Today's News: Our Take


EPIDURAL PLEASE!

Jennifer Aniston better get the hang of those breathing exercises: The producers behind NBC's Friends are mulling a season-ending plot in which Aniston's pregnant alter ego, Rachel, endures the longest labor in the history of the hospital where she gives birth. However, executive producer Kevin Bright says May's season finale has yet to be written, and as a result, "We're still weighing some options." read more

Josh Hartnett's Secret Love


Black Hawk Down star Josh Hartnett tackles dating dilemmas in his new film 40 Days and 40 Nights — opening Friday — but he's very secretive about his current real-life relationship. He's widely rumored to be dating a young woman from back home in Minneapolis, Minn. Asked if he's in love, Hartnett confesses: "I feel like I am."

Still, he draws the line at further inquiry on just who his lucky lady is. "People in my life didn't choose to be a part of this," the fame-trodden 23-year-old says. "I try to keep my family and friends out of it as much as possible."

Like his 40 Days character, Hartnett's suffered his share of heartbreak. How does the pinup cope with getting over a breakup? "I kind of wallow in the misery," he read more

SHORT CUTS

Warner Bros. is developing a big-screen remake of Alfred Hitchcock's 1951 pic Strangers on a Train, based on Patricia Highsmith's first novel... Showtime is planning a film about the 1963 kidnapping of Frank Sinatra Jr.. Stealing Sinatra will star David Arquette, William H. Macy and Ryan Browning as the kidnappers and Thomas Ian Nicholas as Sinatra... Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Color Purple is read more

TRIPLE THREAT

CBS confirmed Tuesday that it is moving forward with plans for a Big Brother 3, and is now accepting applications at CBS.com. The third installment will air over the summer and will feature "new innovations." Like, maybe, no housemates? read more

SMELLS LIKE A BEST SELLER

The journals of late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain will be published this fall by Riverhead Books. The currently untitled book will feature writings, drawings and handwritten lyrics to such hits as "Smells Like Teen Spirit." The journals begin when he was a teenager and end in 1994, the year Cobain committed suicide. read more

HE'S SUCH A BALDWIN!

Alec Baldwin will play a love interest for Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) on an upcoming Friends, TV Guide Online has learned. The episode is tentatively slated to air March 28. read more

SEPT. 11 TRIBUTE

The Writers Guild of America will honor late Frasier co-creator David Angell Saturday at its annual awards dinner. Angell and his wife, Lynn, died on Sept. 11 when their hijacked plane crashed into the World Trade Center. The multiple Emmy winner will be awarded the Valentine Davies Award, which recognizes those who have "brought dignity and honor to the profession of writing." read more

CAN'T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG?

West Wing creator Aaron Sorkinwho complained that NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw's Jan. 23 special, The Bush White House: Inside the Real West Wing, was a "Valentine" to President George W. Bush — has apologized to Brokaw. In the current New Yorker, Sorkin groused that, "The White House pumped up the president's schedule to show him being much busier and more engaged than he is and Tom Brokaw let it happen." Well, after learning that Brokaw prefaced the show by saying Dubya's schedule was loaded up for the occasion, Sorkin spoke to Brokaw and said he was sorry. read more

ALL'S RIGHT WITH THE WORLD

Simmah-down Saturday Night Live fans, your favorite funny lady is finally returning to TV. We're talkin' about Cheri Oteri! Arguably the most talented SNL grad in recent memory, Oteri will be reunited with former castmate Colin Quinn on the premiere episode of The Colin Quinn Show (airing live March 11 at 9:30 pm/ET on NBC). Oteri will appear in a comedy sketch opposite Quinn. read more

SHE'S COMIN' OUT

Rosie O'Donnell stormed out of the closet Monday night during a raucous stand-up performance at an Ovarian Cancer Research benefit in New York, reportedly calling herself "a dyke." The outgoing talk show host — who is expected to reveal that she is a lesbian in her upcoming memoir, Find Me — went on to say that, "I don't know why people make such a big deal about the gay thing... like this is a big revelation to somebody." Well, we had our suspicions... (For the scoop on O'Donnell's daytime swan song, click here.) read more

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