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Entertainment Today: Showbiz News

By KAREN BUTLER, United Press International   |   Dec. 13, 2002 at 3:00 AM
RARE N.Y. ARTIFACTS DESTROYED IN WTC

More than 850,000 rare New York artifacts were destroyed when terrorists attacked the World Trade Center last year.

Hoping to make his Civil War-era epic appear "more than real," Martin Scorsese and the production team behind "Gangs of New York" said they utilized thousands of artifacts recently uncovered by archaeologists excavating in Lower Manhattan.

Sadly, nearly the entire collection was lost when the World Trade Center 6 Building was partially collapsed by falling debris.


PROBATION FOR NOLTE

Actor Nick Nolte was placed on three years' probation Thursday after pleading no contest to driving under the influence of the date-rape drug GHB.

Superior Court Judge Lawrence Mira ordered the Oscar-nominated star of "Affliction" and "Prince of Tides" to remain in a drug rehab program for 90 days, as part of a plea agreement in which prosecutors agreed to drop one of two misdemeanor drug charges in connection with Nolte's Sept. 11 arrest in Malibu. Nolte also was fined $500.

Terms of the plea bargain require Nolte to enter a state drug education program after completing his rehab program. If he violates the terms of his probation, he could be sent to jail for six months.

Nolte was charged with being under the influence of Gamma-Hydroxybutyrate, a depressant that acts on the central nervous system. The drug is popular with bodybuilders and dance/club scene regulars.

Nolte's lawyer, Mark Werksman, told reporters last week his client does not know how the illegal substance was introduced into his bloodstream -- but he suspects it might have come from some of the nutritional supplements he uses.

Three days after he was arrested by a California Highway Patrol officer, who said Nolte "seemed completely out of it," Nolte checked himself into Silver Hill Hospital in New Canaan, Conn. Other celebrities -- including Billy Joel, Mariah Carey and Diana Ross -- have sought treatment at Silver Hill.

Nolte's other screen credits include "The Thin Red Line" (1998), "Blue Chips" (1994), "Cape Fear" (1991), "Down and Out in Beverly Hills" (1986), "48 Hrs." (1982), "North Dallas Forty" (1979), "Who'll Stop the Rain" (1978)" and "The Deep" (1977).

Nolte was nominated for an Emmy in 1976 for his star-making role as Tom Jordache in "Rich Man, Poor Man" -- ABC-TV's 1976 miniseries based on the 1970 novel of the same name by Irwin Shaw.

(Thanks to UPI's Pat Nason in Hollywood)


GOING THE DISTANCE AS ROCKY

It looks like Sylvester Stallone is training for another round as fictional boxer Rocky Balboa.

The Hollywood Reporter writes the 55-year-old action star is nearing a deal with MGM to make a sixth installment of the popular franchise.

Stallone is expected to write, produce and star in the film, which is budgeted for $10 million to $15 million.

"Rocky VI" also reunites Stallone with Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff, producers of the original 1976 "Rocky," which cost $1 million and went on to win an Oscar for Best Picture.


POTTER 'SNEAK PEEK' FETCHES HIGH PRICE

A "teaser card" featuring clues to the plot of the next Harry Potter novel has sold for $45,380.

The British news Web site Ananova.com reports this was almost six times the item's $7,911 reserve price. Written by Potter author J.K. Rowling, the card was bought by a private American collector at Sotheby's in London. All the money is going to charity.


DOOGIE HOWSER NEW 'CABARET' EMCEE

Neil Patrick Harris, best-known as TV's teen doc Doogie Howser, is taking over the role of the "Emcee" in the hit musical revival of "Cabaret."

Harris' first performance opposite Molly Ringwald, Raul Esparza, Carole Shelley and Tom Bosley is slated for Jan. 3, 2003. This marks the actor's first return to Broadway since playing Anne Heche's unexpected suitor in the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama, "Proof" at the Walter Kerr Theater.

The Roundabout Theater Co.'s production of "Cabaret" opened on Broadway March 19, 1998, and won four 1998 Tony Awards, including Best Revival of a Musical. To date, "Cabaret" has played more than 1,700 performances, making it one of the longest running revivals in Broadway history.

© 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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