Today's News: Our Take


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Fox confirmed Thursday that it currently is scouting locations for a second installment of Temptation Island. Meanwhile, Wednesday's finale attracted 17.3 million viewers, just behind NBC's The West Wing (18.1 million)... HBO announced that it will air a live Britney Spears concert on Nov. 18 from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas... As expected, NBC has committed to a sitcom pilot starring former Seinfeld alum Julia Louis-Dreyfus as a performer surrounded by a cast of quirky characters, Variety reports. The project is being targeted for a midseason 2001-02 debut. — Michael Ausiello and Daniel R. Coleridge read more

ISLANDERS GET HOLLYWOOD ENDING

Last night's finale of Fox's Temptation Island was one big letdown, er, lovefest as the three remaining couples resolved to stay together — despite advances made by more than two dozen comely singles. In case you missed it, here's a recap: Shannon and Andy kissed, made up and got engaged; Mandy and Billy settled their differences and the former declared, "I never want to play this game again"; and Kaya and Valerie decided to remain committed to one another, with Kaya gushing to his love: "You make me a better man." In other reality news, on the final episode of ABC's The Mole, 29-year-old law school lecturer Kathryn Price was revealed to be the saboteur by contestant Steven Cowles. The 30-year-old Denver cop walks away with $510,000 in prize money. read more

ON SECOND THOUGHT...

Contrary to their public announcement yesterday, it appears actress-singer Jennifer Lopez still might testify at the gun possession and bribery trial of ex-boyfriend Sean "Puffy" Combs on Friday. "It's always been a possibility," said Combs's attorney, Benjamin Brafman, who admitted his client was trying to quell media speculation. Meanwhile, prosecutor Matthew Bogdanos has demanded that Combs be held in contempt of court for violating the trial's gag order (by releasing yesterday's statement). Combs takes the stand today in his own defense. read more

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When Hannibal makes its broadcast premiere on CBS in November 2003, it will be repackaged into a four-hour miniseries featuring as much as an hour of unused footage, Variety reports... Pierce Brosnan (aka 007) and fianc&#233e Keely Shaye Smith became the proud parents of son, Paris Beckett Brosnan, born Tuesday in Los Angeles. This is the couple's second child together... Veteran TV producer Stan Margulies (Roots, The Thorn Birds) died Tuesday of cancer at the age of 80... Muggles everywhere can view the first trailer for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone beginning Friday, when the David Arquette comedy See Spot Run hits theaters. — Michael Ausiello and Daniel R. Coleridge read more

Wayans vs. Hughley: "There's No Feud"


Damon Wayans — who returns to the small screen on March 28 in the ABC sitcom My Wife and Kids (8 pm/ET) — insists that "there's no feud" between him and fellow sitcom star D.L. Hughley. This, despite the fact that last summer Hughley scolded Kids, claiming it was basically a rip-off of his comedy The Hughleys, which ABC axed last season. (The show was rescued by UPN and currently airs Mondays at 9 pm/ET.)

"You know, I understand... He was hurt," admits Wayans, who, in addition to starring in Kids, is its co-creator and executive producer. "And I think because [my show] was the next one coming along, he for some reason [blamed me]. But I've been in that situation where you get your show cancelled and you're just trying to justify it in your own mind. If it helps him get through it, then I'll be the bad guy that took his idea. The audience will determine whether I did or not."

My Wife and Kids — which Wayans says read more

SNL STANDOUT RETURNS

CBS has given the go-ahead for a sitcom pilot starring former Saturday Night Live funnylady Cheri Oteri, Variety reports. In Loomis, Oteri — best known for her dead-on impersonations of Barbara Walters and Melissa Rivers — will play a small-town celeb who spends her leisure time trying to handle the challenges presented by her offbeat family and friends. Meanwhile, ABC has greenlit a comedy pilot starring Larry Sanders Show alum Jeffrey Tambor as the host of a TV cooking show. read more

STUNT CASTING ALERTS!

Actress-model Elizabeth Hurley plays herself on Denis Leary's new ABC cop comedy, The Job, on March 21. Donald Trump also makes a cameo in the risqu&#233 episode, which has Hurley and Leary exchanging a steamy kiss — and some even steamier dialogue. Chad Lowe (Mr. Hilary Swank) and Margot Kidder (Ms. Superman), meanwhile, will appear in a May sweeps episode of NBC's Law &#038 Order: Special Victims Unit. Lowe plays a repressed young man suspected of murdering a pregnant woman, and Kidder is his domineering mother. Finally, ER doc Anthony Edwards will attempt to breathe some life into the Peacock's ailing The Weber Show on March 15, playing Chris Elliott's aging rock musician brother. read more

ROBBED AGAIN?

A week after losing the Album of the Year Grammy to Steely Dan, Eminem has once again found himself on the receiving end of a snub. The 28-year-old rapper was shut out at Wednesday's Soul Train Music Awards, losing the two categories in which he was nominated. The event — which Eminem did not attend — will air in syndication on March 3. The big winners were R&#038B quartet Jagged Edge and singer R. Kelly. read more

LOVE HURTS

Courtney Love hopes to save her celebrity skin by countersuing her record label, Universal Music, Reuters reports. The company filed suit against the rock star last year for breaking her contract. Love protests what she calls "repressive and unfair working conditions" at the major record labels, adding that "artists who have generated billions of dollars for the music industry die broke and uncared for by the business they made wealthy." read more

The Truth About Julia and Brad's Bed Scene


In The Mexican, which hits theatres Friday, Julia Roberts and Brad Pitt face enough romantic woes to confound even Oprah Winfrey's fave relationship guru, Dr. Phil McGraw. Amusingly enough, Roberts is actually a diehard Dr. Phil aficionado. "I watch Oprah and I enjoy Dr. Phil," confesses the actress, who also includes the daytime soaps among her TV viewing guilty pleasures.

In fact, one particular sudser indirectly inspired Roberts to appear sans makeup in The Mexican's opening scene, which finds her lying beside Pitt in bed. "I'm a notorious Days of Our Lives watcher," she reveals. "So I see all these beautiful people waking up with lipstick and eye shadow on, [and] that bothers me. I only like to look glamorous when it's called for. So when I shot my scene with Brad, I just did it au naturel."

To hear Roberts tell it, setside camaraderie came naturally to her and Pitt as well. "I guess I was surprised that every day read more

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