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News 08/26/2007

In reality TV news: Jen Johnson, a 23-year-old nanny from Beverly Hills, CA, became the seventh houseguest evicted Thursday night from CBS's "Big Brother 8." Also on Thursday, Paula Thomas, a.k.a. Whip-Snap, a 31-year-old security officer from Los Angeles, CA, was eliminated from the Sci-Fi Channel's "Who Wants to Be a Superhero?"

Nicole Richie served a total of 82 minutes of her four-day sentence for DUI Thursday and was released early due to overcrowded jail conditions, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said. The five months pregnant starlet was booked into the same Lynwood facility where Paris Hilton served her stint earlier this year. She was listed at five-feet, one-inch tall and 105 pounds and was said to be "cooperative" during the process.

A judge issued a preliminary injunction Friday preventing a Texas doctor from disseminating a 1994 videotape documenting Anna Nicole Smith's breast augmentation surgery. The ruling extends a temporary restraining order the judge issued against the doctor earlier this month at Howard K. Stern's request.

Roger Ebert has refused to review films with his traditional "thumbs up-thumbs down" critique while renegotiating his contract with Disney-ABC Domestic Television, which distributes his show in syndication. He has "exercised his right to withhold use of the 'thumbs' until a new contract is signed," the company said Friday. The legendary critic owns the copyright to the thumb assessment with the estate of the late Gene Siskel, his original "At the Movies" co-host.

Austin Nichols, the former "John from Cincinnati" star who's infinitely better known as Jake Gyllenhaal's most favored workout buddy, was busted on suspicion of DUI after cops spotted him driving the wrong way down a one-way street.

Bad news for FOX's "Anchorwoman"...the network yanked the new series Thursday after the debut episode drew a measly 2.7 million viewers. Unaired episodes will be available on FOX's Website, the network said.

David Hasselhoff was awarded "substantial" libel damages from OK! magazine in a British court Friday over a report that he was drunk and abusive at a Los Angeles nightclub after winning a custody battle for his daughters. The story claimed Hasselhoff "drank champagne like it was water" from midnight until 2 a.m. The actor's lawyer called the allegations "entirely false."

A comedy writer is suing the Walt Disney Co., alleging he conceived of the idea for "Hannah Montana," but was never compensated. Buddy Sheffield filed his lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court Thursday, alleging breach of contract, breach of confidence, unfair competition, and unjust enrichment. He claims he pitched the network an idea for a series called "Rock and Roland" in 2001 about a junior high school student who lived a secret double life as a rock star, but Disney officials passed. "Hannah Montana" stars Miley Cyrus as a high school student who lives a secret double life as a famous pop star. Disney had not commented on the suit.

News 08/23/2007

In reality TV news: Tre Wilcox, the 30-year-old chef de cuisine of the Abacus Restaurant from Cedar Hill, TX, was eliminated Wednesday on Bravo's "Top Chef 3."

Robin Roberts told the Associated Press Thursday that her prognosis is "quite good" after undergoing breast cancer surgery on Aug. 3. The 46-year-old newswoman said her doctors will wait several weeks for her to heal before subjecting her to more treatment, which could involve chemotherapy. Roberts said she didn't want to give out details about her treatment until she knows what it is.

The CW has revealed the latest group of would-be catwalkers set to compete on the ninth season of "America's Next Top Model." Among the aspiring fashionistas: Ebony, a 20-year-old nursing student from Chicago; Janet, a 22-year-old aesthetician from Georgia; Lisa, a 20-year-old dancer from New Jersey, and Mila, a 20-year-old recent college grad from Boston. The new season premieres Sept. 19.

"Heroes" star Hayden Panettiere is the latest white-mustached subject of the Got Milk? ads, representing a campaign to encourage teens to down three glasses of low-fat or fat-free milk a day. The ads, which debut Sept. 10, were shot by Annie Leibovitz and show Panettiere wearing a clingy red dress and clutching an exploding glass of milk.

Stephen Colbert will auction off the cast that helped mend his broken left wrist on eBay, with the proceeds benefiting the Yellow Ribbon Fund, a charity that assists injured service members and their families, Comedy Central said Wednesday. The cast has been signed by Mike Bloomberg, Katie Couric, Bill O'Reilly, Nancy Pelosi, Brian Williams, Tim Russert, and Tony Snow. "If I had known that it would give me the opportunity to help our wounded veterans, I would have shattered my triquetrum a long time ago," Colbert said in a statement.

Wayne Newton is preparing to lace up his dancing shoes. The Vegas legend is reportedly set to show off his best moves on the upcoming season of "Dancing with the Stars," per Entertainment Weekly. ABC has yet to announce the official roster and had no comment on the rumored casting.

