Today's News: Our Take


DIVORCE COURT

Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland has filed for divorce from his wife, Mary Weiland, after nearly four years of marriage. In related news, the five-year marriage between Vincent D'Onofrio (Law & Order: Criminal Intent) and wife Carin Van Der Donk has come to an end. read more

COUPLING YANKED

Here's the best development of the new TV season: NBC is benching Coupling for the next two weeks! (Yipee!) However, the Peacock has opted to fill the struggling sitcom's post-Will & Grace timeslot this week with a repeat of Whoopi. (Sigh... ) Ironically, in spite of the whole Coupling debacle, NBC is taking another stab at translating a hit British comedy for American audiences. The network has ordered a pilot for a U.S. version of the sublime U.K. comedy The Office. (Some people never learn... ) read more

Ed After a couple good weeks of...

Ed
After a couple good weeks of Ed and Carol's courtship, we're back to cutesy costume gags, are we? Fine. At least Tom Cavanagh can work a Revolutionary War get-up like nobody's business. And even if The Simpsons did do a whole thing about the town founder being a fraud a few years back, you have to salute the timeliness of Ed defending Stuckeyville's cowardly forefather with a baseball analogy, seeing how that's what everyone else seems to be watching tonight.

Smallville
Oh my god! Miguel from Passions shot the farm boy of steel! With a kryptonite bullet! So not pretty. But gory entrance wounds aside, the most disturbing thing here is the post-Columbine idea of a militia-crazed teen, armed to the gills and gunning down "freaks" created by a meteor shower. I get the intolerance allegory, but does such a youth-skewing show need to play with guns so much? Especially since this thing really flies when it's all ab read more

MUST-FLEE TV

Due to tonight's final game of the American League Championship Series between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox, NBC has decided to scrap original episodes of Friends, Scrubs, Will & Grace and ER in favor of repeats. Ditto for CBS, which is going with repeats of CSI and Without a Trace. (An original Survivor will air as planned.) Last night, NBC pulled a fast one on viewers when it swapped in second-run Law & Orders in place of original programming. In related news, go Yan..., er, team! Go team! read more

ACCESS IS EVERYTHING

Rumor has it Access Hollywood anchor Pat O'Brien may follow in pal Arnold Schwarzenegger's footsteps and run for governor of South Dakota in 2006. O'Brien would challenge incumbent Republican Mike Rounds. What's next — Tony Potts for president??? (He better get those Mensa scores up first.) read more

SIMPLE PLAN

Veteran actor James Garner has been tapped to play the father of Katey Sagal's widowed alter ego in four episodes of ABC's 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter. Garner will first appear in early November, when the show returns with a special hourlong episode that will revolve around the Hennessy clan as they cope with the loss of John Ritter's character, Paul. (According to sources, Dick Van Dyke was among the contenders for the part.) The role of Garner's TV wife, meanwhile, is still being cast. read more

KEYSTONE COPS

NBC has ordered an hour-long cop dramedy pilot from producer Steven Bochco. According to Variety, the potential series will focus on rookie cops in a suburban college town who spend much of their time handling bizarre, generally non-life-threatening crimes. This is Bochco's first project with the Peacock network since L.A. Law. read more

FAMILY AFFAIR

Art imitates wife on the Nov. 24 episode of CBS's Two and a Half Men when Denise Richards guest stars as the on-again-off-again girlfriend of real-life hubby Charlie Sheen. The couple also act opposite each other in Scary Movie 3, which opens next Friday. read more

CONAN'S A POP

Late Night funny guy Conan O'Brien and his wife, Liza Powel, became the proud parents of a baby girl on Tuesday. Neve O'Brien was born at 5:13 pm in New York City. This is the couple's first child. Conan will resume his late-night duties tonight. In other baby news, Curb Your Enthusiasm star Cheryl Hines and hubby Paul Young are expecting their first child in March. read more

Fired Practice Star Returns!


So this is how David E. Kelley sleeps at night. Just months after pink-slipping ex-Practice aide Marla Sokoloff (as well as five of her colleagues), the prolific producer has hired back the actress. Sokoloff is joining the cast of Kelley's new CBS drama, The Brotherhood of Poland, New Hampshire as Audrey, a local Mare Winningham's character Dotty recruits to sing at her new theater.

"Dotty just takes a liking to her and convinces her to do some duets with her," says Sokoloff, who's on board for at least two episodes starting later this season. The role is a good fit for the 22-year-old, who moonlights as a singer. "It's so crazy, because I was always giving David my demo tapes when I was in my band [Smitten] and just praying he would let me read more

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