Meg Ryan, Susan Sarandon, David Spade, Julia Stiles and Denis Leary have joined the all-star line-up for "The Concert For New York." They join previously announced actors Jim Carrey, Jerry Seinfeld, Gwyneth Paltrow and John Cusack in taking part in the four-hour show on Saturday, Oct. 20, (at 8 p.m. ET) at Madison Square Garden.
The concert --- which will feature musical performances by Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, The Who, Eric Clapton, Billy Joel, Bon Jovi, John Mellencamp, Macy Gray, Goo Goo Dolls and Melissa Etheridge, among others -- will benefit the victims of the Sept. 11 attack on New York City and pay tribute to the spirit of New York and the heroism of the rescue workers who worked tirelessly to save others. Five thousand members of the New York Fire, Police and Rescue crews and their families will be in attendance as guests.
The show will be telecast live and commercial free on VH1 and will be simulcast on the VH1 Radio Network and Westwood One. All broadcasts will feature a phone number and Web address for charitable donations.
(Tickets for "The Concert for New York" go on sale Monday through Ticketmaster by phone, at its outlets or online at ticketmaster.com.)
Director Barry Levinson admits there was an avalanche of jingoistic, pro-American films cranked out by Hollywood as part of the propaganda effort during the Second World War. But he tells the New York Post that he does not think the Sept. 11 attacks will foster the same reaction.
Levinson notes that during the height of the Great Depression, movies were not painting a sad picture of America. Most were uplifting comedies. Some stars, such as singer Eddie Cantor, were promising that everything would be alright "when my ship comes in." (He even promised "Walter Disney pictures in the hall.") Levinson says America will deal with the crisis with pictures that are fun to watch and not full of doom and gloom.
It took a check for $1,114 before Oscar-winning actor Ben Affleck was allowed to leave a rural Georgia courtroom after being arrested for speeding.
Published reports indicate the 29-year-old actor was clocked at 114 mph on a stretch of Interstate highway earmarked as a 70 mph zone. Affleck was released after paying the hefty fine. By the way, he filmed parts of his 1999 movie "Forces of Nature" in nearby Savannah.
Affleck has been trying to "do better" following a stint in a California rehab center last summer for alcohol abuse. There are no reports that alcohol was involved in the recent incident.
(The above two items thanks to UPI Feature Reporter Dennis Daily)
Jodie Foster has a new baby.
A publicist for the two-time Oscar-winning actress said Foster gave birth last Saturday to Kit Foster, who weighed in at 6 pounds 3 ounces.
Foster's first child, Charles, is 3. The 38-year-old star of "Accused" and "The Silence of the Lambs" has never revealed the name of Charles' father.
(Thanks to UPI Hollywood Reporter Pat Nason)
'PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION'
The 28th season on "A Prairie Home Companion" kicks off this Saturday, broadcasting all new shows from The Fitzgerald Theater in downtown St. Paul, Minn. Musical guests for the season opener include zydeco band C. J. Chenier & The Red Hot Louisiana Band, the rockabilly sounds of Jack Knife and The Sharps, singer Mollie O'Brien and a brand new season of stories from Lake Wobegon, the little town that time forgot, from one of America's foremost humorists, Garrison Keillor.
The 2001-2002 season will consist of 34 live shows: 19 originating from The Fitzgerald Theater; a northern tour in December (Grand Forks, N.D.; Ann Arbor, Mich.; Buffalo, N.Y.; and Madison, Wis.); a trip to Hawaii in January; in February, a first-time broadcast from New Orleans and a broadcast from Ames, Iowa; New York's Town Hall for shows in April; and three broadcasts from outdoor venues at Tanglewood in the Berkshires and two other venues yet to be chosen.
"A Prairie Home Companion" airs Saturdays (from 6-8 p.m. ET) on more than 500 U.S. public radio stations nationwide.
(Web site: prairehome.org)
'BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER'
Just as "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" has a new (TV network) home, so does the show's Web site.
BuffyUPN.com (buffyupn.com) is where fans of the former WB drama, now on UPN, can get their Internet fix for all things Buffy. The site features in-depth "Watcher's Guide" episode summaries, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" trivia, fan polls, cast photos, behind-the-scenes action shots, and exclusive video interviews with the creator and stars.
When it was announced last spring that "Buffy" was pulling up stakes at the WB and moving to UPN, Warner Bros. removed the show's Web site from its online line-up. It was soon restored.
The series --- starring Sarah Michelle Geller --- premiered on UPN this past Tuesday.