Today's News: Our Take


LISTEN UP, KIDS

Madonna's third book for children, Yakov and the Seven Thieves, will be published June 21. Madge describes it as "a story about how all of us have the ability to unlock the gates of Heaven — no matter how unworthy we think we are. For when we go against our selfish natures, we make miracles happen, in our lives and in the lives of others." But can you dance to it? read more

REMEMBERING REAGAN

ABC, CBS and NBC are planning to interrupt regular programming Wednesday evening to cover Ronald Reagan's funeral procession in Washington. The Big Three will also air Friday's national funeral service at the Washington National Cathedral live. read more

HE'S AT IT AGAIN

Reality bigwig Mark Burnett is developing a rock 'n' roll version of American Idol, Variety reports. The show, which Burnett plans to pitch to the networks this week, will search for a crooner who could step in as the lead singer of an "existing, internationally known rock group" that no one has ever heard of. read more

STAY AWAY

A Los Angeles judge ordered Halle Berry's alleged stalker to stay at least 100 yards away from her and her entourage. The Oscar winner claims Greg Broussard has tried to contact her and has fantasized a relationship with her. read more

J.MOM?

Is J.Lo preggers? That's the latest buzz following the diva's surprise weekend wedding to Marc Anthony. According to the New York Post, Lopez has been telling close pals that she is expecting her first child. Anthony, meanwhile, appeared on the Today show this morning and dodged all of Matt Lauer's questions about his new bride. Sporting what appeared to be a wedding band on his left hand, the singer declared his "personal life" off-limits. read more

ON SECOND THOUGHT...

ER star Alex Kingston is backing down from claims that she was fired from NBC's long-running hospital drama for being too old. As reported Monday, the 41-year-old actress told London's Radio Times that her contract wasn't renewed because "according to the producers and the writers, [I] am part of the old fogies who are no longer interesting." But faster than you can say "The wrath of John Wells," Kingston released a statement saying her remarks "were taken out of context." She added that Dr. Corday was being phased out because "the character had run its course." Translation: She was an old fogie. read more

MARTHA UPDATE

Martha Stewart's sentencing has been pushed back three weeks until July 8 to give the judge time to consider the domestic diva's request for a new trial. Stewart's lawyers contend that their client was wrongfully convicted because a government witness lied on the stand. What, did he say she was nice? read more

BOOTYGATE UPDATE

MTV will edit out a shot of Eminem mooning the audience when it airs the 2004 Movie Awards Thursday night. The rapper dropped trou toward the end of his performance with D12 and was quickly handed some Clearasil. read more

FOUR-LETTER WORD

Cable channel Trio has announced plans to air The N-Word, an original documentary that explores the roots and impact of that nasty racial epithet. The film, airing July 4, will feature interviews with such celebs as Chris Rock, Ice Cube, Whoopi Goldberg and Samuel Jackson. In related news, rumor has it Apprentice pariah Omarosa Manigault-Stallworth is pushing the network to do a special that explores the roots and impact of the phrase "The pot calling the kettle black." read more

CLOTHES MAKE THE MAN

Sean "P. Diddy" Combs was named the top menswear designer of the year at the CFDA (Council of Fashion Designers of America) Awards Monday night, beating industry vets Ralph Lauren and Michael Kors. Sarah Jessica Parker, fresh off her memorable duet with Hugh Jackman at the Tony Awards, was honored as this year's Fashion Icon. read more

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