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Entertainment Today: Showbiz news

By United Press International   |   April 2, 2002 at 5:00 AM
ROBERT ILER

The trial of 17-year-old actor Robert Iler on charges of robbery and marijuana possession has been postponed by a New York court.

Iler, best known for his work on the HBO hit series "The Sopranos," was arrested with two others -- one 19, one 16 -- in connection with an alleged mugging in Manhattan that netted $40. According to People magazine's on-line service, the teen could get up to five years if convicted on the robbery charge. The pot-possession charge, if successfully prosecuted, could mean a $100 fine.

Since his arrest, many of Iler's friends and associates have lobbied in his behalf. Actor James Gandolfino, who plays Iler's father on the HBO series, even wrote a letter to the court asking for lenience. Gandolfino claims the young actor simply had a "lapse in judgment."

Iler is due back in court May 6.


BILLY CRYSTAL

When comedian Billy Crystal returned recently to the Big Apple, the New York Post says the funnyman felt right at home. With "high school sweetheart of 32 years (Janice) in tow," he told the publication that it's great to be back in Manhattan.

Crystal is back home to start work on a new Robert DeNiro comedy. It's reportedly a sequel to the highly successful movie "Analyze This." It will be called "Analyze That."

Crystal tells the publication that he watched the recent Oscars show alone. He apparently has tried to enjoy past broadcasts in the company of friends -- attending traditional Oscar parties. But Crystal says that too many people like to watch his reaction to the show and ask him about previous shows that he hosted. He reports that he liked this year's broadcast.

(The above two items thanks to UPI's Dennis Daily)


WESLEY SNIPES

Wesley Snipes' next movie reportedly will be a modern-day biker film titled "When The Ride Is Ruff."

The Hollywood Reporter says Kirk Wong ("The Big Hit") will direct the film, which concerns a biker gang known as the Ruff Ryders, led by Snipes' character. While attending a biker rally in Myrtle Beach, S.C., the hero is framed for murder and must lead his gang on a ride back to New York through hostile rival biker territory.

The publication said Ruff Ryder Records is co-producing the project and will provide the soundtrack.


'CHANGING LANES'

Ben Affleck, Samuel L. Jackson, Amanda Peet, Sydney Pollack and William Hurt are scheduled to attend the world premiere of their latest movie "Changing Lanes" this Sunday at Paramount Pictures in Hollywood. The film -- about a rush-hour fender-bender on New York City's crowded FDR Drive that turns two complete strangers into vicious adversaries -- opens nationwide April 12. (Rated R for language.)


'DUE EAST'

Robert Forster, Kate Capshaw, Clara Bryant and Cybill Shepherd co-star in "Due East," a Showtime original movie that'll premiere May 12 (at 8 p.m. ET/PT). The film -- directed by Helen Shaver -- is based on two books written by Valerie Sayers: "Due East" and "How I Got Him Back."

© 2002 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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