Hollywood hunk Shemar Moore has broken his silence on the high-profile romances he enjoyed in the 1990s, revealing he had a "wild ride" with Toni Braxton and "fell hard" for Halle Berry. The Criminal Minds actor admits he couldn't believe his luck when the R&B singer asked him out early on in his career.
He tells BET.com, "(Braxton) was my first Hollywood relationship. I was a baby, I did not know s**t. I had just graduated from college, I had no money and I was on (U.S. soap opera) Young and the Restless. She called my agent when she was shooting a video in Miami, and it just went from there. I was like the little kid who found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It was a wild ride with Toni. She would never sing for me, though. That always bothered me."
Moore also explains how he tried to keep his relationship with Berry under wraps since she had just split from her first husband, David Justice.
He adds, "(Berry) was the first woman to really knock my socks off. I fell hard for Halle. A lot of people now know we dated, but we had to keep it hush-hush at the time because she was fresh off her divorce from David Justice. I'm still grateful for that relationship. I was smitten not just because of who she was, but because we were so similar in so many ways. She was biracial, she was kind of going through the same things I was in Hollywood. Toni was a fun ride, but Halle was a necessary experience. It made me much stronger as a man, and knowing the calibre of woman I want in the future."
Britney Spears' estranged husband Kevin Federline shocked audience members at Justin Timberlake's Las Vegas gig on Friday night when he showed up at the concert.
On Thursday, just days after Spears left Las Vegas after spending a lavish weekend with model Isaac Cohen, her two exes arrived in town separately.
Timberlake was in Sin City to perform at the MGM Grand, while Federline was in town to check out the World Extreme Cagefighting matches at the Hard Rock Hotel.
They both were spotted at Tao nightclub on Thursday, where Federline spent most of his time in the VIP section at a table next to some of Timberlake's dinner companions.
According to one club-goer, "He wasn't drinking much and really only talked to a couple of his friends. It seems like he's trying to move on from past Vegas visits where it was all about the bling-bling."
Their paths crossed the following night, when Federline, along with Alyssa Milano, David Hasselhoff, Toni Braxton and Taye Diggs, caught Timberlake's show.
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Kim Cattrall seems to have found something interesting to do on her time off from the hit HBO series Sex and the City. Cattrall and Martha Plimpton will play lesbians in the New York premiere of David Mamet's Boston Marriage at the Public Theater this November, Variety reports. Boston Marriage, a Victorian comedy about two aristocratic lesbians, recently ran at the Donmar Warehouse in London. Sharon Stone had been mentioned to star in a Broadway production of the Mamet play two seasons ago, but it never materialized. Other HBO stars hitting the stage during their series hiatus include The Sopranos' Edie Falco, who is starring in Frankie and Johnny, and Six Feet Under's Michael C. Hall, appearing in Chicago.
Jason Priestley was released from Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis late Saturday morning, The Associated Press reports. The 32-year-old former Beverly Hills, 90210 star spent 12 days in the hospital, recovering from injuries he sustained when his car crashed at Kentucky Speedway on Aug. 11. Doctors say he is expected to make a full recovery.
Still no trial date has been set for Winona Ryder, who was accused of shoplifting from a Saks Fifth Avenue store more than eight months ago. According to Reuters, her lawyers met with the prosecutors and a judge Friday, fueling speculation that a plea bargain was in the works. But after the hastily arranged closed-door meeting, Superior Court Judge Elden Fox instead set Ryder's next pretrial hearing for Sept. 5, where he is expected to set a date for her trial.
There was more trouble on the Romanian set of Nicole Kidman's new film, Cold Mountain. According to Ananova.com, the Romanian daily Evenimentul Zilei reports that Paul Cojocaru, 17, was impaled by a metal spike after falling from a height of two meters while he was cleaning a tent. An investigation is being made into how the accident occurred. The teenager was taken to Floreasca Emergency Hospital, where surgeons removed the spike. Three weeks ago, a young boy trying to get a spot as an extra in the film suffered multiple fractures to the head and shoulder after being crushed in a crowd of people.
