Entertainment Today: Show-biz news

By United Press International  |  Oct. 18, 2001 at 4:45 AM
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The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences is hoping maybe the third time will be the charm. It has rescheduled the 53rd annual Primetime Emmy Awards for Nov. 4.

Ceremonies originally scheduled for Sept. 16 were rescheduled for Oct. 7 following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. The October ceremonies were canceled on a few hours' notice, following the announcement that the United States and Britain had launched air strikes against military and terrorist targets in Afghanistan.

The TV academy announced Wednesday that it will hold the ceremonies at the Schubert Theater in Los Angeles on Nov. 4, which is the first Sunday of TV's November sweeps period.

Finding a suitable air-date was a two-pronged problem for CBS. The November primetime schedule is already crowded with high-profile programming for the ratings sweeps, but the network had been counting on the Emmys telecast to provide an opportunity to promote its upcoming shows.

(Thanks to UPI Hollywood Reporter Pat Nason)


Jay Leno's 2001 Harley-Davidson -- festooned with dozens of celebrity autographs -- has fetched a high bid of $360,200 on eBay to raise money for The Twin Towers Fund.

The "Tonight Show" host has collected signatures on the bike from Tom Cruise, Denzel Washington and Nicole Kidman, among others.

The list of celebrities who have signed the bike also includes Nicolas Cage, John Travolta, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, Cuba Gooding Jr., Salma Hayek, Pamela Anderson, Magic Johnson and Terry Bradshaw.

Visitors to eBay's Auction for America have been bidding on the bike, which Leno just bought in July, since last week. On Oct. 10, Leno added a brand new limited edition 2001 Ford Harley-Davidson F-150 SuperCrew to the package. The SuperCrew is the second in a series of trucks jointly developed by Harley-Davidson and Ford.

After verifying that the top bidder has the funds to do the deal, Leno will announce the auction winner on Friday's "Tonight Show."

The list of signatures also includes Arsenio Hall, Leelee Sobieski, Tim Allen, Bill Maher, Mira Sorvino, Ed Harris, David Spade, Martina McBride, Megan Mullally, Michael Richards, Ed Kowalczyk, Drew Carey, Maria Bartiromo, Emeril Lagasse, Samuel L. Jackson, Jennifer Esposito, Michael Douglas, Jessica Alba, Ricky Martin, Jenna Elfman, Breckin Meyer, Billy Bob Thornton, Angelina Jolie, Doug Flutie, James Taylor, Russell Crowe, former Secretary of State Madeline Albright, Adam Sandler, Ellen DeGeneres, Martin Short, James Woods, Jennifer Garner, Ozzy Osbourne, Rodney Dangerfield, Heather Locklear, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, David Schwimmer, Jet Li and Jill Hennessy.

A publicist for NBC said Heather Graham, Kevin Spacey and Leno would sign the bike before it is turned over to the highest bidder.

Images of both vehicles and celebrity signings are posted at nbcmv.com.


Woody Allen, Edward Burns, Spike Lee, Martin Scorsese, Jerry Seinfeld and Kevin Smith are each directing an original short film that will premiere during Saturday's "The Concert for New York City." The films -- which will all celebrate the spirit of New York in some way -- will be shown throughout the evening and will also air live on VH1.

Previously announced music and talent for the show include The Backstreet Boys, Michael J. Fox, Adam Sandler, Mike Myers, Jimmy Fallon, Reese Witherspoon, Ryan Phillippe, Paul Shaffer, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Eric Clapton, Billy Joel, The Who, Bon Jovi, James Taylor, John Mellencamp, Macy Gray, Goo Goo Dolls, Melissa Etheridge, Marc Anthony, Five For Fighting, India.Arie, Jim Carrey, Meg Ryan, Susan Sarandon, David Spade, Julia Stiles, and Denis Leary, John Cusack, and members of New York sports teams.

