- The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 1, 2006

Latin in Manhattan

The seventh annual Latin Grammy Awards will be broadcast live from Madison Square Garden tonight at 8 on Spanish-language network Univision.

This is the first time New York has hosted the gala event, which honors excellence in Latin music. Previous ceremonies took place in Miami and Los Angeles.

Singer-actress Lucero and salsa superstar Victor Manuelle will serve as hosts. Performers include Colombian pop star Shakira, Puerto Rican pop star Ricky Martin and Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli.

MediaWeek.com reports that the ceremony has attracted some big-name backers — including Clinique, Heineken, McDonald’s, Nissan, Wal-Mart, Washington Mutual and Verizon. Bally Total Fitness, Delta Airlines and Pepsi also signed on as first-time sponsors of the event.

Chase does Gibson

NBC’s “Law & Order” likes its plots ripped from the headlines, and this week’s episode is no exception.

Tomorrow night’s installment, “In Vino Veritas” (airing at 10), has similarities to a story that generated plenty of news a few months back. Comic actor and former “Saturday Night Live” cast member Chevy Chase guest-stars as an actor who blasts into an anti-Semitic tirade after he’s arrested for drunken driving. The plot will be familiar to anyone who remembers — and who doesn’t? — the Mel Gibson scandal from July. Mr. Chase’s character even says some of the same things Mr. Gibson was reported to have said. He asks Detective Nina Cassady (played by Milena Govich, one of this season’s newcomers) “Are you a Jew?” and later makes a lascivious comment about her anatomy.

“Does he know he has the right to remain silent?” asks an incredulous Lt. Anita Van Buren (Emmy winner S. Epatha Merkerson).

The similarities, however, end there. Mr. Chase’s character is covered in blood, and the police soon find a murdered Jewish producer.

The episode doesn’t rank among “L&O;’s” most compelling hours, but those who can’t get enough of Hollywood scandals might want to tune in.

‘The O.C.’ moves on

Scandal of a different sort can be found tonight at 9 when “The O.C.” returns for its fourth season on Fox.

Can Newport Beach (and the series) survive without fan favorite Mischa Barton — whose troubled character, Marissa Cooper, died in a car accident at the end of last season? That tragedy and the anticipation surrounding high school graduation have abruptly thrust her friends into adulthood, including Brown University-bound Summer Roberts (Rachel Bilson from “The Last Kiss”).

But wait…there’s more.

Those who crave even more association with the dishy show can carry traces of it wherever they go. A brand of fragrances dubbed the O.C. for Her and the O.C. for Him has just hit store shelves.

Creative differences?

Biting British comedian Eddie Izzard has left Fox’s hit drama “24” — after just one day of filming.

The Emmy-winning cross-dressing comic has been replaced by another British actor, David Hunt, husband of “Everybody Loves Raymond” star Patricia Heaton, World Entertainment News Network reports.

Mr. Izzard also has been working on his upcoming TV series, “The Riches,” with fellow Brit Minnie Driver. The show was picked up by the FX network in September.

Nielsen on the net

Television and the Internet have become increasingly cozy in recent months. Now one company is trying to help advertisers capitalize on it.

Nielsen Media Research and NetRatings yesterday announced the creation of the NationalTV/Internet Fusion database.

“This product merges information from television and Internet panels into a single data set,” the two companies said. The service combines Nielsen’s National People Meter panel of 30,000 viewers with NetRatings’ NetView panel of 29,000 Internet users.

The new data set will look at what media company Web sites TV viewers are visiting and how well combined TV-Internet campaigns reach consumers. Eventually, the two companies hope to develop a single-sample TV-Internet panel to be used first during the 2007-08 TV season.

Nielsen and NetRatings produced a research report of their April fused data. They found that 40 percent of Americans are more television-centric, 24 percent are more Internet-centric and 15 percent are heavy users of both TV and the Internet.

The remaining 21 percent were light users of both media, and heavy Internet users tended to watch more TV than light users.

Compiled by Kelly Jane Torrance from staff and wire reports.

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