Matt Webb Mitovich


How West Wing Won Over Dreyfuss


He has portrayed a senator (in The American President), the Commander in Chief (in the TV-movie Fail Safe) and a secretary of state (in an upcoming TV-movie about the attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan). As such, it's fitting that what ultimately led Academy Award-winner Richard Dreyfuss to star in CBS's The Education of Max Bickford (premiering Sunday at 8 pm/ET) was television's acclaimed look at White House life.

"The West Wing was pretty persuasive," says Dreyfuss of what made him commit to a series. "When I realized that one could write like that about a subject like that, and that the quality could remain so high, my fear went down."

In fact, it is Dreyfuss's hope that Max Bi read more

Music To A Country's Ears


Bruce Springsteen, he whose name is synonymous with "Born In The USA," on Friday night came to mourn with the USA. As the opening act for "America: A Tribute To Heroes" — the live telethon broadcast on dozens of networks to benefit the families of those victimized by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks — The Boss used the all-too-aptly titled "My City Of Ruin" to urge this country to "Come on, rise up."

And sure enough, from there on, scads of performers — over 80 in total — rose up for the star-spangled television event. One by one, and sometimes in pairs, celebrities from all crafts were revealed from shadows to pay spoken tribute to those who lost their lives and those rescue workers who strive to find lives. To kick off the evening, Tom Hanks quoted United flight 93 passenger and apparent hijacker attacker Jeremy Glick, saying, "We're going to try to do something." And though, as Hanks added, the stars on hand were "not heroes, merely artists, read more

How West Wing Won Over Dreyfuss


He has portrayed a senator (in The American President), the Commander in Chief (in the TV-movie Fail Safe) and a secretary of state (in an upcoming TV-movie about the attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan). As such, it's fitting that what ultimately led Academy Award-winner Richard Dreyfuss to star in CBS's The Education of Max Bickford (premiering Sunday at 8 pm/ET) was television's acclaimed look at White House life.

"The West Wing was pretty persuasive," says Dreyfuss of what made him commit to a series. "When I realized that one could write like that about a subject like that, and that the quality could remain so high, my fear went down."

In fact, it is Dreyfuss's hope that Max Bi read more

Love Cruise's Sexy Secrets Revealed!


Meet Toni, whose store-bought bosom puts her fellow female contestants on guard right from the start on Fox's Love Cruise (debuting tonight at 9 pm/ET on Fox). "I don't mind what people say [about my plastic surgery]. Why do you think I got them?" the brassy blonde proudly declares during a round of the boat-based reality series's "Hot Seat" competition. "I wanted to make myself more attractive to men. It was my choice, my money and I did what I had to do."

Oh, to remember the simpler times of Love Boat, when the most bawdy banter stopped and started with, "Would you like to come in for a night cap?" Instead, Love Cruise — in which eight eligible men share a boat with eight single women — aims to make serious waves. "This is a very raucous, salacious, gregarious — and even exhibitionist — cast," host Justin Gunn teases TV Guide Online. "Each and every one of them is a grand personality with a lot to give."

Af read more

Wheeere's Johnny? Ed McMahon's on a Search


When Ed McMahon's Next Big Star premieres Sunday (6 pm/ET on PAX), its titular host promises a competitive showcase for up-and-coming talent — much akin to Star Search, his popular 1980s series — as well as appearances by established entertainment superstars. (Steven Tyler, 'N Sync and Jessica Simpson, to name just a few, have already taped segments.) Yet one friend of McMahon's that you won't see is Johnny Carson, the Tonight Show host for whom McMahon served as announcer and sidekick for three decades.

"It's very unlikely," McMahon tells TV Guide Online of the possibility for a cameo by Carson, who largely has been MIA since turning over the late-night talker to Jay Leno in 1992. "He just won't do anything on television.

"Johnny has turned down hosting the Oscars five times," he adds, illustrating his point. "And that would be the show to host, with three billion people watc read more

Apes Director's Secret Fear


An opening weekend gross of $69 million can buy a lot of bananas. Yet anyone familiar with Planet of the Apes director Tim Burton knows that the preferred fruit of his labor is the satisfaction in presenting an unmistakably unique vision to moviegoers.

"That whole thing about 'successful movies,' 'personal versus studio movies'... It's all the same to me," he attests. "I feel close to every film I make, though there may be a few that feel slightly more personal."

In terms of critical and audience acceptance, "every movie that ever came out from me could have gone either way, as far as my mind was concerned," the auteur behind Sleepy Hollow, Edward Scissorhands, Beetlejuice and two Batman films adds. "But read more

Apes Star Makes Peace with Heston


In Planet of the Apes's most self-referential moment, ape army leader General Thade visits his father's bedside, where the withering patriarch, with his last breaths, unveils a symbol of humankind's inventiveness: a firearm. Yet, since the ailing elder is played by original Apes star Charlton Heston — the president of the National Rifle Association, natch — it's a scene that Thade's portrayer, Tim Roth, almost was not a part of.

"It was difficult for me, because of the whole NRA thing," admits the actor. "I'm aware of [Heston's] reputation, but I've got two kids. In fact, it has taken away from his reputation as an actor, to be honest.

"Everyone is welcome to their politics, I completely agree with that," Roth adds. "But [th read more

Wahlberg Tackles Apes Rumors


Now that Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes has hit theaters, star Mark Wahlberg can offer up a spoiler-free look at the rumors surrounding the film — and the final scene that has tongues wagging.

Did a skimpy loin cloth — like the one Charlton Heston sported in the 1968 original — ever find its way into Wahlberg's wardrobe, only to be rejected? "When I first met with Tim [about the film], I said, 'I'll do anything you want,'" the actor recalls. However, he neglected to say that he would be "really uncomfortable in a loin cloth." As a result, Wahlberg had to wait six long weeks before eyeing his Apes wardrobe. "Thank God there was just a space suit," read more

Bully Star Has No Pie Cravings


You're looking to populate the next big teen romp/gross-out comedy, and think that Nick Stahl would be a fine addition to the cast; after all, he does have the high-school fright flick Disturbing Behavior on his r&#233sum&#233. Good fit, right? Well, don't add his name to the movie poster just yet. After all, "disturbing behavior" aptly describes the types of roles to which this young actor is drawn.

"I get sent [American Pie-type] scripts all the time," Stahl reports. "But they're just not as interesting to me. I guess you've got to see the bad stuff, though, to see the good."

Such a stance hasn't stymied his career path; rather, after a promising feature debut in Mel Gibson's The Man Without a Face, Stahl went on to face gritty read more

Director Can't Bully Ratings Board


There's very little difference between director Larry Clark's world of six years ago and today. Both then (with Kids) and now (with the just-released Bully), he brought to the public a film depicting — in harrowing reality — the sordid life of an isolated group of teens. And both times, the Motion Picture Association of America compelled him to release his work unrated.

"There's always a battle with my films," Clark admits with a slightly exasperated yet accepting laugh. "If we were a big studio with a lot of money and big stars, Bully would get an R-rating. But since this is a small independent film, and since we're trying to reflect reality — whatever "reality" is — the board said 'No.'"

In fact, the MPAA issued back an unusually colorful denial. "When we asked them what we could o read more

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