Mario Lopez

Barry King/WireImage.com

This Saved by the Bell alum is giving celebrity journalism the old college try.

Mario Lopez, who has been pulling double duty as a correspondent and cohost of Extra's weekend edition since January 2007, has been tapped to replace weekday anchor Mark McGrath on the syndicated entertainment news magazine show when it kicks off its 15th season starting Sept. 15.

Warner Bros Television announced today that Lopez was tapped after McGrath decided to get back together with Sugar Ray, which is working on a new album set for release in early 2009.

In other casting news:

  • Sopranos alum Vincent "Big Pussy" Pastore is set for a guest appearance on General Hospital beginning in October, playing—what else?—a mobster. As Entertainment Weekly reports, Pastore's Maximus Giambetti arrives in Port Charles to check up on his two wiseguy sons, only to discover they're not as high on the food chain as he thought.
  • According to the Hollywood Reporter, ex-Gilmore Girl Alexis Bledel has found The Good Guy, starring in the indie romantic comedy opposite Friday Night Lights' Scott Porter. The flick follows a Wall Street hotshot who lands a new girlfriend (Bledel) and ends up taking her salesman buddy under his wing, unleashing a chain of events that may lead him to ruin. Andrew McCarthy, Bryan Greenberg, Anna Chlumsky and Aaron Yoo also star.
  • Ving Rhames, Ellen Barkin, and Maggie Q, along with comic actors Rob Corddry, Bob Odenkirk,and Jeffrey Tambor, have joined the cast of Rogue's Gallery, a spy comedy that starts filming this week in Los Angeles. The film is about various groups of government secret agents who battle it out in an underground intelligence facility after their boss is murdered.
  • Last but not least, James Franco's younger bro, Dave, has been tapped as a regular in the new Fox hotel-based comedy Do Not Disturb, starring Jerry O'Connell. Franco will play a roadie for a rock band who is left behind at the hotel and joins the crew there.
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