Today's News: Our Take


GAY FOR PAY

That long-rumored gay cable channel is back on the drawing board at MTV Networks. The company is once again talking to top cable operators about launching Outlet, a 24-hour network geared toward gays, lesbians and at least one of last night's American Idol semifinalists. read more

MAC'S BACK

Macaulay Culkin has been cast in NBC's Conan O'Brien-produced comedy pilot Foster Hall. The potential series revolves around a brother and sister reunited as adults after being shuffled to various foster homes during their youth. read more

BIGGER OCEAN

Catherine Zeta-Jones has joined the cast of Ocean's Twelve, the in-the-works sequel to 2001's Ocean's Eleven starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts and Matt Damon. Shooting is scheduled to begin April 12. read more

RAYMOND UPDATE

There's still no word whether Everybody Loves Raymond will return for a ninth and final season next fall, but there's reason to be hopeful. According to reports, series creator Phil Rosenthal and star Ray Romano are holding brainstorming meetings to determine at what price they can be bought, er, I mean whether's there's enough creative juice left in the show to go another year. read more

Gilmore Girls I know I've ranted...

Gilmore Girls
I know I've ranted about this before, but... Could this whole thing with Lorelai dating Digger be any more of a stretch? In my world, when a workaholic brings his cell phone on a date and talks to it more than me, it's not cute. It's over.

When Emily scoffs at the idea of these two as a couple, I think we're meant to see Lorelai's mother as a benighted old fussbudget. Like, "Oh, Emily, if only you knew..." Yet, once again, I gotta side with Emily here. They're all wrong for each other! It seems clear Gilmore Girls is just biding time, milking the unspoken longing between Lorelai and Luke. But in the meantime, could she please have a less-annoying romantic diversion to play with?

Speaking of annoying, Milo Ventimiglia comes back for a two-episode stint as bad boy Jess. But we had to wait until the second episode for him and Rory to actually interact? C'mon! Yes, it read more

COURTING MICKEY

Cable TV giant Comcast Corp. launched a proposal Tuesday to buy the Walt Disney Co. for $66 billion. If the deal goes through, it would make Comcast one of the world's largest media companies. read more

FOOD FIGHT

Intrusive flies are suddenly the least of Rocco DiSpirito's problems. The celeb chef and star of NBC's The Restaurant is being sued by a group of investors who financed his famous Italian eatery. They claim he mismanaged the joint and lost in excess of $600,000. Viewers can see for themselves when The Restaurant kicks off its second season this summer. read more

BLUE FLU

Is Reba McEntire pulling a Brad Garrett? That's the buzz on the set of her WB sitcom Reba, where the country star has gone AWOL on at least two occasions in recent weeks due to a suspicious "family emergency." Word is McEntire is unhappy with her current salary. read more

COWABUNGA, DUDE!

Bart, Lisa and Maggie are about to experience a long-overdue growth spurt. Yes, The Simpsons is finally heading to the big screen. Execs at 20th Century Fox confirm that series creator Matt Groening is in the "very early stages" of developing a feature film based on Fox's animated phenom. Simpsons scribe Mike Reiss spilled the beans in an interview with DVDFanatic.com. He said the studio "wanted to do this since Season 2. Finally Fox said, 'Let's just do it!' We never had the greatest idea that was compelling, but Fox said, 'Maybe if we start paying you, you'll get inspired.' And, sure enough, it worked!" read more

FOX ON TOP

Fox won the Nielsen derby last week among adults 18-49 on the strength of American Idol, My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance and That '70s Show — all of which finished in the top 20. CBS, buoyed by CSI, Survivor: All Stars and the Grammy Awards, ranked second in that demo but first among total viewers. The top five shows last week were American Idol (Tues.), CSI, American Idol (Wed.), the Grammy Awards and Friends. Reba, meanwhile, finished 91st for the week. Now that's what I call a family emergency. read more

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