Today's News: Our Take


WE NEVER SAW IT COMING

In an extreme case of art imitating life imitating something else entirely, writer-producer Chris Henchy — whose off-screen courtship of wife Brooke Shields begat his ABC sitcom, I'm With Her — has tapped his more famous half to pass through the Feb. 10 episode as an actress rival of Alex (the aforementioned Teri Polo). read more

REMEMBERED

Award-winning newsman Jerry Nachman, who most recently served as editor-in-chief of MSNBC and host of the network's Nachman show, died Tuesday of cancer at his home in Hoboken, N.J. He was 57. Nachman's résumé also included stints as editor of the New York Post and a staff writing position on Politically Incorrect With Bill Maher. read more

American Idol Ahhhh, there's nothing...

American Idol
Ahhhh, there's nothing quite so cruel and entertaining as the first three weeks of American Idol. Sure it's great to watch raw talent emerge from the streets of Atlanta, talented crooners like Terrence or Lauren, but c'mon, let's be honest, we're sadistic voyeurs, all 20 million of us tuning in to watch the the courageous and clueless, like promo posterboy Pablo Amorim, humiliate themselves at the altar of reality television. It's the 21st-century version of the coliseum with all of us pretending we're there to see a handful of vocal warriors defy the odds and realize their dreams. But what we're really doing is salivating over the prospect of seeing hopes dashed to pieces by the terrible trifecta of Randy, Paula and, of course, Simon.

And we weren't disappointed. Simon thought Kristen, who lost 80 pounds and felt great about herself, was putting them on by pretending to sing awfully. Bu read more

END QUOTE

"I question the strategy." — Donald Trump in an interview on the Today show this morning on NBC's decision to move The Apprentice from Thursday to Wednesday, opposite American Idol, beginning tonight. read more

PSST....

Freaky Friday's Lindsay Lohan has signed a deal to star in the film version of the best-selling novel series Gossip Girl. Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino will adapt the screenplay, so expect lots of witty banter and the occasional non sequitur. read more

HE'S ALIVE!

USA Network is resurrecting Frankenstein to star in his own weekly series next fall, Variety reports. Martin Scorsese and author Dean Koontz are spearheading the update of the Mary Shelley classic, which will reportedly feature a contemporary twist. Production on the two-hour pilot is expected to get under way in April. read more

WHO'S YOUR DADDY?

Dustin Hoffman has been cast as Ben Stiller's father in Meet the Fockers, the upcoming sequel to Meet the Parents. In addition to Stiller, Robert De Niro and Blythe Danner will be back as the in-laws, and Teri Polo (I'm With Her) will reprise her role too. read more

Jennifer Aniston: Gotta Dance!


As Rachel on Friends, Jennifer Aniston doesn't show off her dancing skills too often. She struts her stuff in Along Came Polly (currently in theaters), but quickly realized all that hoofing around is a lot of harder than it looks.

"I was supposed to be a really good salsa dancer. I took two classes. I was supposed to take more, but I didn't," Aniston admits. "We [only] had two days shooting in New York, and then, the next bit for me was all of the salsa dancing. It was six days straight. My feet looked like raw meat. It was just disgusting, but it was so much fun. I loved it, I loved learning how to dance."

And then, a tragic twist. "Right after we shot those six days, I broke my toe," the 34-year-old says with a sigh. "So thank God we took care of all that stuff."

Turns out, shaking and shimmying with costar Ben Stiller didn't cause the broken digit. Aniston reluctantly takes respon read more

PRICEY FRIENDS

NBC is charging advertisers $2 million for a 30-second spot during the May 6 Friends finale — a record for an entertainment show. By comparison, the network commanded $1.7 million a spot for its Seinfeld send-off in 1998. read more

SHORT CUTS

Stephen Baldwin is attempting to get his career back on track with Robbin Hoodz, an "old-school-type skateboarding film" he plans to cowrite and direct... CBS is developing a three-hour musical adaptation of Scrooge for next season... CBS has also secured rights to air the Tony Awards through 2010. read more

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