Today's News: Our Take


CHRISTMAS FUTURE

Seinfeld alum Jason Alexander and Law & Order's Jesse L. Martin have joined the cast of NBC's upcoming musical adaptation of A Christmas Carol, starring Kelsey Grammer as Scrooge. Alexander will play Scrooge's dead business partner Marley, while Martin will play the Ghost of Christmas Present. read more

FriendsSo fans picked the Brad...

Friends So fans picked the Brad Pitt Thanksgiving episode as one of their favorite episodes of all time. And for the most part, I agree with the selection. Turkey Day installments have always been funny on this show, mostly because it's an easy excuse to get the gang together to reminisce about the past. And this show's basically a hoot, with Brad showing up as a formerly fat high-school pal of Ross's whom Rachel tortured way back in the day but now has the last — albeit cheap — laugh at her expense. But I'm probably going to ruffle a lot of feathers with my next pronouncement: Like a certain matinee idol named Tom whose appeal continues to baffle me, Brad Pitt can't act. Sure, he's drop-dead gorgeous and can exchange bons mots with the likes of George Clooney in cinematic confections like Ocean's Eleven, but have we all forgotten Cool World, The Devil's Own and Meet Joe Black? Some would beg to differ with me, ci read more

SHORT CUTS

Good Morning America will institute a five-second delay when Boobygate star Janet Jackson performs on its March 31 show... Stephen King's Kingdom Hospital flatlined Wednesday, dropping 35 percent from its debut last week... A&E Network has cleared a second season of its runway reality hit Airline for takeoff... Buena Vista has renewed the syndicated version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire for a third season. Ratings for the Meredith Vieira-hosted quizzer are up 23 percent over last year. read more

RHYMES WITH JAR

Here's some news even a grinch could love: Iconic children's author Theodor "Dr. Seuss" Geisel was honored posthumously Thursday with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The honor is part of a monthlong celebration commemorating what would have been Geisel's 100th birthday. read more

LITTLE ELF

Funny guy Will Ferrell and wife, Viveca Paulin, became first-time parents Sunday with the arrival of son Magnus Paulin Ferrell. read more

NICE TRY DI

Diana Ross has been ordered to serve another two-day jail sentence for drunken driving because she apparently cheated her first time around. According to authorities in Greenwich, Conn., the 59-year-old diva only spent 47 hours in police custody, leaving and returning multiple times. Ross will now have to return to the scene of the crime — Tucson, Ariz., — and do some hard time at the Pima County Jail. Big Bertha's waiting... read more

RING ROOTS

Japanese filmmaker Hideo Nakata, whose 1999 flick Ringu spawned the horror smash The Ring, is in talks to replace Noam Murro at the helm of The Ring 2, Variety reports. As reported here Wednesday, Murro dropped out of the upcoming sequel due to "creative differences" with DreamWorks. read more

Sexy Sorceress Haunts House


While most L.A. residents would enroll in Sorcery 101 if they thought it'd get them a Sci Fi Channel series, Fiona Horne turned down the network three times because she's a Wiccan. Then, finally, the telegenic Aussie relented and moved into Mad, Mad House (airing tonight at 9 pm/ET), the new reality program in which "normal" folks are challenged to bunk with "alts," among them a vampire and a voodoo priestess.

"I agreed to it when I realized there were no frauds or freaks," she tells TV Guide Online. "The other alts were all sincere people committed to their alternative-lifestyle choices." What's more, the powers that be let the alts do what came naturally. "They never tried to dictate what would happen [other than that] we had to have a trial every week" (to determine which contender was safe from elimination).

Convincing Horne of her fellow hosts' authenticity was one thing. But making believers of the guests was another matt read more

SHORT CUTS

Donald Trump will host Saturday Night Live on April 3... Christina Applegate will make her Broadway debut on April 21, 2005, in a revival of Sweet Charity... With sales of 204,000 copies, Norah Jones' sophomore effort, Feels Like Home, maintained its hold atop Billboard's album chart for a fourth straight week. read more

LIFE AFTER SEX

DreamWorks is courting Sarah Jessica Parker for the lead role in its big-screen remake of The Man Who Came to Dinner. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Parker's casting is contingent upon whom the studio hires as her leading man. Steve Martin recently passed on the part. Note to Mikhail Baryshnikov: Don't get any bright ideas. read more

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