The Fix

Spears confirms pregnancy. Cruise screwing Paramount employees out of jobs? Plus: Time, magazine of the year!

Published May 10, 2006 1:30PM (EDT)

Morning Briefing:
Baby, one more time: Vindicating weeks of not-so-idle speculation by the tabloid press, Britney Spears announced, during a last-minute appearance Tuesday night on "The Late Show With David Letterman," that, yes, she's pregnant with her second baby. Appearing in a black dress that showed off a little bump, she got straight to the point. "Don't worry, Dave, it's not yours," she told Letterman, who responded: "I think that's good news for both of us." (Associated Press)

Paramount in a panic over "M:I 3"? There's more than just schadenfreude material for Tom Cruise haters in the unspectacular opening weekend for "Mission: Impossible III": At Paramount, the studio behind the film, the low numbers may carry actual consequences. Fox 411 reports that on Monday every department at Paramount was asked for possible budget cuts, and a source says, "There's talk of layoffs again." Cruise reportedly hasn't been doing much to help his film's fortunes: A Reuters story on Wednesday says the star hasn't been playing along with companies handling the promotional tie-ins for the film. Casio, for instance, had to recall an enormous shipment of watches intended for the U.S. market after Cruise's production company refused to sign off on the marketing agreement in time. (Fox 411, Reuters)

This year's ASME awards: Time took home its first general excellence award in more than 20 years last night at the American Society of Magazine Editors awards, winning the prize for magazines with a circulation over 2 million. There was no dominating winner as Harper's, New York and the New Yorker each won two awards -- bringing the New Yorker's total number up to 46 wins over the 40 years the awards have been handed out. Surprise entrant the Virginia Quarterly Review also took home two awards, though as Gawker notes, it also had the worst seats in the house, while the Atlantic Monthly was shut out, despite being nominated in eight categories. A full list of winners is here. (N.Y. Times, Gawker,

A Rolling Stones spokeswoman now admits that Keith Richards did indeed undergo surgery for his palm-tree-related head injury -- she'd earlier said he wouldn't need it -- but insists there was only one operation, not two, and that Richards is recovering well and not suffering from any brain damage. (Reuters) ... "Knight Rider" may be making its way back to the big screen, as we reported on Tuesday, but there's no hint that David Hasselhoff will be reviving his role as Michael Knight; a source tells E! Online that he's not involved with the project at all. (E! Online) ... Officials in Singapore have banned anyone under 16 from seeing "The Da Vinci Code," worried that young people will take the movie as fact, not fiction. (Associated Press) ... Online betting sites tend to agree with Simon Cowell, heavily favoring Chris Daughtry or Taylor Hicks to become the next "American Idol." (Wagerweb) ... Fox is the latest network to sign up with iTunes, and is now offering "24," "Prison Break," "The Shield" and other shows for download. (Hollywood Reporter) ... Franz Ferdinand frontman Alex Kapranos is publishing his first book: a collection of food columns he has written for the Guardian newspaper. (NME)

Turn On:
The 20th season of "American Masters" (PBS, check local listings) debuts with a show devoted to director John Ford and actor John Wayne, and IFC is showing Wong Kar-Wai's smoldering "In the Mood for Love" (IFC, 7:20 p.m. EDT).

-- Scott Lamb

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By Salon Staff

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