IN THE BLACK: Men in Black II zapped its way to the biggest July 4 opening ever, scoring $52.1 million from Friday to Sunday and $87.2 million for the five-day weekend.
REST IN PEACE: Veteran filmmaker John Frankenheimer, who directed such classics as The Manchurian Candidate and Birdman of Alcatraz, died Saturday of a stroke at the age of 72. Frankenheimer also won four Emmys for his prolific TV work.
MALCOLM MOM IN THE MONEY: Malcolm in the Middle mom Jane Kaczmarek, who had been pushing for a big raise, close to signing a deal that will pay her about $100,000 per show for the upcoming fourth season, $150,000 per for the 2003-04 season and retroactive pay for last season, according to the Hollywood Reporter. A typical season consists of 24 episodes.
BLACK AND WHITE? Michael Jackson accusing the recording industry of conspiring to turn a profit at the expense of minority artists. The recording companies, he said, "steal, they cheat, they do everything they can. . .especially against the black artists." Jackson made the remarks Saturday at the Reverend Al Sharpton' National Action Network gathering in Harlem.
MARRIAGE AND THE CITY: Author Candace Bushnell, whose best-selling book Sex and the City was adapted into HBO's hit series, married Charles Askegard July 4 on Nantucket Island in Massachusetts.
GOING TO TOWN: Adam Sandler's latest hit, Mr. Deeds, snagging a TV license deal from the Fox Network and TBS worth an estimated $21.25 million. Both networks will share broadcast duties.
SOME LIKE IT NOT: Veteran Hollywood actor Richard Widmark telling London's Daily Telegraph that Marilyn Monroe was no picnic on set. "I liked Marilyn, but she was God-awful to work with. Impossible, really. She would hide in her dressing room and refuse to come out," he said.
RETREAT! Oscar-winning director Ron Howard aborting plans to film The Alamo for Disney because the studio took too long to pull the project together. The filmmaker may still serve as executive producer on the Western, however, as Disney seeks a new director.
THE BOYS IN BLUE: Colin Farrell snagging an estimated $8 million to play Officer Jim Street in Columbia Pictures' big-screen adaptation of the 1970s cop show S.W.A.T. Samuel L. Jackson will star in the film.
WAKE-UP CALL: Current Inside Edition host Deborah Norville coanchoring CBS' The Early Show with Jane Clayson this week. The stint is widely regarded as a test run for Norville for a more permanent position should the show's ratings take off.
MODEL BEHAVIOR: British tabloid Daily Mirror on Monday appealing a ruling in a London court that awarded supermodel Naomi Campbell damages of $5,360 for invasion of privacy after the paper published a photo of her leaving Narcotics Anonymous.
CABLE CALLING: NBC finalizing a deal with Court TV to broadcast four back-to-back half hours of the cable channel's Forensic Files series to air Sundays at 8 p.m. beginning August 25. In return, Court TV will get an undisclosed license fee and a 30-second spot on the network to advertise one of its regularly scheduled shows.
MOURNED: Famed Celebrity photographer Sid Avery, who captured such legendary Hollywood stars as Humphrey Bogart, Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando in their most private moments, has died of cancer at the age of 83, his family said on Monday.