"The Concert For New York City" will air live on VH1 (at 7 p.m. ET) from Madison Square Garden in New York City. It will benefit the victims of the September 11th attack on New York City and pay tribute to the spirit of New York and the heroism of the rescue workers who worked to save others. Five thousand members of the New York Fire, Police and Rescue crews and their families will be guests of honor at the show.


Comedian Richard Pryor will finally get his due in his hometown of Peoria, Ill.

After months of arguing, the City Council voted 6-5 Tuesday to recognize the town's famous and funny native son with six blocks of Sheridan Road and the first block of Persimmon Street renamed "Richard Pryor Place."

First District Councilman Clyde Gulley Jr. convinced the majority that the city should be proud of Pryor's achievements and not focus on his past drug use or history of domestic violence.

"I'm not focusing on all the bad -- all the negative aspects -- but the good things that Richard Pryor has done for the city of Peoria," he told the Peoria Journal Star.

"Richard Pryor Place" will be located in the center of Peoria's South Side African-American community.

Pryor, 60, suffers from multiple sclerosis.


Last July, the San Francisco Symphony and Opera staged a concert performance of Stephen Sondheim's evil musical "Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street."

Now KQED Television says it will broadcast what a San Francisco Chronicle music critic called "a stunning concert performance of a masterpiece" when it airs "Todd" on Halloween night on the PBS network (check local listings). Starring in the musical will be singer/actress Patty LuPone. Also in the cast is George Hearn, who plays the male lead. "Phantom of the Opera" veterans Lisa Vroman and Davis Gaines are also in the cast, as well as Neil Patrick Harris (TV's Doogie Howser).

(Thanks to UPI Feature Reporter Dennis Daily)


Jeremy Irons has signed on to star in the title role in the upcoming Showtime movie tentatively titled "The F. Scott Fitzgerald Project." The film follows the final months in the life of author F. Scott Fitzgerald as told by Frances Kroll, the young woman who was his secretary at the time. Neve Campbell will star as Frances.

(Web site: sho.com)


Olympic Gold Medalist Oksana Baiul guest stars on Lifetime Television's original drama "Strong Medicine" this Sunday (at 8 p.m. ET/PT).

Demonstrating the skating ability that won her an Olympic Gold medal in 1994, Baiul plays a figure skater who has set her sights on making the U.S. Olympic Figure Skating team, but is diagnosed by Dr. Dana Stowe (Janine Turner) with osteoporosis.

The skating in the episode was choreographed by World Figure Skating Champion Randy Gardner.

Topics: Adam Sandler, Angelina Jolie, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Arsenio Hall, Bill Maher, Billy Bob Thornton, Billy Joel, Cuba Gooding, David Spade, Denis Leary, Denzel Washington, Doug Flutie, Ed Harris, Edward Burns, Ellen DeGeneres, Eric Clapton, Heather Graham, Heather Locklear, James Taylor, James Woods, Janine Turner, Jennifer Esposito, Jennifer Garner, Jeremy Irons, Jerry Seinfeld, Jessica Alba, Jet Li, Jill Hennessy, Jim Carrey, Jimmy Fallon, John Cusack, John Mellencamp, John Travolta, Kevin Smith, Kevin Spacey, Lee Martin, Madeline Albright, Magic Johnson, Marc Anthony, Martin Scorsese, Martin Short, Martina McBride, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, Meg Ryan, Megan Mullally, Melissa Etheridge, Michael Douglas, Michael J. Fox, Mick Jagger, Mike Myers, Neil Patrick Harris, Neve Campbell, Nicole Kidman, Oksana Baiul, Ozzy Osbourne, Randy Gardner, Reese Witherspoon, Richard Pryor, Ricky Martin, Rodney Dangerfield, Russell Crowe, Ryan Phillippe, Salma Hayek, Samuel L. Jackson, Spike Lee, Susan Sarandon, Sweeney Todd, Sylvester Stallone, Terry Bradshaw, Tim Allen, Woody Allen
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