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New NBC Show Stirs Controversy; Jon Stewart to Host Oscars; Preview of Summer Blockbusters; Jamie Foxx Tops Billboard R&B Chart

Aired January 5, 2006 - 19:00:00   ET


A.J. HAMMER, CO-HOST: I`m A.J. Hammer.
BROOKE ANDERSON, CO-HOST: And I`m Brooke Anderson. TV`s only live entertainment news show starts right now.


HAMMER (voice-over): On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT: faith, fury, and "The Book of Daniel." The new religious drama that`s sparking a firestorm. It`s got sex, drugs, robbery. And TV stations who won`t let it see the light of day. Does "Daniel" have a prayer? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has the inside story of the devotion commotion.

Tonight, breaking news in the search for a former teen heartthrob. Barry Cowsill: his disappearance, the desperate search and new tragic developments. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT with the latest heartbreaking news.

Jon Stewart`s big gig. The comic, tapped to host the academy awards. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has the behind-the-scenes secrets of how he landed the prime spot, who got snubbed, and what you can expect on Oscar night.

EMMY ROSSUM, ACTRESS: Hi, my name is Emmy Rossum, and if it happened today, it`s on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


ANDERSON: Hi there. I`m Brooke Anderson live in Hollywood.

HAMMER: I`m A.J. Hammer, live in New York.

Tonight, we`re on top of the fury among the faithful in the heartland. It`s all about a show about a pill-popping priest who has an alcoholic wife, semi-functional children, and Jesus as his sidekick.

The NBC show, called "The Book of Daniel," debuts tomorrow night. It is no "7th Heaven," to be sure. NBC may or may not have a hit on its hands, but it may already have a controversy of biblical proportions.


AIDAN QUINN, ACTOR: If we never did anything bad, how could we repent and be stronger for our weaknesses?

HAMMER (voice-over): Episcopal priest Daniel Webster, the main character on NBC`s controversial new show "The Book of Daniel," has some big problems.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you really think it`s wise to validate the inevitability of sin?

HAMMER: He`s getting flack at work. His wife and kids, who include a drug-dealing daughter and a gay son, give him problems at home.

SUSANNA THOMPSON, ACTRESS: It`s afternoon, I`m having a martini. But please continue. I believe you were calling your sister a drug addict.

HAMMER: And there`s Daniel`s painkiller addiction.

GARRET DILLAHUNT, ACTOR: I thought you were cutting back on those?

HAMMER: Oh, and did we mention he constantly gets advice from Jesus himself, an ever-present companion whom only Daniel sees?

QUINN: I only take them occasionally.


QUINN: Could you fit more judgment into that "right"?

DILLAHUNT: Actually, yes, I could.

HAMMER: But "The Book of Daniel" may be facing an even bigger problem: controversy. The American Family Association, a Mississippi religious watchdog group founded by Reverend Donald Wildmon, is urging stations and viewers to boycott the show. The AFA tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT the show is disrespectful to Christians.

TOM WILDMON, AMERICAN FAMILY ASSOCIATION: It`s a presentation of a Christian pastor and his family, and the person of Jesus Christ, as depicted in this show, all of that is done in a very negative manner.

HAMMER: At least two NBC stations are refusing to air "The Book of Daniel." The station manager of one of them, Terre Haute, Indiana, affiliate WTWO tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, quote, "Our relationship with NBC always provided for the right to reject programming. I am reaffirming that right to let them know I will not allow them to make unilateral decisions affecting our viewers."

Could all the extra attention end up helping the show?

QUINN: If they`re trying to get the people not to watch the show, they`re certainly going to have the opposite effect.

HAMMER: Aidan Quinn, who plays the priest, tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT he doesn`t understand what all the fuss is about, especially when it comes to his character`s chats with Jesus.

QUINN: They have a somewhat irreverent, sometimes funny relationship, and sometimes very deep and serious, you know. That`s the controversy. What? Why? I don`t understand.

JACK KENNY, CREATOR, "THE BOOK OF DANIEL": Jesus represents the best part of Daniel. He represents Daniel`s faith and Daniel`s soul, and his thoughts. And so I don`t feel like -- it was never designed in any way to mock or satirize Christianity.

HAMMER: Of course, "The Book of Daniel" is far from the first show to stir boycotts. One of Wildmon`s first TV targets was back in the 1970s, against a suggestive little show called "Three`s Company."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you want from me, God?

HAMMER: In 2000, the animated show "God, The Devil and Bob" drew protests from Wildmon`s group and others. Twenty-two affiliates didn`t air it, and the show lasted less than a season.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you hear? Little sister got nabbed for possession last night.

