Today's News: Our Take


NOTHING'S FOR FREE

Turns out, that "free" Rolling Stones concert we told you about yesterday has turned into a benefit. Fans will now have to shell out $16 (U.S.) to catch the Stones headline an all-day concert in Toronto on July 30. The outdoor event, aimed at reviving the city's tourism industry in the wake of the SARS mess, will also feature performances by Justin Timberlake, AC/DC and the Isley Brothers. In related news, action star Jackie Chan has agreed to appear in a Hong Kong tourism ad to help repair the city's image post-SARS. read more

SPIKE VS. SPIKE UPDATE

Spike Lee's fight to prevent Viacom from renaming its TNN cable network Spike TV will go to trial sans jury on Aug. 18. Meanwhile, the filmmaker was ordered to post $2.5 million bond to cover Viacom's damages in the event he loses the case. He has until Monday to come up with the cash. read more

SEX STILL SELLS

Viewers are still hot for Sex. Sunday's kickoff of Sex and the City's sixth and final season aroused 7.3 million viewers, making it the show's fourth highest-rated episode ever. That's roughly on par with last summer's fifth-season premiere, which drew 7.9 million viewers. read more

JUST LIKE BOBA FETT!

Alias creator J.J. Abrams is developing a new drama for ABC that revolves around bounty hunters. Alias sidekick Greg Grunberg, who also starred in Abrams's late, great WB drama Felicity, has been tapped to play the male lead. read more

FATONE 'NGAGED!

Another 'N Syncer is off the market. Joey Fatone announced on CBS's The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn that he is engaged to longtime girlfriend Kelly. The couple — who have a 2-year-old daughter together — have been dating for 10 years. Fatone popped the question on June 18 at his home in Orlando, Fla. Rumor has it, bandmate Justin Timberlake is now feeling the pressure to finally make things official with galpal Cameron Diaz. Stay tuned... read more

DINNER'S READY

Ashton Kutcher and Bernie Mac are attached to star in The Dinner Party, Columbia Pictures' remake of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner. In this version, Mac's character has trouble coming to terms with his daughter's decision to marry a white guy (Kutcher). Shooting is expected to begin next spring. read more

ET PHONES COJOCARU

It looks like fashion diva Steven Cojocaru is parting company with his friends at Access Hollywood. Cojocaru, who has become AH's go-to red carpet guy at awards shows, has inked a development deal with Paramount Domestic TV that includes a possible series and a correspondent gig on rival newsmag Entertainment Tonight. Matt Lauer, however, can breathe easy. Cojocaru will continue with his weekly Today show appearances. read more

SHRINK WRAPS

Kelsey Grammer confirms that Frasier will be signing off for good next May after 11 years. "This is the last season," the Emmy winner tells TV Guide Online. Grammer may want to share that bit of information with NBC, which has yet to herald an end to its long running comedy the way it has Friends. "[Frasier] will be on this coming season, and beyond that, we don't know," says a Peacock rep. Counters Grammer: "Right now, we're writing as though it's the end. We've laid out our plotlines for all 24 shows, and we're pretty happy with the way that arc is shaping up. So, something would have to happen fairly soon [in order for us to change course]." Like, say, cash? read more

SHORT CUTS

U.S. publisher Scholastic has ordered another 800,000 copies of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, bringing the total in print to 9.3 million... Chris Tucker is in talks to reprise his role as Detective James Carter in Rush Hour 3, Variety reports... Comedy Central cut 20 percent of its workforce Tuesday (roughly 80 staffers) as the cable channel's operations are folded into MTV Networks. read more

Where in the World is Colby Donaldson?


Survivor producer Mark Burnett is thisclose to hooking a big fish for next winter's all-star Survivor: Colby Donaldson. The Australian Outback dreamboat confirms that CBS is reserving a tiki torch in his name.

"If the scheduling works out, I want to do it," says the 29-year-old cowboy, who, after his 2001 stint Down Under, relocated to Hollywood to pursue acting (and appeared in the 2002 PAX movie Another Pretty Face). Is Donaldson worried that a return to reality will jeopardize his career as a serious thesp? (His bud, Survivor host Jeff Probst, advised him not to return for that very reason.) "Could it be a risk? Sure," Donaldson muses. "But I wanted to compete on Survivor long before I [started] pursuing acting. I think it would be an awesome opportunity to go back and play an amazing game and have a wonderful experience all over again."

Meanwhil read more

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