- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 23, 2009

Regis on ‘Millionaire’

ABC is bringing back the prime-time version of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” in August, nearly 10 years after the iconic game show changed the face of American television.

Regis Philbin has agreed to return as host of the prime-time revival, which - like the 1999 original - will unfold as a two-week, 11-night event, TVWeek.com reports.

“Millionaire” will air Sunday through Thursday nights at 8 p.m., starting Aug. 9. The show will take a rest on Friday and Saturday. Its grand finale will be Aug. 23.

‘Gardens’ bloom

“Grey Gardens,” HBO’s Kennedy kin biopic, was the network’s fourth-most-watched original premiere movie since 2004, drawing 1.8 million viewers during its April 18 premiere and eventually racking up a total of 2.7 million viewers by the time the weekend was over, notes Broadcast ingcable.com.

Money woes hit HGTV

The nation’s economic problems have changed the mix at the perpetually sunny HGTV.

The cable network that focuses on home style is spending more time on modest properties, Associated Press reports. HGTV president Jim Samples says the network is airing its shows “Property Virgins” and “My First Place” more frequently because viewers can better relate to stories about first-time homebuyers than those seeking vacation getaways.

Two new shows, in fact - “Real Estate Intervention” and “The Unsellables” - focus on fixing down-on-their-luck properties to bring them to market.

Irreplaceable Abdul

Paula Abdul says her contract is up this season on “American Idol” and that no one can ever replace her.

In an interview with Cynthia McFadden, airing tonight on ABC News “Nightline” (11:35, WJLA-ABC7), the former Los Angeles Lakers cheerleader turned ‘80s pop star and “Idol” judge says that she loves the show, especially this season, which has a fourth judge, Kara DioGuardi.

Asked whether she thinks Miss DioGuardi will replace her on the show, Miss Abdul replied, “I don’t think anyone (can). First of all, Kara says, ‘I could never replace you.’ And I said whenever there is change, it’s not about replacing anybody; it’s about possibly moving on.”

Miss Abdul says she has no problem that Miss DioGuardi joined the judges panel - along with herself, Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson - but she also says she wasn’t consulted about the decision beforehand.

c Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports

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