HAMMER: One religious group that doesn`t appear up in arms over "The Book of Daniel" is the Episcopal Church. In a statement, a church spokeswoman tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, quote, "Everybody needs to remember that this program is fiction. If you want the facts, come to your local Episcopal church this Sunday."

And some critics say religion is not the main point of the show.

MARC PEYSER, "NEWSWEEK": It`s a drama. It`s a family drama. And it`s about the human side of these people. So I think to argue that there`s something irreligious or blasphemous about it because you have an Episcopal priest doing things that many people would not approve of, it misses the point.

HAMMER: But blasphemy, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. And the viewers who behold "The Book of Daniel" when it debuts this Friday will have the final word on its future.



HAMMER: Well, NBC is standing behind "The Book of Daniel." In a statement today, the network says, quote, "We`re confident that once audiences view this quality drama themselves, they`ll appreciate this thought-provoking examination of one American family."

ANDERSON: Tonight, a big Oscar shocker: a host has been chosen for the Oscars. And get ready for what might be the most controversial Oscar ceremony yet.

And the honor goes to "The Daily Show" host Jon Stewart. The comedian, known for his candid political satire, was chosen today to emcee an Oscar show filled with politically sensitive issues because of films like "Brokeback Mountain" and "Crash."

And live tonight here in Los Angeles is Tom O`Neil. He`s a columnist for "The Los Angeles Times" awards site, which actually first broke the story of the Stewart choice.

Tom, great to see you again. Thanks for being here.


ANDERSON: All right, this is a really big deal. It`s a big gamble, too, right?

O`NEIL: It`s a huge gamble, Brooke, because you know, Jon Stewart, the reason we love him as a comedian is that he`s one of those assassin comedians and often that doesn`t working at the Oscars.

Remember what happened just last year when Chris Rock went offline. He was insulting Jude Law at one point and then Sean Penn came out and protested. Well, that`s the kind of thing that Jon does all the time.

Twice before he`s hosted awards shows, not successfully. The last time he did the Grammys, "The Hollywood Reporter" said he was, quote unquote, "hopelessly awkward and uncomfortable."

ANDERSON: And there really is a lot for him to chew on this year, Tom. It`s the year of controversial movies. You`ve got "Brokeback Mountain" with the gay theme. You`ve got "Crash" with underlying racial themes. This also gives him the platform to really riff on the war in Iraq. These are issues he parodies every night on his show, but in this situation, how ugly could it really get?

O`NEIL: It could get as ugly as it got in September, when Jon was asked to host the Magazine Publishers of America and it was one of the worst disasters of 2005.

He was there with "TIME" magazine, "Cosmopolitan" and he started to insult them all. He said to "TIME" magazine, how could you have given your notes to the government and then turn around and give your story to "Newsweek." He then told "Cosmopolitan" that "You have nothing but contempt and disdain for your readers."

Everybody thought he was kidding. It got worse. He finally turned to 1,000 of these magazines` advertisers in the audience and he said, "Print is irrelevant." He said, "They don`t even belong at the party, but I`ll let them sit at the kiddies table."

ANDERSON: And he wasn`t joking really.

O`NEIL: He wasn`t joking. You don`t insult your host is what you don`t do at the Oscars or any of these events and Jon loves to do that.

ANDERSON: All right. Well, some other celebrities who were reportedly considered for the job are Steve Martin and Whoopi Goldberg. They`ve both hosted in the past. Also Billy Crystal. Crystal reportedly turned it down, so -- we only have a few moments left. Why ultimately did the Academy go with Jon Stewart?

O`NEIL: Well, Jon does represent a kind of hipness and a kind of irreverence that an establishment that is sometimes viewed as stodgy, like the Oscars, needs. And it`s a great choice. If he can rein in his humor and not make the show about himself, because that`s what David Letterman did bad and just play ringmaster and just play patrician in this great family reunion of showbiz, it will go well.

ANDERSON: All right. We will have to wait and see how he does. Thank you so much, Tom O`Neil from And the 78th annual Academy Awards Ceremony will air Sunday, March 5.

And now we want to hear from you. It is our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day. Jon Stewart: is he the right choice to host the Oscars? Vote at And send us an e-mail at We are going to read some of your thoughts later on in the show.

HAMMER: Reese Witherspoon may have a real-life "Election" in her future. In the February issue of "W" magazine, Reese says she would consider running for office someday. She says she doesn`t think there are enough strong female figures in politics. And she wishes that there was someone who represented more of her ideas.

Reese also talks about what she calls "something in the zeitgeist" right now about women in Hollywood portraying themselves as stupid. She says whether it`s actresses or singers playing dumb, it doesn`t do service to the women`s movement, and that, quote, "It irritates me that the sort of fad that `stupidity is cute` might really be doing some serious damage. It`s the cheap answer, and let`s hope that their moment fades."

