'The Osbournes' are coming back to MTV
By Beth Harris
Get ready for a third season of family dysfunction, messy pets and four-letter words.
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Kelly, Sharon, Jack and Ozzy Osbourne star in MTV's "The Osbournes." Eldest daughter Aimee declined to be on the series.
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"It's been one hell of a journey these past few years," patriarch Ozzy Osbourne said the other day at the Television Critics Association summer gathering. "This whole MTV thing has been an incredible adventure. We didn't want the adventure to end so soon."
"The Osbournes" is MTV's biggest-ever hit, although ratings have slipped since its debut in March 2002. The network says the second season is averaging more than 3 million viewers.
"If you thought we wouldn't re-sign the Osbournes for another season, you're crazy," said Van Toffler, MTV president.
Since the unscripted "reality" show began, viewers have seen matriarch Sharon Osbourne undergo cancer treatments and 17-year-old son Jack recently emerged from a stint in rehab.
"Drugs are everywhere. We are not winning the war on drugs," said Jack Osbourne, wearing a black T-shirt, brown sweat pants and several gold chains and bracelets.
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"I suppose it didn't help matters he was going to clubs and parties," Ozzy said, adding that he credits his son for seeking help on his own.
"If you were 17, would you have gone to your folks and said, 'Mom, Dad, I have a drugs and alcohol problem?' I know I wouldn't," he said. "It was very courageous of him. He's my hero."
Meanwhile, Aimee Osbourne has finally entered the entertainment world.
The soft-spoken oldest daughter, who declined to be part of her family's weekly show, will make her television acting debut in the MTV movie "Wuthering Heights," scheduled to air Sept. 4.
It's an adaptation of the classic novel by Emily Bronte about doomed and tragic love, but updated for the MTV audience with an emphasis on music. Osbourne studied acting in London.
"I don't have huge intentions to be some big actress," she said. "I was casually asked. It was a great experience and I'm glad I did it."
For the past 18 months, Aimee Osbourne has been writing and recording her debut album, something her 18-year-old sister Kelly already did. Aimee has no regrets about not joining her bickering siblings on MTV.
"I wasn't 100 percent comfortable with it. I was 17, I wasn't very confident, I was shy, it was just a huge risk for me to take as well as my family," she said. "That to me was really intimidating and scary."