Today's News: Our Take


BACK IN THE HOUSE

The WB has officially ordered 13 episodes of Aaron Spelling's newest family drama, Summerland, which is set to debut in summer 2004. Created by and starring Lori Loughlin (Full House), the show follows a single lady lawyer who inherits three kids to raise from her late sister. read more

AMAZING FINISH

Kelly and Jon's worst nightmare came true on last night's mega-suspenseful Amazing Race 4 finale: They got beat by two gay guys. In what had to be the most exciting sexual orientation showdown since Richard Hatch trumped his hetero rivals on the first season of Survivor, hottie gay marrieds Reichen and Chip prevailed over bickering straight couple Kelly and Jon. The pair walked away with a cool $1 million and bragging rights to being Amazing Race's first gay champions. Best friends David and Jeff, meanwhile, came in a distant (and rather sad) third. If you have questions for Reichen and Chip or Kelly and Jon, e-mail them to me via the link at the bottom of this column, and I will be sure to forward them on to my colleague Ethan Alter, who will be speaking to the quartet this weekend. And if you have questions for David and Jeff, please e-mail them to me via the link at the bottom of this column and I will be sure to read more

SHORT CUTS

NBC is thisclose to ordering a second helping of The Restaurant, although the network may ditch Rocco DiSpirito and instead focus on a new eatery... With S.W.A.T. making a killing at the box office, Sony may bring the classic cop franchise back to the small screen next fall... USA Network has renewed The Dead Zone for a third season. read more

RINGS REDUX

New Line Cinema will release special expanded editions of the first two Lord of the Rings films in theaters worldwide two weeks before the Dec. 17 opening of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. The studio wants to refresh moviegoers' memories before the final installment arrives. read more

SEEING RED

Film producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura is teaming with 24 scribe Evan Katz to develop an A-Team-like action series for NBC, Variety reports. The Red Team will revolve around a band of renegade military personnel who use government technology to help out the little guy. read more

FIRE FALLOUT

Six months after a deadly nightclub fire killed 100 people, members of rock band Great White and the owners of The Station were fined nearly $100,000 Wednesday by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The band plans to appeal. read more

VMA UPDATE

Beyonce Knowles and Metallica have been added to the performance lineup for next Thursday's 2003 MTV Video Music Awards. They join previously announced acts Mary J. Blige, 50 Cent, Good Charlotte, Coldplay and Christina Aguilera. read more

SAD DAY FOR RICKI

Talk show vet Ricki Lake and hubby Rob Sussman have filed for legal separation. Married for nine years, the couple has two kids aged 2 and 6. Just this year, the family moved from New York to L.A., where they purchased Courteney Cox and David Arquette's old pad for about $6.5 million. read more

MAD MAN

MADtv funnyman Frank Caliendo is joing Fox NFL Sunday this season as a game prognosticator. He replaces Jimmy Kimmel, who went on to score a bigger and better gig at ABC. read more

GET OUT!

Here's some "TV News" scoop from next week's issue of TV Guide magazine: It's not the Seinfeld reunion we were hoping for, but it'll do. Jerry Seinfeld is set to guest-star on Curb Your Enthusiasm, the HBO series starring Seinfeld cocreator Larry David. Jerry will play himself in the fourth-season finale (to air in 2004), which features Larry making his Broadway debut. "[Seinfeld] stopped by the set to visit," says an HBO spokeswoman, "and they decided to put him in the audience." Wise move indeed. read more

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