Elsa doll, a character from the Disney animated movie, "Frozen."
By Barbara Vancheri / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
• If you're shopping for a child who has been singing "For the First Time in Forever" since seeing the animated adventure "Frozen," Disney has an avalanche of dolls and related merchandise ... but it's been going fast. Olaf the snowman melted off shelves, but you may be able to find a 12-inch version of Elsa, with long blond braid and sparkly turquoise dress. It's $16.95 at the Disney Store, South Hills Village. Most chain retailers have merchandise, too.
• Credit Technicolor and the contrast with the Yellow Brick Road for turning Dorothy's slippers from silver, as in the book, to ruby. And Toto's real name was Terry, but it was permanently changed after the female cairn terrier became a star. Those are just two of the many tidbits in "The Wizard of Oz: The Official 75th Anniversary Companion" (Harper Design, $40 or less) by Jay Scarfone and William Stillman with never-seen artwork, removable memorabilia and small poster. At Barnes & Noble stores or online.
• No one can buy a ticket to the Oscars in Hollywood, but anyone can purchase one to Highmark Presents Lights! Glamour! Action! That's the Oscar gala staged by the Pittsburgh Film Office at Heinz Field on Sunday, March 2. Tickets range from $75 (if six or more are purchased) to $500, which includes a pre-party event at J. Verno Studios Jan. 31. Walk the red carpet, graze at gourmet food stations, bid on silent auction items and watch the 86th Academy Awards on a big screen. Go to www.showclix.com/event/LightsGlamourAction2014 for tickets and details.
(Click image for larger version)
• Give the gift of coziness and hot chocolate, complements for the perfect movie night (you supply the DVD, such as "Monsters University," "The Croods" or "42"). Williams-Sonoma Hot Chocolate Sampler, $29.95, features three flavors: classic with bittersweet chocolate shavings, peppermint and salted caramel. Add a box of mini marshmallows, $16.95.
• It's been another banner year for family films and the delightful "Despicable Me 2" is on DVD. You can buy just the movie or spring for the set with the Blu-ray, DVD, digital copy and three new mini-movies with those adorable minions. $24.99 at retailers such as Target.
• A gift card will pay for movies or a large bucket of popcorn or fizzy drink. Virtually every theater, from the 75-year-old Oaks and newly renovated Manor to chains such as Cinemark, AMC and Phoenix Big Cinemas, sell cards or certificates. Pittsburgh Filmmakers' Screenie card, $80, grants 12 admissions (which can be shared) and 12 free popcorns or fountain drinks with other benefits. You can buy it today at the Regent Square Theater during free "It's a Wonderful Life" showings at 5 and 8 p.m.; front desk of Filmmakers, 477 Melwood Ave., before noon Monday; or Pittsburgh Center for the Arts shop before 3 p.m. Christmas Eve.
• You cannot go wrong with any bottle bearing the name of Francis Ford Coppola, the great director who has been in the wine business for years. Diamond Collection Malbec promises rich robust flavors of currants, plums and spice. Look for it at state Wine & Spirits Stores for $17.99.
• "Anchorman Ultimate Blu-Ray Fan Pack" has three versions of the first film, a T-shirt (size large) proclaiming, "I'm Kind of a Big Deal," $7.50 off an "Anchorman 2" ticket and coupon for a free pint of Ben & Jerry's ice cream, Ron Burgundy's Scotchy Scotch Scotch flavor, and 16-page excerpt of Ron's autobiography. At Wal-Mart, $19.96. If the gift set is sold out, look for the book "Let Me Off at the Top!" ($22, Crown Archetype) by the fictional Burgundy.
To report inappropriate comments, abuse and/or repeat offenders, please send an email to
email@example.com and include a link to the article and a copy of the comment. Your report will be reviewed in a timely manner.