Today's News: Our Take


Survivor's Rupert: "My Money's Spent!"


In May, Rupert Boneham won America's Tribal Council on Survivor: All-Stars, proving once and for all he's the game show's most popular alum. Since then, the tie-dyed pirate has used his $1 million windfall to fund his charity, Rupert's Kids, which he works on when he's not busy hunting for acting gigs. Here, the jolliest bearded man since Santa Claus sits down with TV Guide Online to catch up.

TV Guide Online: So how'd you spend your summer vacation?
Rupert:
My summer — ever since the show I like to call Who Wants to Make Rupert a Millionaire? — was insanely whirlwindy and wonderful. At 40 years old, it is hard to learn new skills, but I love running around the country being me. I couldn't ask for a better career.

TVGO: We've seen tie-dyed T-shirts with your face on them.
Rupert:
I have my own line of clothing on Rupertb.com. Right now, I have tank tops and T-shirts. We're talking about getting different stuff & read more

LATE-NIGHT BOMBSHELL

There's been a major shake-up in late-night, folks. Conan O'Brien, who's been hosting NBC's Late Night since '93, has inked a new deal with the network that calls for him to replace Jay Leno as host of the Tonight Show in five years. "In 2009, I'll be 59 years old and will have had this dream job for 17 years," says Leno. "When I signed my new contract, I felt that the timing was right to plan for my successor and there is no one more qualified than Conan." Appropriately enough, the bombshell comes the same day the Tonight Show celebrates its 50th anniversary on the air. In other succession news, NBC is expected to announce that Kate Couric's 13-year-old daughter, Ellie, will replace her mama on the Today show in 2031. read more

WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

Martha Stewart, who begins her five-month prison term on Oct. 8, has been designated federal inmate No. 55170-054. Interestingly, if you add up all those numbers, multiply it by 3 and then subtract 18, you get Stewart's age — 63. Talk about spooky. read more

DANCES WITH DOMESTICITY

Kevin Costner married girlfriend Christine Baumgartner Saturday at his ranch in Aspen, Colo. This is the second marriage for Costner, 49, and the first for Baumgartner, 30. read more

EXTREME VICTORY

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition kicked off its second season Sunday with nearly 17 million viewers — the show's biggest audience ever. Ty and Co. helped ABC score a rare victory on the night in total viewers and adults 18-49. read more

UNFORGETTABLE OPENING

Moviegoers had no trouble remembering The Forgotten over the weekend. Thanks to a kick-ass trailer, the Julianne Moore missing-persons thriller topped the box office with $22 million. Among other newcomers, the Katie Holmes-Marc Blucas romantic comedy First Daughter inherited a measly $4 million, tying for fourth place with Resident Evil: Apocalypse. And the low-budget zombie spoof Shaun of the Dead came alive with $3.3 million on only 607 screens. Finally, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow encountered rough air in its second week, plummeting to second place with $6.7 million. read more

RATINGS HIKE

Will the sight of Anakin Skywalker morphing into Darth Vader be too intense for the kiddies? According to George Lucas, yes. The Star Wars mastermind is predicting that Revenge of the Sith, due out May 19, will get slapped with a PG-13 rating. All of the previous Star Wars films have been rated PG. "This is the darkest of them all," Lucas tells USA Today. "I don't think it's going to be rated like the other ones. It's just more emotionally intense." But will it be any good? Please, let this one be good. read more

YOU DO THE MATH

CBS News, still under fire for Rathergate, has decided to scrap a 60 Minutes report on the Iraq war because execs felt it would be "inappropriate" to air so close to the presidential election. [Enter your own Showtime joke here.] read more

SHORT CUTS

Spike TV is breaking ground on Boom, a new reality series that features demolition experts blowing up structures and vehicles.... Paramount is in talks with Mark Wahlberg, Charlize Theron, Seth Green, Mos Def and Jason Statham for a sequel to The Italian Job.... Twentieth Century Fox is developing a half-hour sitcom starring Chris Elliott as a frustrated performer who plays stage dad to his teenage daughter, Variety reports. read more

WELCOME TO THE FILM WORLD

O.C. star Mischa Barton is about to test her acting chops on the big screen. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Barton has signed on to star in the voodoo-themed thriller Hexxx. read more

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