Today's News: Our Take


Monday's official announcement that Buffy the Vampire Slayer's reformed vamp James Marsters (Spike) would be crossing over to Angel full time next season must have caught exec producer Joss Whedon by surprise. I spoke to Whedon on Thursday and asked him point-blank whether Marsters would be an Angel regular next season should the WB pick up the drama. His unequivocal response? "We have made no decision about that — at all." So, either Whedon is A) way out of the loop, B) a big fat liar, or C) rich and indifferent. What do you think? Cast your vote via the link at the bottom of this column. read more


MTV has ordered two more seasons of The Real World and Real World/Road Rules Challenge... As first reported by TV Guide's J. Max Robins, controversial ABC correspondent John Stossel has been tapped as Barbara Walters's new co-anchor on 20/20, the network confirmed Tuesday... The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. has pushed back the 2004 Golden Globe Awards from the third weekend in January to Jan. 25. The move apparently came in response to Oscar's shift from the end of March to Feb. 29... Finally, my friend Jill gave birth to son Owen Tuesday morning at an undisclosed New Jersey hospital. In case you were wondering, Jill rocks! read more


It looks like Bachelor Bob is going to have the last laugh. Bob Guiney — the portly jester whom Trista Rehn rejected on ABC's The Bachelorette — has been chosen the next star of The Bachelor. Since getting the boot from Ms. Rehn last year, Guiney became a celeb in his own right, appearing on Oprah five times, signing a book deal and shedding 40 pounds in the process. And proof that he's not holding a grudge against his ex-crush, the 32-year-old mortgage broker has reportedly agreed to sing at Trista's wedding to Ryan Sutter — an event ABC will air next fall as part of a four-hour special. And if all goes according to plan, the network hopes to broadcast the couple's divorce hearing at the onset of November sweeps. read more


Noticeably MIA from the WB's new fall schedule: shows starring the men in Rory's life on Gilmore Girls. The Gilmore spinoff centered around Milo Ventimiglia's Jess character is being held until midseason, and the MacGyver update starring Gilmore hunk Jared Padalecki appears to be DOA. Of course, that's nothing a few paper clips and a dab of peanut butter can't fix. read more


Can TGIF work sans Urkel? We'll find out next fall when ABC revives its once-popular TGIF-themed Fridays, this time featuring returning comedies George Lopez, Life with Bonnie, Less Than Perfect and Back to Kansas, a sitcom about a shy New Yorker who marries into a Midwestern family. Kansas joins six other new shows on ABC's fall lineup, which will be unveiled to Madison Avenue today in New York. Among the other newcomers: the Kelly Ripa-Faith Ford sitcom Hope and Faith; I'm With Her, a sitcom about an actress ( Teri Polo) who dates her high-school teacher; It's All Relative, a comedy featuring gay dads; Karen Sisco, a drama centered around read more


NBC is reportedly looking to get Super Bowl-sized ad rates for the two-hour finale of Friends next May. For a 30-second spot, advertisers will have to shell out roughly $2 million. A 30-second Friends commercial typically goes for $450,000. read more

Stars Flock to Peacock this Fall

NBC is betting on star power to propel its slate of new shows for the fall. In a splashy presentation at New York City's Metropolitian Opera House, the network rolled out six new series for the 2003-2004 season that include such marquee names as Whoopi Goldberg, James Caan, Rob Lowe, Alicia Silverstone, Ryan O'Neal, Christine Baranski and John Larroquette.

"Obviously, [NBC En read more

Smallville's Super Secrets!

Heads up, Supes fans! Tonight at 9 pm/ET, the WB airs "Calling," part one of Smallville's two-part season finale. Besides resisting the urge to mount lovely Lana, Clark (Tom Welling) will explore more of his alien origins. So expect flashy surprises!

Such as? "We will hear the voice of Jor-El," exec producer Al Gough tells TV Guide Online. "And we got an actor who's certainly meaningful to Superman fans. I can't say who... he is from the Superman movies. It was our first [casting] choice, so we're happy about that."

Just so you're not confused, it won't be the original Jor-El. "It is not Marlon Brando," Gough laughs. "That I can definitely tell you. Once you hear the voice, you'll know." (Put on your thinking caps, 'cause we won't spoil it!)

Futur read more

Jenna Gets Dished at Survivor Soiree

After Jenna's landslide victory at Sunday's Survivor: The Amazon finale, CBS's guests left the Ed Sullivan Theater for a bustling afterparty at Tao. How the restaurant's Asian theme — complete with veggie springrolls and a giant Buddha statue — relates to Amazon jungle adventure, I don't know. Eh, who cares? Party Boy adored gettin' tipsy on Tao-tinis while dishin' the topic du jour: Does 21-year-old swimsuit model Jenna Morasca deserve the million?

"I'm surprised," grumped Survivor's gay granddaddy, Richard Hatch. "I thought it should've been Rob [Cesternino]. He's the best player since me, I think. But Jenna — who knew?

"It wasn't dumb luck," he added. "It's the game. I can't really say she played the best of anybody, but others didn't play well enough to keep her from winning. I think it came down to what [the jury] thought of Matt. They didn't think he read more


Single gal Renée Zellweger has postponed her move from California to New York after an international magazine published a photo of her new Hamptons digs. "When you live alone with your cat and your dog in a community with not a lot of people," she says, the loss of privacy is, "kind of sad." So is thinking you're still Bridget Jones. read more

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