News Roundup: Oct. 12

Top Stories

Smokey Robinson, Sheryl Crowe, Mary J. Blige, Melissa Etheridge and Johnny Lang were among some of the performers at Thursday’s Motown industry bash, Reuters reports. The event raised more than $1.5 million for the medical research and treatment organization City of Hope. Canadian media mogul Edgar Bronfman Jr., executive vice-chairman of Vivendi Universal, was the evening’s honoree.

In Courts

A man arrested in the Netherlands by Dutch authorities is being held over alleged death threats sent to Spice Girl Melanie Chislom, the BBC reports. The singer started receiving threatening and sexually explicit letters last year and received a menacing message on a cassette tape at her London home last week.

An antiques dealer who burglarized actress/ model Jerry Hall’s London home on Sept. 27 has been sentenced to three years in jail, Reuters reports. David Bryce, 32, was convicted Friday of stealing a computer, candlestick and jewelry.

CNN is trying to win the right to film the inquiry into the deaths of hundreds of Dr. Harold Shipman’s patients in Britain, Reuters reports. Shipman, dubbed “Dr. Death,” is connected to the deaths of 466 people.


Dagmar, who appeared on the NBC late-night show Broadway Open House and wasone of television’s first sex symbols, died Tuesday at her home in Ceredo, W. Va., Reuters reports. She was 79. Dagmar also played a nurse on Milton Berle’s Texaco Star Theater, briefly hosted her own TV show, Dagmar’s Canteen on NBC, and was a regular panelist on ABC’s Masquarade Party.


The Screen Actors Guild will present actor Edward Asner with the Lifetime Achievement Award on March 10 during the SAG awards, Reuters reports. TNT will broadcast the event.

In General

The Federal Communications Commission ruled Thursday that public broadcasters can run ads and earn revenues directly from programming, Reuters reports. The order allows public broadcasters to use the advent of digital TV for subsription services. The decision sparked concern that the ruling could open the door to commercialism at the publicly funded stations.

Producer John Wells is in talks to take over producer duties on the Sally Field legal drama The Court. According to Variety, the ABC show is expected to focus on Field‘s character outside her job rather than inside the court room.

The Beirut Film Festival, which wrapped Wednesday, suffered many cancellations from film directors, journalists and guests, Variety reports. U.S.-led attacks on Afghanistan frightened many industry insiders who worried they would be unable to get flights out of Beirut.