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Entertainment Today: Showbiz News

By KAREN BUTLER, United Press International   |   May 22, 2003 at 3:00 AM   |   Comments

BUFFY LIVES, SPIKE SAVES THE WORLD

Millions watched Buffy and her pals save the world for the last time on the series finale of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer."

The critically acclaimed drama, which had a rabid cult following and was adored by academics for its intelligent writing, character development and use of mythology, went out with a bang -- literally -- after seven seasons Tuesday night.

Reformed vengeance demon Anya (Emma Caulfield) died in battle; Willow (Alyson Hannigan) became a goddess; Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) not only lived, but got what she always dreamed of -- the chance to live a normal life; and vampire Spike (James Marsters) -- God bless his recently installed soul -- sacrificed his own life to save them all after Buffy finally admitted she loved him. Their hometown of Sunnydale, however, was swallowed up shortly after the rest of them escaped.

Although the finale tied up a lot of loose endings, it also left open many possibilities for the main characters to return in a spin-off.

The decision to end the show came after Gellar announced she would hang up her stakes to focus on her new marriage to Freddie Prinze Jr.


JACKMAN TO HOST TONYS TELECAST

Hugh Jackman, star of the two "X-Men" films, will host the 57th annual Tony Awards ceremony next month.

Set to headline the eagerly awaited new musical "The Boy From Oz" on Broadway this fall, Jackman will serve as master of ceremonies for one of the New York theater community's most important nights on June 8 at Radio City Music Hall.

Expected to present awards at the star-studded event are Matthew Broderick, Joey Fatone, Laurence Fishburne, Sarah Jessica Parker and Christopher Reeve.

"The Boy From Oz," the semi-autobiographical of entertainer Peter Allen -- Liza Minnelli's first husband -- marks Jackman's Broadway debut.


McDERMOTT, BOYLE AXED FROM 'PRACTICE'

Dylan McDermott and Lara Flynn Boyle reportedly have been disbarred from "The Practice."

Word from TV Guide Online is that McDermott and Boyle, along with several other cast members, will not be returning to David E. Kelley's legal drama in the fall.

The Web site quotes Kelley as saying, "economic and creative realities" forced him to slim down the cast.

Also gone from the firm will be Kelli Williams, Lisa Gay Hamilton, Marla Sokoloff and Chyler Leigh. Several new faces are expected to be added to the ensemble, which now features just three original cast members: Camryn Manheim, Michael Badalucco and Steve Harris.

McDermott, meanwhile, will make a handful of guest appearances in the fall, noted TV Guide Online.


WAX MUSEUM UNVEILS J-LO STATUE

London's famed Madame Tussaud's wax museum has unveiled its latest creation -- Jennifer Lopez.

British Web site Ananova.com reports the gorgeous statue blushes when visitors to the museum whisper in J-Lo's ears.

Wearing a low cut dress, the "Maid in Manhattan" mannequin is part of a new section at Madame Tussaud's called "Blush."

An interactive party features live actors mingling in the room, along with alternative fashion expert Danny the Tranny. Visitors can be interviewed by a reporter, be made up by a live stylist or hang out in Madonna's exclusive VIP area.

© 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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