Jennifer sues photog, burns wedding dress: Jennifer Aniston is suing a photographer over some topless pictures he took of her at home. The suit says that paparazzo Peter Brandt used "a high-powered telephoto lens" to get shots of Aniston topless at her Malibu, Calif., home -- in fact, the suit alleges he took the images from more than a mile away. Brandt contends that such long-distance shots are "impossible ... unless you have something from NASA." Aniston already has a restraining order in the U.K. barring publication of Brandt's photos there, and has sent out an aggressive letter to warn U.S. magazines that running the photos would open them up to legal action. Also, according to what seems like a highly speculative report in the British magazine Grazia, Aniston recently had a cleansing ritual on the beach near her place, burning her wedding dress, letters from ex-husband Brad Pitt, and T-shirts and CDs belonging to him, all while "laughing and sipping champagne." (Los Angeles Times, Smoking Gun, Softpedia)
Why adopt when you can marry? USA Today is wondering why Brad Pitt, if he wants to adopt Angelina Jolie's kids so bad, doesn't just marry her. "This is not the easiest way of doing things," David Baum, president of the Academy of California Adoption Lawyers, tells the paper. "Frequently what you do if you are in a relationship with someone and you want to adopt their children, you marry them and do a step-parent adoption." California laws make it much more difficult to file for adoption as a second parent, involving more money and far more time -- Pitt's living conditions will have to be inspected, and he'll need letters of reference testifying to his abilities as a caregiver. Janice Min, editor of Us Weekly, tells the paper that there may be a very good reason for the Pitt-Jolies to take on the extra paperwork: "These are two people for whom marriage hasn't necessarily worked out, especially for Angelina." (USA Today)
Stern promises filth: With his migration from FCC-controlled air space to the free range of satellite radio coming up next month, Howard Stern is vowing to get dirtier than ever before. In a long interview in New York magazine, Stern says the censure of the FCC had long been getting him down -- he's been fined at minimum $2.5 million -- though he says, "I dont think theres a fucking thing I ever did that was indecent." The move to satellite is going to be a renaissance of all things Howard: Plans include eavesdropping on conversations between clients and prostitutes at the Bunny Ranch bordello in Nevada, a quiz show called "I Want to Fuck a Porn Star," on-air phone sex, and a send-up of "The View" done by four crack-addicted prostitutes. "Wouldnt it be brilliant if my audience could all lie down at night together and come together?" Stern wonders aloud for the magazine. "Cum together?" (N.Y. Post via Fox News, New York)
Biting the hand that feeds, and purchases expensive watches: Jessica Simpson's personal assistant, CaCee Cobb, is rumored to be taking sides in Simpson's split with husband Nick Lachey -- against her employer. "CaCee can't get past the fact that Jessica cheated," a spy tells the New York Daily News. "She feels badly for Nick and is very vocal about missing him. She saw Jessica abuse him all along. Ever since 'Dukes of Hazzard,' Jessica hasn't been good to Nick, and no one saw this more clearly then CaCee." The talk has been that Simpson had flings with "Dukes" costar Johnny Knoxville, as well as with Bam Margera from "Jackass" and Maroon 5's Adam Levine. On Monday, Simpson P.R. rep Rob Shuter denied all of it -- but even the denial reads almost as a reminder to Cobb about where her loyalties should lie. "Saturday night was CaCee's birthday," he told the paper. "We all had dinner and then went out to the Roosevelt Hotel [in Los Angeles]. Jess paid for everything. Jess also bought CaCee a vintage Rolex watch. Jess and CaCee love each other." (N.Y. Daily News)
Tag team replaces Jennings: ABC has finally announced its replacement for Peter Jennings on "World News Tonight" -- two replacements actually: Elizabeth Vargas and Bob Woodruff will become the permanent co-anchors of the show starting Jan. 3. It's not a huge surprise -- Woodruff and Vargas have been part of the lineup of anchors filling in since Jennings' death in August -- but it's a blow to "Good Morning America" host Charlie Gibson, who'd been widely thought to be the likely replacement. Sources tell the New York Post that ABC originally wanted a three-anchor format, à la the new "Nightline," but Gibson was holding out for a three-year deal. (Zap2It, N.Y. Post)
Comedy Central has decided to air the unfinished footage Dave Chappelle shot for his series "Chappelle's Show" before he went AWOL in May and abandoned the show, but says it's now even more unlikely the show will ever return in its full form. (Hollywood Reporter) ... Star is reporting that Eminem is planning to marry ex-wife Kim Mathers again. "Em told me, 'I might as well marry her again. For some reason, we seem to be stuck with each other for life,'" a friend tells the magazine. "It looks like they're getting remarried after the new year." (Star magazine) ... Robbie Williams has won "substantial" libel damages against a slew of tabloids in the U.K. for claiming that he's secretly gay. (BBC) ... The wedding banns for Elton John's marriage to David Furnish went up yesterday at Maidenhead Town Hall, and the ceremony is now officially set for Dec. 21 at the Windsor Guildhall, where Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles were hitched back in April. (3 a.m. Girls) ... A date was set on Monday for the murder trial of legendary music producer Phil Spector -- the case will begin on April 24 of next year. (Monsters and Critics) ... Somehow, we don't think these photos of Charlize Theron apparently taking a hit of something from an apple bong is going to have the same effect as those shots of Kate Moss doing lines. (DumpALink.com) ... Nothing captures the spirit of Christmas like this card from the Gottis. (A Socialite's Life)
Specials tonight: The seasonal standby "A Charlie Brown Christmas" (ABC, 8 p.m. EST) and "The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show" (CBS, 10 p.m. EST), in which Tyra Banks takes her final turn on the runway before retiring and Heidi Klum takes her first since having her baby. Also, it's the series premiere of "Daisy Does America" (TBS, 10 p.m. EST), executive-produced by David and Courteney Cox Arquette, and the season premiere of both "Fear Factor" (NBC, 8 p.m. EST) and "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" (Bravo, 10 p.m. EST).
-- Scott Lamb