For more about Reese Witherspoon and other A-list stars, grab your copy of the February issue of "W" magazine. It will be on newsstands on January 20.

ANDERSON: Coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, a musical mystery comes to a shattering conclusion. We will have the latest developments in the search for `60s teen heartthrob Barry Cowsill.

HAMMER: Also ahead, an extreme makeover of a different sort. Meet the woman who`s using guerilla tactics to turn troubled teens into model citizens, on a reality show that`s stirring up a bit of controversy in Japan.

ANDERSON: And prepare to be sucked in to the cinema. Hollywood is gearing up for what could be the biggest blockbuster year in history. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT blows the cover off the movies you`ll be buzzing about for months to come.

HAMMER: First tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly Great American Pop Culture Quiz." In what city did the `80s TV cop drama "Hill Street Blues" take place? Chicago, Philly, New York or an unknown city? We`re coming back with the answer next.


HAMMER: Again, tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly Great American Pop Culture Quiz." In what city did the `80s TV cop drama "Hill Street Blues" take place? Well, the exact setting of the series was never revealed. The answer is D, unknown.

ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s only live entertainment news show. I`m Brooke Anderson.

Well, things are heating up around here at SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, so much so we might need to turn on the air. And tonight, we have your first class ticket to preview some of this summer`s biggest potential blockbusters. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Sibila Vargas joins us live with that story.

Hey, Sibila.

SIBILA VARGAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Bring it on. Bring it on, Brooke, bring on the air.

Hollywood is banking on a summer chock full of blockbuster hits. Two of Hollywood`s leading men, Tom Cruise and Tom Hanks, go head to head. Superman and some other superheroes will be going to battle. And don`t underestimate that swashbuckling pirate, Johnny Depp.


VARGAS (voice-over): There may be a winter chill outside but Hollywood is already turning up the heat and getting ready for one hot summer. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has your ticket to this summer`s biggest and most brazen blockbusters and you`re in for one wild ride. Hollywood is banking on audiences this year. What they already know, and what they already love.

LEAH ROZEN, MOVIE CRITIC, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: The code word in Hollywood these days is pre-awareness. You want something that the audience all knows about ahead of time. So you want a comic book, you want a novel that was a huge popular hit, you want a remake, you want a sequel. Those are the films that performed best last summer. Hollywood is assuming the same thing will happen this summer.

VARGAS: And Hollywood is banking on some of its most bankable stars. This summer it will be a case of Tom versus Tom.

Tom Hanks is trying to crack a case in "The Da Vinci Code," taken from the best-selling novel, a murder mystery in the Louvre, threatens to unravel the foundation of a major religion.

The top secret production, directed by Ron Howard, has been kept under wraps, but SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is the first to tell you some secrets from the set, thanks to the film`s producer, Brian Grazer.

BRIAN GRAZER, PRODUCER: We are now actually have the movie finished and we`re editing it. We have a rough cut and it`s very -- it`s really quite a thriller. I mean, it`s intense, and it`s thrilling, and I think people will be, will be very, you know, certainly very excited. It has some combustibility to it, I guess.

VARGAS: Then there`s the other Tom, Tom Cruise that is. He`s hoping he`s made another mission, well, impossible to miss with "Mission: Impossible III." can he do?

ROZEN: It`s been six years since the last "Mission: Impossible" film. Has he sort of -- has he peaked? Did jumping on the couch mark the beginning of the downward spiral?

VARGAS: Leah, Tom would like to think otherwise and be on top of the world in 2006. In 2005 we saw a different side of Tom, expressing his opinions and coining a new catch phrase, "jumping the couch," but can Tom Cruise still open a blockbuster movie?

ROZEN: Tom Cruise has become, you know, a national punch line, but at the same time, look at his track record. Every single Tom Cruise film makes well more than $100 million, even something like "Vanilla Sky." Right now if there`s one star who guarantees box office, it`s Tom Cruise.

VARGAS: And Hollywood is hoping to guarantee box office gold when some slick superheroes hit the big screen. "Superman Returns" and "X-Men 3" are hitting the theaters this year. "X-Men 2" hit super hero box office numbers, more than $200 million, bigger than the first "X-Men."

Back to Superman. Some say the "Superman" franchise might be too distant a memory for some. Warner Brothers has cast a largely unknown actor for the role, Brandon Ralph. But then again, the original "Superman" was also cast with an unknown back in 1978.

ROZEN: I think in many ways the "Superman" is a gamble, because what you`ve got is a complete unknown in the Superman role. It`s been a long time since the last "Superman" films. Is there really some great hunger out there for new "Superman" films?

They`ve put in a young actor who basically has done a soap opera or two. That`s pretty much it. Then again, when Christopher Reeve was cast as Superman, he was pretty much an unknown and a soap opera actor, and you know, that experiment turned out pretty well.


