SOUND BITES It’s not official yet, but the Grammy Awards appear to be headed back to New York for the first time since 1998, according to published reports. The National Academy of Recording Arts of Sciences, which runs the Grammys, is scheduled to make a ”major announcement” in a Wednesday press conference in Madison Square Garden; Mayor Michael Bloomberg will attend, the Associated Press reported. Meanwhile, an anonymous source told the AP that next year’s Grammys will not be held at Los Angeles’ Staples Center, the awards’ site in recent years. The last time the Grammys were in New York, ”Soy Bomb” interrupted Bob Dylan‘s performance, and Ol’ Dirty Bastard seized the stage from Shawn Colvin to complain about losing Best Rap Album. So get ready for a nice, quiet ceremony in 2003….
Irish rocker Van Morrison is set to release his first solo album of original material in three years. The album, ”Down the Road,” is due May 14 from Universal Records, with the single ”Hey Mr. DJ” to be released to radio April 16, according to the company.
REEL DEALS After running around with a green monster in ”The Hulk,” Oscar winner Jennifer Connelly will spend time on a quieter project. According to Variety, Connelly has signed to costar with Ben Kingsley in ”The House of Sand and Fog,” where she’ll play an alcoholic who goes to extremes to get back a house she lost to an immigrant (Kingsley). First-time director Vadim Perelman will helm the project….
Mathematician John Forbes Nash, who inspired Best Picture winner ”A Beautiful Mind,” won’t have to leave his beautiful house. Officials in West Windsor, N.J., had considered a bridge-moving plan that would have forced them to condemn Nash’s longtime residence, but they ultimately decided to reject it, according to the AP. To their credit, the Nash family never blamed the situation on Universal Pictures’ Oscar rivals….
Christina Ricci will star opposite Ewan McGregor in the historical drama ”Borgia,” Variety reports. The film is set to begin production in the summer….
The makers of the animated porn flick ”Starballz” have filed a libel suit against Lucasfilm, according to the Associated Press. The suit accuses a Lucasfilm spokesperson of libeling the filmmakers when she suggested the cartoon was aimed at children. Lucasfilm had unsuccessfully sued ”Starballz” for infringing on their copyright for ”Star Wars”….