The Fix

NBC drops Martha Stewart. Burberry backs Kate Moss. Plus: Is Lindsay Lohan marrying Jared Leto?

Published November 14, 2005 2:15PM (EST)

Morning Briefing:
Kate Moss watch: The inexorable resurrection of Kate Moss' post-cocaine-scandal career continues apace, with Burberry now standing up for Moss after first dropping her from its fall campaign. "There has been so much nonsense in the press about Burberry dropping Kate. Is Kate still part of our family? Absolutely," Burberry's creative director, Christopher Bailey, now says. In one of the few level-headed public statements made so far during the fiasco, Bailey added: "Yes, she has some issues that she probably needs to resolve, but don't we all? She's living in the public eye -- but she's a model, and she's probably the best one ever in the world. And she's a good, good person inside." (Brand Republic via Gawker)

The LeRoy mystery deepens: Author J.T. LeRoy -- the "Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things" writer who has spoken to Salon before -- had an upcoming piece for the New York Times magazine on the cultural effects of HBO's "Deadwood" killed before it made it to publication. The reason? The Times is no longer convinced that LeRoy exists. Sure, LeRoy's actuality has been in question ever since he first appeared in print -- notoriously shy and reclusive, LeRoy has never been photographed publicly. But some time after commissioning the piece, and after publishing another story by LeRoy about Paris Disneyland, editors at the Times magazine got skittish. After a long profile in New York magazine (which also brought the author's existence into question) and then an attack on the Times by Washington Post journalist David Segal, the magazine wanted more proof from LeRoy than an address to send checks to. "They asked me for my passport, my Social Security card," LeRoy told Women's Wear Daily. "I've always played with identity and gender. I understand what [the Times is] saying, but they entered into working with me knowing that ... Just because the Washington Post came after them, why should I be forced to prove who I am? They knew exactly what they were getting when they dealt with me." The magazine also let LeRoy know he wouldn't be writing for it in the future, unless, we assume, he can prove his existence some other way. (WWD)

You're fired, so keep quiet: Hoping to stop disgruntled ex-employees from talking trash about the show, producers of "The Apprentice" (the original, Donald Trump version) are threatening legal action. Two would-be apprentices, Mark (Markus) Garrison and Jennifer Wallen, have spoken badly about the show in public: He says the tricky editing defamed his character; she says Trump is sexist. "As you may know, two 'Apprentice' participants have recently spoken to Lloyd Grove of the Daily News alleging that they were portrayed unfairly in the program," NBC's vice president of business affairs, Lee Straus, wrote in an e-mail now appearing in Grove's column. "These actions constitute a serious breach of the Applicant Agreement ... which provides (in part) that you may not discuss the program publicly or reveal information regarding the show without MBP's [Mark Burnett Productions] and NBC's consent." The memo goes on to explain that the network might be entitled to millions in damages. Meanwhile, Martha Stewart's not being asked back to "The Apprentice" for reasons of her own: low ratings. NBC has passed on ordering a second season of the Stewart-flavored spinoff of the Trump reality show, with an average 6.8 million viewers per episode. (N.Y. Daily News, Hollywood Reporter)

Another show apparently not getting picked up for next season: the persistently near death "Arrested Development." While there's been no official announcement, TV Guide reports that the third-season order for the show has been cut from 22 episodes down to 13. It's a cruel world, as the magazine notes: "How's this for stomach-churning irony: The Bluths got the hook the same day that ABC extended a full-season order to 'Freddie'" If a few grainy shots of a cheap-looking ring are any indication, Lindsay Lohan just might be engaged to Jared Leto. Rumors -- pretty dubious ones, to be fair -- have been brewing about the potential pair for a week, and the sudden appearance of the ring reeks of media hoax, but it's hard to imagine a more fascinating car crash than Leto-Lohan nuptials  Michael Jackson has written a thank-you song to all the fans who stuck by him through his sex abuse trial, and plans to release it with his next album. Talking to the president of fan site, Jackson said, "I can't wait to record it. I wrote it during the trial"  While astronauts Bill McArthur and Valery Tokarev "bobbed up and down and sipped from squeeze pouches," Paul McCartney serenaded them with "Good Day Sunshine" in the first-ever live concert broadcast in space  If there's one impression this quiz from Star magazine wants to leave you with, it's that Britney Spears both can and should leave Kevin Federline as soon as possible -- "Leave Kevin now" is a possible answer to a few different questions, and there are a few variations on "Is Ferderline bad for Spears?" As of Monday morning, over 60 percent of respondents to the online quiz thought she should leave him over his recent partying behavior  "WWE Smackdown!" star Eduardo Gory Guerrero was found dead in his hotel room on Sunday, just hours before he was scheduled to perform, and police don't yet have a cause of death. The wrestler was 38.

Money Quote:
Madonna on her love of dropping "fuck" into conversation: "It just feels so good to scream it out loud, sometimes positively, sometimes negatively. And I just love how it irritates everyone." (3am Girls)

Turn On:
If you prefer Colin Firth's Darcy to all others, the Biography Channel will be airing the 1995 British miniseries version of "Pride and Prejudice" (9 p.m. EDT) over the next three days, and there's a new episode of "Prison Break" (Fox, 9 p.m. EDT).

-- Scott Lamb

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By Salon Staff

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