Top Story: Country Music Darlings No More
It's hard for those country music lovers to forgive and forget. The Dixie Chicks are still getting flack for their anti-war comments as audience members at the Academy of Country Music Awards Wednesday night booed at the mention of their names. Reuters reports that instead of showing up at the glitzy Las Vegas ceremony, the three-time nominees performed a song live via satellite from Austin, Texas, but they received a "pretty big negative response," the show's host, Reba McEntire , told reporters backstage afterward. The trio also walked away empty handed. The evening's winners did include Martina McBride for top female vocalist, Kenny Chesney for top male vocalist and record of the year, Toby Keith for entertainer of the year and Alan Jackson for album of the year.
Palme d'Or Race Muddled
As the 2003 Cannes Film Festival nears its end, critics are having a tough time figuring out who the frontrunners are to win the festival's coveted Palme d'Or. "I honestly don't have the slightest idea at this stage," Variety reporter Todd McCarthy told Reuters. "It's been very disappointing. Last year, in comparison, was very strong." Some strong contenders include Lars von Trier's three-hour saga Dogville, Hector Babenco's Carandiru about life in a Latin America jail and the French-Canadian tearjerker The Barbaric Invasions. The awards will be handed out Sunday.
Jackson Can't Handle the Pressure
Michael Jackson was briefly hospitalized Wednesday in Indianapolis for observation, the same day the pop oddity was scheduled to give a deposition in a copyright infringement lawsuit against the Jackson Five, The Associated Press reports. Brian Oxman, an attorney for the Jackson family, told AP the singer "was not feeling well." "He has, in some occasions in the past, not eaten when he should," Oxman said. "He can become very concerned and nervous at depositions. He doesn't like lawsuits, and it makes him ill to have to cope with litigation that people seem to heap on him."
Idol's Seacrest Gets His Own Show
Just as the second season of American Idol comes to an end, host Ryan Seacrest has signed on with 20th Television to develop a one-hour syndicated show, which will, as Seacrest described to The Hollywood Reporter, "marry the newsmagazine and variety show to bring a hybrid of entertainment and information to America." Oh boy!
Roseanne Gets Real
ABC announced Wednesday it will air a 13-episode reality show in July centering around comedian Roseanne Barr as she creates a cooking show, Reuters reports. "In terms of what is she really like now, you are going to get to see. You're going to see Roseanne--the good, the bad, the ugly, the pretty, the everything," ABC Entertainment chairman Lloyd Braun told Reuters. The cooking series will actually be shown on cable network ABC Family.
Mine Workers Join Fight Against Hillbillies
There's even more pressure on CBS to rethink any plans to air the reality show The Real Beverly Hillbillies. AP reports mine workers from West Virginia and Kentucky have now joined the growing legions of protestors--including other major labor unions and 43 members of the House of Representatives from Florida to Texas--who are calling to halt the series which takes an Appalachian family and sets them up in a Beverly Hills mansion. "We think that's practicing bigotry. It's hurtful and painful. It's discrimination of an entire segment of our society," Cecil Roberts, president of the United Mine Workers of America told AP.
Barbie as Elle Woods
Even Barbie gets to be a movie star. Mattel and MGM have partnered to create an "Elle Woods" Barbie doll, patterning it after the Legally Blonde character which was made indelible by actress Reese Witherspoon and which will coincide with the release of the sequel Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde. Ria Freydl, a spokesperson (even Barbie has a publicist) told Newstream.com, "She is proud to be associated with the sequel and hopes her homage to a strong female character like Elle Woods will further the movie's message that you can have both substance--and style."
Role Call: Comic Book: The Movie is Coming!
Miramax Films plans to release the semi-fictional documentary Comic Book: The Movie, starring and directed by Star Wars star Mark Hamill. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Comic Book is an improvised film in the vein of Waiting for Guffman, which follows the antics of the world's biggest comic fan, who has been hired to direct a documentary about his favorite comic book heroes of all time.