ROZEN: And experimenting with his own successful franchise, everyone`s favorite swashbuckling pirate, Johnny Depp, returns to the high seas as Jack Sparrow in "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man`s Chest." Depp not only has the appeal of younger audiences; he`s managed to captivate an older audience, as well.

ROZEN: What Johnny Depp means to the film is that sort of older adults who would not normally go to this kind of film are going to go to the theater because it`s a Johnny Depp film.

ROZEN: Add Tom Cruise and Tom Hanks to that list of Hollywood actors over 40 who have a considerable career behind them and then combine that with the tried and true stories that audiences already know, and rest assured, it will be one big box office treasure in the summer of `06.


VARGAS: And SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has your calendar so get your pen ready. Here we go. "Mission: Impossible III" comes out on the 5th of May. "The Da Vinci Code" releases on May 19. "X-Men 3" hits theaters May 26. The curtain to come down (sic) on "Superman Returns" June 30. And "The Pirates of the Caribbean" launches on July 7.

Brooke, you got all that?

ANDERSON: I had my pen ready, Sibila, and I was taking notes.


ANDERSON: A lot of great films to look forward to. Thank you so much, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Sibila Vargas.

And a little later on in the show, we have your first look at another potential summer blockbuster beside it. Believe me, you won`t want to miss it.

HAMMER: Tonight Jamie Foxx proves he`s unpredictable once again, as the actor takes the music world by storm. Foxx`s R&B album hit No. 1 on the Billboard album chart, a week after making its debut at No. 2, ousting Mary J. Blige`s "The Breakthrough." The Oscar winner sat down with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. He told me his album is certainly not a vanity project.


JAMIE FOXX, ACTOR/SINGER: The one thing I wanted to do was just have a musical album, a musical one that when musicians hear it, when people that I know in the industry that are music critics, that will come up and say, "Ahhh." For them to hear it and them to say yes, they dig it, that`s the only thing that matters.

And now the public will get it and enjoy it because it`s one of those albums where I`m not afraid to be singing to the young ladies and, you know, letting them know that they`re loved.

I got a great song with myself and Carmen. It starts out: "Do I look bad to you?" "No." "That`s not what I asked you." The song is called, "You Still Got It." And it`s about a young lady who is pregnant and a dedication for all women who, you know, when they start to have a baby, the body starts changing and sometimes they don`t feel as sexy. So we empower them with that song. So it`s a great thing.

HAMMER: Also "wish you were here."

FOXX: "I Wish You Were Here," yes.

HAMMER: The song you sang for your grandmother.

FOXX: yes.

HAMMER: What was it like recording that? Was it a little bit of a tear-jerker?

FOXX: It was a tough thing because, you know, my grandmother passed away October 23 last year, and it was a tough song to write, so I had other people help me write it.


HAMMER: Foxx also says the support of Kanye West, who he teamed up with for the hit "Gold Digger," was instrumental in his success.

ANDERSON: Coming up, it`s Miller time. No, not that kind of Miller time but Sienna Miller time. The actress shows us the offbeat looks that have spawned a flock of imitators. That is next in "Thursday InStyle."

HAMMER: And move over, Dr. Spock. Meet a trailblazing woman who has some ideas, and they`re fairly radical, about what makes teens tick. Some say her approach to child-raising is hair-raising. Others are clamoring for her number.

ANDERSON: And a startling conclusion to a gut-wrenching mystery. The disappearance of `60s singer Barry Cowsill reaches its last chapter. We`ll have the latest on the story that has gripped fans across the nation. Coming up.

HAMMER: Now SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Birthday Shout-Out." This is where we give fans a chance to wish their favorite stars a happy birthday. Tonight, it`s a "Birthday Shout-Out" to actress Diane Keaton. Diane is celebrating her 60th birthday today.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My name is Philip, and I`d like to wish Diane Keaton a happy and healthy birthday and a happy new year. I`ve seen all of your movies. I think you`re an exquisite actress.



ANDERSON: It is time now for "Thursday InStyle."

At only 25, Sienna Miller has become a fashion icon. Her unconventional style is making a splash in both in America and Europe. Tonight, we take you on a "Fashion Flashback" with Sienna Miller.


SUZANNE ZUCKERMAN, "INSTYLE" MAGAZINE: We chose Sienna Miller for January`s "Fashion Flashback" really for the basic reason that this story is about style and the evolution of style.

At the `04 Oscars, Sienna Miller sort of set a new trend in terms of breaking away from the old Hollywood standard of having the perfect hair, the perfect makeup, the matching sort of dyed pumps with the bag that is dyed the same color as your dress.

