Stephen M. Silverman
December 03, 2004 08:00 AM

CAST: Nicole Kidman, whose summer 2005 comedy Bewitched already has its trailer in theaters, will star in the movie adaptation of the Darcy Cosper bestselling comic novel Wedding Season, reports Variety. Kidman, 37, will play one half of a cynical couple devoted to remaining unmarried – until confronted with 17 weddings of friends over a 6-month time period. Veteran producer Robert Evans (Chinatown) will produce. “Who knows more about weddings than I do?” Evans, whose many wives included Ali McGraw, tells the trade paper. No start date or costar for Kidman have been announced.

FILED: Julia Sorkin, the wife of West Wing creator Aaron Sorkin, 43, has filed for divorce. The papers requesting a dissolution of their nearly nine-year marriage were filed on Nov. 30 in Los Angeles. The couple, who separated in October of this year, have a 4-year-old daughter.

RATED: Tom Brokaw’s Wednesday night exit from his NBC Nightly News anchor desk trounced the competition and gave the newscast (over which he presided for 23 years) its largest total audience since Jan. 16, 1997, averaging 15.36 million viewers, according to preliminary numbers from Nielsen Media Research. That’s well above ABC’s average of 9.2 million and CBS’s 7.2 million. By comparison, for the week of Nov. 15-19, the last full week of the 64-year-old Brokaw’s reign, NBC Nightly News averaged 10.8 million viewers.

ROBBED: Robert Blake’s lawyer said Thursday he hopes to go forward with his client’s murder trial despite the theft of a computer that contained what a court representative described as “the heart and soul of the defense case,” AP reports. The computer was taken Wednesday – the same day the jury was seated – from the apartment of M. Gerald Schwartzbach, who is defending the actor against charges that he murdered his wife, Bonny Lee Bakley, in 2001. Schwartzbach declined to comment on whether he had copies of the material on the computer missing from his Sherman Oaks apartment, which was serving as his office.

OFFERED: Sopranos star Lorraine Bracco’s Sneden’s Landing, N.Y., home – with its three bedrooms, three stories and three fireplaces – is on the market for $4.4 million, reports the Wall Street Journal. The house, which has views of the Hudson River, was built in 1960, and Bracco, then married to Harvey Keitel, bought the property in 1990 from actress Ellen Burstyn. They paid $1.2 million.

SOLD: An unidentified Chicago man paid $1.2 million in a Sotheby’s New York auction on Thursday for the baseball bat used by Babe Ruth to hit the very first home run in Yankee Stadium, on April 18, 1923. The Babe (who grew up in orphanages and always looked after kids) had donated the historic piece of wood to a youngster in Los Angeles, Victor Orsatti after winning it in a youth batting contest that Ruth helped sponsor. Orsatti died in 1984, and his estate decided it was time for the bat to move on.

ORDERED: A man who said he wanted to pray with Passion of the Christ director Mel Gibson has been ordered to stand trial, Reuters reports. Zack Sinclair, 34, was arrested in October after showing up at the Catholic actor’s Malibu home and at his private chapel demanding to be allowed to pray with Gibson. In court papers, Gibson said Sinclair, who is homeless, also sent him several letters that he found “alarming, harassing and annoying.”

CHARGED: Grammy winning “Rose Garden” singer Lynn Anderson, 57, was charged on Thursday with drunk driving near Dallas after police found her passed out in her car on the shoulder of a highway, reports AP. Anderson was arrested after officers woke her and conducted a field sobriety test. She was released on $1,000 bond, police said.

DEFEATED: Jeopardy! giant killer Nancy Zerg, who put all-time champ Ken Jennings out to pasture on Tuesday’s historic episode (he’d had an unprecedented 74-game run), unceremoniously proved to be a one-night wonder. She lost Wednesday to Katie Fitzgerald of New Rochelle, N.Y.

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