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Entertainment Today: Showbiz news

By United Press International   |   Dec. 11, 2001 at 4:45 AM   |   Comments

ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER

Tough guy Arnold Schwarzenegger has broken several ribs in an accident on his motorcycle in Santa Monica, Calif.

A publicist for the 54-year-old star says he was treated at the St. John's Health Center following the accident. She gave no further details.

In an official statement, Schwarzenegger told his fans not to worry and noted that his family's planned ski trip to Sun Valley will go on as planned.

His latest movie, "Collateral Damage," was to have been released this fall, but its opening was postponed in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks. It's now due out in February.

(Thanks to UPI Feature Reporter Dennis Daily)


DAVID HYDE PIERCE

According to a report in Daily Variety, Paramount Network Television is close to a deal to pay "Frasier" co-star David Hyde Pierce $1 million per episode.

The deal is expected to persuade Pierce to stay with the show for two more seasons. Pierce has won three supporting actor Emmys playing Niles Crane, the brother of Frasier Crane, played by series star Kelsey Grammer.

Citing industry insiders familiar with the negotiations, Variety reported that as of Friday, Pierce had driven his price up to at least $750,000 per episode, and stood a chance of joining TV comedy's exclusive seven-figure club -- which includes Grammer, Tim Allen, Helen Hunt, Paul Reiser and Jerry Seinfeld.

Grammer recently signed a two-year deal with Paramount paying him $1.6 million an episode. At $75 million over the life of the agreement, Grammer became the highest-paid actor ever in a half-hour comedy.

At $750,000 per episode, Pierce would be paid as much as Drew Carey for "The Drew Carey Show" and all six stars of "Friends" -- but not as much as Ray Romano, who is pulling down an estimated $800,000 per episode to star in "Everybody Loves Raymond."


STARS COME OUT FOR U.S TROOPS

George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and Andy Garcia -- the stars of "Ocean's Eleven" -- combined business with patriotism last Friday as they signed autographs, posed for snapshots and schmoozed with American troops at a top-security military base in Turkey.

News organizations were not permitted to cover the visit up close, but the event generated positive publicity both for the U.S. war against terrorism and the Warner Bros. publicity campaign on behalf of "Ocean's Eleven."

Also Friday, Tom Cruise -- who opens this week in his new movie, "Vanilla Sky" -- visited troops at the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base in Fort Worth, Texas. He was accompanied by "Vanilla Sky" director Cameron Crowe.

(The above two items thanks to UPI Hollywood Reporter Pat Nason)


MICHELLE PFEIFFER

Michelle Pfeiffer is the first presenter to be announced for next month's "AFI Awards 2001," to be broadcast from the Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Jan. 5 (8-11 p.m. ET) on CBS.

The actress is also the first presenter to have an AFI-Target Scholarship established in her name. Target Stores has established scholarships at the AFI Conservatory in the name of AFI Awards 2001's 19 presenters and host. The host, additional presenters and nominees for the awards will be announced shortly.

The AFI Awards honor the 10 most outstanding American films of the year and will present several television awards in the categories of comedy series, drama series, movies and mini-series.


KEVIN BACON

Kevin Bacon has filmed a series of public service announcements (PSAs) for the PA September 11th Victims Assistance Program. The actor -- a native of Philadelphia -- filmed the spots on New York's Upper West Side to focus attention on the non-profit organization's mission to assist Pennsylvania residents in need of physical, emotional and financial support as a result of the events of Sept. 11.

Bacon, who currently lives in New York, volunteered his time after a call went out to the stage and screen community for their help. "We wanted someone with a recognizable name and face, and we certainly got that with Kevin," said Kristine Lewis, casting director and owner of the Theatre Arts Center in Doylestown, Pa. "Kevin came to the studio during a break in his current project, took a few minutes to memorize his lines, and gave us exactly what we wanted. It was a pleasure to have him involved in the project."

The PA September 11 Victims Assistance Program was established by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency to act as a single source of relief for the families and victims of the terrorist attacks. The program offers one-on-one counseling, as well as guidance through the process of obtaining financial assistance.

(Web site: PaSept11.org)

© 2001 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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