Today's News: Our Take


Inspired by what she called President Bush's "vile and hateful comments" against gay marriage, Rosie O'Donnell and longtime girlfriend Kelli Carpenter tied the knot Thursday in San Francisco. They join more than 3,300 other same-gender couples who have married in the city since Feb. 12. Emerging from city hall to thunderous applause from hundreds of spectators, O'Donnell thanked the mayor of San Francisco for taking "this amazing stance for... the thousands and thousands of loving, law-abiding couples." O'Donnell and Carpenter have been together for six years and have four children, one failed Broadway show and a truckload of koosh balls. read more


Reality television's foremost villain, Richard Hatch, got his torch snuffed for the first time last night on Survivor: All-Stars. The Mogo Mogo tribe — led by the increasingly grating Colby Donaldson — voted unanimously to oust the 42-year-old naked guy, prompting Survivor's first champ to exclaim, "I've been bamboozled!" Meanwhile, Donald Trump wisely fired 27-year-old emotional basket case Ereka Vetrini on NBC's The Apprentice on the grounds that she, well, was an emotional basket case. read more


A day after getting dumped in six markets by radio giant Clear Channel Communications, shock jock Howard Stern took to the airwaves Thursday and blamed his suspension on a conservative backlash prompted by Boobygate. (Duh.) "They've been after me since 1992, and they're having their way with me," he said on his show. "Then Janet Jackson whipped out her boob and it's all over." read more


Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has joined Forbes magazine's billionaires club... One of Clay Aiken's early American Idol outfits — soiled Smurf Underoos and all — will be on display at the North Carolina Museum of History beginning March 2. read more


NBC's Late Night with Conan O'Brien and Last Call with Carson Daly hit new ratings highs last week among adults 18-49, and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno posted its best numbers in that demo in three years. read more


Bobby Brown has been sentenced to 60 days in the slammer for parole violations stemming from a 1996 drunk driving charge. Brown's wife, Whitney Houston, was MIA at the sentencing hearing. Eh, it's not right but it's OK. read more


ABC News is close to signing a deal with British journalist Martin Bashir, whose controversial interview with Michael Jackson catapulted him to fame in the U.S. In related news, Bashir's Living With Michael Jackson documentary was named program of the year Thursday by Britain's Royal Television Society. read more


The Practice has beamed up William Shatner for a four-episode guest stint. The Star Trek icon will play an "eccentric, well-connected, power-drunk legal legend who is chief partner of a law firm that goes head-to-head" with James Spader and Co. Meanwhile, it looks like fired Practice star Dylan McDermott is headed back to the ABC drama later this season after all. For more on that, pick up next week's issue of TV Guide magazine (on sale Monday). read more


The official opening-day tally for The Passion of the Christ is in, and the film grossed $23.6 million on Wednesday — well above preliminary estimates of $15 million to $20 million. Mel Gibson's labor of love is poised to rank as the biggest religious-themed movie since The Ten Commandments and Ben-Hur. read more


Fresh from her serial-killing spree in Monster, Charlize Theron is in talks to play a futuristic (and, thankfully, good-looking) assassin in a film based on MTV's animated series Aeon Flux. read more

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