She wore a Grecian inspired Matthew Williamson gown. It was green, unlike the sort of sea of black that usually marks a black tie ceremony like the Oscars, and she paired it with a white studded Chloe bag that one might wear to sort of a Sunday brunch in London.

Her look in the Roland Mouret black halter dress is sort of punk meets bohemian. The costume designer who worked with her on December`s "Casanova" is named Jenny Beaven. And what Jenny said is that Sienna dresses the way a lot of young Londoners do.

At the premiere of "Casanova" at the Venice Film Festival, it was actually pouring rain, and I don`t know of any other starlet who could look that stunning.

This Dior gown was completely beautiful. It`s sort of this pewter gray color. It`s John Galliano at his best. It`s haut couture. It`s tight through the bodice and it flows out in sort of Grecian inspired full skirt.

Her style has literally exploded onto the scene, both in America and in Europe. Sienna Miller is absolutely a trendsetter. She`s one of these women who has come out of London and even in paparazzi shots she just looks like she`s on a runway.


ANDERSON: How does she manage to always look good, always looks great?

OK. To read more about Sienna Miller`s fresh approach to fashion, pick up a copy of "InStyle" magazine. It is on newsstands now.

HAMMER: Coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, a revealing chat with Beau Bridges about his hit show "Stargate SG-1." And we`ll find out what it`s like to be a part of Hollywood royalty. Beau Bridges joins us live in the interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

ANDERSON: Plus, from heartthrob to heartbreak. The latest on the disappearance of `60s singing sensation Barry Cowsill. We`ll bring you the heart wrenching twist in a mystery that has gripped millions.

HAMMER: And it`s been a tough week for Lindsay Lohan, but not all is lost. We`ll give you the details next.


HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Thirty-one minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. And you are watching TV`s only live entertainment news show.

A.J., tonight, we have breaking news in the search of Barry Cowsill, the former teen heartthrob. You know, he disappeared during Hurricane Katrina. His family didn`t know what happened to him. And now we will have the latest developments on where he went, what really did happen to Barry Cowsill.

HAMMER: And also still to come, Brooke, of course, here in America, on television, we have Dr. Phil. Among the things he does is help families deal with their teenagers and their angst. Well, in Japan, there`s a reality show featuring a woman who has a much different and some say very unorthodox approach. She actually will show up at the homes of these families and yell at the kids and yell at the parents. She`s a hit.

ANDERSON: A lot of controversy surrounding that approach.

HAMMER: Yes, a lot of people are saying the way she`s going about it not good. We`ve got that story coming up, as well.

But first, let`s get to tonight`s "Hot Headlines" with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Sibila Vargas joining us live once again in Hollywood -- Sibila?

SIBILA VARGAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Tonight, Lindsay Lohan is out of the hospital. The actress and singer had been hospitalized in Miami for severe asthma attack. The episode came just a few days before it came out that she admitted to "Vanity Fair" magazine that she suffered from bulimia and had done drugs.

Well, "Brokeback Mountain" leads the nominations for the Screen Actors Guild Awards. The film got four nominations, including one for the entire cast and individual nominations for Heath Ledger, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Michelle Williams. Winners will be announced January 29th in Los Angeles.

Well, there might be a moment of Zen at the Oscar this year. Today, it was announced that Jon Stewart will host the Academy Awards. Producer Gil Cates says he and his wife watch Stewart on "The Daily Show" every night and that he`s the epitome of a perfect host. The Oscars are on Sunday, March 5th.

And those are tonight`s "Hot Headlines." A.J., I still think you would have been a great host.

HAMMER: Stop saying that, Sibila. I can`t wait to see Jon Stewart do this. I think he is an excellent choice. Thanks for joining us live from Hollywood.

VARGAS: I do, too. I do. But maybe next year.

HAMMER: I don`t get to vote unless I can get to my computer right after the show, but you can, if you think Jon`s a great host, too, because it is our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Jon Stewart: The right choice to host the Oscars? is where you`ll find us on the Web. You can also write to us at Your e-mails on the way in 22 minutes.

ANDERSON: Tonight, heartbreaking news in the case of missing former `60s teen heartthrob Barry Cowsill. He went missing over four months ago when Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans. His family pleaded for his return on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, but tonight, they are mourning his loss.


ANDERSON (voice-over): They were the famous `60s pop group, best known for hits "Indian Lake" and "Hair." A family of singers, the inspiration for the TV show, "The Partridge Family." But reality didn`t mirror fiction, and Barry Cowsill, the troubled teen idol of the group, checked out, described by the family as a wanderer. Then Katrina struck.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Downtown New Orleans...

