Captain Kirk plays trick

Riverside, Iowa -- Riverside has been "punk'd" by William Shatner, aka "Star Trek" Capt. James T. Kirk, and Spike TV.

Riverside considers itself the "future birthplace" of Capt. Kirk, commander of the starship USS Enterprise in the '60s "Star Trek" series. The town has an annual TrekFest, which includes a parade with people dressed as "Star Trek" characters.

Shatner had been shooting scenes in Riverside for what he said was a low-budget, sci-fi movie titled, "Invasion Iowa," for the past year

Shatner thanked some 800 people who turned out for a gathering Tuesday and then revealed the a year of filming there had not been for a movie, but rather for a new reality show on Spike TV about a small town playing host to a Hollywood film shoot. The show is set to debut next year.

To soften the blow, Shatner announced that he and his co-producers were donating $100,000 to the city to be used for community projects.

Met radio broadcast names host

New York City -- The Metropolitan Opera has named Margaret Juntwait as the new announcer for the opera's Saturday afternoon radio broadcast series.

Juntwait succeeds Peter Allen, who retired in May after 29 years of broadcasting the program. Juntwait is only the third regular announcer for the broadcast series. Her appointment was announced Tuesday by the opera's general manager, Joseph Volpe.

The 2004-05 Metropolitan Opera Saturday afternoon radio broadcasts, which have over 10 million listeners worldwide, will begin Dec. 11 with Verdi's "I Vespri Siciliani" and will continue until May 7. It can be heard on KCUR, 89.3 FM.

It's not been done before

Los Angeles -- Fox Broadcasting Co. has ordered a pilot for a variety show starring the Barenaked Ladies that will feature the playful rock group performing music and comedy skits along with guest actors.

The Canadian band, known for writing upbeat songs with quirky lyrics and engaging its audiences with onstage banter, will have plenty of leeway to ad-lib on the show, tentatively titled, "The Barenaked Ladies Variety Show."

All of the band members -- Steven Page, Jim Creeggan, Ed Robertson, Kevin Hearn and Tyler Stewart -- will perform.

'Real World' meets 'Baywatch'

The company that in many ways created the present-day template for reality TV with "The Real World" is making its first foray into scripted shows.

Bunim-Murray Productions, the producers of "The Real World," "The Simple Life" and a number of other unscripted staples, has teamed with "Baywatch" creator Gregory Bonann to develop a drama series set in the Malibu beachside community of Point Dume.

The show will focus on teenagers who work in the SEA (Sea Extreme Alliance) Corps, helping out the Coast Guard, lifeguards and rescue personnel on a when- needed basis. The SEA Corps is based on a real-life program for high school students.

Bunim-Murray and Tower 18 Productions, Bonann's company, have yet to sell the show.


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