Today's News: Our Take


Question: I know Ronald ...

Question: I know Ronald Reagan was a movie actor, but did he ever star in a TV show of any sort before he became President? — Rocky S.

Televisionary: He never starred in anything, Rocky, but he had many appearances in other capacities in the '50s, mainly working as a host or acting in dramatic presentations of one sort or another. His first professional work with wife Nancy, for example, was on Ford Theatre in 1953 (in a production called First Born).

In 1954 he hosted a TV version of A Place in the Sun on Lux Video Theatre, which was on CBS at the time before it jumped to NBC. He also acted in a CBS Medallion Theater presentation, hosted ABC's musical-variety show The Orchid Award and was featured in a CBS Star Time Playhouse production around that time.

Reagan's longest TV stint was as host of CBS's General Electric Theater, which he appeared on from 1954-62, also acting in som read more

Question: I read in a TV ...

Question: I read in a TV Guide article that Family Guy is coming, with new episodes, to Cartoon Network. But I saw on TV Guide Channel it was going to Fox. Which is it? — Chris, Millville, Mass.

Televisionary: The latter. It's because of The Family Guy's success in Cartoon Network's "Adult Swim" reruns and in its DVD release that Fox is producing new episodes. Look for them as early as summer 2005.

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POST-NASAL TRIP

Max, Niles and the rest of the Nanny gang reconnected at Fran Drescher's Malibu estate on June 16 to tape The Nanny Reunion: A Nosh to Remember, a Lifetime special slated to air October 11. For more on this bit of scoopage, pick up the current issue of TV Guide magazine, turn to page 13, say hello to my picture and read on! read more

THERE'S ALWAYS THE DORMS

Add homelessness to the list of Mary-Kate Olsen's woes. The New York Post reports that Mary-Kate and sister Ashley — who plan to hit the books this fall at NYU — have lost out on a bid to lease a three-bedroom condo in lower Manhattan. The crib's owner allegedly feared the twins wouldn't pass muster with the building's rigid board, which has been known to discriminate against former stars of overrated '80s sitcoms. read more

L&O Boss Stands Trial


It would be a crime to confuse Fox's new legal drama, The Jury, with NBC's midseason contender, Law & Order: Trial by Jury — or at least so says Dick Wolf, the creator of L&O and its umpteen spin-offs. Rumors that the latest addition to the franchise will be set entirely in the deliberation room are "absolutely incorrect," the executive producer tells TV Guide Online. "There will be one or two scenes in the fourth act every week in the jury room, but you couldn't set a [whole] show in the jury room, I don't think."

However, Wolf concedes that TBJ — potentially an all-star affair featuring Jerry Orbach, Candice Bergen and Frasier dad John Mahoney — will not adhere as strictly to the time-tested L&O format as, say, SVU. "The cops are not as big as they are on L&O because it's set in the courthouse," he explains. "It's not law... it's order. The setup is a l read more

WHAT'S THIS?

Actress Helena Bonham Carter and filmmaker Tim Burton are the parents of a baby boy, born Saturday in London. There's no word on a name or whether the little guy's sportin' scissors for hands. read more

POLITICAL TREK ABORTED

Jack Ryan has reportedly dropped his bid for an Illinois U.S. senate seat in the wake of that embarrassing sex scandal involving his wife, Star Trek: Voyager's Jeri Ryan. As reported last week, the actress accused her ex of trying to coerce her into performing sex acts at various clubs while the entire Borg collective watched. That joke will officially get old tomorrow at 1 pm/ET. read more

FAHRENHEIT $21.8 MILLION

This weekend turned out to be a mixed bag for George Bush. The good news: The prez starred in the country's No. 1 film. The bad news: His performance is generating some major Razzie buzz. Michael Moore's much-hyped anti-Dubya doc, Fahrenheit 9/11, obliterated box office records left and right over the weekend, debuting at No. 1 with an astounding $21.8 million. If estimates hold, the film will rank as the top-grossing documentary ever; the previous record holder was Moore's 2002 Oscar winner Bowling for Columbine, which brought in $21.6 million during its entire run. The figure is all the more impressive when you consider that 9/11 was playing on only 868 screens. By comparison, the weekend's No. 2 film, the Wayans brothers' comedy White Chicks, grossed $19.2 million on 2726 screens. read more

WASH, RINSE, REPEAT

With ABC's upcoming Wife Swap generating positive buzz, the network has ordered two companion reality shows: Boss Swap and Husband Swap. And if this franchise tanks, look for ABC to put feelers out to NBC, CBS and Fox for Network Swap. read more

HONORED

Price Is Right emcee Bob Barker, Today hostess Katie Couric and CBS newsman Dan Rather were inducted into the Academy of Television and Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame Saturday in Los Angeles. read more

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