Today's News: Our Take


CONGRATS!

And the No. 1 reason David Letterman is glowing these days? He's gonna be a first-time daddy! The Late Show host's longtime girlfriend, Regina Lasko, is preggers, the New York Post reports. read more

FLASH FLOOD

The WB is slowly turning into the Superhero Network. The Frog net — home of Smallville and (as of Oct. 5) Tarzan — is developing an hourlong drama for fall 2004 centered around fast-moving DC Comics icon the Flash, Variety reports. CBS attempted its own Flash series back in 1990, but that show tanked — and it was really good, too. Not to be a pessimist or anything. read more

THE NAME GAME

American Idol host Ryan Seacrest's upcoming daytime talk show has a title: On Air with Ryan Seacrest. Rumor has it Twentieth Television ditched the well-groomed emcee's original choice, I'm Not Gay. read more

NO SHOW

Pop star Jewel has scrapped her North American tour after the sudden death of her bass player Terome "T-Bone" Hannon. The musician died Sept. 4 after suffering a massive stroke. He was 39. "T-Bone was a phenomenal player and we all loved him," Jewel said in a statement. "We are all just in shock and hurt." read more

WEDNESDAY RATINGS

Wednesday's third season premiere of Enterprise attracted 4.1 million Trekkies, up 8 percent over last May's season finale, but off 16 percent from the show's second season premiere last September. UPN's new drama Jake 2.0, meanwhile, retained a promising 90 percent of Enterprise's total audience. read more

FAREWELL

Country legend Johnny Cash, who became a giant in the music world with such hits as "Folsom Prison Blues," "I Walk the Line," and "A Boy Named Sue," and who earned the nickname the Man in Black for always dressing in black, died Friday morning of complications from diabetes. He was 71. Cash had been released from the hospital earlier this week after a two-week stay for treatment of an unspecified stomach ailment — an illness which caused him to bow out of last month's MTV Video Music Awards. read more

GOING BATTY

An American Psycho is taking over the role of Batman. British thesp Christian Bale — best known for his indie work in films such as Little Women, Laurel Canyon and American Psycho — has been tapped to play the Caped Crusader in Warner Bros. Pictures' upcoming Batman flick. "What I see in Christian is the ultimate embodiment of Bruce Wayne," says director Christopher Nolan (Memento). "He has exactly the balance of darkness and light that we were looking for." The film — which will follow the early career of the Dark Knight — is expected to begin production early next year. read more

RITTER TRIBUTE

TV Land and Nick at Nite will pay tribute to John Ritter with two programming specials airing Sunday and Monday. The TV Land salute — which kicks off Sunday at 9 am/ET and lasts through the evening — will showcase Ritter's work on such sitcoms as The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Cosby Show, Rhoda, Starsky & Hutch, The Waltons and The Bob Newhart Show. Nick at Nite, meanwhile, will air a Three's Company marathon beginning Monday at 9 pm/ET and continuing through Tuesday at 6 am/ET. read more

BIG MAC SWITCH

Listen up, America: There's more upheaval behind-the-scenes at The Bernie Mac Show. Former Regency TV exec Peter Aronson is replacing Friends alum Michael Borkow as the sitcom's showrunner. Last spring, Borkow replaced series creator Larry Wilmore, who's now calling the shots on Whoopi. read more

SAD DAY IN HOLLYWOOD

Emmy-winning TV icon John Ritter, best known for his role as endearingly awkward Jack Tripper in Three's Company and more recently the star of ABC's family comedy 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter, died Thursday of a heart problem. He was 54. According to reports, Ritter had an undiagnosed defect in his aorta. In a statement, ABC said it was "shocked and heartbroken at the terrible news of John's passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife and children at this very difficult time." There's no word on what impact Ritter's death will have on 8 Simple Rules, which was slated to kick off its second season Sept. 23. Ritter is survived by his wife, Wings actress Amy Yasbeck, as well as children Jason, Carly, Tyler and Stella. For a tribute from TV Guide critic Matt Roush, click here. read more

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