Today's News: Our Take


DID SHE CRY?

Barbara Walters can add another big notch to her belt. The ABC News vet has landed an exclusive interview with embattled domestic guru Martha Stewart. The chat — Stewart's first since being indicted for insider trading — took place over the weekend. However, ratings-hungry ABC is holding the piece until November sweeps. During the sit-down, Stewart admitted the prospect of doing jail time frightened her. "Who wouldn't be scared? Of course I'm scared," she said. "The last place I would ever want to go is to prison. And I don't think I will be going to prison, though." read more

SECOND CHANCE

Here's some "TV News" scoop from the current issue of TV Guide magazine: Just months after pink-slipping former Practice receptionist Marla Sokoloff (as well as five other colleagues), David E. Kelley has hired the actress back. Sokoloff has been cast in a multi-episode arc on Kelley's struggling CBS drama The Brotherhood of Poland, New Hampshire. She'll play Audrey, a local recruited by Mare Winningham's character to sing in her new theater. She'll first air in December. read more

DIE ANOTHER DAY

Hollywood is beating another action movie franchise to death. According to Variety, 20th Century Fox has tapped screenwriter Mark Bomback to pen Die Hard 4. Bruce Willis is slated to reprise his role as John McClane if (and only if) the script passes his muster. And let's face it: The bar was set pretty high with 1995's Die Hard: With a Vengeance. read more

AMERICAN WEDDING

Former Buffy the Vampire Slayer sorceress Alyson Hannigan had a pretty magical weekend. On Saturday, the actress married longtime beau (and Angel actor) Alexis Denisof in Desert Hot Springs, Calif. And the following day, news broke that the American Pie leading lady — who recently made public her wish to star in a TV sitcom — had inked a deal with NBC to headline her very own comedy series for fall 2004. Comparatively, my weekend highlights included bringing my winter clothes up from storage and catching a Sunday matinee of Intolerable Cruelty. And contrary to tabloid reports, I went to the movie alone by choice and not because I have no friends. read more

HAPPY HOLIDAYS

Christmas is coming early for American Idol fans. Fox will air an American Idol holiday special on Nov. 25 featuring alums Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken singing your favorite Yuletide hits. Why is the network scheduling a Christmas special two days before Thanksgiving, you ask? Because they want to get it in before the end of November sweeps, silly. 'Tis the season! read more

BILL KILLS

Quentin Tarantino's bloody big-screen comeback Kill Bill butchered the box office competition over the weekend, opening at No. 1 with $22.2 million. It was the director's biggest debut to date and the fourth-best October bow ever. Last week's top flick, Jack Black's School of Rock, slipped to second with $15.4 million, but lost only 21 percent of its business. Joel and Ethan Coen's new dark comedy Intolerable Cruelty — starring George Clooney and Catherine Zeta-Jones — opened at No. 3 with a decent $13.1 million, followed by Good Boy! (No. 4 with a better-than-expected $13 million) and Out of Time (No. 5 with $8.6 million). In limited release, Clint Eastwood's latest directorial effort Mystic River earned a spectacular $591,390 on just 13 screens. It opens nationwide Wednesday. read more

RUSH TO JUDGMENT

Rush Limbaugh may be facing more than just a 30-day stint in rehab. The conservative radio host — who last week admitted to listeners that he was addicted to painkillers — is also under investigation by the Palm Beach County, Fla., state attorney's office, The Associated Press reports. read more

SPEAKING OF

... the current issue of TV Guide magazine, Amazing Race fans will also want to check out my "TV News" column for scoop on the reality show's upcoming fifth edition. Now, go buy an issue, race back to your computer and e-mail me the scoop via the link at the bottom of this page. The first person to do so will get a shout-out in my column tomorrow! You'll be famous! read more

SundaySunday Morning Shootout...

Sunday

Sunday Morning Shootout
Producer Peter Guber and Variety Editor-in-Chief Peter Bart argue over the MPAA's decision to ban sending DVD and VHS screeners to Academy Awards voters because of piracy concerns. I can't say for sure what I think, so they should send them all here and let me decide. Edward Norton stops by to discuss whether on-set tension makes for a better movie, a question I firmly believe can only be settled by... well, sending all Academy screeners to me. Then arguments start over the ballooning cost of movie making and how much support Governor Ah-nuld can expect from Hollywood. I, of course, believe the only way to get to the bottom of these issues is to... You know where I'm going with this, right?

The Practice
The Lyon's Den
Switching back and forth: On The Practice, Sharon Stone says she talks to God, but the other lawyers don't belie read more

Meet WB's New "Mrs. Brady"

Diane Farr has the voice of an angel — well, maybe a very wry angel who got rid of her extra-thick New York accent. "I think somebody once called it 'whiskey-soaked,'" says Farr, 31, of her distinctive inflection. "It sorta sounds like I had a rough night." But, after well-received stints on MTV's Loveline and ABC's The Job, her days are pretty smooth now, as she lends that unique delivery to the new WB comedy Like Family (Fridays, 8:30 pm ET). She plays a single mother who, with her teenage son, moves into the crowded suburban home of her best friend (Holly Robinson Peete). Luckily, Farr made some space to talk with us.


TV Guide Online: The actor who plays your son on Like Family, J. Mack Slaughter, is actually 20 years old. Um, have you ever read that book Growing Up Brady by Barry Williams?
Diane Farr:
(Laughs) No, but I make the jokes all the time that I'm gonna pull a "Mrs. Brady" on him.

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