HE'S GOTTA HAVE FAITH: Pop singer George Michael saying he fears for his life in the United States after releasing his new single "Shoot the Dog," which mocks the U.S.-led "war on terror." "Americans are very reactionary right now and I...cannot return to America, even though my partner lives there," he told Britain's ITV network.

MORE DRAMA AT CBS: Security guards at CBS' Television City lot stopping a car loaded with rifles and handguns as it tried to enter the facility. The driver didn't make it in, but Los Angeles' KCAL-TV reports that the person was trying to get onto the set of American Idol and may have worked on the show.

RECUPERATING: Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura released from the hospital Friday after he was admitted with a blood clot in his lung. A spokesman says he's doing "fine."

JER-RY! JER-RY! TV Guide picking The Jerry Springer Show and My Mother the Car as two of its worst 50 TV shows of all time. Also making the list: The Brady Bunch Hour, Hogan's Heroes and AfterMASH.

WHAT MORE CAN GO WRONG? Michael Jackson's never-released 9-11 charity single "What More Can I Give?" abandoned by the pop star after his advisers found out the song's executive producer had ties to the gay pornography business, the Los Angeles Times reports. Jackson had previously accused Sony of blocking the song's release, as part of his war against the label.

HEY JUDE! Road to Perdition costar Jude Law reportedly attacked by a Romanian politician after he thought the actor was trying to steal his brother's car. Turns out it was Law's car.

SAY IT AIN'T SO, JOE: Joseph Cartagena, otherwise known as heavyweight rapper Fat Joe, turning himself in to New York police Wednesday facing charges of assault. Police say Joe and a member of his posse got into a brawl with another man at the B.B King Blues Club in May and broke his jaw.

A DIFFERENT SET OF LETTERS: Sesame Street planning to introduce an HIV-positive Muppet to children in South Africa, where 40 percent of adult deaths have been attributed to AIDS. The Muppet, who doesn't yet have a name, will be introduced on Takalani Sesame September 30.

REALITY BITES: Ex-Playboy pinup and upcoming E! star Anna Nicole Smith testifying against her ex-boyfriend in court, saying he pulled a knife on her and then left threatening messages on her answering machine.

O BROTHER, THERE ART THOU: CBS' premiere of Big Brother 3 edging out Fox's American Idol Wednesday night, drawing 9.2 million viewers over Idol's 9 million.

HOUSTON HAS A PROBLEM: Whitney Houston leaking a new single from her upcoming album, "Whatcha Lookin' At," which takes aim at the press for talking about her personal life.

COURTHOUSE: Lawyers for Robert Blake asking a state appellate court to order a Van Nuys judge to hold a bail hearing for the actor. Blake is currently being held without bail in his wife's 2001 shooting death.

JUST SAY NO: The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency meeting with Hollywood heavyweights such as Michael Mann and Arthur Hiller Wednesday to discuss the connection between drug trafficking and the war on terrorism.

STITCHED UP: Disney announcing that its latest animated hit Lilo & Stitch will get a straight-to-video sequel and its own TV series. The sequel, tentatively titled Stitch! The Movie, is due out in 2003, while Stitch! The TV Series will hit the Disney Channel in fall 2003.

E-GREGIOUS: Director Penelope Spheeris signing on to direct CBS' upcoming TV movie Crooked E: The Inside Story of Enron, an account of the collapse of the company that the network is hoping to debut next season. Variety reports that actor Brian Dennehy is slated to play one of the Enron execs.

TOUGH REPLACEMENT: Former Star Wars star Mark Hamill replacing the late Rod Steiger in the role of a small-town funeral director for the film No Tomorrow, currently shooting in Wisconsin.

STORK REPORT: Actor Daniel Day-Lewis and filmmaker-wife Rebecca Miller welcoming their second son several weeks ago. The pair already have one boy, Ronan, born in 1998.

ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST: Vivendi Universal's chief financial officer, Guillaume Hannezo, resigning from his post following the departure of chairman Jean-Marie Messier, French newspaper Le Monde reports.

ANTIQUES SIDESHOW: An antiques dealer sentenced to a year in a halfway house and fined $830,000 for giving fake appraisals and defrauding collectors on the PBS series Antiques Roadshow. Russell Pritchard III and business partner Georg Juno have both pleaded guilty.

THE AMISH ROCK? Wrestler-turned-action star The Rock attached to a new Columbia Pictures film described as a "comedic take" on the 1985 Harrison Ford film Witness, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

TO HAVE: Oscar winner Benicio Del Toro signing on to produce and star in To Have and Have Not, a thriller based on the novel by Ernest Hemingway. Variety reports that filmmakers promise to be more faithful to the book than the first film adaptation in 1945.

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