Celebrity news

September 04, 2004

'America's Next Top Model' returns

NEW YORK (AP) - "America's Next Top Model" is heading back to the runway. The UPN reality show has announced the cast for its third season of supermodel boot camp.

The new season debuts Sept. 22.

Under the mentoring of Tyra Banks, 14 aspiring models will compete in tests of catwalks, fitness and publicity skills. The contests, according to the show's Web site, will be judged for "both inner and outer beauty."

The models' poise will likely be tested while they live together in a New York City loft under constant surveillance from the show's cameras.

One contestant, Magdalena, 24, says, "I think it's quite possible for me to lose my temper while living with 13 other girls."


Kristi, who is 20 and from St. Louis, says, "I was raised really Christian. I have a lot of family that might be pretty disappointed if I end up naked on TV."

Toccara, a 22 year-old from Dayton, Ohio, is the only plus-size model. She proclaims: "Girls, watch out, 'cause big is in!"

Cruise plays against type in 'Collateral'

VENICE, Italy (AP) - Tom Cruise was playing cold and heartless at the Venice International Film Festival in his hit-man role as Vincent, the devil in a gray tailored suit, in Michael Mann's action-thriller "Collateral."

But "Collateral," which isn't in competition for an award, got a warm greeting Friday at the 61st festival, being held on the small Lido island off central Venice. The festival ends Sept. 11 with an awards ceremony hosted by Sophia Loren.

Cruise plays against type as a psychopathic murderer, while Jamie Foxx is a hapless but goodhearted taxi driver.

Two of the films in competition for the Golden Lion awards - "Rois et Reine" by French director Arnaud Desplechin and "Udalionnyj Dostup" by Svetlana Proskurina of Russia - also were screened Friday.

The incoherent story line of the Russian film led some audience members at a press preview to walk out and others to boo loudly at the end.

Liotta to play alcoholic ex-con on ER

NEW YORK (AP) - "ER" is taking a note from "24" by doing a real-time episode, and is bringing actor Ray Liotta along for the ride.

The episode, to air Nov. 11, will follow every moment of guest star Liotta's hospital visit. He plays an alcoholic ex-con with cirrhosis of the liver and a host of other problems.

The real-time narrative is a first for the NBC emergency room drama. "ER" has previously experimented with different structures, but the series' famous live broadcast in 1997 wasn't in real time.

"In a way, this is the inverse of that," co-producer David Zable told The Associated Press Thursday. "We also have never tracked one patient the whole time through the show."

The trademark "ER" style is one of crosscutting and story lines that intertwine with each passing gurney. The editing allows "ER" to sometimes skip over the uglier or more mundane aspects of emergency room treatment.

Zable, who wrote the Nov. 11 episode, says: "We really had to mine each moment for drama."

The season premiere of "ER," which continues last season's cliffhanger car accident ending, will air Sept. 23.

Stone to get lifetime achievement award

STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) - Oscar-winning director Oliver Stone will receive the Stockholm Lifetime Achievement Award at this year's Stockholm International Film Festival.

Stone, who won an Academy Award for 1989's "Born on the Fourth of July," will receive the award at a prize ceremony in Stockholm on Nov. 18, it was announced Thursday.

His movies also include "Platoon," "JFK," "Natural Born Killers" and the upcoming "Alexander," starring Colin Farrell, Angelina Jolie and Val Kilmer.

"With a fearless exploration of individual lives affected by modern-day America, maverick and rebel Oliver Stone has challenged mainstream norms and created a deeply personal and political cinematic world," the prize jury said.

Stone will be given the Bronze Horse. At 16 pounds, the trophy is touted as "the world's heaviest film prize."

The 15th Stockholm International Film Festival takes place Nov. 18-28. The festival also runs screenings and mini-festivals year-round.

Unwanted fans don't bug Al Yankovic

DU QUOIN, Ill. (AP) - Things got hairy for parody singer "Weird Al" Yankovic as a flock of unwanted fans rushed onstage during his performance at a state fair in southern Illinois.

Green moths swarmed Yankovic, some nesting in his trademark long curly locks.

"My band asked me if I could find a concert where we would be attacked by insects," Yankovic told his audience Wednesday at the Du Quoin State Fair. "I said I would see what I could do."

Yankovic didn't seem bugged by the uninvited guests, though, as he plugged along in the performance to support his recent album, "Poodle Hat."

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