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Morning Report

Arts And Entertainment Reports From The Times, News Services And The Nation's Press.

October 08, 1999|SHAUNA SNOW

POP/ROCK

Pride of East L.A.: The L.A. City Council will honor Los Lobos for its "25 years of artistic contribution to the Hispanic community and the city of Los Angeles" today at 10 a.m. in the council's City Hall chambers. On Saturday, band members will be honored with a similar state resolution from Lt. Gov. Cruz M. Bustamante during a reception prior to their 8:30 p.m. Greek Theatre concert.

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'Favoritism' Is the Word?: Claiming that resurrected film star John Travolta has been paid more royalties from the hit "Grease" soundtrack than she has, Olivia Newton-John's production company has sued Universal Music Group for more than $230,000 in damages. The L.A. Superior Court suit states that despite a 1978 deal guaranteeing that no other artist performing on "Grease" album would be paid higher royalties than Newton-John, Travolta was being paid for the use of his name and likeness on the soundtrack's cover. The suit claims that Universal Music Group later agreed to pay Newton-John a "comparable" royalty, but that in an audit last year, ON-J Productions found that it was owed at least $150,000 that the defendant allegedly refused to pay. A Universal spokesman was not immediately available for comment on the suit.

TELEVISION

'Prep' Expelled: Fox has pulled the plug on "Manchester Prep," an adaptation of the teen movie "Cruel Intentions," without ever airing the show. Two hourlong episodes were completed, meaning Fox has already sunk several million dollars in the project. The network has yet to decide what will permanently fill the program's planned 8 p.m. Thursday slot, currently occupied by "World's Wildest Police Videos" and specials. In an odd twist, it's the third consecutive year an announced Thursday night Fox series has failed to make it on the air.

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Survival of the Fittest: CBS plans to blend the suddenly hot game show genre with reality programming with a 13-episode summer series, "Survivor," in which 16 contestants will be dropped onto a secluded island in the South China Sea and left to their own devices to find food, water and shelter. The rival contestants will then vote as a "tribal council" to expel members each week, with the final competitor left to win $1 million. Filming is expected to take six weeks. The network said the program will allow viewers to "watch as strangers compete in a contest that forces them to rely on one another to survive, yet also forces them to eliminate each other in order to win." Contestants will be determined through a nationwide search; details are available at http://www.cbs.com.

STAGE

International Exchange: The Pasadena Playhouse and Austria's Theater of Vienna have announced an alliance for the exchange and joint development of theatrical productions. Dating back nearly 200 years, the Vienna theater seats 1,270 and is part of a producing organization that also programs two smaller spaces. Since 1966, its programming has consisted largely of musicals. Pasadena Playhouse's recent "Play On!" is among the musicals under consideration for a possible overseas exchange.

OPERA

Bocelli Under the Stars: Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli will perform with a full symphony orchestra on an outdoor stage erected along Beverly Hills' Rodeo Drive on Nov. 7 as part of "Tribute to Style: The Millennium Exhibition & Concert," a charity event benefiting the Entertainment Industry Foundation. Steven Mercurio will conduct. The event also features dinner and a futuristic fashion exhibition. Tickets start at $1,000.

QUICK TAKES

"Roswell" premiered with strong ratings by the WB network's standards Wednesday, drawing an estimated 6.7 million viewers--more than its lead-in, "Dawson's Creek." The sci-fi program fared even better in Los Angeles, winning its time period locally, against competition that included NBC's White House drama "The West Wing." . . . American singer Tina Turner received a lifetime achievement award for her 40-year roller-coaster career Wednesday at Britain's 1999 Black Music Awards. "Black music has finally been recognized," she told cheering supporters at London's Royal Albert Hall. "I've been in the business since 1960 and, to my knowledge, black music has never been rewarded in this way."

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