More than 30,000 Britons participated in the BBC phone and Internet poll to select the country's all-time top 10.
Also mentioned were: former Prime Minister Winston Churchill, naturalist Charles Darwin, naval hero Horatio Nelson, one-time Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell, scientist Isaac Newton and engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel.
An overall winner will be chosen after five weeks of programs on BBC Two, in which different presenters will offer hour-long arguments as to why each of those selected should be named No. 1.
ROSEANNE TO RETURN TO ABC
Emmy Award-winning comedian Roseanne reportedly is set to star in an ABC reality series.
According to Variety, the 50-year-old diva will star in an unscripted, half-hour workplace comedy set at a cooking or talk show.
ABC is expected to offer the series, which Roseanne also will co-executive produce with "American High" creator R.J. Cutler, a 13-episode commitment.
A popular stand-up comedienne in the 1980s, Roseanne ended her top-rated, self-titled sit-com in 1997 after nine seasons. She also hosted a short-lived talk show in 1998.
THERE ARE WORSE THINGS SHE COULD DO...
Australian pop star Kylie Minogue, who played the green fairy in Baz Luhrman's big-screen musical "Moulin Rouge!" last year, reportedly is being considered for the lead role in another song and dance fest -- "Grease 3."
Australia's Women's Day Magazine reports Minogue likely would portray the daughter of good-girl Sandy and greaser Danny, played by Aussie actress/singer Olivia Newton-John and American actor John Travolta in the 1978 film version of the hit Broadway show.
A less-successful sequel, "Grease 2," came out in 1982, starring Michelle Pfeiffer as a greaser chick in love with a Shakespeare-quoting geek (Maxwell Caulfield,) who just happens to be Sandy's cousin. That film does not mention what became of the two main characters from the original story.
There are higher hopes for the new film, however, which reportedly will be helmed by original director Randal Kleiser.
CAGE/PRESLEY MARRIAGE IN TROUBLE?
The marriage of odd couple Nicolas Cage and Lisa Marie Presley reportedly is in trouble just two months after they said, "I do," at their romantic Hawaiian wedding.
The National Enquirer says the couple is disagreeing over when to start a family and where to set up a permanent home.
On the other end of the relationship spectrum are lovebirds Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, who reportedly are planning a wedding, less than a year after Lopez told reporters she was blissfully happy with new hubby, Cris Judd. Lopez left Judd for Affleck, with whom she co-starred in "Gigli" and "Jersey Girl" several months ago.
Britain's Now magazine quotes a friend of Lopez and Affleck as saying: "Jennifer picked out the day a few weeks ago and Ben thought getting married on Valentine's Day was absolutely perfect, so a Valentine's wedding it will be. They're knee-deep in wedding plans and we all know how much Jennifer loves a good wedding."
KNOXVILLE ON 'JACKASS' FLICK
Not even "Jackass" creator Johnny Knoxville seems able to believe his MTV reality series, which features dangerous stunts and disgusting gags, has been made into a major film.
Knoxville recently told United Press International he got a kick out of the fact a movie studio actually entrusted him and his inexperienced buddies with expensive equipment they had no idea how to use.
"It was funny because they ... came to give us a tutorial on the cameras we'll be using, and since it's a movie, everyone has to have titles," Knoxville explained. "So, one of the guys who created the show with me, who is now the director, Jeff Tremaine, and one of the cameramen on the show, Demetri, who was -- I think he was the photo editor of Big Brother Magazine -- he's now director of photography."
Surprised as he might have been by the monstrous success of the TV show, Knoxville said filming it and the big-screen version have been the most fun he has ever had.
"It was so much fun," said the "Men in Black II" and "Deuces Wild" actor. "I mean, we went to Mexico, Tokyo, England, all over the United States, shooting ... They're all my friends, so it's just -- a crew of 10, including cast, 10 or 15 people rolling into a town."
He continues: "We work all day and then go out all night. You know, get a couple of hours of sleep and work all day again. It was probably the most fun I've had in my life. It's the show times 10. It's much better than the show. It's like a 90-minute naughty version of the show. No script, no plot, just shot as half-ass as the show because we don't know what we're doing."
"Jackass" opens Friday.
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