WEEK IN REVIEW: Jer Jokes, Britney's Mum
BRITNEY'S MOM: Posting a New Year's message on her daughter's Web site, Britney Spears's mother, Lynne Spears, said New Year's Eve was "fun" for two of her children (she has three): Britney, 20, and Bryan, 24. (Another daughter, Jamie Lynne, is 11). "They threw a great party in the Village section of New York." That would be Greenwich Village. "Friends and family from home came for the celebration," Lynn went on to say. "I decided to stay home." Still, she said, "The best part of the night was when Britney and Bryan called from their party to wish me Happy New Year. I felt so flattered to be called at the 'bewitching' hour. Nothing can touch that!"
MAKIN' WHOOPI: Oscar winner and "Hollywood Squares" center square Whoopi Goldberg will host the 74th Academy Awards on March 24, her fourth such stint in a decade, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said. Goldberg took home an Oscar in 1991 for her supporting role in "Ghost," and she hosted the ceremony in 1999, 1996 and 1994. Goldberg, 46, said in a statement that she is delighted to return as host. She also noted that the ceremony will take place for the first time at the new Kodak Theater on Hollywood Blvd. "It'll be the first broadcast done from Oscar's new home," said Goldberg, "and I love a housewarming."
AIR-LESS MARRIAGE: Michael Jordan's wife of 12 years, Juanita, filed for divorce on Monday, reported the Chicago Tribune. In papers submitted to Waukegan, Ill., circuit court, Juanita, 42, requested permanent custody of the couple's three adolescent children, as well as possession of the family's 25,000-sq.-ft. mansion in Chicago's upscale Highland Park area and half of the couple's property. Jordan, 38, the former Chicago Bulls star, now plays for and reputedly has a $50 million stake in the Washington Wizards.
LATE DALY: The much-publicized debut of MTV "Total Request Live" emcee Carson Daly, 28, as the host of his own late-night show on NBC, never saw the light of day early Tuesday morning. The 1:35 a.m. program, "Last Call with Carson Daly," was taped and ready to air, but a last-minute contractual glitch forced the network to shelve the show, according to Daly's publicist and NBC. In its place, viewers were treated to a rerun of "SCTV" that included an onscreen crawl informing them that the Daly show would not air. "It's a highly unusual situation," entertainment lawyer Nancy Rose told the New York Post. By mid-week, the show was on and running.