Today's News: Our Take

Political Animals Turn the Oscars Into a Zoo

In a time of war, battles between the rich and famous over little statuettes that justify big paydays and bigger egos seem, to put it mildly, trivial — and Oscar knows it. So, out of respect for the soldiers who are, for better or worse, risking their necks in the Middle East, the producers of last night's 75th Annual Academy Awards ceremony didn't merely trot out the usual who's who of Hollywood stars; instead, they let march a parade of stars and stripes.

Right from the kickoff of ABC's three-and-a-half-hour telecast, it was obvious that the colors of the evening would be red, white and blue, not gold. In fact, host Steve Martin began his uproarious opening monologue by observing the steps that execs had taken to irritate the Iraqi forces: "You probably noticed there was no fancy red carpet tonight," he said in his winning, deadpan style. "That'll send 'em a message." Not a moment later, the good-humor man instructed read more


Gap model Jason Lewis has been cast on Sex and the City as a love interest for maneater Samantha (Kim Cattrall). The new season kicks off this summer. read more


The Hours, featuring Nicole Kidman's Oscar-winning performance, arrives on DVD June 24... War jitters have led Lisa Marie Presley to cancel plans for a European promotional tour on behalf of her debut album, To Whom It May Concern. read more

Dawson's Creek Finale Scoop!

The end is near for those oh-so-very self-aware Dawson's Creek kids. The drama caps its six-year run on the WB with a two-hour time-tripping swan song on May 14 written by series creator Kevin Williamson. In his first interview since paddling back to Creek, Williamson — who left the show at the end of Season One to focus on other projects — gives TV Guide Online the lowdown on why he decided to return, whether Joey (Katie Holmes) will finally choose either Dawson (James Van Der Beek) or Pacey (Joshua Jackson) and what Creek plot he thinks his successors botched.
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Todd Haynes's 1950s melodrama Far From Heaven may have gotten shut out by Oscar, but the acclaimed film won five trophies at Saturday's Independent Spirit Awards, including best picture, best actress (Julianne Moore), best director (Haynes), best supporting actor (Dennis Quaid) and cinematography. Antwone Fisher's breakout star Derek Luke won best actor and Emily Mortimer was named best supporting actress for Lovely & Amazing. read more


With war coverage blanketing the airwaves, the networks have been forced to make some schedule changes. Among the shifts: ABC is holding the remaining episodes of its struggling reality show The Family until summer; the finale of CBS's Star Search, interrupted last Wednesday, will air on April 2; and NBC will go with reruns of its Must-See Thursday comedies on Tuesday. read more


Madonna made headlines on Oscar weekend — but not the kind she would have liked. The aspiring actress's stink bomb of a film, Swept Away, was the big "winner" at the 23rd annual Razzie awards, which recognize the year's sorriest cinema efforts. The movie picked up five trophies, including worst film, worst performance by an actress (Madonna), worst remake, worst screen couple (Madonna and co-star Adriano Giannini) and worst director (Madge's hubby Guy Ritchie.) Adding insult to injury, the singer — who shared worst actress honors with pop tart Britney Spears for Crossroads — was also singled out as worst supporting actress for her cameo in Di read more


Bringing Down the House was the No. 1 film at the box office for the third-consecutive weekend. The Steve Martin-Queen Latifah comedy grossed another $16.2 million for a three-week total of $83.4 million. Horror flick Dreamcatcher, which opened at No. 2 with $15.3 million, fared much better than fellow newcomers View from the Top (No. 4 with $7.6 million), Piglet's Big Movie (No. 7 with $6.1 million) and the Cuba Gooding Jr. farce Boat Trip (No. 10 with $3.7 million). Note to Cuba: Bitch-slap your agent, and then fire him. read more


The 75th Annual Academy Awards went on as scheduled Sunday night, and war politics and jazz were in the air. As expected, Chicago danced off with a field-best six trophies, including best picture and best supporting actress for Catherine Zeta-Jones. In two major upsets, Roman Polanski scored best director kudos for The Pianist and the film's star, Adrien Brody, walked off with best actor honors. Elsewhere, a tearful Nicole Kidman won best actress for The Hours, and read more

Stars Pick Their Oscar Faves!

On Oscar night, the Hollywood celebs who aren't nominated usually sit and watch the three-hour plus ceremony on TV. Many attend lavishly catered "viewing parties" — while others park it on the sofa with some munchies, just like you. Of course, world events could mean Sunday night's Oscar ceremony will be postponed at the last minute. Just in case, though, TV Guide Online polled Tinseltowners to learn which movies and movie stars they're rooting for. According to them, the 75th Annual Academy Awards should go to...

Vin Diesel (A Man Apart): Catherine Zeta-Jones worked her ass off in Chicago. And you could tell she enjoyed it!

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