News 08/22/2007

Ventriloquist Terry Fator, a 42-year-old singing ventriloquist from Dallas, TX, took home the million-dollar prize on NBC's "America's Got Talent 2" Tuesday, beating out reggae singer Cas Haley, a 26-year-old reggae singer from Arlington, TX; beatboxer Antoinette "Butterscotch" Clinton, a 21-year-old musician/beat-boxer from Davis, CA; and country crooner Julienne Irwin, a 14-year-old country singer from Bel Air, MD, for the victory. In addition to the cash, Fator scored a headlining slot at Bally's resort in Los Vegas, beginning next month. Also on Tuesday, Will Bigham, a 31-year-old film editor from Glendale, CA, was named the winner of FOX's "On the Lot" and welcomed to the DreamWorks fold by Steven Spielberg himself. The aspiring filmmaker's victory includes a $1 million deal with the studio. He defeated Jason Epperson, a 30-year-old film production company owner from Winchester, KY; and Adam Stein, a 29-year-old freelance film editor from Los Angeles, CA, to win the competition.

Paris Hilton and Zeta Graff announced Wednesday that they had amicably resolved the $10 million slander suit Graff filed against her rival heiress in 2005. Terms of the settlement were not revealed. Graff, who once dated Hilton's ex-fiancé Paris Latsis, had accused Hilton of planting "vicious lies" about her in the press.

News 08/21/2007

In reality TV news: Fred, a 45-year-old salesman, the oldest student, and a virgin, was eliminated Monday on VH1's "The Pick-Up Artist."

NBC is gearing up for the return of "Heroes" and the launch of the season one DVD by launching a "Heroes" World Tour, with 12 cast members of the Emmy-nominated series traveling to eight countries around the world in eight days, beginning Sunday. The DVD is due out Aug. 28, while the second season premieres Sept. 24.

Joey Fatone has signed on as Lisa Rinna's red-carpet co-host for the TV Guide Network, replacing the channel's former team of Joan and Melissa Rivers. The duo's first gig together will be the Emmy Awards on Sept. 16.

"Entourage" creator Doug Ellin says a movie based on the hit series is not out of the question. "If people were interested in that, and somebody wanted to finance it, I would be all for it. But it's never been discussed," he told TelevisionWeek. "I hope we have four or five good seasons left of this show before that were to be the case."

Janeane Garofalo is clocking into "24." The über-liberal actress will join the conservative-leaning drama as a government agent investigating the crisis befalling Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) & Co. in the upcoming season, per the Hollywood Reporter.

News 08/20/2007

Kevin Federline will guest star in an multi-episode arc of "One Tree Hill," playing Jason, the cocky frontman of local rock band No Means Yes. The hit drama is due to return midseason on the CW.

Anna Nicole Smith's daughter, Dannielynn, will celebrate her first birthday next month at a party in Louisville, Kentucky. The event will be hosted by Tricia Barnstable Brown, who throws an annual celebrity-packed Kentucky Derby-eve party at which Smith and Larry Birkhead met in 2003. Dannielynn was born Sept. 7, 2006 in the Bahamas.

CBS has revealed the identities of the 16 castaways set to compete on the 15th season of "Survivor," set on two separate islands on China's Zhelin Lake, located in the Jiangxi province. Among the contestants ready to outwit, outplay, outlast: James Clement, a 30-year-old gravedigger from Louisiana; Amanda Kimmel, a 23-year-old hiking guide from Los Angeles, Steve "Chicken" Morris, a 47-year-old chicken farmer from Virginia, and Denise Martin, a 40-year-old lunch lady from Massachusetts.

Duane "Dog" Chapman says he is "devastated" that a $300,000 U.S. federal bond remains in effect in his case even though a Mexican judge has dismissed charges of "deprivation of liberty" against him stemming from his 2003 capture of Max Factor heir and convicted rapist Andrew Luster. Chapman posted the bond and was freed after he was arrested last September as he fought extradition to Mexico.

Red carpet staple Ryan Seacrest will serve as the host of the 59th Annual Emmy Awards on Sept. 16, FOX announced Monday. The latest gig comes after last week's announcement that the "American Idol" star and "E! News" anchor had been tapped to host the Super Bowl in February.

Former "Veronica Mars" star Kristen Bell has signed on for a multi-episode arc on the hit NBC series "Heroes," playing a mysterious character named Elle, who has ties to Claire, HRG, and Peter. Bell is slated to make her first appearance in October.

Jessica Lucas will guest star in four episodes of "C.S.I.: Crime Scene Investigation," playing Veronica "Ronnie" Lake, a hotshot rookie addition to the Las Vegas team, CBS said Monday.

All news gathered from E! Online and other sources

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