Today's News: Our Take


HER DAY IN COURT

Winona Ryder pleaded innocent Friday to shoplifting and drug charges stemming from her Dec. 12 arrest at Saks Fifth Avenue. Last week, a superior court judge ruled that there was sufficient evidence for the actress to stand trial. A pretrial hearing is set for July 15. read more

R.I.P., V.I.P.

Pamela Anderson's campy action-adventure series V.I.P. soon will be M.I.A. According to Variety, Columbia TriStar Television is pulling the plug on the four-year-old syndicated series, citing the financial woes of co-producer, German media giant Kirch. However, Anderson said in a statement that the decision to end the show was partly hers. "Due to a multitude of issues — some personal — we have decided to all move on from V.I.P.," she said. "It has been an incredibly fun four seasons and we kicked butt!" (Someone needs to simmer down now!) Anderson happily reports that fans won't be missing her for long: Reruns of V.I.P. begin airing in September on TNN, and, "I will also be starring in my own animated series created by Stan LeeStripperella, which is coming soon." Yipee! read more

WHO IS MANDY ANYWAY?

Barry Manilow and Sting were among the artists inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame on Thursday. Fellow inductee Michael Jackson was a no-show. read more

BARENAKED LADY

Jennifer Love Hewitt will release her new album, BareNaked, on Sept. 24. The first single, also called "BareNaked," will hit the airwaves on July 1 and the video will premiere on MTV the week of July 15 — but there's no word if Hewitt will be either bare or naked in it. read more

SYNERGY ALERT

Mickey Mouse is coming to the rescue of his struggling TV network. The Walt Disney Co. is planning to use its vast resources — movies, theme parks, retail stores, restaurants — to promote the heck out of ABC's new fall shows. read more

WAS ZAC THE RING BEARER?

Taylor Hanson, the 19-year-old lead singer of Hanson (he's the middle brother), married 18-year-old girlfriend Natalie Anne Bryant on June 8 in Pine Mountain, Ga. The ceremony was reportedly romantic and intimate. All together now: MMMBop! read more

YOUNG AND EMPLOYED

Diff'rent Strokes alum-turned-Celebrity Boxing champ Todd Bridges is attempting yet another comeback. The 37-year-old trouble-prone actor has snagged a recurring role on CBS' The Young and the Restless playing a bad guy out for revenge. For more, go to Soaps News. read more

DEEP THOUGHTS

Dateline NBC claims to know the identity of Deep Throat — the secret source at the center of the Watergate scandal. Using computer technology and good old-fashioned research, a journalism professor at the University of Illinois teamed up with a group of his students to solve the 30-year-old mystery. The results of their year-long project will be revealed tonight at 9 pm/ET. Our guess: Carrot Top. read more

FULL COURT FLOP

The Los Angeles Lakers' slam dunk victory over the New Jersey Nets in the NBA Finals yielded record low ratings for NBC. The four-game rout averaged a 10.8 household rating, making it the lowest rated NBA Championship Finals since 1982. read more

SHORT CUTS

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer is developing a sequel to Coyote Ugly... Stockard Channing has elected to remain The West Wing's First Lady for another year, signing on for 12 of next season's 22 episodes. She also has joined the cast of Woody Allen's latest, untitled film. read more

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