- The Washington Times - Friday, June 26, 2009

Atlanta ‘Wives’ return

Just when you thought the “Real Housewives” drama was ending — after the table-throwing finale of the hit series’ New Jersey franchise — Bravo has announced “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” will return for its second season at 10 p.m. Tuesday.

Back for season two are aspiring country singer Kim Zolciak, entrepreneur Lisa Wu-Hartwell, the outspoken NeNe Leakes and budding fashion designer Sheree Whitfield, People.com reports.

Meanwhile, Kandi Burruss, a Grammy-winning singer-songwriter and former member of the ‘90s R&B group Xscape, will join the mix, becoming the official fifth cast mate, replacing DeShawn Snow. According to the network, the newest housewife’s story line will involve balancing wedding planning, writing and recording a new album as a solo artist, and being a mom. Miss Burruss is friends with Miss Wu-Hartwell.

As for the show’s veterans, Bravo notes that upcoming Atlanta episodes will document the development of Miss Whitfield’s She by Sheree fashion line and her dating life, Miss Zolciak’s life after breaking up with married beau “Big Poppa,” and Miss Leakes’ upcoming self-help book for women.

‘Talent’ tops Tuesday

The two-hour season premiere of “America’s Got Talent 4” pulled in 11.3 million viewers for a first-place victory Tuesday, giving NBC an easy win for the night, Broadcastingcable.com reports.

Its season debut began with 10.3 million viewers, and over the course of the two hours, it attracted 12.8 million viewers overall.

Babs mad over aging ad

Barbara Walters may have been around for a while, but that doesn’t mean she endorses every anti-aging pill on the planet.

According to TMZ.com, Miss Walters is miffed over something called Exilatrol for using her picture in one of its online ads. Next to her photo it says, “As seen on Barbara Walters and 60 Minutes.”

She made her displeasure known via Twitter, saying, “If u see ads for products with Resveratrol showing my photo and name they are false.”

“The View” founder and veteran broadcaster talked about resveratrol, an ingredient in Exilatrol, in an anti-aging special in 2008 — but she has never endorsed any product, TMZ notes.

Suit disputed

We’re not quite done with news about “The View.”

Another member of the show’s panel, co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck, says a claim that she plagiarized parts of her best-selling diet book is “without merit.”

Mrs. Hasselbeck defended her book “The G-Free Diet: A Gluten-Free Survival Guide” on Wednesday, speaking to the camera briefly just before the first break on the ABC daytime show.

Susan Hassett, a self-published author on Cape Cod, claims in the lawsuit, filed in Massachusetts, that Mrs. Hasselbeck lifted content from her book on celiac disease “word for word.” It doesn’t cite specific examples, Associated Press reports.

The lawsuit also says the books have a similar organization and chapter format.

Miss Hassett says she sent Mrs. Hasselbeck her book as a courtesy after Mrs. Hasselbeck disclosed las year that she had the digestive disorder.

Weekend watch

BET Awards ‘09 (8 p.m. Sunday, BET) — Jamie Foxx hosts the ninth annual ceremony honoring blacks and other minorities for achievements in music, acting, sports and other fields of entertainment over the past year. Performers include Kanye West, Beyonce, Queen Latifah, Soulja Boy, Keri Hilson, Mary Mary, Ne-Yo, Maxwell, Fabolous, T-Pain and Keyshia Cole. Also slated to appear: The O’Jays, Alicia Keys, Wyclef Jean, Tyra Banks, Taraji P. Henderson, Idris Elba, Sherri Shepherd, Anthony Anderson, Paula Patton, Estelle, LeToya Luckett, Nichelle Nichols, Keke Palmer, Ray J, Snoop Dogg, Ving Rhames, Zoe Saldana and Marlon Wayans. Airing live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles.

Unsung (9 p.m. Sunday, TV One) — The acclaimed four-part series wraps with perhaps its most-talked-about subject — the life and tragic downfall of Florence Ballard, the original lead singer of Motown’s legendary Supremes.

Hung (10 p.m. Sunday, HBO) — Series premiere. The premium cable biggie’s attempt to weave a story around one man’s effort to improve his luck by using his most prominent feature works — surprisingly — thanks to a clever, engaging script by Colette Burson and Dmitry Lipkin and the strength of its leads. Thomas Jane is Ray Decker, a former varsity basketball standout at Detroit’s West Lakefield High School who seemed destined for a pro career. Instead, he returns to West Lakefield as a teacher and coach of his former team, now on an unprecedented losing streak. Underpaid and embittered that his wife of 20 years (Anne Heche) left him for her dermatologist (Eddie Jemison), Ray also is underinsured — which he quickly learns when fire damages his run-down lakeside home. However, things begin looking up when he attends a self-help class where the mantra is to identify a personal “winning tool” to market for financial success. He does just that, with the help of Tanya (Jane Adams) a fellow classmate and would-be poet. Oscar winner Alexander Payne (“Sideways”) directs.

Written and compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from staff, Web and wire reports.

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