TOP OF THE NEWS: Opening arguments resumed this morning in the Simpson trial with O.J.'s lawyer ripping Nicole Brown Simpson's character. She destroyed the marriage, had an abortion after an affair and pursued her ex-husband obsessively, said Robert Baker.

LIVING DANGEROUSLY: Federal prosecutors say that the Mexican Mafia targeted Edward James Olmos for extortion and possibly murder, the Los Angeles Times reports, apparently after his American Me infuriated the gang with a scene of a Mexican Mafia leader being sodomized and killed by his own followers.

DOCTOR IS IN: The producers of Frasier have confirmed that Kelsey Grammer is back on the set today after checking out of the Betty Ford center on Monday.

OPENING ACT: Recovering the Satellites, latest album from the Counting Crows was the bestseller in record stores last week, its first week of release.

CELEB PATROL: Emilio Estevez, one of the stars of Stakeout, noticed a thief breaking into a car at the beach near L.A. and phoned police, who apprehended the alleged perp. "He could be on my stakeout team anytime," an officer told a local TV station.

BABE MOGUL: Donald Trump purchased the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen beauty pageants...Miss Canada International, Danielle House, was charged with assault in Newfoundland after she punched another woman in the face, chipping her tooth.

SUE HARD: Bruce Willis gave a deposition in a suit by Laurence Fishburne against Cinergi Pictures, who Fishburne claims promised him the role played by Samuel L. Jackson in Die Hard with a Vengeance.

LEGAL GLITCH: Yolanda Saldivar, convicted in 1995 of the murder of singer Selena, could get a new trial now that some crucial records needed for her appeal are missing.

A WINNER, FINALLY: Although she's never won the Emmy for Murder, She Wrote, Angela Lansbury is finally getting an award. The 71-year-old actress, whose career spans more than 50 years, will receive the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award--the guild's highest honor. She will pick up the trophy at a ceremony in February.

THUMBS WAY UP: Are you sick of Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert giving thumbs up to crappy movies? Now's your chance to fight back. The show is premiering a new segment this week called "The Viewer's Thumb." Viewers send in a 20-second home video tape responding to the critics and they review it.

BLEACHER BUMMED: The Hollywood Reporter says that NBC is steamed that the baseball games it broadcast did so poorly and may seek to change its $80 million contract with Major League Baseball.

SET IN STONE: Sharon Stone closed deals to star in two flicks: Gloria, a reprise of a role that won Gena Rowlands an Oscar as a woman protecting a boy from the mob, and The Enemy Within about a CIA agent undercover in Russia. For all the casting news, see The Dotted Line.

FAST FORWARD: The National Association of Theater Owners complains that the window between theatrical and video release of features is shrinking: traditionally six months, it now averages five months, 18 days, says NATO.

TULIPS WILT: Dutch-based international music company PolyGram will lay off 400 staffers worldwide and take a $90 million writeoff. One big problem: its struggling Motown unit.

CUT WIRES: Tele-Communications Inc., one of the country's largest cable companies, told its equipment suppliers to halt shipments ASAP, putting Wall Street on alert about cashflow trouble in the entire cable industry, the Wall Street Journal reports.

DEATH: Jason Bernard, a character actor nominated last month for a CableAce award for his role in the Lifetime movie Sophie and the Moonhanger, died of a heart attack in Hollywood at 58.

RED INK: Criticizing the "unchecked spread" of such foreign comic characters as Mickey Mouse, the Chinese Ministry of Propaganda is launching its own comic books with such Chinese characters as Soccer Boy, a sports hero who succeeds through obedience and teamwork.

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