NPR host moving to screen

Los Angeles -- Fans of National Public Radio talk-show host Tavis Smiley soon will be able to see as well as hear him.

Smiley will be host of a new PBS late-night talk show beginning in January 2004, according to KCET/Hollywood, the Los Angeles public television station that will produce the program.

"The Tavis Smiley Show" will offer a mix of news and pop culture coverage, KCET said. It will air weeknights.

"Our series will cover everything, politics, money, relationships, race, class, culture and more," Smiley said in a statement. "If it's being discussed -- or better yet, if it's not -- we'll be talking about it and we'll be breaking news."

Music fest to honor reporter

Los Angeles -- The second annual Daniel Pearl Music Day will take place in October to encourage worldwide harmony in memory of the slain Wall Street Journal reporter.

The international series of concerts will be organized around what would have been Pearl's 40th birthday on Oct. 10, according to the Daniel Pearl Foundation.

The inaugural music day last year included more than 100 concerts in 18 countries.

Pearl, 38, was chief of the Journal's South Asia bureau when he was kidnapped Jan. 23, 2002, while researching a story on Islamic extremists. Four Islamic militants were convicted last year for their involvement in his kidnapping and slaying.

Blaine tries another high one

London -- For his latest trick, magician David Blaine will try to last more than six weeks without food in a box suspended high over central London.

Starting Sept. 5, Blaine will live in a plastic box 7 feet long, 7 feet deep and 3 feet wide for 44 days without food or contact with the outside world, a representative said Thursday.

The street magician-turned-endurance performer previously spent 35 hours standing atop a 100-foot-tall pole and three days encased in ice.

All he'll have in the box is a tube for water and a tube for urine. But he'll also have a good view of London. The box will be suspended 40 feet high from a crane next to the River Thames and near the historic Tower Bridge.

Fans to celebrate Ebsen's life

Los Angeles -- The family of the late Buddy Ebsen wants fans to join in this week's tribute to the actor known to generations as Jed Clampett on TV's old series "The Beverly Hillbillies."

His widow, Dorothy, will present the Aug. 30 "Life Celebration" for Ebsen, who died July 6 at 95.

Dick Van Dyke will be host for the event and actors Fess Parker, Lee Meriwether and Max Baer Jr. will share memories about Ebsen. The one-hour retrospective "The Buddy Ebsen Story" will be shown.

"I know Buddy is up there somewhere tap dancing with Gregory Hines, and he will be here with us for the celebration," Dorothy Ebsen said.

Hines died Aug. 9.


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