Today's News: Our Take


MOVE OVER, RONALD

You know the economy is in the toilet when Justin Timberlake takes a job at McDonald's. Actually, the pop star's not flipping burgers — he's been hired to star in a global advertising campaign. Terms of his undoubtedly lucrative contract are undisclosed, but we do know he'll sing in TV commercials worldwide, and McDonald's will sponsor his upcoming 35-country tour. read more

STORMY WEATHER APPROACHING

Janet Jackson has signed on to portray Lena Horne in ABC's upcoming musical-biopic on the singer-actress, Variety reports. Michael's sis is expected to record new takes on Horne's classic songs, including her signature tune "Stormy Weather." Craig Zadan and Neil Meron — the folks behind Chicago — will produce the two-hour TV-movie. read more

SAVE THE DATE

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez will tie the knot on Sept. 14 in Santa Barbara, Calif., — at least that's what the New York Daily News is reporting. The couple's divorce, meanwhile, will take place on Sept. 22 in Los Angeles Superior Court. read more

NOT SO FAB

Queer Eye for the Straight Guy's original "culture expert" is suing the show's producers for breach of contract. According to the New York Post, Blair Boone — who was fired after two episodes and replaced with Jai Rodriguez — claims that he should have been paid $105,000 for a year's worth of shows. Speaking of Queer Eye, was I the only one bored by last night's episode? read more

THREE BABIES AND A MAN

Here's some "TV News" scoop from the current issue of TV Guide magazine: Movie star Giovanni Ribisi will reprise his role as Phoebe's wacky brother — and father of the triplets to whom she was a surrogate mom — in a Friends episode slated for October. read more

LABOR GAINS

The annual Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon raised a record $60.5 million in pledges Monday for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. That surpasses last year's record of $58.3 million. Despite suffering from pulmonary fibrosis, the 77-year-old Lewis — whose body appeared bloated due to steroid medication — emceed the event for the 38th consecutive year. read more

DID THEY OR DIDN'T THEY?

Although there's been no official confirmation, Beatle scion Stella McCartney allegedly married publisher Alasdhair Willis on Saturday on a remote Scottish island. Among the celebs in attendance: The fashion designer's famous father Paul, Coldplay's Chris Martin, Madonna and model Kate Moss. read more

Freaks and Geeks: The Next Generation


Freaks and Geeks creator Paul Feig is developing a new comedy series for HBO about four twentysomething friends — three guys and a girl (no pizza place) — dealing with sex and dating from a distinctly nerdy point of view. Think of it as his attempt to educate Hollywood about the complexities of the male species.

"Guys in their 20s in movies and on TV always wanna get laid, and that was not my experience," the self-proclaimed geek tells TV Guide Online. "We were looking for the great girlfriend, who could then make a wife. I wanted to portray that and get away from the ugly side of male mating."

Of the four central characters, "three work at a mall and a fourth guy secretly works in an adult book store on the outskirts of town," explains Feig. "What it enables them to do is meet in the food court all of the time, which is very Freaks and Geeksy in a way. I just love how people kind of talk when they're eating together.

"An read more

WHAT'S GOOD FOR ASHTON...

Topher Grace has signed a new deal with That '70s Show that will pay him more than $250,000 an episode next season. That puts the actor on par with what co-star Ashton Kutcher will be making. read more

HEY, MIKE TYSON — DINNER IS READY

Illusionist David Blaine performed his best stunt yet over the weekend: He left the British media bloody speechless. At a London press conference Monday, Blaine appeared to cut off his ear with a pocket knife after a reporter asked whether he could show off any new tricks. He left the room holding a handkerchief to his ear and later returned covered in blood. (Why doesn't this happen at any of the press conferences I go to???) The point of all this? Publicity for Blaine's Sept. 5 stunt, in which he'll be suspended in a clear box by the River Thames in London for 44 days. read more

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