ANDERSON: In the midst of all these devastating images was Barry Cowsill, in New Orleans when the hurricane hit. And then, this haunting video on A shot of someone looking very much like Barry outside the New Orleans convention center made the Cowsills certain that Barry was alive. Barry`s brother, Bob, and sister, Susan, came to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT to plead for help in finding him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I thought it was him, 1,000 percent. I mean, I cried when I saw that thing.

ANDERSON: Adding to the heartbreak, frantic messages left on Susan`s voice mail. She told SHOWBIZ TONIGHT she was unable to receive any phone calls because of the storm.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He basically was just pretty freaked out, asking for us to come get him. He was pretty panicky, pretty scared. It was heartbreaking, because I didn`t get those messages. And then, after that, I just sat by that phone.

ANDERSON: He never called back. Just days after Christmas, four months after the storm hit, police found him. Barry Cowsill`s body was found in New Orleans on the banks of the Mississippi River, just now positively identified by dental records.

And moments ago, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT spoke with Susan Cowsill in New Orleans about the devastating news.

SUSAN COWSILL, BARRY COWSILL`S SISTER: We are very close family in the most strangest way, I guess. A lot of people don`t even think we are. And Barry was our free spirit, our orbiter. He was on a path to try and turn his life around. And then the winds started blowing, and I think it was all a little too overwhelming. We don`t know what happened.

ANDERSON: But on their Web site, once a site for news postings on Barry, are now postings of grief. The family writes of their sadness and an outpouring of grief from fans.

One fan, thankful, saying, quote, "I have much gratitude to Barry and the Cowsills for providing some of the soul-sweetening music from my childhood that to this day brings me joy when I hear it."

Another fan from Massachusetts writes, "He touched so many lives with his poetic justice."

A third fan from California remembers, "Barry`s memories and music will live on in the hearts and spirits of many, many people."


ANDERSON: Our condolences go out to Barry`s family. In addition to his siblings, Barry is survived by two daughters and a son. Barry Cowsill was 51 years old.

HAMMER: Well, a reality show that`s a big hit in Japan is also raising some serious ethical questions. Its star is a woman who is taking tough love to the extreme. And we`ve got that story, coming up.

ANDERSON: Plus, the remake trend is continuing at the box office, with an updated version of "The Poseidon Adventure." Your first look at "Poseidon" is coming up in the "Showbiz Showcase."

HAMMER: And what`s the longest-running sci-fi drama on television? Beau knows. Beau Bridges, joining us live, coming up in the interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s only live entertainment news show. I`m Brooke Anderson.

In tonight`s "Showbiz Showcase," a movie that`s hoping to draw big numbers with its name, "Poseidon." The movie is a remake of the 1972 classic, "The Poseidon Adventure," about a group of passengers trying to survive after the luxury boat they`re on capsizes. Leading the group of survivors are Josh Lucas and Kurt Russell. Let`s take a look.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Poseidon was the god of the sea. What better way to celebrate the birth of a new year than borne on the back of the old fellow himself?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you feel that? Something`s off.

UNIDENTIFIED GROUP: Five, four, three, two, one. Happy New Year!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You stay here or you die.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m losing him.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We will be saved.


ANDERSON: You can look forward to "Poseidon" this summer.

And tonight, we have...

HAMMER: It is time now for a "Showbiz Sitdown" with Emmy Award- winning actor Beau Bridges. Beau is part of a famous acting family in Hollywood, of course, his father, the late Lloyd Bridges, his brother, Jeff bridges. And Beau is now starring in "Stargate SG-1" on the Sci-Fi channel. The series has just been given a green light for its 10th season. They`re just about to get rolling with that, making it the longest-running sci-fi drama on television.

Beau joining us live in New York. It`s nice to see you.

BEAU BRIDGES, ACTOR: Good to be here. Thanks for having me on.

HAMMER: And congratulations on getting picked up for a 10th season.

BRIDGES: Yes, I`m excited about that. For me, this would be my second year, so I joined the group after they`ve already be on for a couple of years.

HAMMER: See, that`s good. You let the show establish, let it get settled in, and then you hop on board.

BRIDGES: There you go.


HAMMER: But this is something, you know, that not even "Star Trek" and all of the "Star Trek" series has accomplished. They were only on the air for seven years maximum. What`s the draw here with "Stargate"?

BRIDGES: Well, you know, it`s all about good stories, I think. And our executive producers, Brad Wright and Robert Cooper, are wonderful writers, as well as producers. And they just know how to tell the stories, and I think the fans have been very loyal. The sci-fi fans are pretty amazing. I went to my first big convention.

HAMMER: Are you doing the conventions? That`s the...

BRIDGES: Yes, Comic-Con. Oh, man.

HAMMER: Do you go in your full regalia for that or...

BRIDGES: No, I didn`t, but a lot of the people that go there, they dress like the characters and stuff, you know?

