Today's News: Our Take


SUPER GIG

Beyoncé Knowles has been tapped to sing the national anthem at Super Bowl XXXVIII on Feb. 1. read more

JURY DUTY

Fox has ordered five episodes of The Jury, a drama series that examines the legal process through the eyes of jurors. There's no verdict on when the show will air, but a mid-season debut is possible. read more

DISBANDED

B2K is so yesterday. The platinum-selling band — whose hits include "Bump, Bump, Bump" and "Uh Huh" — is breaking up. It seems personal disagreements among Omarion, Lil Fizz, J-Boog and Raz B have led the so-called "Boys of the Millennium" to pursue solo careers. For their last gig together, B2K's music will be heard in the movie You Got Served (due out Jan. 30), in which Omarion has the starring role. read more

SAD DAY IN HOLLYWOOD

British-born TV and film director Brian Gibson has died at 59 from a rare form of cancer. In his career, the Emmy winner has helmed a wide range of movies, including The Juror, What's Love Got To Do With It? and The Josephine Baker Story. read more

RUSH KEEPS IT HUSHED

Rush Limbaugh's lawyers have persuaded a Florida judge to keep his medical records sealed for yet another 15 days. As previously reported, prosecutors are hoping to probe the paperwork for criminal evidence of Limbaugh's prescription drug abuse. The radio talker's attorneys argue that's a violation of his right to privacy and want the records to be permanently sealed. read more

ON THE AIR

Whacked Sopranos alum Vincent Pastore (Big Pussy) has been reincarnated as a radio DJ. Beginning today, Pastore will take to the airwaves in Westchester, N.Y., as host of a weekly show on WVOX — that's 1460 on the AM dial. Turns out it was an offer the former mobster could have refused; Pastore reportedly took the job for free. read more

DIRECTOR KUDOS

The Directors Guild of America announced the nominees for its 56th annual DGA Awards, and the finalists for outstanding directorial achievement in a film are Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation), Clint Eastwood (Mystic River), Peter Jackson (The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King), Gary Ross (Seabiscuit) and Peter Weir (Master and Commander). The winner will be announced Feb. 7. read more

Celebs Flock to Las Vegas


Is NBC's Las Vegas turning into a modern-day Love Boat? It would seem so, judging by the growing list of B- and C-list celebs checking into the Montecito. In recent months, singer Wayne Newton, magicians Penn and Teller and actress Mimi Rogers have all made cameos. And next week, Vegas hits the jackpot when Alec Baldwin and Brooks and Dunn pay a visit.

"People are calling and approaching us," boasts exec producer Gary Scott Thompson. "It seems to be the fun show that everyone wants to be on or have something to do with."

Illusionists Siegfried and Roy were booked to appear in a November sweeps episode, but Roy Horn's tiger attack forced Thompson to come up with a Plan B. "It was so Las Vegas," he says of the plot, which was shelved until February. "We're trying to find another [quintes read more

BOWLED OVER

College football fans clearly didn't view Sunday's Sugar Bowl as a national championship game. The showdown between Louisiana State and Oklahoma averaged a preliminary 14.4 rating/22 share — off 23 percent from last year's Ohio State-Miami matchup. ABC fared better with Thursday's Rose Bowl. Nearly 24 million people watched USC crush Michigan, making it the most-watched Rose Bowl in six years. According to my calculations, that makes USC the clear No. 1. Fight on!!!! (In the spirit of full disclosure, yes, I am a USC alum.) read more

MORE KUDOS

The Producers Guild of America announced its nominees for best picture of the year, and they are Cold Mountain, The Last Samurai, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Master and Commander, Mystic River and Seabiscuit. On the TV side, Alias, CSI, Six Feet Under, 24 and The West Wing (huh?) will compete for best drama series, while Everybody Loves Raymond, Malcolm in the Middle, read more

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