News Article

The Deal Report

TELEVISION ''Ten weeks to Judge Braugher, ten weeks to Judge Braugher.'' Homicide vet Andre Braugher is guesting as a Wapner on Fox's high-concept summer series The Jury, which, 12 Angry Men-style, will track one case an episode, focusing on the folks in the jury room. Filling in for the honorable Rain Man director Barry Levinson -- a cast regular and part of a returning Homicide brain trust that includes cocreator Tom Fontana (Oz) -- Braugher will play a judge in two episodes set to air in July and August. ''It's a pretty easy job,'' he jokes. ''You sit in the chair, you frown a little bit, you growl a little bit, you say, 'SUSTAINED!'''... Down goes Frasier, down goes Frasier! But with the classic sitcom ending soon, might the Kelsey Grammer character yet be reborn? Sources say Paramount wants 3 million smackers an episode for a 16-ep, midseason Frasier spin-off starring Grammer as Frasier (again!) and -- ooh, love her -- Laura Linney. NBC officially turned it down, but CBS has been approached. Paramount says it's not true.... Speaking of CBS, is Everybody Loves Raymond gonna come back or what? Unsolved mystery! But many believe that the deal has already gone down for a shorter season next year and that the network, which declined comment, is sitting on the news till May 19, when it unveils its fall 2004 schedule to advertisers in NYC. Smart. But sneaky!

MOVIES Billy Bob's next role: Buttermaker. As in Morris Buttermaker, the badass baseball coach played by Walter Matthau in 1976's The Bad News Bears. Thornton's in negotiations for a Paramount remake, which is being written by the same badasses who wrote the totally badass Bad Santa.

STAGE Whassup, Garry Marshall? ''I'm working on, truly, a Happy Days musical, based on my old TV show, at my theater, the Falco theater in Burbank,'' says the Raising Helen director. A singing Fonzie? Truly!

Originally posted May 14, 2004 Published in issue #765 May 14, 2004 Order article reprints