Amanpour Stays at CNN: Despite speculation that she might jump to another outlet, Christiane Amanpour is staying with CNN, where her international reporting has made her one of the news network's stars. The network, which is bracing for reorganization and budget cuts, said Monday that Amanpour has signed a new multiyear contract. CNN said her duties will expand to include anchoring CNN coverage of special events tied to major international news stories, and reporting a series of one-hour programs examining major news events. Amanpour also will be more visible on CNN's Web services with regular reports and analysis.
More CNN News: Linda Chavez is co-hosting the network's "Crossfire" today. Sources say the never-was Labor Department secretary is being considered as a permanent replacement for Mary Matalin, who has gone to work for the Bush White House.
Books on the Tube: Public station KCET has lined up funding to produce 26 installments of a series about books. The host will be Patt Morrison, a Times columnist and a commentator for KCET's "Life & Times Tonight." Premiering April 7, each half-hour edition of "The BookShow With Patt Morrison" will feature interviews with authors, discussions of new and classic works, and recommendations regarding children's literature.
GLAAD Nominees: "Best in Show," "Billy Elliot," "The Next Best Thing" and "Wonder Boys" are the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation's nominees for the best wide-release film of 2000. "Aimee & Jaguar," "Before Night Falls," "The Broken Hearts Club" and "Urbania" were nominated in the limited-release category. TV nominees for best comedy series include Showtime's "Beggars and Choosers," Telemundo's "Los Beltran," the WB's "Popular" and NBC's "Will & Grace," while the WB's "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," "Dawson's Creek" and "Felicity," Showtime's "Queer as Folk" and MTV's "Undressed" were nominated for best dramatic series. GLAAD also announced special honors for CBS' "Survivor," which featured openly gay corporate trainer Richard Hatch, and NBC's "The West Wing," which regularly addresses issues of discrimination against the gay community. The 12th annual GLAAD Media Awards, designed to honor "fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community," takes place in Los Angeles on April 28.
Angel Picks: The films "Cast Away," "Billy Elliot," "Chicken Run," "Joseph," "My Dog Skip" and "Remember the Titans" were nominated for the 24th annual International Angel Awards, announced on Monday. The television nominees are NBC's "Frasier" and "Providence," A&E's "Biography," the CBS drama "The District," Bravo's "Inside the Actors Studio" and CBS' "Touched by an Angel." The Angel Awards recognize creative excellence as well as a production's potential to positively impact the public morally and/or socially, according to the awards' sponsor, Excellence in Media. It's possible to have multiple recipients in a category for the awards, which will be handed out Feb. 15 at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.
Sundance Honors: Actress Christine Lahti, who won an Oscar in 1995 for directing the short film "Lieberman in Love," and director Kasi Lemmons, who won critical acclaim for her 1997 feature directorial debut, "Eve's Bayou," will receive Women in Film's second annual Independent Vision Awards on Saturday at the Sundance Film Festival. Lahti's first feature as a director, "My First Mister," is the festival's opening-night presentation, and Lemmons' new "The Caveman's Valentine" is also being shown at the festival. In addition, producer Gale Anne Hurd ("Aliens") will receive a Founder's Award from Women in Film for her "lifetime commitment to supporting women in the film industry."
Black Films: The ninth annual Pan African Film & Arts Festival, featuring more than 80 movies and billed as the largest festival in the United States dedicated to independent black films, takes place Feb. 8-19 at the Magic Johnson Theatre and the adjacent Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza shopping mall. The opening-night gala features the film "Kingdom Come," starring Whoopi Goldberg, LL Cool J, Jada Pinkett Smith, Vivica A. Fox and Cedric the Entertainer.
Funding Dance Development: The Los Angeles-based James Irvine Foundation has given $1 million to Dance/USA to administer the two-pronged Irvine Dance in California Program over the next three years. One activity of the program is giving 10 grants of $10,000 each year for creating new dance works. The other is providing financial support to the 24 dance artists who were selected for the Irvine Fellowship program over the past three years.
Oscar winner Judi Dench, currently on the screen in "Chocolat," will be honored March 8 as supporting actress of the year at ShoWest 2001 in Las Vegas. . . . NBC has renewed its daytime drama "Passions" for a third season. . . . L.A. artist and 1998 UCLA grad Kristin Calabrese is making a splash in London, where six of her paintings of domestic interiors will be in the prestigious Saatchi Gallery's "I Am a Camera" exhibition, Thursday through March 25.