Rosie O'Donnell said goodbye to her daytime TV talk show Wednesday with a blend of sentimentality and bravado -- finishing with a capper on a long-running joke about her passion for Tom Cruise.
Less than one week after winning her sixth Daytime Emmy in six years as best talk show host, O'Donnell wrapped production on the show at Rockefeller Center. At the end she surprised the audience with a video clip of Cruise.
"I didn't know how to end the show and I was thinking, who would be the right guy?" said O'Donnell. "Funny, this is who came to mind."
The video showed Cruise mowing a lawn, then walking towards the camera with a tall, cold drink.
"Rosie, I cut your lawn," Cruise said. "Here's your lemonade."
O'Donnell had talked often about the torch she carried for the star of "Risky Business" and "Mission: Impossible," but after she came out as a lesbian, ABC's Diane Sawyer asked her what sense that made.
"I never once said I want him naked in a bed doing the nasty," O'Donnell told Sawyer. "I want him to mow my lawn and get me a lemonade."
The farewell also featured O'Donnell singing in Times Square, and being serenaded by cast members from several Broadway productions, including "Beauty and the Beast" and "The Producers."
Although it was O'Donnell's last original show, there are still some other shows in the can that will run through June 27.
The New York Daily News reported that Richards was stunned to see the size of her behind in the artwork -- because it apparently was digitally manipulated to appear rather larger than the one she sees when she looks in the mirror.
"I slammed on the brakes when I saw it," she said. "I saw it at a bus stop and I thought, 'What the hell did they do to my a--?' Plus I got all these phone calls from my girlfriends saying, 'What did they do to you? You look ridiculous.'"
For the record, Richards wants the world to know the artwork for the movie is an exaggerated version of the real thing.
"They twist the art around," she said. "I didn't approve that."
The four surviving members of the Grateful Dead will reunite for two nights this summer for their first shows since 1995.
Drummers Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann, bassist Phil Lesh and singer/guitarist Bob Weir -- billed as the Other Ones -- will play on Aug. 3 and 4 at the Alpine Valley Music Theatre in East Troy, Wis. The line-up will also feature guitarist Jimmy Herring, and keyboardists Jeff Chimenti and Rob Barraco, and Dead lyricist Robert Hunter is also scheduled to perform.
The event is being billed as Terrapin Station: A Grateful Dead Family Reunion.
Tickets are $44.50 per day, plus 50 cents for the Unbroken Chain and Rex Foundations. Tickets will be available online beginning Thursday through Grateful Dead ticketing (dead.net), and June 8 through Ticketmaster.
MUPPETS FOR SALE
According to a report in Daily Variety, the auction of the Jim Henson Co. may finally happen pretty soon.
New bids are expected from prospective buyers after Memorial Day weekend. A management buyout proposal is also a possibility.
The current owner, EM.TV, first indicated a desire to sell the company in March 2001. The financially troubled German media group hired the investment firm Allen & Co. to conduct an auction, expecting to be rid of the property after just a few months. But events -- including a downturn in the markets and the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks -- conspired against that plan.
Variety reported that at least six companies are interested in the Henson company, including AOL Time Warner, Disney and Viacom.