The Fix

Porn star steps up for O'Reilly; Star Jones registers for $11,000 tray; Mary-Kate ditches NYC.


Salon Staff
October 20, 2004 12:00AM (UTC)

Turn On:
You've seen the promos, now you can watch NBC's new reality show "The Biggest Loser" (8 p.m. ET), in which contestants who've struggled with their weight vie to shed spare poundage and earn big bucks. Also on Tuesday night, the first installment in a three-night PBS special on the Great White Way, "Broadway: The American Musical" (check local listings).

Morning Briefing:
Not fit for the kiddies? Alas, it looks like Bill O'Reilly's new children's book, "The O'Reilly Factor for Kids," will go unpromoted by its author for the time being. In the wake of the sexual harassment allegations recently brought against him by an associate producer on his show, O'Reilly has seen fit to cancel scheduled interviews on ABC's "The View," HBO's "Real Time With Bill Maher," and CBS's "The Early Show." "Because of the intense media scrutiny Mr. O'Reilly is currently facing, he and [the book's publisher] HarperCollins have jointly decided to postpone the final media interviews planned to promote 'The O'Reilly Factor for Kids,"' HarperCollins reps said in a statement. "We hope to resume the book promotion with Mr. O'Reilly at a later date and we wish him well during this difficult time." (Reuters)

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Other O'Reilly tidbits: A "former friend" of Andrea Mackris, the woman who has accused Bill O'Reilly of sexual harassment, alleges that Mackris had a crush on O'Reilly, willingly enaged in flirtatious, "intimate" conversation with him and planned to write a tell-all about their relationship. Mackris' lawyer calls the allegations "garbage" (N.Y. Daily News) ... And Vivid Video star Savanna Samson, who was mentioned in Mackris' lawsuit as having appeared on O'Reilly's show shortly before he advised Mackris to buy a vibrator, has seen fit to fan the flames of her renewed fame with this comment: O'Reilly "should have called me. I would have given him phone sex for a lot less than $60 million" (Page Six)

Reaching for the stars: The chutzpah of Star Jones apparently knows no bounds. Not only has she been angling to get vendors to provide goods and services for her wedding for free -- she's also asking guests to pop for extremely expensive gifts. Among the items requested on her various registries: an $11,000 George IV-style silver tray from Tiffany, gilded plates and Baroque-style silverware from Geary's of Beverly Hills, and sheets from Frette costing more than $1,000 a set. Writes Jones on her registry Web site, to which Page Six apparently finagled the password, "We are changing the master bedroom of both our East Hampton home and our New York City home to reflect a 'married couple,' rather than a single-woman fantasy bedroom. Gotta make room for the head of the household!" Without compromising on threadcount, of course. (Page Six)

So much for class: Is Mary-Kate Olsen dropping out of NYU just a few weeks into her freshman year? That's the rumor. "She's moved back to L.A., and might be staying indefinitely," a source tells Lloyd Grove's Lowdown. "She may not go back to school. Ashley says she's not sure if Mary-Kate wants to come back. They talk on the phone all the time." A rep for the Olsens insists that the troubled twin is just taking a quick break to attend to some "personal business" and plans to return to her studies, but the timing of the unscheduled vacation -- just before midterm exams -- has raised suspicions. (Lloyd Grove's Lowdown)

Also: Patti Davis, daughter of late President Ronald Reagan, is suing the Salvation Army for canceling a speech she was scheduled to give at an event sponsored by the group -- and refusing to pay her the cancellation fee specified in her contract -- after learning of her support for stem cell research (Associated Press) ... Kate Winslet swears she hasn't dieted to lose weight and has called rumors that she has "insane" (AP) ... Melissa Etheridge is recovering after surgery for breast cancer and will soon begin chemotherapy. "I still have both of my breasts and whether I will keep them is a bridge I have to cross later," she wrote on her Web site. "What an unexpected journey this is" (AP) ... Al Franken's radio talk show is closing in on Rush Limbaugh's show in New York, according to just-released Arbitron ratings (New York Post) ... The surviving members of Nirvana, Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic, will appear at a rally for John Kerry in Los Angeles (Boston Herald) ... And the buzzy start-up celebrity and culture magazine Radar, founded and edited by Maer Roshan, is being revived (New York Times)

-- Amy Reiter

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