Today's News: Our Take


PAGING DAPHNE ZUNIGA...

Mel Brooks is working on a sequel to his hilarious Star Wars spoof, Spaceballs. In an interview with Playbill.com, Brooks said he hopes to get the film in theaters around the same time as Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith, which opens in May. Let's pray we can tell which one's the spoof. read more

CHILD'S PLAY?

Planet Toys has inked a licensing agreement with CBS to produce a line of CSI-themed forensic activity kits for children age 14 and up. The first one, the CSI: Forensic Facial Reconstructive Kit, will be available exclusively at Toys R Us beginning Friday. The other two — CSI: This Is a Really Bad Idea and CSI: Someone's Gonna Get Fired Over This — are due in late October. read more

LEAP OF FAITH

Despite modest ratings, the WB has picked up its acclaimed drama Jack & Bobby for a full, 22-episode season. No word yet on The Mountain. Let's hope no news is bad news. read more

COULD IT BE... SATAN?

ABC is turning the horror classic Rosemary's Baby into a four-hour miniseries to air in 2005, Variety reports. The project will likely pick up the story years later, when Rosemary's demon spawn becomes a teenager and ventures out to buy one of those CSI activity kits. read more

RATINGS ROUND-UP

Crime paid big-time for CBS during the first official week of the new TV season. With all three CSIs landing in the top five, the Eye network finished No. 1 among total viewers and — cover your eyes, NBC — adults 18-49. ABC also came alive thanks to strong showings from Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and J.J. Abrams' new castaway thriller Lost, while the WB gained some ground with the help of its resurgent Tuesday night lineup of Gilmore Girls and One Tree Hill. NBC, Fox and UPN, meanwhile, were down over last year. read more

COS AND EFFECT

Bill Cosby is returning to the small screen, adapting his best-selling book Congratulations! Now What?: A Book for Graduates into a half-hour comedy series. Per Variety, the show will revolve around a new college grad who moves back in with his parents. Cosby is not expected to star in the project. In related news, Nick at Nite has renewed Cosby's animated series Fatherhood for a second season. read more

ART IMITATES LIFE

Real-life spouses Harry Hamlin and Lisa Rinna will appear in at least three episodes of UPN's out-of-this-world drama Veronica Mars. They'll play the movie-star parents of Veronica's high-school rival, Logan, starting Nov. 2 read more

NCIS A Navy captain's wife and...

NCIS
A Navy captain's wife and his angelic, piano-playing, blind daughter are abducted for ransom. (I know. We're barely two minutes into the show and I was groaning, too.) The kidnapper — who's tormenting the captain via webcam on his office PC — demands two million bucks in a creepy, electronically altered voice. And the little blind girl is, of course, freakishly developed in her other senses and thus is able to help the NCIS investigators save her parents. That is, when she's not too busy weeping and tugging at the viewer's heartstrings like a Dickensian orphan. Ugh. It's just old-fashioned melodrama — the same ol' schmaltzy, manipulative kind of TV drama I hate, even if it does have the modern technological twist. Sorry, Mark Harmon's still a handsome silver fox (and Michael Weatherly didn't look so bad in that sweaty tank top either), but I still can't get into NCIS.

By the way, some things ser read more

BB5's Cowboy Bucked


He might've been the most happy-go-lucky (if slightly dim-witted) cast member of Big Brother 5, but Michael Ellis, better known as Cowboy, is very bummed that his ex-housemates awarded the $1 million prize to cutie-pie Drew. The 23-year-old from Oklahoma doesn't begrudge his fellow "Horseman" the cash — he just wishes BB5's jury had based their votes on financial need more than gamesmanship. While this soon-to-be married gent tried hard to fit in — he even let his roomies shave racing stripes in his leg hair! — Cowboy couldn't win a Head of Household competition to save his life. Here, the downtrodden runner-up shares his regrets with TV Guide Online.

TV Guide Online: You must be happy. You won some money.
Michael Ellis:
Well, it wasn't the 500 Gs.

TVGO: Well, $50,000 isn't too shabby.
Michael:
Oh, no. I need to pay some bills.

TVGO: Did you at least have fun in the Big Brother read more

Stacie J. to World: ''I'm Not Crazy''


Had Stacie J. consulted her now-infamous Magic 8 Ball before entering Donald Trump's boardroom on last Thursday's Apprentice, it probably would have said, "Signs Point to Unemployment." But the 35-year-old model/Subway franchisee — whose 8-Ball-fueled breakdown freaked out her teammates and led to her firing — isn't about to let a pesky little pink slip get her down. She's too busy fending off accusations that she's loony tunes to worry about that.

TV Guide Online: I thought it was really cruel how the girls all ganged up on you in the boardroom.
Stacie J:
[Sighs] It was terrible.

TVGO: That said, your Magic 8-Ball freak-out was a little spooky. What happened?
Stacie J:
I was trying to motivate my team. It was the end of the task and I was like, "Hey you guys, we won! We won! Come on, get psyched!" I was being a cheerleader for the team. It's like what I do at my store — I own a Subway sandwich s read more

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