Plus: Fox attending presidential debate, Housewives a hit, and more
WELCOMED: Following up on his announced plan, Ontario-born Jim Carrey became a U.S. citizen last week, the Canadian Press reports. “I have no intention of giving up my Canadian heritage, and all those who loved and supported me,” Carrey, 42, who is now a dual citizen, said in a statement. “My upbringing in Canada made me the person I am. I will always be proud to be a Canadian.” Of his new home, Carrey said of the U.S.A.: “This country has helped define me and make my dreams come true.” No word on if Carrey made the Oct. 4 deadline to register to vote in the Nov. 2 presidential election.
INVITED: Michael J. Fox will attend Wednesday night’s presidential debate as a guest of Teresa Heinz Kerry, the wife of Democratic candidate John Kerry, PEOPLE reports. Fox, 43, who has Parkinson’s Disease, has actively campaigned for Kerry and recently filmed a commercial praising the candidate for his support of increasing federal funding for stem-cell research.
CAST: In more post-Friends news, Matthew Perry, 35, will star in and direct the Nov. 23 episode of Scrubs, NBC has announced. He will play a man willing to donate one of his kidneys to his sick father – played by Perry’s real-life dad John Bennett Perry, 63 – until complications arise. Also set for Scrubs duty: ER alum Julianna Margulies, 38, who will guest star as a malpractice lawyer in two sweeps episodes on Nov. 9 and Nov. 16. In other TV casting news, John Travolta, 50, will join his onetime Look Who’s Talking costar Kirstie Alley, 53, as a guest star in her upcoming Showtime series, Fat Actress, reports the Associated Press. The series is due to debut in March.
RATED: ABC’s Desperate Housewives is the hit of the new season, with its second episode last Sunday attracting 20.3 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen numbers. The soap opera, about suburban housewives with a secret, stars Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman, Marcia Cross and Nicolette Sheridan. Sandwiched between ABC’s other Sunday fare, Extreme Makeover and Boston Legal, Housewives helped the ailing network win the night in terms of total viewers and among adults 18-49. Desperate Housewives has also widened to 2.3 million viewers its lead over CBS’s CSI: NY, which most experts had predicted would become the No. 1 new series.
PENALIZED: The Federal Communications Commission proposed a record indecency fine of nearly $1.2 million Tuesday against the FOX Broadcasting Co. for an episode of its reality series Married by America that included graphic scenes from bachelor and bachelorette parties, AP reports. The FCC said the material, which featured male and female Las Vegas strippers in a variety of sexual situations, was indecent and patently offensive, intended to “pander to and titillate the audience.” (The previous record of $550,000 was levied against CBS last month for last February’s Super Bowl halftime show featuring Janet Jackson’s exposed breast.) A spokesman for FOX declined comment on a possible appeal but said: “We disagree with the FCC’s decision, and believe the content is not indecent,” he said. Adding insult to injury, the six-episode Married by America got dismal ratings.
PROMISED: Yanked by NBC before its finale announcing the winner could be aired, the last episode of reality show Last Comic Standing 3, hosted by Jay Mohr, 34, will land on Comedy Central at 8 p.m. ET Saturday, which has run same-week repeats of the show since the beginning of the season, according to trade reports. The last comics standing are the first season’s Dave Mordal and Rich Vos and the second season’s John Heffron and Alonzo Bodden. The winner will receive $250,000.