News, June 5: Sandler May Join Cruise in “Collateral,” Stewart Writes Open Letter to Fans, “Will & Grace” Actress Pleads No Contest, More…

Top Story: Sandler To Join Cruise in Collateral

Funnyman Adam Sandler is in talks to star opposite Tom Cruise in director Michael Mann‘s drama Collateral for DreamWorks. The story revolves around a cab driver who picks up a passenger, a contract killer who takes him hostage as he travels around Los Angeles to conduct his business. The action all takes place on a single night. If Sandler joins the project, he would play Max the cabbie while Cruise would take on the villainous role. According to Variety, Cruise and Mann have been trying for awhile to find a film to work on together. The pic is expected to begin production in October, before Cruise is set to start working on Mission: Impossible 3.

Stewart Writes Open Letter

Martha Stewart published an open letter in USA Today and on the Internet at on Thursday proclaiming her innocence and encouraging fans to send her email, Reuters reports. The government charged Stewart yesterday with securities fraud and lying to authorities, claiming she interfered with the investigation into the timing of a sale of her ImClone Systems Inc. shares. “I simply returned a call from my stockbroker,” Stewart wrote. “The government’s attempt to criminalize these actions makes no sense to me.”

Will & Grace Actress Pleads No Contest

Will & Grace actress Shelley Morrison, who plays Karen’s maid Rosario on the hit NBC sitcom, pleaded no contest Wednesday to shoplifting about $450 worth of jewelry from a Robinsons-May department store in Los Angeles last April, Reuters reports. The 66-year-old actress was sentenced to one year’s probation and fined $300 for misdemeanor petty theft. Morrison thanked her family and friends for their support during her ordeal and said she was looking forward to resuming work on the next season of the show.

Jennifer Connelly and Husband Expecting

Academy Award-winner Jennifer Connelly and her husband Paul Bettany are expecting a boy in August, Reuters reports. Connelly was supposed to do interviews to promote the new comic book actioner The Hulk, which hits theaters June 20, but a publicist for Universal Pictures says the actress is “on bed rest right now.” The couple starred together in Ron Howard‘s 2001 drama A Beautiful Mind and were married in early January of this year.

Foxx Needs Time in New Orleans Case

A lawyer for actor Jamie Foxx has asked the judge in his case in New Orleans for a continuance, The Associated Press reports. Foxx, who is free on $1,900 bond, was arrested in April on charges of trespassing, disturbing the peace, battery on police officers and resisting arrest. Trouble started when Foxx, his sister and their group were asked to show identification before going into a casino near the French Quarter. Police say the actor, who was in New Orleans to film Unchain My Heart, fought with police after he and his entourage refused to leave.

R. Kelly Can’t Film Video in L.A.

Cook County Judge Vincent Michael Gaughan ruled Wednesday that R&B singer R. Kelly can travel to Los Angeles to attend the BET Awards and perform at an upcoming concert, but cannot go there to film a music video, the AP reports. Kelly, who is free on bond since he was indicted on 21 child pornography charges last June, hasn’t been allowed to leave the Chicago area without a judge’s permission since his indictment. Gaughan said Kelly‘s attorneys presented no argument why he couldn’t produce a video with technology and creative resources in his hometown of Chicago.

Linkin Park Frontman Hospitalized

Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington was admitted to a Los Angeles-area hospital after suffering “an attack of severe back and abdominal pains,” a representative for the band said Wednesday. According to a statement on the band’s Web site, all touring and video shoot plans in Europe have been put on hold this month until Chester fully recovers. “We wish him the best and will keep everyone posted as to his condition.” Linkin Park received a Grammy award for their 2000 debut album Hybrid Theory.

Everclear Wants Moshing To Stop

Everclear singer Art Alexakis told AP Radio he’s tired of seeing girls kicked in the head in mosh pits during concert performances. Alexakis said that while he’s “a little reminiscent for the summer of ’94 just like anyone else,” he’s sick of people getting hurt. The singer says people still mosh at their shows, but they tend to jump more than mosh. “It’s just like, just watch the show,” he said. To keep things interesting for the fans, Alexakis says they’ve been pulling an audience member to play guitar on the single “Santa Monica.”

Role Call: MGM Picks Up Cedric’s Flash

Barbershop‘s Cedric the Entertainer will star and produce Flash for MGM. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the project is described as a comedy with heart centering on Coach Levels (Cedric), who leads a group of athletes both on and off the playing field and forms a tight bond with one of the kids.