July 10, 2002 12:00 PM

Los Angeles Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal, fresh from his third NBA championship, is about to make the leap from the courts to the small screen, while TV star Heather Locklear, fresh from the final season of “Spin City,” is about to jump to the big screen. Variety reports that Shaq, 30, who is no stranger to movies (1996’s “Kazaam”) or rap music, has been in discussions with the major networks regarding a one-hour drama project that he thought up, about the friendship between two basketball players. O’Neal has pitched himself as the executive producer, says the trade paper. As for Locklear, 40, Variety says that as TV networks dangle large offers before her to come back in her own series, the “Melrose Place” veteran has signed on to play an aggressive record executive in an upcoming feature-film comedy for MGM titled “Molly Gunn.” The picture is shooting in New York and is due for release next year. Brittany Murphy (“Riding in Cars with Boys”) plays the title role.

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