News Roundup, Jan. 21: Bobby Brown Hospitalized While in Jail

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Bobby Brown, who began an eight-day sentence for drunken driving last week, was hospitalized Tuesday, according to the Associated Press. The DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia told AP the singer was taken to the hospital around 3 a.m. but would not release Brown‘s medical condition. Brown is eligible for release on Wednesday under a “good time” policy which reduces the jail time by 25 percent for good behavior. The sheriff’s office spokeswoman told AP Brown could be released from custody without having to return to jail.


Famed caricaturist Albert Hirschfeld, who worked seven decades for the New York Times, drawing celebrities ranging from the Marx Brothers to Jay Leno, died in his sleep Monday in his Manhattan home. He was 99.


Now that she doesn’t have to go to jail, Winona Ryder is set to do the comedy Eulogy with Everybody Loves Raymond‘s star Ray Romano. Variety reports the black comedy follows three generations of a dysfunctional family as they come together for the funeral of the family patriarch and let loose all their hidden secrets. The film also stars Debra Winger, Hank Azaria, Monica Potter and Rip Torn.

Getting behind the camera for the first time since his Oscar-winning Braveheart, Mel Gibson‘s new film The Passion is a $25 million biopic starring Jim Caviezel that chronicles the day Jesus Christ was crucified. The project is very hush-hush, but according to Variety, Gibson, a devout Catholic, told Time magazine last week the film is being shot in two languages: Latin, the language of Palestine’s Roman conquerors, and Aramaic, the main language of the region’s Semites 2,000 years ago. Here’s the catch: there will be no subtitles. Gibson told Time, “The audience will have to focus on the visuals.” The privately financed film has yet to find a distributor.


AP reports the Walt Disney Co. settled a $20 million lawsuit filed by a former employee who claims she was fired because she refused to help the company allegedly cheat the IRS. The case was scheduled to go to trial Jan. 27 but was settled last week, according to the Los Angeles Times. The terms were not disclosed.


Despite ABC’s decision to run one of the NFL playoff semifinals during primetime Sunday, NBC’s 60th Annual Golden Globes telecast won the evening’s ratings war despite falling to a six-year low. Variety reports Nielsen numbers showed the Golden Globes “averaged roughly 20 million viewers,” a 15 percent drop-off from 2002 and the smallest turnout for the award show since 1997.

AP reports Madonna will guest star on NBC’s Will & Grace, making her first appearance on a TV series. The show will air during May sweeps. No other details of the episode have been made available, although the show’s star Debra Messing told Entertainment Tonight at the Golden Globes that Madonna would not be playing herself on the episode.

Now that Friends has made the deal to end things for good after its 10th season, NBC is renewing negotiations to develop a spin-off series around Matt LeBlanc‘s character Joey Tribbiani. It’s not a sure thing, as the producers and LeBlanc still need to come up with the right concept for a show–and the right amount of money.


Bob Dylan was nominated for a W.C. Handy award for best blues song of the year for his song “Stepchild.” The Blues Foundation, a nonprofit group that promotes the music genre, announced their nominations in 25 categories, including five nods each to Shemekia Copeland and Magic Slim & the Teardrops.