updated 12/05/2003 AT 1:00 AM ET
•originally published 12/05/2003 AT 1:00 PM ET
MOVING ON: Courteney Cox, 39, will star in a film to be screened during January’s Sundance Film Festival. Director Greg Harrison’s “November” will star Cox as a photographer who struggles to cope after her boyfriend is shot to death in a convenience store, the Associated Press reported. As for Lisa Kudrow, 40, the Hollywood Reporter said she will executive produce a CBS sitcom starring onetime “Friends” actress and former “Talk Soup” host Aisha Tyler. No title has been chosen, but the show is said to be modeled along the lines of the classic “Mary Tyler Moore” show.
CLAY’S CROWD: Students at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte protested the school’s quota system after being told that they can only have seven tickets apiece to attend the upcoming graduation ceremony – which is slated to feature “American Idol” star Clay Aiken. About 500 students signed a petition labeling the ticket policy “unfair,” said AP. The university says it’s limiting tickets because Aiken, 24, is now finishing an independent study course at UNCC and is expected to collect his Bachelor of Arts degree in special education at the Dec. 20 ceremony.
DION MOURNS: Because of last Sunday’s death of her beloved father, Celine Dion cancelled two of her Las Vegas extravaganza shows Wednesday and Thursday to attend his funeral in Montreal, reported AP. A statement released by the family said that Adhemar Dion, 80, was surrounded by relatives at his home in Laval when he died. Celine Dion – at 35, the youngest of his 14 children – flew from Las Vegas to Montreal on Sunday to be with family. The cause of death was not released.
MEL MISSES: Mel Gibson backed out on some bishops and cardinals who were expecting to catch a special Vatican screening of his controversial film “The Passion of Christ,” Reuters reported. The unveiling of the movie, initially set for Tuesday, was to have been part of a convention about spirituality in film. But on Monday, Gibson’s Icon Production company dispatched an e-mail to convention organizers saying that Gibson, 47, was still working on the final version and asking them to wait because “the film is only weeks away from being finished.”
LONDON LUKE: London’s West End is getting another American TV star, with onetime “Beverly Hills, 90210” heartthrob Luke Perry preparing to tread the boards in a stage adaptation of the 1989 romantic comedy “When Harry Met Sally,” to open in February. Perry, 37, will assume the Billy Crystal role of Harry Burns, a guy who’s known Sally Albright for years but fears, as does she, that sex would ruin their friendship. No word yet on who’ll take the Meg Ryan role.