- The Washington Times - Sunday, October 15, 2006

Ebert back next year

Roger Ebert hopes to return to work in time for two of the film industry’s biggest events next year, Associated Press reports.

In a letter published last week in the Chicago Sun-Times, the Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic and co-host of the syndicated “Ebert & Roeper” television show says he hopes to be fully recovered and working full time early next year — just in time for the Academy Awards and the Cannes Film Festival.

“One thing I’ve discovered is that I love my job more than I thought I did, and I love my wife even more,” he wrote.

Mr. Ebert had surgery June 16 to remove a cancerous growth on his salivary gland. He also had emergency surgery July 1 after a blood vessel burst.

He had undergone cancer surgery three times before the June operation, once in 2002 to remove a malignant tumor on his thyroid gland and twice on his salivary gland the next year.

His first movie review in months ran on Friday. He decided to review the Helen Mirren film “The Queen” after an “Ebert & Roeper” producer brought him a copy of the movie on DVD.

Mr. Ebert plans to continue doing occasional reviews until he’s fully recovered. The 64-year-old critic, who’s now at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, thanked fans and colleagues for their support.

He has been a film critic at the Sun-Times since 1967, winning the Pulitzer Prize for criticism in 1975, the same year he teamed up with Gene Siskel of the rival Chicago Tribune to start their TV show. Mr. Siskel died in 1999, and Mr. Ebert has co-hosted the show with fellow Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper since 2000.

Who’s Daltrey on ‘CSI’?

You hear Roger Daltrey every time you tune into “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.”

Soon you’ll be able to see him, too.

CBS announced that Mr. Daltrey, the lead singer of the legendary rock band The Who, will guest star on an upcoming episode of the series “in a surprise role that will keep viewers guessing.” The network is certainly keeping us guessing — they won’t even say when the episode will air.

Every series in the “CSI” franchise features a theme song by The Who. “Who Are You” has served as the original show’s theme since the series began six years ago. Spinoff “CSI: Miami” has “Won’t Get Fooled Again” as its theme, while the spinoff, “CSI: NY,” features “Baba O’Riley.”

Small screen ‘Prada’

Yet another movie may soon become a television show, Cynopsis.com reports.

According to Variety, Fox TV Studios has picked up the television rights to this summer’s movie hit “The Devil Wears Prada” and will turn the film into a television series for the Fox TV Network.

The proposed series will be developed as a half hour sitcom and written by Robin Schiff. The writer-producer’s last project — “Emily’s Reasons Why Not,” starring Heather Graham — was canceled after only one episode — its pilot — aired.

“Prada,” starring Meryl Streep, opened in theaters June 30 and to date has grossed $124 million at the domestic box office. The film was based on the best-selling 2003 roman-a-clef by Lauren Weisberger.

New man in black

Cynopsis reports on another development deal, this one for NBC.

The network has acquired “Bad Judge,” a new unscripted project in development from producer Gavin Palone and starring former “Saturday Night Live” cast member Jon Lovitz.

As a takeoff of daytime syndicated court shows, “Bad Judge” makes Mr. Lovitz a jurist who presides over real cases. According to Variety, the tagline for the show is “The cases are real. The decision is final. The judge is nuts.”

Compiled by Kelly Jane Torrance from Web, wire and staff reports.

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