Karen Valby, Mandi Bierly, Missy Schwartz, and Adam B. Vary
May 28, 2004 AT 04:00 AM EDT

MOVIES Hey, Jena Malone, great news! Remember how you told us that ”Vinyl,” the rock & roll indie you’re starring in with Thora Birch and Lukas Haas, had lost its financing? Well, Thora (who’s also your producer) confirmed, like, minutes after we spoke to you that the movie’s definitely happening! ”Yep, we’re going! We just opened our production offices,” she said. But don’t feel bad you didn’t know, Jena, ’cause Thora’s totally on it: ”I’ll have to talk to her about it. I don’t think our director, Richard [Zelniker], has had a chance to.”… Congratulations, Paul Dinello, for scoring the director’s chair in the feature-film version of ”Strangers With Candy,” Comedy Central’s nutty, after-school-special-ish series that you cocreated and starred in with Amy Sedaris and Stephen Colbert. You also just opened your production offices and are set to start shooting in the New York area in June!

TELEVISION Go, Fox network, for saying to hell with those stinkin’ ratings, and renewing your terrific, off-the-wall series about Jeffrey Tambor’s messed-up family, ”Arrested Development,” for another season!

BOOKS Morgan Spurlock! Duuuude! It’s been just three weeks since the release of ”Super Size Me,” your doc chronicling your 30-day McDonald’s diet, and now you’ve got a deal with Putnam to write a book on making the movie!… And how’s this for a coinkydink, Morgan? Fellow junk foodie, author Eric Schlosser, is following up his ”Fast Food Nation” with a nonfiction look at the grim world of prisons. ”It’s very dark, very heavy,” he says. ”If I never go to another prison again, that’ll be okay.”

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