards at the ceremony.

"It has been a really nice year," said Douglas, "both with Traffic and Wonder Boys".

Javier Bardem, nominated for best actor for Before Night Falls, said: "I never expected to be here, I mean, I'm Spanish."

Bardem said Before Night Falls, a biopic of Cuban poet and writer Reinaldo Arenas, was "an important movie which needs to be watched".

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26 Mar 01 | Film
Picture gallery: Stars arrive
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