WIZARDS OF THE WEEK: Good news if you like the films better than the books: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 had its London (aka hometown) premiere, and all of the major players were dressed to the nine-and-three-quarters! Emma Watson went for a peekaboo lace number, which is funny, since y'all were so sweetly concerned before that Hermione's whosits had been flashed all over the Internet. It turns out that lowly muggles sometimes resort to Photoshop to cast spells on unsuspecting browsers. (We're sticking to a better brand of sneak peek over here.)
Read on for more of the week's biggest stories:
SEMIFINALIST OF THE WEEK: Bristol Palin, who's remained solidly in last place throughout much of Dancing With the Star's 11th season, has progressed into Monday's semifinals. Those who are wondering if ABC has rigged the results to keep people tuning in for more Palimania have a point—except for the fact that all those people who supposedly need to be tricked into tuning in might just be picking up the phone all by themselves...with cup of tea in hand?
SPLIT OF THE WEEK: Always sorry to hear about one of these, especially when a child carried to term all throughout the 2005-6 awards season is involved. There will be no repeat: Rachel Weisz and director hubby Darren Aronofsky have split up, just as his Black Swan is starting to attract Oscar buzz with honey.
ENGAGEMENT OF THE WEEK: Congratulations to Karina Smirnoff, who's suffered through living with Mario Lopez, being engaged to Maks "the Mouth" Chmerkovskiy and partnering The Situation. We hope she has finally hit a homerun with MLB pitcher Brad Penny.
SONG OF THE WEEK: "Country Strong," sung live by Gwyneth Paltrow at the 44th CMA Awards, is now the most overhyped title track of all time for any movie that isn't even coming out until Christmas. At least Gwyneth's wobbly debut didn't completely overshadow the night's most notable accomplishments: Miranda Lambert won the most awards and LeAnn Rimes provided the most information about her holiday plans and E!'s horribleness.
CONCERN OF THE WEEK: Demi Lovato's well-being is still the topic du jour, with those close to her being careful to share only what is not wrong with the actress (i.e. no teen pregnancy or drug or alcohol problem) and give vague prognostications about her recovery. The Disney Channel seems to be trying to give her enough space and time to get better. Time will tell how true the Mouse House's intentions are.
WE THE PEOPLE: The Twilight Saga: Eclipse is the most-nominated bit of pop culture heading into the People's Choice Awards, while Robert Downey Jr., Grey's Anatomy and E! made respectable showings, as well.
OVERCOOKED BEEF: Kanye West's choice is simple: stay in the house all day, or go outside and be asked about Taylor Swift and George W. Bush. The rapper, whose latest album is getting rave reviews but will not be sampled by a Today show audience, most recently faced off with Matt Lauer, who was fresh from grilling the U.S.' 43rd president about his legacy and his recollections of super-important issues...like Kanye West.
SOUTHERN GENTLEMAN: Billy Ray Cyrus walked out of a radio interview when the discussion turned to his divorce.
UNREAL ESTATE: Nicolas Cage's quirkily furnished home, which he bought for $35 million and lost to foreclosure, was finally snatched up by an anonymous buyer for $10.5 million in cash...Lenny Kravitz's Brangelina-adjacent New Orleans cottage is yours for $775,000...Christina Aguilera's premarital manse in the Hollywood Hills still on sale, now for $5,995,000.
GLORY DAYS: Dakota Fanning was crowned homecoming queen (in 1992, judging by her outfit).
WEDDING BELLS: Girls Gone Wild founder Joe Francis agreed to go home to the same pair of breasts for the rest of his life...Hulk Hogan took another step toward remarriage... Jessica Simpson doesn't seem upset about Nick Lachey's engagement...Rick Fox and Eliza Dushku have talked about tying the knot.
BABY TALK: Vera Farmiga and hubby Renn Hawkey welcomed a daughter, their second child...Carrie Prejean and hubby Kyle Boller expecting their first...Pink is officially being bumpwatched...Miranda Kerris in the bloom of pregnancy.
COVERAGE: Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett has not been skiing in a bikini recently, but even old pics of her are good enough for Playboy...Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp are both locked away in France...Angelina, ever fashionable...Eminem menaces Rolling Stone readers...Taylor Momsen's heavy artillery.
