Vanna White hosts ‘Wheel of Fortune’
LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Wheel of Fortune” host Pat Sajak had to have emergency surgery, and his longtime co-host Vanna White will fill in for him while he recovers.
The show said in a statement that Thursday’s taping was canceled as the 73-year-old Sajak underwent successful surgery to correct a blocked intestine.
The 62-year-old White stepped in as host when taping resumed Friday for episodes that will air starting Dec. 9.
The statement says Sajak is resting comfortably and looking forward to returning but does not say how long he is expected to be out or how long White will act as host.
Sajak and White have co-hosted the show since the early 1980s.
She filled in for him once before for one segment of the show, when Sajak had laryngitis in 1996.
OJ Simpson sues Las Vegas casino
LAS VEGAS (AP) — O.J. Simpson is suing a Las Vegas hotel-casino that banned him in November 2017, alleging that unnamed employees defamed him by telling a celebrity news site he had been drunk, disruptive and unruly.
Simpson, on parole in Nevada for a 2008 conviction for armed robbery and assault with a weapon, filed the lawsuit Thursday against Nevada Property 1 LLC, corporate owner of the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.
The complaint acknowledges that Simpson, after several hours with two friends at a steakhouse and a lounge in November 2017, received a notice from a security guard as they left. It prohibited him from returning to the Las Vegas Strip property. He says he was never given a reason.
Cosmopolitan spokeswoman Rachel Henry declined comment
Simpson denied in the lawsuit that he was “belligerent,” broke glass or damaged property.
Simpson attorney Malcolm LaVergne said his client’s reputation was damaged by “hotel staff” accounts cited in a TMZ report that Simpson “was drunk and became disruptive” at the resort’s Clique bar.
TMZ is not a defendant in the lawsuit.
Simpson had been released on parole less than six weeks before the incident, and LaVergne said Friday his client was stung by criticism he received on social media. The attorney said Simpson did not have a Twitter account in 2017.
“Now we’ve got Twitter. We’ve got a lawsuit. We’ll see how things play out,” LaVergne said.
Simpson opened a Twitter account last June with an initial video post saying, “I got a little gettin’ even to do.” Most posts since have been about football.
The defamation complaint said a parole officer arrived unannounced at Simpson’s Las Vegas home following news reports of the Cosmopolitan incident and administered drug and alcohol tests.
Parole officials found that Simpson had not violated probation “and ultimately determined that the Cosmopolitan’s assertions against Simpson were false,” the complaint said.
Nevada Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Kim Yoko Smith declined to comment about the parole finding. She said state law prohibits disclosure of information about supervision of a parolee.
Simpson has been living in a gated golf course community after being freed from prison. He was convicted in October 2008 of leading five men, including two with guns, in an ill-fated bid to retrieve personal items and memorabilia from two collectibles dealers and a go-between at a Las Vegas casino-hotel.
Simpson claims in the complaint he is a “model” parolee and points to “an extremely warm and positive reception by many” who pose with him for photos.
With good behavior credits, his parole could end before 2022.
The lawsuit characterizes Simpson as “a well-known public figure,” college football Heisman Trophy winner and Pro Football Hall of Famer who “has experienced various legal problems.”
Simpson was acquitted in Los Angeles in the 1994 slayings of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ronald Goldman. He was found liable for the killings in 1997 and ordered by a California civil court jury to pay $33.5 million to victims’ families.
The lawsuit was first reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
‘Jersey Shore’ star pleads not guilty
LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Jersey Shore” star Ronnie Ortiz-Magro has pleaded not guilty to domestic violence, child endangerment, false imprisonment and other misdemeanors after his arrest last month in the Hollywood Hills.
The 33-year-old Ortiz-Magro entered the plea Friday in Los Angeles to seven misdemeanor counts that also included criminal threats, brandishing a weapon and resisting arrest.
Police say Ortiz-Magro was uncooperative and they had to use a stun gun to take him into custody on Oct. 4.
Ortiz-Magro’s attorney Scott Leemon says the facts around the arrest have been misreported and exaggerated, and they look forward to addressing the situation with the city attorney.
Ortiz-Magro has had frequent disputes with Jennifer Harley, his on-and-off girlfriend and mother of his child. Harley has also been arrested involving scuffles with Ortiz-Magro but charges were dismissed.
Broadcast, cable networks to televise impeachment hearings
NEW YORK (AP) — ABC, CBS, NBC and PBS will set aside scheduled programming next week to cover the House’s first open impeachment hearings on President Trump.
The cable news networks CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC and CSPAN will also provide live coverage. The broadcast networks’ announcement Friday that they would televise the hearing, however, gives the event an extra measure of exposure and weight with the public.
The first hearing of the House intelligence committee’s hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Eastern on Wednesday, with the second on Friday at 11 a.m.
William Taylor, the U.S. diplomat in the Ukraine, is scheduled to testify Wednesday about the Trump administration’s efforts to tie U.S. military aid to that country in an agreement to investigate the president’s political rivals.
ABC cancels ‘Fresh Off the Boat,’ sets finale for February
LOS ANGELES (AP) — ABC’s “Fresh Off the Boat,” the first network TV comedy in two decades to focus on an Asian American family, is coming to an end after six seasons.
The network said Friday that the sitcom starring Randall Park and Constance Wu will wrap with an hour-long finale on Feb. 21, making this a truncated last season.
The show about a couple and their three children in 1990s Florida is based on chef Eddie Huang’s memoir of the same name.
In a statement, ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke lauded the show as “game-changing” with its focus on an Asian American family.
While the TV industry has gradually embraced diversity, it’s been slow to include characters of Asian descent in the mix. Comedian Margaret Cho’s “All-American Girl” ended in 1995 after one season.
A possible spinoff with characters to be introduced on “Fresh Off the Boat” is being considered. It would focus on an Indian family whose daughter is one of Eddie’s (Hudson Yang) classmates.
Wu, who starred in “Crazy Rich Asians,” apologized earlier this year for a Twitter outburst lamenting the show’s renewal this season.
She said it was an emotional reaction to having to pass on a passion project because it conflicted with “Fresh Off the Boat.”
The comedy that airs at 8:30 p.m. EST Friday is averaging 3.1 million weekly viewers for the season to date, making it No. 69 out of about 80 network programs. Its direct competition includes CBS’ “Hawaii Five-0,” which is drawing nearly triple the audience and ranks 26th for the season so far, according to Nielsen.