Today's News: Our Take


Question: What was the name ...

Question: What was the name of the painting that hung just inside the Stephenses' front door on Bewitched? Been lookin' for it almost forever. Thanks! — David T., Wichita, Kan.

Televisionary: Then look no more, David. That's Rembrandt van Rijn's "A Girl with a Broom." (And for those of you who don't remember the painting, you can see it on the National Gallery of Art's site.)

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KITSCH FACTOR

More than 11 million viewers watched Jessica Simpson sing herself into convulsions on last night's Nick & Jessica Variety Hour. The retro-heavy special — featuring cameos by Kermit, Miss Piggy, Kenny Rogers and Mr. T — easily won its timeslot, although only roughly 1 million viewers tuned in from start to finish. Everyone else slit their wrists, but in a rare stroke of good fortune for ABC, they forgot to shut off their televisions first. read more

TRAGEDY

The elderly parents of Grammy-winning spoofmeister Weird Al Yankovic were found dead in their suburban San Diego home on Friday, the apparent victims of carbon monoxide poisoning. Nick and Mary Yankovic were 86 and 81, respectively. Weird Al, currently on tour in support of his new CD, Poodle Hat, dedicated a Saturday-night concert in Mankato, Minn., to his parents. read more

RUNWAY CLOSED

Victoria's Secret is dropping its nationally televised fashion show this year, in part because of the fallout from Boobygate. According to CCO Ed Razek, "We had to make the decision probably six to eight weeks ago, when the heat was on the television networks." read more

AND ON THE 47TH DAY...

Remembering that Easter isn't all about creme-filled eggs and tense family gatherings, Christians flocked to The Passion of the Christ over the holiday weekend, lifting Mel Gibson's crucifixion saga back to No. 1 with $17.1 million. With $354.8 million in total receipts, Passion now ranks as the eighth highest-grossing film of all time, passing The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Meanwhile, moviegoers apparently forgot The Alamo was in theaters judging by the film's deadly debut; Disney's $100-million historical epic grossed a weak $9.2 million, tying for No. 3 with Johnson Family Vacation. Among other newcomers, the Bruce Willis-Matthew Perry sequel read more

REMEMBERED

Actress Carrie Snodgress, Oscar-nominated for her film debut in 1970's Diary of a Mad Housewife, died last week of heart failure at UCLA Medical Center. She was 57. She was most recently seen in the HBO telepic Iron-Jawed Angels. read more

How Reality Rocked Gina Gershon


These days, there's no denying the PR power of reality-TV. Even stars who once turned up their noses at "unscripted drama" have begun using it to boost their careers. That includes Gina Gershon — the sexpot from Bound and Showgirls — who has her own six-part series, Rocked with Gina Gershon (Fridays at 10:30 pm on IFC). The documentary-style show offers a juicy peek inside Gershon's cross-country tour in support of her movie Prey for Rock & Roll. Of course, like many reality virgins, the actress-turned-rocker was initially skeptical about letting cameras follow her around.

"When people found out I was going on tour," Gershon recalls, "I had like three or four companies coming to me saying, 'Do you want to do a reality show?' To which I quickly said, 'No [expletive] way.' I'm really private. I may not seem that way, but anything that you read about my personal life in the press is probably a lie."

Still, the 42-ye read more

POTTY MOUTH

Lakers superstar Shaquille O'Neal dropped the F-bomb during a live postgame TV interview Sunday. After losing 102-85 to the Sacramento Kings, Shaq was asked to critique his rival's performance on the court. "Not impressed, not impressed," he said. "Not [expletive] impressed, you know what I mean?" It was Shaq's second profane outburst of the season. On Feb. 1 in Toronto, the Kazaam star was suspended for cussing out the referees on live TV. read more

Nikki McKibbin Strikes Back!


A funny thing happened while the world was busy cheering on American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson and jeering at her runner-up, Justin Guarini: Nikki McKibbin, the rockin' redhead who trounced Tamyra Gray to steal third, all but disappeared! And take our word for it, she was no happier about her vanishing act than were the millions of us who admired her powerful pipes and defiant demeanor. "I was angry at first," she tells TV Guide Online. "I was signed to a record deal the same day as Kelly, Justin and Tamyra — I was sitting at the same table as they were! — but I was getting no press for it at all."

For better or worse, the single mom, now 25, had a bigger issue to resolve: RCA wanted to turn her into a country crooner. "I'm from Texas, I love country. Who doesn't?" she exclaims. "I could cross over and do that. But I felt like the fans who kept me on the show would not have followed me [into that genre]; they kept me around read more

Apprentice ''Good Girl'' Gone Bad?

Over the past two weeks, The Apprentice's golden girl, Amy Henry, has quietly stood by as co-star Katrina Campins single-handedly dragged her good name and reputation through the mud in the press. Well, now that Amy's been evicted from Trump Tower — The Donald fired her and sometime sweetie Nick Warnock on last Thursday's show — the 30-year-old Southern belle is free to strike back. But first, we gotta ask her what she did to p--s off another Apprentice diva — Trump's bespectacled media-relations lieutenant, Norma Foerderer.
TV Guide Online: Norma had it out for you! Which one of her snarky remarks stung the most?
Amy:
The — "She's bubbly and energetic and has perfect teeth, but she's annoying" — comment was the harshest. (Laughs) I thought I had a good interview with her.

TVGO: What did you do that rubbed her the wrong way?
Amy:
I read more

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