The Call Sheet sifts through the day's glut of Hollywood news to find the stories even non-industry types can care about. Today: Jennie Garth is heading back to TV, Britney Spears' manager has a strange new client, and Regis announces his send-off guests.
After a scuttled run on the rebooted 90210 -- guess nobody cares about old people! -- original West Bev bitch Jennie Garth is returning to the television to star in an ABC Family pilot called Village People. No it is not about the cowboy and the Indian and all the rest of them. It's actually about the very iVillage-y subject of a "high-powered career woman" who adopts a baby from a teen mom (very hip these days) and then ends up taking in the teen mom also. So it's basically What I Like About You if Amanda Bynes hadn't been Jennie Garth's sister and Nick Zano was a baby instead of Nick Zano. (Or just Nick Zano as a baby.) Seems pretty par for the course for ABC Family, but that's OK. Jennie Garth, you guys! [Deadline]
Apparently not having had his fill of strange-skinned gum demons, Britney Spears' manager Larry Rudolph has signed former Real Housewives of New York problem-person Kelly Bensimon as a client. Yiiiiikes. Presumably, other than helping her deal with a shoe line and a silly book and possibly a new show, Rudolph's main managing duties will include taking her eyeballs out of the toaster every morning and making sure her organs are all wound up for the day before they're put back inside her body. It's a tough job, but evidently someone has to do it. [THR]
Though it stumbled a bit in the beginning and looked to be in danger of a surprising cancellation, Fox's big-money dinosaur procedural Terra Nova has surged in the ratings, jumping 24% in the 18-49 demo last night and adding 17% more overall viewers. Who or what takes the credit for the increase? Probably the show's resident teen Landon Liboiron, who on a recent clear black night, fearing for the show's future, climbed to the top of a tall stone tower and lit the great fire that summons the forces of his old Degrassi: The Next Generation fans to his aid. Horns sounded in the night all the way up to Canada, and then, with a great rumble, the dark masses streamed down from the mountains and out of the forests to come watch Terra Nova. It's a fearsome thing to do, because once summoned it is hard to control Degrassi fans, but Liboiron felt he needed to do it. Hopefully it does not ultimately cause him more harm than good. [EW]
The lineup for Regis Philbin's last week on Live! With Regis and Kelly has been announced and it mostly features a roster of Regis' favorites. Regis' all-star guest list includes: An old hat he lost on a dinner cruise in 1973 and has missed ever since, the nice colored gal who gets him his sandwiches on Tuesdays, some of the grandkids, the divine Ms. Ursula Andress, the Irish Setter from down the street whose name is Baxter or something but who Regis calls Sergeant because he looks like a Sergeant doesn't he Joy?, and Bret Michaels. Well, OK, Bret Michaels is definitely going to be on the show, as will Don Rickles, David Letterman, Donald Trump, and, of course, Kathie Lee Gifford. The other ones... Well, producers have calls out to their people. [THR]
The strangely sexually menacing Mimi Rogers will guest-star in two upcoming episodes of the plainly sexually unsettling Two and a Half Men as Ashton Kutcher's character's mom. She's going to play a renowned primatologist, so there will probably be jokes about monkeys playing with themselves and she'll seduce Jon Cryer or something. Or she'll seduce Ashton Kutcher. Who knows. That show is pretty gross, guys. [Deadline]
Jonathan Franzen says that the upcoming HBO series based on his novel The Corrections will be "like no TV I've ever seen." That's exciting! He also says that minor characters from the novel will be made major characters on the show and that he's added a lot of new material. This had better work, everyone. Don't screw this up. Otherwise they'll never make another show like it and then how will we ever get a Visit from the Goon Squad series created by Tamara Jenkins? (Wouldn't that be great??) This is all on you, guys! [Vulture]
Theater news! Everyone loves theater news. Norbert Leo Butz and Elizabeth Reaser have been cast as the leads in the first-ever New York revival of Paula Vogel's major, Pulitzer-winning play from the '90s How I Learned to Drive, which is beginning in January. We'd always thought that Sandra Bullock would be great as the lead in the play, Lil' Bit, but Reaser works too. Go see this play if you can. [NYT]