BBC America features PBS heartthrob

Saturday, February 28, 2004

If PBS had a resident heartthrob, it might be Robson Green ("Reckless," "Touching Evil"). The handsome actor returns in the British legal drama "Trust" (9 p.m., Saturday, BBC America) as senior partner Stephen Bradley, a workaholic legal eagle who thinks nothing of toiling three straight days without sleeping in his own bed or seeing his wife and kids. Needless to say, this does not make for domestic tranquility.

The rest of his team marches to his drumbeat. He berates one assistant for turning off her "mobile" (cell phone) at 4 a.m. Another colleague is so disoriented by his schedule that he can't even remember whether he's just had sex. Law buffs tired of David E. Kelley's over-the-top torts might enjoy this taut drama. To me, all work and no play makes Robson a dull boy.

Green also turns up in the repeat presentation of "Me and Mrs. Jones" on "Masterpiece Theatre" (8 p.m., Sunday, PBS), in which he plays a tabloid reporter who romances a lovelorn British prime minister.

Mario Lopez is host of "50 Greatest Movie Animals" (7 p.m., Saturday, Animal Planet), a two-hour clip-job countdown featuring a menagerie of moviedom's most beloved critters.

Celebrities and unknowns gather at the "Independent Spirit Awards Red Carpet Show" (8 p.m., Saturday, Bravo), followed by "The Independent Spirit Awards" (9 p.m., Bravo), honoring small movies made outside of the studio system. Maverick director and bad-taste aficionado John Waters hosts.

OK, it's "The 76th Academy Awards" (7:30 p.m., Sunday, ABC) -- time for Oscar predictions. No, I'm not talking about which film will win for Best Documentary Short Subject. I'm talking about the jokes and "statements." While industry in-jokes are hard to predict, I give 2-to-1 odds that someone will comment about illegal movie downloading and/or the Academy's efforts to stop "screener" tapes from being distributed. And the odds that the Oscars will wrap up by midnight Eastern? Not a chance.

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