'Dancing With the Stars' sashaying high
ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" seems to have regained its footing with this season's slimmed-down cast and new co-host.
The show averaged 18.2 million viewers last season, but Monday's two-hour opener pulled in 23.9 million, the biggest audience in 10 seasons.
The 11-member celebrity cast is down nearly a third from last season's. But its higher-profile hoofers, including reality star Kate Gosselin, Playboy centerfold Pam Anderson, astronaut Buzz Aldrin and Olympian Evan Lysacek, make the show "appointment viewing television again," executive producer Conrad Green says.
Ratings haven't been the only early surprise. Green and host Tom Bergeron praise Brooke Burke, the season seven winner who has taken over co-hosting duties from Samantha Harris. Green says what Burke "understands is the pressure of people competing. She has the empathy and insights on what it's like."
'MIRACLE WORKER' FLOPS ON BROADWAY
The Broadway revival of "The Miracle Worker" will close April 4 after a disappointing run of less than two months and a loss of more than $2.5 million.
The production stars Abigail Breslin as Helen Keller and Alison Pill as Annie Sullivan, who teaches the deaf and blind Helen how to communicate.
Producer David Richenthal said yesterday that he was saddened by the play's short engagement but that the opportunity "to share this powerful story with a new generation of theatergoers has been remarkable."
TEEN OBJECTS TO BIDEN'S SALTY LANGUAGE
The teenager who persuaded the California Assembly to approve a No Cussing resolution earlier this month wants Vice President Joe Biden to watch his mouth.
South Pasadena High School student McKay Hatch held a news conference Friday in front of his city's post office, asking the vice president to apologize for letting a profanity slip out during a bill-signing ceremony with President Obama earlier this week.
Hatch, 17, said he plans to mail Biden one of his No Cussing Club's penalty jars and an official club T-shirt.
Hatch founded the No Cussing Club at his junior high school in 2007. He says it has since grown to include chapters in all 50 states and 20 countries.
'DRAGON' KNOCKS OUT 'ALICE' AT BOX OFFICE
"How to Train Your Dragon" breathed a bit of box- office fire with a $43.3 million opening weekend and a No. 1 debut, according to studio estimates yesterday.
"How to Train Your Dragon" features the voices of Jay Baruchel and America Ferrera ("Ugly Betty") in the tale of a Viking youth who tames a fire-breathing reptile.
Disney's "Alice in Wonderland," which was No. 1 the previous three weekends, slipped to second place with $17.3 million.
John Cusack's raunchy comedy "Hot Tub Time Machine" had a lukewarm No. 3 debut of $13.7 million. It features Cusack as part of a group of losers hurled back by a time-traveling hot tub to the 1980s, where they have a chance to set their lives right.
— Advertiser News Services