Lee Zlotoff, the creator Paramount Television's series MacGyver, closed a seven-figure deal Friday with New Line Cinema to write, direct and produce a feature version of late 1980s series, according to The Hollywood Reporter. There is no deal yet for Richard Dean Anderson, who starred as the secret agent in the series, to reprise his role. There is no script yet, although a plot has been completed for the big-screen version.
A judge ruled last week that Phil Donahue lost the "first dibs" right to buy rerun rights of his former show when his contract with the show's owner expired in 1996, the AP reports. Donahue sued Multimedia Inc., Universal Television Enterprises Inc. and Gannett Co., Inc. in 1997 saying he didn't get the chance to be first to buy the rights to the show when Gannett bought Multimedia in 1995 or when Universal Television bought the rerun rights from Gannett one year later. Donahue might appeal the ruling.
R&B singer Ashanti accepted her entertainer of the year honors at Saturday's Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards, despite complaints from music fans that she didn't deserve it. More than 28,000 signatures were collected on an Internet petition posted at PetitionOnline.com, railing against the decision to bestow Ashanti with the entertainer of the year honor. Her critics complain that she isn't talented enough to deserve the award. Previous winners include Toni Braxton, Mariah Carey, TLC and Jill Scott. The awards show was hosted by Arsenio Hall, Scott and Soul Train host Shemar Moore. Winners were determined by an unspecified group of radio programmers, recording artists and music retail employees.
Troubled rapper Eminem pleaded no contest Monday to two gun-related charges stemming from an incident last year involving the Insane Clown Posse's road manager.
Eminem, whose real name is Marshall Mathers III, was charged with carrying a concealed firearm and brandishing a weapon during an argument with road manager of the rival band Insane Clown Posse outside a Royal Oak, Mich., stereo store in 2000.
The plead comes less than two weeks after Eminem received two years probation on a separate charge of carrying a concealed weapon during a brawl outside a Detroit-area nightclub. He also allegedly pistol-whipped a man he saw kissing his then wife, Kimberly Mathers. They are now divorcing.
Sentencing was schedule for Tuesday, June 5. He faced up to five years in prison, but he will now receive probation for pleading no contest.
VH1 moving beyond the music
VH1, known for its music videos, seems to be replacing the music with more original programming--comedies and dramas, to be exact.
The cable network has announced plans for a full slate of series, reality shows and feature-length films.
"We tried really hard to make sure that all our new shows are fundamentally about music," Lauren Zalanick, VH1's head of original programming, told The Associated Press.
Among some of the new programs is the drama Pulling the Strings, starring James Brolin as an entertainment mogul on the verge of a nervous breakdown. His wife, Barbra Streisand, will co-produce.
VH1 also plans to develop TV movies about MC Hammer and heavy metal rockers Def Leppard.
Looking for Bond
Little-known Scottish actor Gerald Butler may enjoy a license to kill as and when Pierce Brosnan hangs up his Walther PPK.
Several actors have been considered as the new James Bond, including British pop star Robbie Williams, but Butler may be the one to become the sixth actor to portray 007, as reported by Scotland's Daily Record newspaper.
Series producer Barbara Broccoli would like to cast a Scottish actor. The most famous Bond remains Sean Connery, a Scot.
"Gerard is one of the two people Barbara has appointments with," a source told the paper. "They are meeting to discuss replacing Pierce after his final movie."
Brosnan's contract expires after his fourth installment, which will go into production in January 2002.
Butler, who took up acting after earning a law degree from Glasgow University, was seen in last year's Wes Craven's Dracula 2000.
Braxton goes to the chapel
R&B singer Toni Braxton married her love of four years, Keri Lewis, the keyboardist for the group Mint Condition, on Saturday during a private outdoor ceremony.
Former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young officiated the ceremony, as Braxton, 32, and Lewis, 28, exchanged vows in front of 250 guests at the 60-acre Dean Gardens estate in Atlanta.
Guests included singer Monica, rapper Mack 10, Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins and Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas of the R&B group TLC.
The bride wore an ivory satin gown with a notched and beaded bodice, and a beaded train and matching veil designed by Vera Wang. She also wore diamond-crusted gems designed by Stephen Russell, as reported by The Associated Press.