HAMMER: And have you gotten your real taste of how sort of obsessive some sci-fi fans are known to be?

BRIDGES: Well, I was a little surprised. I heard about all that, but at least at Comic-Con, it was a lot of families and just people -- folks having a great time. And they were very devoted. It makes me feel like I really want to just match it for them, you know, and help them continue to have a great time.

HAMMER: So nothing scary?

BRIDGES: No, no.

HAMMER: OK. Well, and "Stargate," of course, has had a wild cult following since the 1994 movie with Kurt Russell.


HAMMER: And it has gone on now, you know, as I said, going into its 10th season. Were you a part of that cult, or was this just kind of a gig for you when it came along?

BRIDGES: I`ve always liked sci-fi. I was in the two-hour movie called "The Sand-Kings" that kicked off the "Outer Limits" franchise. And maybe that`s even where they thought about me for this show. So I`ve always been a big fan of sci-fi. I like it.

HAMMER: Well, I mentioned your dad, Lloyd Bridges, earlier. And of course, he was always and still is beloved by Americans, of course. Some remember him from the "Sea Hunt" series back in the `50s and `60s. All of the movies -- he has, like, almost 200 film credits. Some of my favorite memories from him are in "Airplane," of course, and in "Seinfeld," the last years of "Seinfeld," Mandelbaum, right? Was that the character?

BRIDGES: Yes, he was -- we thought he was nuts. His family was so nervous because he was doing, like, prat falls in his eighties, you know? And he loved comedy. He was so happy to get that opportunity.

HAMMER: What`s a favorite memory of yours of your dad?

BRIDGES: One of my favorite memories is, he was a wonderful athlete. And we liked -- we were very competitive. And up into his seventies, he could pretty much take me in most things. And I was playing tennis with him. He was a good tennis player.

And for the first time, I realized that I was -- I could probably take him pretty easily. So I started blowing balls off into the net and you know. Then we sat down afterwards. We both were a little out of breath. And this wave of melancholy swept over me, and I looked at him, and I said, "You know, Dad, I don`t know if -- you know, how I`m going to be able to live my life when you`re gone." I said, "You mean so much to me. And I just don`t know what it`s going to be like without you."

There was a long pause. He turned to me and he said, "What makes you think I`m going to go first?"


And he was dead serious, too.

HAMMER: That sounds...

BRIDGES: That`s my dad.

HAMMER: That sounds a lot like I would know him. And he actually -- and some people may not know this -- he was up for the Captain Kirk gig in "Star Trek," wasn`t he, back in 1966?

BRIDGES: I didn`t know that.

HAMMER: It`s a little fact that we dug up today.

BRIDGES: I got to tell Shatner that. That`s amazing.

HAMMER: Are you friends with Shatner?

BRIDGES: Yes, I`ll tell Shatner that. That`s good. OK.

HAMMER: I bet your character could kick Shatner`s character`s butt.

BRIDGES: Oh, no, no, no. Bill`s tough. Come on.

HAMMER: I don`t know. Look at the two of them...

BRIDGES: Oh, there they are.

HAMMER: Yes, I think...

BRIDGES: Oh, what do you think?

HAMMER: I have a feeling you could take him.

BRIDGES: No, well, he`s got -- is that a rock in his hand? Oh no, he`s standing by a chair.

HAMMER: Beau Bridges, excellent to see you. Thanks for dropping by SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

BRIDGES: Good talking to you.

HAMMER: We appreciate it. You can catch the season premiere of "Stargate SG-1" tomorrow on the Sci-Fi Channel.

ANDERSON: Tonight, we have a reality TV show to tell you about. It`s kind of Japan`s version of the "Supernanny," only with super-tough attitude. The show stars a woman who bursts in and bullies sulky teens and the parents who are fed up with them. It`s a big hit in Japan, and that`s where CNN`s Atika Schubert is for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


ATIKA SCHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Utiko Osada (ph) is not a psychologist. She has no degree in child counseling. But that doesn`t stop her from entering a stranger`s home and trying to literally drag their kids out of depression, all on national television.

This boy, his face obscured to protect his privacy, has locked himself in his room for months. His parents have called Osada for help. She bursts in with a camera, as he tries to crawl under a table, but there is no escape.

Osada specializes in treating this phenomena known in Japan as (INAUDIBLE) "prolonged teenage withdrawal," often for months and years. In all her cases, she is asked to step in as a disciplinarian to both parents and child.

"Do you know how he got to be like this?" Osada snaps at the parents. "Because you babied him. You allowed him to be like this."

After a tearful apology, the boy draws up a list of promises to his parents, to go to school, eat his lunch, and stop sucking his thumb. The problem, she says, is not the child. It`s the parents.

