- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Back to school

Will Ferrell was flashing back to his college days.

The star of “Elf” and “Anchorman” returned to his alma mater to show what he has made of himself — and to show his bare backside, as he did in his comedy “Old School.”

Mr. Ferrell, a graduate of the University of Southern California, hosted the 75th anniversary gala for its School of Cinema-Television on Sunday, commemorating the first college in the country to offer courses in filmmaking, Associated Press reports.

The event opened with the screening of a short silent project that was described as the school’s first student film: It was black-and-white footage of Mr. Ferrell wearing the school’s Trojan mascot headdress and running bare-bottomed around campus.

“It’s amazing what they turn up in those archives,” the actor deadpanned. “For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Will Ferrell. I am a professional entertainer, actor and exhibitionist.”

Although he was there to address the school of cinema and television, the former “Saturday Night Live” regular can’t be counted among that department’s graduates.

“This is such a thrill for me because I’m also a graduate of USC, class of 1990, with a degree in sports information,” Mr. Ferrell quipped.

Arnie terminated?

Will he, or won’t he, be bahk? That is the question.

Variety magazine reports that the draft script for a fourth “Terminator” movie, by “Terminator 3” writers John Brancato and Michael Ferris, is ready and that work on the new film will begin next year.

“T3” director Jonathan Mostow supervised the draft, so all the ideas are in place.

Yet California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is MIA.

According to the Web site Cinemaeye.com, if Ahnuld does return to the set, it will be in a limited role, as there’s likely to be an entirely new Terminator model.

She oughta know

No, it isn’t ironic that Alanis Morissette backed out of a scheduled concert in Indonesia, citing terrorism fears.

Her decision — in the wake of a Sept. 9 attack by a suicide bomber on the Australian embassy — follows similar actions by such superstar acts as Alicia Keys and the British violin group Bond who also canceled their concerts in the capital city of Jakarta.

Miss Morissette had been scheduled to perform Sunday in Jakarta, concert promoter Rini Noor told local television station Metro TV yesterday.

Some more stalwart groups, however — including the British boy band Blue and the German rockers the Scorpions — have ignored the violence and performed in the capital in recent weeks.

Together again?

Pop music superstar Usher and his ex-girlfriend Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas reportedly are back together after spending time together in Las Vegas, the San Francisco Chronicle notes, citing a report from World Entertainment News Network.

According to In Touch magazine, the couple were spotted kissing and cuddling backstage after Usher’s show at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and then spent the following day shopping for jewelry.

Usher has denied speculation that his smash-hit album “Confessionsoffers a candid account of the breakup.

Miss Thomas reportedly has been dating Baltimore Ravens star linebacker Ray Lewis.

In this corner

Former heavyweight boxer Chuck Wepner won the first round of his legal dispute against Sylvester Stallone, although the actor scored a combination punch of his own.

According to AP, a U.S. district judge, Katharine S. Hayden, denied Mr. Stallone’s bid to dismiss the lawsuit, permitting a trial on just one of Mr. Wepner’s claims: that Mr. Stallone inappropriately used Mr. Wepner’s name to promote his “Rocky” films.

The judge knocked out two of Mr. Wepner’s other claims: that the “Rocky” star was unjustly enriched by trading on Mr. Wepner’s life story and that Mr. Wepner suffered by relying on Mr. Stallone’s promises.

“For us, it’s 100 percent victory, since those two claims were tenuous at best,” Mr. Wepner’s lawyer, Anthony G. Mango, said yesterday.

Mr. Stallone’s attorney, Jon Paul Robbins, declined comment. “We’re not going to litigate this in the press,” he said.

Compiled by Scott Galupo from Web and wire reports.

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