TV LAND: Conan premiered on TBS, to mixed reviews but great ratings...Joe Jonas blogged for E! about his 90210 debut...The Simpsons is headed for season 23...Merry Christmas from Glee!...Keith Olbermann quickly unsuspended from MSNBC...Parks and Recreation will be back...Tina Fey awarded the Mark Twain Prize for Humor...Paris Hilton is the voice of an ABC Family movie pooch...Justin Bieber snuffed out on South Park...What hath Pat Sajak wrought?...Portia De Rossi down for same-sex Dancing With the Stars?...Weeds finale sneak peek...Janet Jackson's bad Good Times experience...Gene Shalit signs off from Today...Check out Robert Downey Jr. as Mr. Peanut!...It's a Wheel of Fortune miracle!...Nancy O'Dell to be the new Mary Hart on Entertainment Tonight...L.A. County school district says "no thanks" to Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution...Daniel Radcliffe traded wands for fangs on The Simpsons...SPOILER ZONE!
SCREENPLAY: Malin Akerman perpetuates the Jennifer Aniston-goes-topless rumors...Bella and Edward honeymooning in Brazil...New Tron: Legacy trailer...Essential Expendables bonus clip!...Golden Globes will give the Cecil B. DeMille Award to Robert De Niro...The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo director disses U.S. counterpart...Being Adam Sandler's friend is fun!...All about the Spider-Man reboot...Holiday Movie Guide!
MUSICAL NOTES: Crystal Bowersox album announced...Debate over autheniticity of new MIchael Jackson album continues...Akon, Lenny Kravitz and 50 Cent are along for the ride...Big night for Nelly Furtado at the Latin Grammys...Fire destroys part of Neil Young's warehouse (not the Harvest part, we hope)...Miley Cyrus did her usual sexy thing in Germany and Spain...Lady Gaga reigns in absentia at MTV Europe Awards.
CIVIL WAR: Mel Gibson playing catch-up with child support while arming himself for the revolution...Samantha Ronson sued for fatal dog attack...Gerard Butler sued...Gordon Ramsay turns to the fourth estate to make a point... Nancy Grace settles up with scorned family.
UBIQUITY IS BLISS: The Kardashian sisses were everywhere except their own Mastercard party this week, including The Apprentice, The Tonight Show, Beach Bunny swimwear ads and more. And pretty soon, Kourtney Kardashian is going to be on One Life to Live and ringing in the new year for E! with Party Girl and...maybe you!
GET WELL SOON: Lindsay Lohan is now staying at a Betty Ford-affiliated transitional home and talking to her dad again...Lily Allen laid up with blood poisoning after suffering a miscarriage...Justin Bieber takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin...Jane Fonda successfully treated for breast cancer...Butch "Eddie Munster" Patrick is in rehab...Zsa Zsa Gabor hospitalized with a blood clot.
FAREWELL: Dino De Laurentiis, Oscar-winning producer of Italian classics like La Strada and more than 150 Hollywood films, died at 91.
POSTSCRIPT: Huge turnout at public memorial for The Bachelorette's Julien Hug...Family of late Storm Chasers star Matt Hughes speaks out...Sharon Murphy penning a book about daughter Brittany Murphy as the first anniversary of her death approaches...Shannen Doherty mourning the loss of her father, John.
RUMOR PATROL: Very married Food Network hottie Giada De Laurentiis and John Mayer both adamantly deny that they're shooting their own private sequel to Like Water for Chocolate...Hayden Christensen and Rachel Bilson are hanging out, but not back together...The Jonas Brothers are still related together, despite their show being canceled...Sophia Bush is not planning to marry yet another One Tree Hill costar just yet...John Travolta and Kelly Preston have indeed already named their in-utero son Benjamin.
PRODUCT PLACEMENT: David Beckham to wear his own underwear pretty soon.
SEEN: Boobs bouncing at the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show...Tom Cruise doing his own stunts in Dubai...Christina Aguilera and Burlesque set assistant Matthew D. Rutler hanging out at Soho House in West Hollywood.