Colombian soap opera saying adios
Wildly popular Colombian soap opera Betty La Fea is winding down after a 1 ½-year run. The show revolves around an accountant, Betty, who wears braces, glasses, has a snorting laugh and facial hair. In a country that prides itself on its beautiful women and beauty contests, the show's success was phenomenal.
After more than 300 episodes, the writers and actors are extremely exhausted and glad to have a break, but fans are worried.
"I'm going to miss it, because it's been a lot of fun," Elkin Tovar, a 35-year-old chauffeur told The Associated Press. "But it will also be a bit of a break, because watching the show so often has become a form of slavery."
The show claimed 80 million viewers worldwide across Latin America and as far away as Hungary and Israel. Betty almost single-handedly rescued the Colombian TV network RCN from financial ruin, even as the country's unemployment is at an all-time low and violence is ripping through the nation.
Robin Hood lives on
USA Network is nearing production on a new reality series, based on super spies, which would bring a modern-day Robin Hood to television.
The series, tentatively called Break-In!, will feature two teams in a race to recover stolen artwork or government secrets and return them to their proper owners. The first to do so wins. The prize is yet to be determined.
The show takes its inspiration from such films as The Pink Panther or Mission: Impossible, during which protagonists execute elaborate plans to retrieve stolen items, Chris Sloan, USA Network's senior VP of reality programming, told Variety.
But the show won't show people how to pull off a crime, he said.
"That's why we're doing the fairly fantastical type of things-we're not breaking into someone's house. You're not going to hear us saying here's how you break in to steal the Oscars."
XFL's painful journey
The fate of the XFL has yet to be determined, but NBC Sports and the World Wrestling Federation are treating the low-rated series as a bad skin blemish they are trying to hide.
The XFL should make it to the 2002 season because "Vince [McMahon, chief of World Wrestling Federation] has the leverage to keep the weekly games on UPN Sunday night and TNN Sunday afternoon," David Carter, a principal in the Los Angeles-based Sports Business Group, told Variety.
The leverage is the Thursday-night WWF Smackdown, which is UPN's highest-rated series by far, and the Monday night Raw Is War on TNN, which is killing the competition on basic cable.
On NBC, the XFL averaged a 3.3 rating, 27% below the network's guarantees to advertisers.
NBC may stay on as an investor, but any idea that the network would switch the XFL Saturday night games to its sister network, CNBC, is just not going to happen.
"CNBC's demographic is the upscale white male executive in his 50s." Carter said. "The only two people in that category who watch XFL games are Vince McMahon and Dick Ebersol," chairman of NBC Sports.
Whatever the series has to do to make it, its going to have to prove it can generate revenues: it lost $40 million during its 2001 season, according to industry estimates.
WGA: Waiting to the last minute
With only nine days left before their contract expires, the Writers Guild of America and the Producers Alliance have yet to reach an agreement. Many insiders are saying the serious negotiations will happen in this final week before the contract expires.
Writers and many others are anxious about a strike because the talks, which resumed April 16, did not extend over the weekend. Companies are preparing to stop taking work from writers beginning next week.
There is a chance that the contract expiration may be extended to coincide with the Screen Actors Guild contract, which expires June 30. Although neither side will comment, other scenarios include the contract being extended only a few days-and only if the negotiations are moving forward in a significant way.
The agreement still boils down to around $100 million over three years, including WGA demands for boosted residuals in cable, video/DVD and foreign TV.
"Dances With Wolves" again
Pacifica Film Development has acquired the motion picture and television rights to Michael Blake's novel Holy Road, his sequel to the 1990 Dances With Wolves. Blake also will pen the screenplay, as he did with Wolves.
Holy Road continues the story of Lt. John Dunbar, now known as Dances With Wolves, who has, after 10 years, become a tribal warrior. When the white man invades once again, abducting his wife and youngest child, he embarks on a daring mission to rescue them.
No word on director or casting, but the novel is scheduled for a Sept. 15 publication. The screenplay should be finished by the end of the summer, depending on the potential strikes.
"Trap" continues on
Those pesky, adorable twins from The Parent Trap are back for more mischief.
Writers Derek Guiley and David Schneiderman will pen the Walt Disney Co.'s straight-to-video sequel to the hit film The Parent Trap, originally released in 1961 and remade in 1998.
