Today's News: Our Take


SERENITY NOW

Someone's about to take the fall for Kingdom Hospital, and it looks like it's gonna be ABC chairman Lloyd Braun. According to Variety, the embattled exec is in talks to leave his post next month. read more

LOOK OUT, DAMITA

American Idol meanie Simon Cowell will be a "special guest" on this weekend's Saturday Night Live, joining host Janet Jackson, NBC confirms. read more

RISKY BUSINESS

Rebecca De Mornay will appear in the final four episodes of ABC's The Practice playing an attorney representing Alan Shore (James Spader) in his wrongful-termination lawsuit. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the actress may reprise her role in next fall's Practice spinoff, starring Spader and Captain Kirk. read more

REALITY ROCKS

Spike TV has enlisted Mark McGrath and his cronies from Sugar Ray to star in On the Road, a reality show that is being billed as The Apprentice meets The Real World. Basically, the show will follow eight contestants who go on tour with the band this summer and compete for a job with a music label and a new Kia car. At the end of each episode, one groupie will get fired and sent home in a new Hyundai. read more

SHORT CUTS

Reese Witherspoon has signed on to star in and produce Sports Widow, a romantic comedy about a woman who one-ups her football-obsessed husband by becoming an expert on the sport, according to The Hollywood Reporter... Paramount is developing a remake to Alfred Hitchcock's To Catch a Thief. read more

LIVE WITH CONDOLEEZA

ABC, CBS and NBC will cut into regular programming Thursday beginning at 9 am/ET for live coverage of Condoleezza Rice's highly anticipated testimony before the Sept. 11 commission. Rice's appearance could last nearly three hours, so that means Regis and Kelly, the ladies of The View, Ellen DeGeneres and Bob Barker will likely have the day off. Everyone else should report to work as usual but plan on getting nothing done between 9 am and noon. read more

FOOD FIGHT

Celebrity chef Rocco DiSpirito filed a countersuit Monday against investors of Rocco's, the Italian eatery at the center of NBC's The Restaurant. DiSpirito accuses China Grill Management of cooking the books. In February, China Grill sued DiSpirito, claiming he mismanaged the joint and lost in excess of $600,000. And there was that whole fly drama, too. read more

SUPREME LUCK

Diana Ross will not have to return to Arizona to complete a two-day jail sentence for DUI. Last month, a judge ordered the 60-year-old diva to return to jail after it was discovered that she had been released 90 minutes early during her initial stint behind bars. But the judge reconsidered his ruling at the request of both prosecutors and Ross's attorneys. read more

BIG MONEY!

Jennifer Lopez's 58-year-old mother reportedly won a $2.4-million jackpot while playing $1 slots in Atlantic City on Saturday. Guadalupe Lopez was playing Wheel of Fortune at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa when she hit for $2,421,291.76. According to reports, G.Lo plans to use a portion of her winnings to start a college fund for her two grandchildren. She'll use the rest at the Tropicana's nickel slots. read more

DEAR SALLY... I'M BACK!

CBS has tapped former Felicity star Keri Russell to headline its latest Hallmark Hall of Fame TV-movie, The Magic of Ordinary Days. Based on Ann Howard Creel's novel, the World War II-set love story finds the sorely missed Russell playing a woman who is banished to an arranged marriage with a local farmer (Skeet Ulrich). Mare Winningham co-stars as Ulrich's sister. The telepic is slated to air next season. read more

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