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ABC cancels 'Ugly Betty'

January 28, 2010

ABC jilts 'Ugly Betty'

"Ugly Betty" has gone out of fashion.

ABC has decided not to continue the show beyond its current fourth season. The cast and crew were informed of the news Wednesday morning. The series finale will air in April.

With four episodes still left to produce, executive producer Silvio Horta said they will be able to send "Ugly Betty" off in style.

The news is hardly shocking: After ratings began to cool during the show's third season, ABC moved "Ugly Betty" to Fridays last fall, where viewership plummeted. This season, "Betty" has averaged 5.3 million viewers, a big drop from the third season's 8.1 million viewers.

-- Denise Martin Haiti album at top of Billboard

The all-star "Hope for Haiti Now" album has debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, making it the first digital-only album to hit the top spot.

Nielsen SoundScan said Wednesday that the compilation CD of performances from last week's charity telethon sold 171,000 units over the weekend.

The CD features performances by U2, Beyoncé and Madonna, among others.

More than 80 million people tuned in for at least a portion of Friday's two-hour telethon, which organizers have said raised $66 million.

Meanwhile, Quincy Jones said Wednesday he plans to re-record the 1985 charity song "We Are the World" at an L.A. recording studio Monday and will send the proceeds to Haiti. He did not disclose who will perform on the track.

-- associated press Douglas' son pleads guilty

The son of Michael Douglas pleaded guilty Wednesday to dealing large quantities of methamphetamine and cocaine while holed up in a trendy Manhattan hotel where he was arrested last year.

Cameron Douglas, 31 -- who appeared with his father and grandfather, Kirk Douglas, in the 2003 film "It Runs in the Family" -- told a judge that a New York contact first asked him if he could score the drugs in 2006. After that, "I began supplying on a regular basis."

Prosecutors said Douglas had signed a plea agreement, but the details weren't disclosed.

In addition to conspiracy to distribute drugs, Douglas pleaded guilty to heroin possession -- a charge stemming from allegations that his girlfriend tried to smuggle him the drug in an electric toothbrush while he was under house arrest.

He faces a minimum 10-year prison term at sentencing April 27.

-- associated press Music tribute at White House

Bob Dylan, Natalie Cole, John Mellencamp and Smokey Robinson top a roster of musicians who will play for the Obamas at the White House on Feb. 10 in a program highlighting the role that music played in the civil rights movement as part of Black History Month observances.

They will be joined by additional performers including Jennifer Hudson, John Legend, Seal and the Blind Boys of Alabama and emcees Morgan Freeman and Queen Latifah in a concert scheduled to be telecast nationally the following night on public television stations.

"In Performance at the White House: A Celebration of Music From the Civil Rights Movement" also will get a spotlight on National Public Radio stations with a one-hour special Feb. 12.

It's the latest in the White House Music Series of performances, hosted by First Lady Michelle Obama, that to date has included evenings of jazz, country, classical and a Fiesta Latina.

-- Randy Lewis Dance company sets final tour

The Merce Cunningham Dance Company is embarking on a final world tour honoring the artistic achievements of its late founder. It will disband after a 2011 New Year's Eve performance in New York City.

Cunningham, a choreographer who revolutionized modern dance, died July 26 at age 90.

The first performance of the 35-city tour will be in Columbus, Ohio, on Feb. 12, followed by other U.S., Canadian and European cities. The stops include performances June 4 to 6 at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in downtown L.A.

The performances will feature 18 seminal Cunningham works. The tour is part of a "living legacy" plan Cunningham devised before his death.

-- associated press Finally

Radio host: L.A. talk radio station KTLK-AM (1150), which lost Ron Reagan Jr. as a host when the Air America network folded last week, has replaced him with the syndicated "Clark Howard Show," airing weekdays from 3 to 7 p.m. Howard is an Atlanta-based consumer advocate who advises listeners on "how to save more, spend less and avoid getting ripped off."

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