This time around, the matchmaking girls have to deal with the perils of high school.
Sometimes all these special events during sweeps months just get in the way. They drive a wedge between you, the viewer, and your favorite shows. But, then again, if it wasn't for the May sweeps, there'd be no season finale cliffhangers. And if there were no season finale cliffhangers … Well, we'd rather not even think about a world that bleak. Instead, let's get ready for some quality time with our favorite shows before the summer reruns start… It's season finale week! But first, some special events:
-- After months of soul-searching and hard prayer seeking a solution to ABC's "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire," CBS may have just found the answer in "Jesus" (9 p.m. EDT/PDT, Sunday and Wednesday). Produced by Lorenzo Minoli, who has brought a slew of Old Testament-themed movies to TNT, "Jesus" promises not only a lavish production, but also a more-modern take on the subject, focusing more on Christ's humanity. Jeremy Sisto ("The '60s") stars along with Gary Oldman as Pilate, and Jacqueline Bisset as Mary. Meanwhile, believing that there may be a chance for a weekly series here if they could just rework the ending a little, a certain CBS executive has been negotiating with Jesus in the desert somewhere for the story rights.
-- Okay, one more special event … and it's a good one. Monday night at 8 p.m. (EDT/PDT), NBC brings you "25 Years of Hits: Arista Records Anniversary Celebration". Lots of "live" (the show was taped months ago) performances from cross-generational superstars such as Carlos Santana, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Sara McLachlan, Annie Lennox, Toni Braxton, and many more. Say no more? Okay then…
-- As for the season finales: Let's start with an inspired effort from "The Drew Carey Show" (9 p.m. EDT/PDT, Wednesday, ABC). Hoping to draw attention to the fact that his show has never won an Emmy, Carey offers up a wheelbarrow load of the things that tend to catch the voters' attention in Very, Very, Very Special Episodes. Every cliché in the book is carted out and thoroughly spoofed. The concept alone is funny enough, as we'll see such time honored award-friendly subject matter as illiteracy, bulimia, and latchkey kids. The cast is truly exceptional, too. Just watch Ryan Stiles (also a standout performer on "Whose Line Is It, Anyway?") as he battles his inner demons.
-- Also on Wednesday, "The West Wing" (9 p.m. EDT/PDT, NBC) wraps up its first season. The series already has been renewed for the fall, so creator/writer Aaron Sorkin uses his considerable powers to leave you wanting more for next season. Highest recommendation, here. It's our favorite show (after "Smackdown!" of course).
-- Knowing where the muscle is in their still-potent Thursday line up, NBC cuts the fat for the sweeps, and serves up a solid three-hour block of "Friends," "Frasier," and "ER."
This is NBC's proverbial kitchen sink, so look for the head-to-head with Regis Philbin to be a battle for the top of the ratings heap. In the lead-off spot, is a special one-hour "Friends" (8 p.m. EDT/PDT, Thursday) brings us a serious pothole for the ongoing saga of Monica (Courteney Cox) and Chandler's (Matthew Perry) impending engagement as Richard (Tom Selleck) returns. It seems Richard is really in love with Monica and (even as Chandler fumbles for the engagement ring in his pocket) wants to offer her everything. That would make Chandler the one hanging from the cliff until next fall.
-- Shocking revelations and wacky misunderstandings abound (what else is new?) in an hour-long "Frasier" (9 p.m. EDT/PDT, Thursday). On the night before her wedding, Daphne (Jane Leeves) longs to confess her love for Niles (David Hyde Pierce) to someone. Unfortunately, she picks Frasier (Kelsey Grammer) as her confessor and, well, you can just imagine the Shakespearean confusion and farcical antics that follow.
-- And finally, looking to regain its No. 1 overall rating one more time, "ER" pulls out the stops to conclude its sixth season. Benton (Eriq La Salle) and Kovac (Goran Visnjic) are flown in to render medical aid in the midst of an ongoing grade school shooting incident, while Carter (Noah Wyle) confronts the staff with a shocking ultimatum. The whopping 23.6 rating garnered for the May 2 "celebrity edition" of "Millionaire" is the number to beat for May. This "ER" might just pull it off.