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Hollywood Digest

By PAT NASON, UPI Hollywood Reporter   |   March 14, 2003 at 3:40 PM   |   Comments

U2 WILL PERFORM ON OSCARS TELECAST

Producer Gil Cates announced Friday that U2 will perform on the 75th Anniversary Academy Awards telecast.

The Grammy-winning band will perform their Oscar-nominated song "The Hands that Built America" from "Gangs of New York." It will be their first time performing on the Oscars show.

Cates also announced that John Travolta would be a presenter. It will be Travolta's ninth appearance as an Oscars show presenter.

Travolta has been nominated twice for the Best Actor Oscar -- for "Saturday Night Fever" (1977) and "Pulp Fiction" (1994).

The 75th Anniversary Academy Awards will be presented on March 23 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, in ceremonies to be televised live by ABC.


MICHAEL JACKSON LOSES LAWSUIT

The BBC reported Friday that a jury in Santa Monica, Calif., has ordered pop star Michael Jackson to pay $5.3 million to a concert promoter.

The promoter, Marcel Avram, had been seeking $21.2 million from Jackson for pulling out of two millennium concerts in Sydney and Honolulu. Avram said Jackson canceled after he had already been paid $11.2 million, but Jackson testified during the trial that Avram had canceled the dates.

Avram testified that Jackson pulled out of the shows after "dismal" ticket sales for earlier charity concerts in Munich and Seoul.


HONORS FOR MERYL STREEP

An all-star lineup is scheduled to gather in Beverly Hills, Calif., Monday as MORE magazine presents actress Meryl Streep with its first MORE Alpha Woman Award.

The award was designed to recognize "successful, dynamic and spirited women over the age of 40." Streep, 53, is one of the most decorated actresses in Hollywood history. She has been nominated for the Oscar 13 times -- more than any other performer -- and has won twice.

She is nominated for Best Supporting Actress this year for her performance as Susan Orlean -- the author of "The Orchid Thief" -- in "Adaptation." Orlean is scheduled to take part in Monday's presentation.

The guest list for Monday's ceremony also includes Best Actor nominee Adrien Brody ("The Pianist"), as well as Rosanna Arquette, Carrie Fisher, Carol Leifer and Victoria Principal.


STILL SEARCHING FOR 'SUPERMAN'

The short list for "The Man of Steel" just got shorter, as Paul Walker has taken himself out of consideration to star in a new "Superman" movie trilogy.

"The Fast and the Furious" star's decision reportedly leaves producers with just two leading prospects -- Brendan Fraser ("The Mummy") and Matthew Bomer ("The Guiding Light," "All My Children").


HALLE BERRY SHARPENS CLAWS

Daily Variety reported Friday that Warner Bros. has set Halle Berry to star in "Catwoman" later this year.

The paper said no deal was in place, but Berry was expected to come onboard soon. The project began life as a planned spinoff of "Batman Returns," in which Michelle Pfeiffer played the role. Ashley Judd was most recently attached to play "Catwoman," but she left the project to do a play.


MATTHEW PERRY HEADS FOR 'WEST WING'

"Friends" star Matthew Perry will guest-star on two upcoming episodes of the Emmy-winning White House drama "The West Wing."

Perry will show up on April 23 and April 30 as a Republican candidate for White House associate counsel.


MACAULAY CULKIN HEADED FOR SMALL SCREEN

Macaulay Culkin will make his network series debut this spring when he guest-stars on the NBC comedy "Will & Grace."

Culkin ("Home Alone," "Uncle Buck") will appear in an episode titled "May Divorce Be With You," as a seemingly immature young man hired by Karen (Megan Mullally) to argue for her divorce against Will (Eric McCormack).


MONTY READY TO 'DEAL' AGAIN

Original "Let's Make a Deal" host Monty Hall will make a special appearance on NBC's current prime time revival of the classic game show next Tuesday.

Hall is an executive producer of the show, which features President George W. Bush's nephew Billy Bush ("Access Hollywood") as dealmaker-in-chief.


BOX-OFFICE PREVIEW

Teen star Frankie Muniz is expected to score the biggest movie hit of his career this weekend, when "Agent Cody Banks" arrives in theaters.

Muniz ("Malcolm in the Middle") plays an adolescent CIA agent assigned to save the world from evil. The movie is expected to be in a horse race for No. 1 with last week's top box-office draw, "Bringing Down the House," starring Steve Martin and Queen Latifah.

Oscar-winners Tommy Lee Jones and Benicio Del Toro open this weekend in the action-thriller "The Hunted," and Crispin Glover ("Back to the Future," "Charlie's Angels") opens in an update take on the '70s horror movie "Willard."

© 2003 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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