Love this humming babe, cruel world. Cherish her.
Who's shooting J.R.?
That would be Gurinder Chadha, the Brit Bend It Like Beckham and Bride & Prejudice director who announced Friday that she's taking the helm of Dallas, which will star John Travolta as villainous oil magnate J.R. Ewing and Jennifer Lopez as his wife, Sue Ellen. Chadha, who'll start shooting in October, is also developing a movie version of TV classic I Dream of Jeannie.
Rapper Nelly has paid $20,000 to settle freelance photog Jerry Livingston's complaint that he was pummeled and otherwise mistreated by the performer's bodyguards at a concert last year in Bridgeport, Conn.
Da Ali G Show comedian Sacha Baron Cohen, who has used his annoying, sub-Mensa alter ego Borat to satirize Kazakstanis as racist drunks, is being defended by one of Kazakstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev's three daughters.
Dariga, who formerly headed the country's main TV channel Khabar, says her nation's decision to ban Cohen's Web site, which has been taken down, did more to harm its global reputation than the site itself. "We should not be afraid of humor and we shouldn't try to control everything," she said.
A family affair
The lovely, lovely Bryce Dallas Howard, who wowed the angels with her star-making turn in The Village, is being wooed by director - and daddy - Ron Howard. Variety says Ron wants to cast her in the Look of Real, an ensemble girl-movie about a group of women in the garment industry scripted by My So-Called Life creator Winnie Holzman.
Paula Abdul, who gives kooky a whole new meaning, is trying to use her spaced-out flower-child positive-vibe thing to develop a slew of syndicated shows for the company behind Entertainment Tonight, which uses her as a "special correspondent." The Hollywood Reporter says there's no info on what the shows will be about, or what level of lunacy they will feature.
A 'Gilmore' exit
Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino, the creative couple behind WB's Gilmore Girls, are leaving the show in May because of contract issues. The lives of Lorelai Gilmore (Lauren Graham) and her lovely, headstrong girl Rory (Alexis Bledel) will now be in the hands of writer-producer David Rosenthal, who'll take the reins for the show's seventh season - which will now be on the WB and UPN combined entity, CW Network.
Brendan Frasier will star in Eric Brevig's 3-D remake of Jules Verne's Journey to the Center of the Earth.
Scamming New York?
Some dude reportedly is being sought for defrauding Manhattan nightspots of tens of thousands of dollars by pretending to be Eva Mendes' brother Marco Mendes, and asking for comped meals and/or using a stolen credit card number to pay for his fine taste. One tipoff: The actress has no bro by that name.
Contact Newsmakers at 215-854-5797 or firstname.lastname@example.org. This article contains information from Inquirer wire services.