News Roundup: Sept. 26


Top Story

NBC’s Friends may not be ending things this season, its ninth, after all, especially after the Emmy wins for Jennifer Aniston and for best comedy series. Although the show’s producers and stars have not said anything to the contrary since last February’s announcement that they wanted “a farewell season devoted to concluding the series,” Variety reports some television insiders are saying now the show will come back. One major network exec told Variety, “The Emmy validates what they’re doing. The cast all realizes what a great gig this is. They work 3-1/2 days a week, they’re working with their best friends, and they’re making an ungodly amount of money. As long as the stories are rich and funny, why not come back?” Why not indeed. Time will tell.


Crooner Barry White will undergo a course of maintenance dialysis due to kidney failure from years of high blood pressure, Reuters reports, and is hoping for a kidney transplant. At the request of White’s family, however, no other details regarding his health have been disclosed.


Looks like director Brett Ratner (Red Dragon) beat out Charlie’s Angels‘ director McG (who is too busy with Charlie’s Angels 2) to take the helm of Warner Bros. Pictures’ action-adventure feature Superman, the first-part of a trilogy. Ratner is elated and told The Hollywood Reporter he hopes to direct the sequels as well. Filming may begin as early as April or May of next year.


Pop princess Britney Spears, rapper Nelly, hip-hop queen Missy Elliot and other singers will be appearing in several TV ads warning people against online piracy. The ads, sponsored by the major record labels (who else?), will try to educate people that downloading music from the Internet is illegal. Good luck.

Sex and the City creator Darren Star has set his sights on Southern California’s Pacific Palisades as the center of his next HBO series. He is teaming with writer/director Nicole Holofcener (Lovely & Amazing, Walking and Talking) to develop a dramedy which would revolve around the affluent families that live in the Palisades, as well as the people who work for them.

Opie’s back. Oscar-winning director Ron Howard is moving back into television with a new Fox pilot, tentatively titled Arrested Development. The drama series, which Howard will executive produce, focuses on an Orange County family who loses all their money in an accounting scandal. Must be a Southern California trend going on.


American Idol darling Kelly Clarkson saw her first single “A Moment Like This” shoot to the No.1 spot on the Hot 100 singles chart from Nielsen SoundScan, Reuters reports. Clarkson’s single stole the spot from rapper Nelly’s “Dilemma,” his duet with Destiny Child’s Kelly Rowland, which held No.1 for seven weeks.

Get your guns out. Rock band Guns N’ Roses, lead by singer W. Axl Rose, announced they will go on tour for the first time in North America since 1993. Called the Chinese Democracy World Tour, the show will feature old classics and new songs from their forthcoming album.