Today's News: Our Take


HIS FINAL HOURS

Comic legend Bob Hope died Sunday with a smile on his face but uttered no final words, his daughter Linda told reporters Monday. "Dad had an amazing send-off," she said. "I think all the good vibes he put out during his lifetime came back to take him up." Hope — who died at his home in Toluca Lake, Calif. — was surrounded by his family, including wife Dolores and their children, as well as his personal physician, several nurses and a priest. "It was a quiet and lovely evening," Linda added. "I can't tell you how beautiful and peaceful it was. The fact that there was a little audience gathered around, even though it was family, warmed dad's heart." President Bush, meanwhile, has ordered flags be flown at half-staff on Wednesday for Hope's private burial. A public memorial is slated for Aug. 27. read more

PAYING TRIBUTE

Turner Classic Movies will air a five-film tribute to Bob Hope on Thursday, beginning with 1962's The Road to Hong Kong at 11 am/ET and ending with 1961's Bachelor in Paradise at 6 pm/ET. For more on Hope's life, click here. read more

WILL AND GRACE

Legendary actress Katharine Hepburn, who died last month at age 96, left the bulk of her $20 million estate to family, but donated her Oscars and other memorabilia to charity, TheSmokingGun.com reports. Also of note: Hepburn willed furniture, paintings and $10,000 to her goddaughter, ABC News correspondent Cynthia McFadden, and her housekeeper Norah walked away with $200,000. What am I, chopped liver? read more

ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL?

Britney Spears and Mary J. Blige will help launch the 2003 National Football League season by giving a free concert on Sept. 4 at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. This will mark Spears's first major gig since taking a powder last year. Kid Rock and Aerosmith are also being recruited for the show, which will air from 8-9 pm/ET on ABC, followed by the big Redskins/Jets game. read more

SEXUAL ENERGY

Anne Heche and West Wing star Dule Hill have joined the cast of Sexual Life, an indie feature about intertwined relationships among a group of adults. The pic — which begins shooting next month in Los Angeles — also stars Tom Everett Scott, Azura Skye and Ally McBeal's James LeGros. read more

Question: Who played April, ...

Question: Who played April, the robot built by Warren on Buffy the Vampire Slayer?

Televisionary: In the Feb. 20, 2001 episode "I Was Made to Love You," the mechanical April was played by Shonda Farr. You may also have caught her guest work on such series as Smallville, Once and Again, Maybe It's Me and CSI. For more Buffy episode details, see our ShowGuide.

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WESTERN TRAILBLAZER

Steven Spielberg is producing a 12-hour Western for TNT that will follow a pair of families, one white and one Native American, Variety reports. The still-untitled "limited series" is slated to air in summer 2005. read more

SHORT CUTS

Ex-Brat Packer Andrew McCarthy and Oscar nominees Diane Ladd and Bruce Davison have checked into Stephen King's Kingdom Hospital, ABC's 15-hour series that debuts Feb. 5... Finding Nemo, which just became the highest-grossing animated feature of all time, arrives on DVD Nov. 4. read more

WHY ME?

Unfaithful actress Diane Lane is suing a production company for nearly $3 million, claiming it failed to finance a film she was slated to appear in opposite Bruce Willis. Lane alleges that Intermedia Film Equities USA agreed to pay her $3.5 million to star in Me Again — regardless of whether the movie ever got made. To date, Lane claims she has received just $833,000 for doing absolutely nothing. read more

Question: With all of the ...

Question: With all of the media attention surrounding the death of the legendary Katharine Hepburn, I learned that she also had an Emmy. What was this TV-movie and when was it made? — Caroline, Memphis, Tenn.

Televisionary: The late Ms. Hepburn was named Outstanding Lead Actress in a Special Program for ABC's 1975 production of Love Among the Ruins. She co-starred with Laurence Olivier (the only time she did so) in the Victorian London-based love story, which was directed by film legend George Cukor.

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