Today's News: Our Take


Kevin Kline is playing gay again. The actor — who fell for Tom Selleck in 1997's In & Out — will portray composer and songwriter Cole Porter in De-Lovely, a big-screen biopic to be directed by Irwin Winkler. According to Variety, the film will focus on how a gay man found his musical inspiration from the woman he married. (Insert proverbial Liza Minnelli-David Gest joke here.) read more


The acclaimed Japanese animated film Spirited Away was the big winner at Saturday's Annie Awards, picking up trophies for best feature film, writing, music and direction. DreamWorks's similarly-titled (but far inferior) Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron also fared well, receiving awards for character design, effects animation, production design and storyboarding. read more


The WB has finally put Dawson's Creek out of its misery. On Sunday, the network announced that the dried-up teen drama would end its five-year run in May. (Teenage girls everywhere are asking themselves: Ohmigod! Was that still on the air?) A two-hour finale airs May 14, after which James Van Der Beek, Katie Holmes, Michelle Williams and Joshua Jackson will begin weighing offers from Celebrity Mole and Surreal Life. read more


MTV issued an apology to the people of India on Friday for offending them with its new comedy Clone High, USA, which features a "horny" character named "Gandhi." The series is set at a fictional high school populated by clones of historic figures. MTV said it has the "the utmost respect for Gandhi," adding that Clone High was intended only for an American audience "where this form of comedy is common." In a related aside, I'm still bitter that Gandhi won the Oscar for best film over E.T. in 1982. read more


Following Saturday's tragic space shuttle disaster, Paramount Pictures quickly pulled trailers for its upcoming movie The Core from theaters. The promo for the sci-fi thriller, which stars Hilary Swank and Aaron Eckhart, showed a space shuttle in jeopardy. The studio, however, still plans to release the film on March 28. read more


Sotheby's is suing Michael Jackson for reneging on a deal to purchase two 19th-century paintings he won at auction last October. Apparently, the baby-dangler thinks the artwork — which he bid $1.3 million for — no longer fits into his collection. Here's my advice to Jacko: Pay for the art and then toss it over a fifth floor balcony. read more


Buoyed by a special supersized Friends, NBC handily won the first night of February sweeps on Thursday. The Emmy-winning sitcom attracted 25.6 million viewers, making it the evening's second most-watched show behind CBS's CSI, which drew 27.5 million crime-scene addicts. read more


Colin Farrell's got another excuse to party this morning! His spy thriller The Recruit, co-starring Al Pacino, opened in first place at the box office over the weekend with $16.5 million. Final Destination 2 debuted in second place with $16.2 million, followed by the new motorcycle flick Biker Boyz (No. 3 with $10.1 million). Rounding out the top five: Kangaroo Jack (No. 4 with $9 million) and Darkness Falls (No. 5 with $7.5 million). Sorry folks, but it's hard to get excited about any of these films. read more


Veteran record producer Phil Spector was arrested today on suspicion of homicide after a woman's corpse was found in a suburban Los Angeles home. The 62-year-old Spector is best known for producing such hit musical acts as Tina Turner and the Ramones. He also produced the last Beatles album, Let It Be, in 1970. read more

Meet Alias's New Bad Girl

Alias fans weren't the only folks shocked by last Sunday's post-Super Bowl episode, which climaxed with the murder of Sydney's (Jennifer Garner) sweet roommate Francie (Merrin Dungey) at the hands of her never-before-seen evil double. Not even Dungey's closest friends knew the actress would soon transform into a femme fatale. Since October, she's been suffering under a vow of silence about the plot twist, and now she's dying to tell us all about it!

"J.J. [Abrams, the show's creator] said he'd send my character to Disney World, never to return, if I said anything," she tells TV Guide Online. "I've been holding this secret and living [like] Sydney Bristow... No o read more

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