Today's News: Our Take


HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!

MTV's Newlyweds: Nick & Jessica kicked off its second season Tuesday with its most-watched episode yet, attracting an estimated 4.7 million viewers. That helped boost the debut of 'Til Death Do Us Part: Carmen and Dave, which notched a decent 3.3 million viewers and ranked as MTV's highest-rated series premiere among viewers 12-34. read more

GOTCHA!

The plot thickened Thursday in Hollywood's ongoing screener saga. The FBI arrested an Illinois man, Russell Sprague, in connection with an Internet piracy ring that allegedly can be traced back to Academy member/actor Carmine Caridi. According to reports, Caridi had been sending his Oscar screeners over the past three to five years to Sprague, who transferred them into digital format and put them online. Oh, so that's how you do it. read more

FriendsNot one but two reruns?!...

Friends Not one but two reruns?! Yeah, you'll be there for me. In April.

Steve Harvey's Big Time The ever-smug comedian continues to mock his guests (he's more sincere hawking Burger King's Chicken-Caesar sandwich) on this variety show, which tonight should be called Steve Harvey's Big Top since all but one of his acts belongs in the circus. Among tonight's gems: an Eastern European who manipulates a bow and arrow with her feet; a South American woman who swings from a pole by her hair; and an American hula-hoop champion. All of a sudden, Cirque de Soleil ticket prices seem reasonable.

Tru Calling Nash Bridges' Jodi Lyn O'Keefe guest-stars as Tru's former best friend, whom she has to save from drowning at their five-year high-school reunion. Though the still-painful old wounds and rivalries and are melodramatically accurate, I have two major quibbles: My five-year reunion, which I'll never forgive my mom for read more

FRIENDS FLAP

NBC has decided that, well, maybe Friends isn't the "best comedy ever" after all. The network promised Thursday not to rerun a much-criticized promo in which it used that phrase to refer to the departing hitcom. An NBC spokeswoman concedes that the spot "went overboard." She'll get no argument from Frasier star Kelsey Grammer, who last week expressed his dismay at the ad. "I don't blame them for saying that," he said. "Although, we all know it's not true." read more

GREEN GIANT

Even though Shrek 2 doesn't open for another four months, DreamWorks is fast-tracking production of a third installment, in which the lovable green ogre tackles the legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Meanwhile, Variety reports that the studio is also hard at work on Shark Tale 2, even though the first Shark Tale doesn't debut until October. read more

The Apprentice's Sam Speaks!

It was a move that surprised absolutely no one — except Sam Solovey. On last night's Apprentice, Donald Trump finally canned Sam. From Day 1, the 27-year-old Internet entrepreneur from Chevy Chase, Md., created static with his teammates. But if you think the experience has humbled him, think again.

TV Guide Online: Why was it such a struggle for you to stay on the show?
Sam Solovey:
I have a strong personality. I have a lot of big ideas. I was thinking out of the box, which I do in business, and it's been successful for me. And it didn't work in this environment. I may have been a threat. A lot of people in the working world think one-dimensionally, and I don't, and that often throws people off.

TVGO: Do you think trying to sell a cup of lemonade for $1,000 hurt you?
Solovey:
I was actually very close to getting that sale. I'd be willing to go back to those people today and present them with the same offer, and I think they w read more

SCHOOL'S OUT

Boston Public's school year has been cut short. Fox, which ordered only 15 episodes of the show this season, has opted not to pick up additional installments. The network has yet to decide whether the show will be back next season, but I'll go out on a limb and say it doesn't look good. read more

The Apprentice's Sam Speaks!

It was a move that surprised absolutely no one — except Sam Solovey. On last night's Apprentice, Donald Trump finally canned Sam. From Day 1, the 27-year-old Internet entrepreneur from Chevy Chase, Md., created static with his teammates. But if you think the experience has humbled him, think again.

TV Guide Online: Why was it such a struggle for you to stay on the show?
Sam Solovey:
I have a strong personality. I have a lot of big ideas. I was thinking out of the box, which I do in business, and it's been successful for me. And it didn't work in this environment. I may have been a threat. A lot of people in the working world think one-dimensionally, and I don't, and that often throws people off.

TVGO: Do you think trying to sell a cup of lemonade for $1,000 hurt you?
Solovey:
I was actually very close to getting that sale. I'd be willing to go back to those people today and present them with the same offer, and I think they w read more

KUDOS KING

The Chicago Film Critics Association has chosen The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King as the best picture of 2003. Bill Murray (Lost in Translation) and Charlize Theron (Monster) won top acting honors. read more

JACKPOT!

Red-hot Las Vegas star Josh Duhamel has landed the lead role in Disney's upcoming big-screen epic Antarctica. The project is based on the true story of a group of explorers fighting for their lives in the bitter cold. Duhamel's latest film, Win A Date with Tad Hamilton, opens Friday. read more

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