'X Factor' lawsuit

Hollywood -- Simon Fuller, the creator of "American Idol," is suing one of the show's hosts, Simon Cowell, over a new talent show in England that Fuller says is a rip-off of the original, the Hollywood Reporter said.

Fuller accuses the producers of "The X Factor," who include Cowell, of infringing on the copyright of "Idol." The new show features a panel of judges passing judgment on aspiring actors.

Freemantle Media, which produces "The X Factor," issued a statement on behalf of itself and Cowell denying the charge.

Musical munitions

New York -- Though U2 is among the nominees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Irish rock band is still going strong.

"How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb" will be released on Nov. 23, Interscope Records announced Tuesday.

Recorded in Dublin, Ireland, and the south of France, the album is the band's first since 2000's "All That You Can't Leave Behind." Steve Lillywhite, who produced U2's first three albums, returns as one of the producers, which bolsters reports that the new disc is a return to the band's rock roots.

The first single, a track called "Vertigo," hits radio waves Sept. 24.

Concept becomes reality

New York -- Reality TV might be real after all.

The toy designed by the winning team on last week's premiere of NBC's "The Apprentice 2" will be produced by Mattel. On the show, two gender-divided teams competed to create a toy that tested well for 6-year-old boys.

The women's team came up with the idea of a remote-controlled car with interchangeable parts, which can be crashed and easily put back together. A prototype was designed overnight by Mattel and met with approval from young boys who tested the car.

Named Morph Machines, the toy (tweaked slightly to have a sleeker style) will hit shelves in early 2005 with a retail price of $30, Mattel said.

"The Apprentice 2" airs at 8 p.m. Thursdays on NBC.

Kutcher's restaurant burgled

New York -- Ashton Kutcher's exclusive Los Angeles restaurant, Dolce, was burglarized twice over Labor Day weekend, syndicated entertainment show "Access Hollywood" reported Monday.

The upscale restaurant also is owned by Kutcher's co-stars from "That 70's Show": Wilmer Valderrama and Danny Masterson. Also co-owners are actors Jamie Kennedy, Masterson's brother Chris and 15 other investors.

"Access" reported that the Los Angeles Police Department said the restaurant was robbed of money and checks from a small safe on Sept. 4 and again on Sept. 6, robbed of cash and several bottles of wine.


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