Today's News: Our Take


Blair Witch Returns!


When The Blair Witch Project became the monster hit of 1999, Heather Donahue naturally thought she'd be able to write her own ticket in Hollywood. Alas, for a while there, the only ticket she got offered was one straight outta town!

"I was sort of counted out before I even had the chance to show up," she tells TV Guide Online. "All my life, I wanted to be an actor, and then all of a sudden, it wasn't entirely clear that anyone was going to let me be an actor... [because the movie's marketing execs] kept telling people that [the thriller's unhappy campers] weren't actors but were really in this [scary] situation. That wound up being very damaging to the cast."

Ever since, the University of the Arts (Philadelphia) grad has worked double time to prove that she was more than a contestant in an especially creepy installment of Fear read more

SCOOP!

Orlando Jones — who plays a by-the-book bandleader in Drumline (opening Friday) — is negotiating to take a role in Columbia's as-yet-untitled love triangle comedy starring Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton and Keanu Reeves. "I don't know if we can work out the scheduling," Jones tells TV Guide Online. Nancy Myers (Father of the Bride) penned the script and plans to direct. read more

SHORT CUTS

Drew Barrymore is in talks to reteam with her Wedding Singer co-star Adam Sandler in the upcoming Columbia romantic comedy 50 First Kisses... The Reese Witherspoon hit Sweet Home Alabama will be released on DVD Feb. 4... Emmy-winning producer-writer David E. Kelley (The Practice, Boston Public) is pitching to the networks a new hourlong drama series centered around an Irish-American family. read more

Miranda Richardson Kisses (Kidman) and Tells!


Nicole Kidman's astonishing resemblance to Virginia Woolf in The Hours had even her co-stars seeing double. But it wasn't the famous literary figure that Miranda Richardson saw when she looked at Kidman. "She reminded me of a girlfriend of mine," laughs the two-time Oscar nominee. "I was like, 'Oh my God, it's Kate.'"

Richardson — who plays Virginia's sister Vanessa in the highly anticipated film (opening Dec. 27) — believes all the identity confusion worked to her advantage. "I suddenly saw somebody that I had a very particular affinity with," she says, "[which] was good for the sibling thing."

Of course, the sisterly bond between Virginia read more

A WHOLE NEW WORLD FOR GWYN

Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow have signed on to star in the big-budget thriller The World of Tomorrow, described by The Hollywood Reporter as a retro sci-fi pic in the vein of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Set at the turn of the 20th century, the film follows a reporter (Paltrow) and pilot (Law) who team up on an adventure. read more

REUNITED

Latin crooner Marc Anthony and his wife, former Miss Universe Dayanara Torres, renewed their wedding vows on Saturday in San Juan. The ceremony came five months after the couple announced that they were separating. read more

DAILY NEWS

Late-night funnyman Jon Stewart has struck a deal with NBC to write and exec produce a half-hour comedy starring fellow Daily Show star-scribe Stephen Colbert, Variety reports. The untitled series will borrow heavily from Colbert's experiences growing up in South Carolina. read more

EDIE FALCO ROCKS!

Tony and Carmela's marriage got whacked on last night's killer fourth-season finale of HBO's The Sopranos. A phone call from one of Tony's scorned girlfriends pushed an already-depressed Carmela (Edie Falco, enjoying her finest hour) over the edge, setting up a fierce domestic confrontation that ended with the cheatin' mob boss (James Gandolfini) out on the street. "You have made a fool of me for years," seethed Carmela. "You've had quite a time on my watch." Other developments from Sunday's episode: Uncle Junior's trial ended with a hung jury; Tony scrapped plans to off rival boss Carmine; and Christopher was released from drug rehab. Nielsen pundits are predicting that the 75-minute climax will likely rank as the highest-rated Sopranos episode in history. We're predicting that Falco will s read more

THEATER NOTES

Sandra Bullock, Leonardo DiCaprio and Candice Bergen were among the stars who turned out for Sunday's Broadway debut of Baz Luhrmann's production of Puccini's classic opera La Boheme. In other theater news, Nicole Kidman is in talks to return to the London stage in Henrik Ibsen's The Lady From the Sea. read more

PARTY OF FIVE

Elizabeth Taylor, James Earl Jones, singer-songwriter Paul Simon, Broadway star Chita Rivera and conductor James Levine were honored Sunday night in Washington, D.C., at the 25th anniversary Kennedy Center Honors. President Bush was on hand to pay tribute to the group. read more

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