"Adults, parents have to make a clear distinction between what is right and what is wrong for their children," she says. "It`s not shocking if I`m telling the truth. A doctor might say it`s a shock, but I`m only saying what`s true."

Psychologists say Osada`s technique is dangerous. "From beginning to end, I am critical of Osada`s methods," says this psychologist. "I am completely opposed to them. Her method is based only from the parents` point of view, and she uses violent intervention."

But Osada`s methods are popular enough to sustain her dormitory for hiki gomudi kids (ph). Here, they follow a strict schedule of study and physical exercise.

Not everyone is strong enough. Matsumoto is 13 years old, but two years of locking himself in his room and eating junk food has left his muscles too weak. Even walking is painful.

In a quiet expressionless voice, he describes how he met Osada. "Dad was talking to someone behind the door, and he told me to come out of my room," Matsumoto says. "I said no, and locked my door, but he came bursting in. He grabbed my arms and pulled me out. And there was a cameraman there."

That forced intervention may deliver more harm than good, say critics. "Violently forcing treatment upon them may get them to participate in society. It`s not impossible, but it may cause more trauma and distrust or even make it more difficult for them to commit to treatment in the long run."

Osada says her method teaches children how to take care of themselves independently of their parents. Her solution is a physically demanding regimented schedule.

(on-screen): It`s 9:30 in the evening, and these kids are doing their third and final round of physical exercise before going to bed. And they`re going to need their sleep, because tomorrow morning at 6:00 a.m. sharp they`re up for another round of pushups and sit-ups.

(voice-over): Every day, each child has to draw up a list of goals to be accomplished. Those who succeed earn more free time. Those who don`t are punished with more study.

"All you have to do is teach them how to live. It`s obvious," Osada says. "Parents cannot make their children happy. Only the children themselves can make their own happiness."

Matsumoto seems to accept his new life. His goals are to finish his dinner and complete at least one round of sit-ups and pushups. He hasn`t succeeded yet.

"If your mind does nothing all day, you just feel tired. And I began to lose my sense of time," he says. "I just stopped feeling the days go by. Since I`ve been here, I`ve been able to regain that sense of time."

Osada checks in on her boarders before lights out. Matsumoto`s case, she admits, is still a puzzle to her. Will Osada`s methods work for him? Matsumoto won`t say.


ANDERSON: Let`s hope something works, right? That was CNN`s Atika Schubert for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

And there is still time for you to sound off in our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Jon Stewart: Is he the right choice to host the Oscars? Vote at or you can write us at We will read some of your thoughts live, coming up next.


ANDERSON: It is time now for the best in daytime talk. This is in "Talk of the Day."

Well, you know her as a "Golden Girl," but Betty White, she also gives advice. On "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," audience members asked Betty their tough questions on romance.


ELLEN DEGENERES, HOST, "THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW": So she says, "Is it shady for a guy to get a call from a girl while you`re on a date with him and act like it`s not a call from a girl?"



DEGENERES: Is it shady?

WHITE: It`s not only shady. There`s another word that`s very close, that`s what it is.

DEGENERES: They have their 40th wedding anniversary coming up soon. And he says, besides Las Vegas, where else could they go? She`s saying she wants to go someplace for a passionate time. What can they do for their 40th?

WHITE: Maybe not go together.



HAMMER: "Maybe not go together." Solid advice from Betty White.

Well, throughout the program, we`ve been asking you to vote online on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Jon Stewart: Is he the right choice to host the Oscars?

Here`s how the vote`s been going so far. A lot of people seem to like Jon Stewart out there; 71 percent of you say yes; 29 percent of you say no.

Among the e-mails we have received, one from Dan in Florida who writes, "Jon Stewart will breathe new life into the monotony that is the Academy Awards."

We also heard from Derek in California. He writes, "Stewart is the perfect choice. He is irreverent, self-effacing, charming, and laugh-out- loud funny."

You can continue to vote by going to

ANDERSON: It is time now to see what`s playing on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT tomorrow. Marquee Guy, what do you have? Fill us in.

MARQUEE GUY: Tomorrow, Bonnie Raitt, live on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. We can`t make her love us, but we think she might. Bonnie`s got a whole lot of lovin`. She`s up for a Grammy. And she`s doin` it right. And she`s coming to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT tomorrow.

Also tomorrow, pucker up everybody, because we have a great big kiss for you. The legendary Kiss, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, sitting down with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT to tell us how they conquered the world with hot guitar licks and a few cases of lipstick. Kiss gives us extra time, tomorrow.

This is the Marquee Guy, noting that "a kiss is just a kiss."

HAMMER: And I know you`re a part of the Kiss Army, Brooke. That is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer.

ANDERSON: And I am Brooke Anderson. Thank you for watching. And please stay tuned for the latest from CNN Headline News.


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