Today's News: Our Take


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"Damn, I'd probably breast-feed all of 'em if I could. Now maybe that's why I wore the dress tonight!" Paula Abdul commenting on her role as American Idol's mother figure in an interview with our own Daniel R. Coleridge backstage at last night's Idol finale. read more

HE STUCK AROUND THIS YEAR

Toby Keith scored a leading four trophies at Wednesday's Academy of Country Music Awards, including Entertainer of the Year, Best Male Vocalist, Best Album for Shock 'n Y'All and Best Video for "Beer for My Horses." Last year, a disgruntled Keith stormed out of the ACMs after he didn't get all the trophies he wanted. This guy must be fun to shop for at Christmas. read more

ALL IS RIGHT WITH THE WORLD

An estimated 31.4 million people watched gospel-tinged soul diva Fantasia "Bo-Bo" Barrino edge out perpetually perky Diana DeGarmo on American Idol's grand finale Wednesday night. That's down slighly from last year's Clay-Ruben matchup. The 19-year-old single mom from High Point, N.C., collapsed in DeGarmo's arms the moment Ryan Seacrest called out her name. "I always said I've been through some things, but I've worked hard to get where I'm at," she sobbed to the "star-studded" audience that included Fonzie, Nicole Richie and Paula Abdul's breasts. Fantasia follows in the footsteps of previous Idol title-holders read more

NEW BLOOD

Can a shot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer bring Fox's deadly-dull Tru Calling to life next season? Well, it certainly couldn't hurt. According to The Hollywood Reporter, longtime Slayer scribe Jane Espenson is joining the show as a co-executive producer. read more

KHAKI COUTURE

Sex and the City's Sarah Jessica Parker is trading in vintage ball gowns and Manolo Blahniks for gaucho pants and jelly thongs. The 39-year-old fashion icon has inked a yearlong deal to serve as pitchwoman for the Gap. She'll appear in a series of print and television ads beginning in August. read more

I know. It's all a big hype thing,...

I know. It's all a big hype thing, but the Idol finale is just too big to handle alone. I mean, come on, it's Fantasia vs. Diana and the sisters are totally doing it for themselves. Thankfully, my devoted and adorable young intern Lauren Trucksess has happily agreed to help out with the pre-show, so I can pop into some of tonight's other options. Take it away, LT!

American Idol
Unless you've been living under a soundproof rock for the last few months, you know that tonight is all about the Idol finale. Hour 1 of the self-proclaimed "TV event of the season" was packed with unnecessary but nevertheless entertaining interviews with Ray Romano, Nicole Richie and Sharon Osbourne, as well as performances by eliminated wannabes Jasmine Trias, George Huff and La Toya London. These just served to show us why Jas and Georgie are doing the pre-show, rather than the showdown, and why La Toya contin read more

CATWOMAN FIGHTS BACK

Halle Berry has filed a restraining order against a 35-year-old Louisiana man who is allegedly stalking her, Celebrity Justice reports. In court papers, Berry claims Greg Broussard "has imagined a relationship with me wherein he and I are engaged to be married." While she's at it, she may wanna file a restraining order against my brother David, too. And my older brother, Pete. And three of my co-workers... read more

A GOOD MATCH?

Undeterred by her Miss Match misfire, Alicia Silverstone has signed a one-year talent deal with 20th Century Fox Television to develop a new comedy or drama, according to The Hollywood Reporter. read more

THE LADY IS WILLING

Oscar winner Gwyneth Paltrow (that's Apple's mama!) will channel screen legend Marlene Dietrich in an upcoming big-screen biopic produced by DreamWorks, Variety reports. The film will be based on Maria Riva's memoir, Marlene Dietrich by Her Daughter. read more

Spaces ''Villain'' Gets Ugly


It has been said (to us, even) that Trading Spaces' Doug Wilson hates being branded a bad guy. "I told him one time that he was the villain of the show, and he was [horrified], like, 'Oh my God! Do you really think so?!'" hunky handyman Ty Pennington once told TV Guide Online. Yet the demanding designer will risk tarnishing his reputation once again as the host of America's Ugliest..., a new series of quarterly Learning Channel specials with an insult built right into the title.

"It's okay," the genial almost-40-year-old insists now. "I knew I was playing the villain. Throughout my life, I have worked not only in design but as an actor as well, so I knew what made good theater. I actually created some of those [tense] situations. I would see an opportunity and say, 'Okay, this could be some good TV!' After all, that's what this is about: entertainment. Design has always been secondary for me on Trading Spaces."

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