Mostly Martha: Today the judge told the jury in the Martha Stewart case that they shouldn't watch news reports about the trial, or read stories in the paper about it. He didn't mention whether they should forgo the Food Network. (AP)
Jerry Lewis will return to Vegas: After a three-month stay in the hospital to wean himself off steroids, the funny man has shed 50 pounds and is making plans to hit the stage once again. (BBC)
Barbra and Dustin to play Ben Stiller's parents? If all goes as rumored, the sequel to "Meet the Parents" (to be called "Meet the Fockers") might star Streisand and Hoffman as parents of the beleaguered Ben. (Playbill)
Tom and Nicole in a tussle? The Mirror is reporting that there was a bit of a row after the Golden Globes when Nicole Kidman went up to her ex and angrily told him to stop sending her text messages. According to the tabloid, Cruise said, "Not here, Nicole!" and moved on. (U.K. Mirror)
Jack Paar has left the stage: The father of all talk show hosts died today, and perhaps, instead of a moment of silence, it would be more appropriate to talk to someone fascinating in his honor. (AP)
-- Karen Croft
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Last night, Dennis Miller kicked off his eponymous new TV show on CNBC by cuddling with a chimp -- "not a monkey. Monkeys have tails ... to tell," he said later in one of the evening's many, many head-scratching moments -- and making a few promises:
"I believe you want someone to get incensed for you," he told his audience, explaining that the world had devolved into "right vs. wrong" and that he, Dennis Miller, intended to offer a special brand of "fair and unbalanced" TV. Note to Fox: He wants you to sue him, is in fact desperate for the publicity boost. He went so far as to accuse Fox of still owing him $12,000 in back pay (Miller had a part-time gig at Fox before CNBC), and offering to settle the dispute by donating $6,000 to a charity if Fox chief Roger Ailes did the same. If Ailes won't, Miller suggested he'd sue.
"I will let people talk until they're all talked out," Miller vowed, though moments later he was interrupting Arnold Schwarzenegger to gush about how very JFK-like he is and Naomi Wolf to prevent her from continuing to mop the floor with fellow guests David Horowitz and David Frum. (Wolf, by the way, kicked ass. In one of the evening's best moments, she asked Miller if he'd read the paper this morning. "No," replied Miller. She gave him a look. Miller sputters, "I was reading your bio, which was arduous." What a host!)
"The American experiment appears to be imploding," Miller later said ominously, adding, "I believe that there's a common-sense revolution coming in this country, folks" -- the chimp wanders over -- "I'd like this to be headquarters."
And while Miller really needs no help in letting you know what sort of insane inanities we might expect from him in the precious weeks before his show is canceled, it seemed, in the spirit of letting people talk until they're all talked out, only fair to recall a few of his choicer comments from the recent past:
"If you want somebody to repair your roads, educate your kids, or purify your water supply, you may want to turn to private enterprise, but if you want massive f***loads of your enemies wiped out in record time, Uncle Sam is the man for you."
"The French, you might as well gas up the dinghy and go fishing with Fredo because you are dead to me, okay. You know something? These pricks are now putting -- they're putting swastikas on our flag in France. You've got all those boys buried in Normandy. And after we had the good taste to chisel the armpit hair off the Statue of Liberty you gave us, you know something, I always thought that tint was oxidized copper. Little did I know it was green with envy."
"Listen, I would call the French scum bags, but that, of course, would be a disservice to bags filled with scum."
"I don't know what I think of George W. Bush when he first got in, but I've grown fond of the man, and maybe it's the times we live in. They say he's not an environmentalist. But every time I see his ranch on TV, it looks pretty nice. You know something, if we all took care of our own, we'd have a great environment."
"As for what many are calling racial profiling in the aftermath of September 11th, well, get ready to be pissed off, you ACLU-F***ing-Morons, we're dealing with a massive threat and limited manpower, so, you want them to check everybody out equally? Sure, fine okay, but let's at least compromise and put the Swedish dwarf a little further down the list than the Iraqi explosives expert carrying a Belgian passport with more eraser marks on it than Kid Rock's trig final."
"There's a lot of differing data [about global warming], but as far as I can gather, over the last hundred years the temperature on this planet has gone up 1.8 degrees. Am I the only one who finds that amazingly stable? I could go back to my hotel room tonight and futz with the thermostat for three to four hours. I could not detect that difference."
"I'll say this about the war protesters: At least most of them are only putting duct tape across their mouths so I can still tell the rest of them to blow it out their ass."
Oh, Oscar: The nominees have been announced. "Return of the King" snagged 11 nods and "Master and Commander" 10. (Oscars.com)
Big, fat Raspberry: Ben Affleck, Jennifer Lopez and "Gigli" are nominated for Razzie awards for worst actor, worst actress, worst on-screen couple and worst flick. (Razzies.com)
Drewhaha: Journalists get ticked when Drew Barrymore hops on Wesley Clark's media bus and tried to monopolize candidate. (Reliable Source)
With reporting by Christopher Farah