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Casting Scoops: 'SNL,' 'Grey's,' 'Housewives,' 'Damages,' 'Old Christine,' and More!

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It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a super-size edition of Casting Scoops featuring exclusive intel on Saturday Night Live, Grey’s Anatomy, Desperate Housewives, Damages, and more!

•    Saturday Night Live: On the off chance this weekend’s SNL features a spoof of tonight’s vice presidential slugfest, I can tell you who will be playing PBS moderator Gwen Ifill: Queen Latifah. A well-placed source confirms to me exclusively that SNL has gone ahead and secured Latifah’s services for Saturday’s show. The insider cautions, however, that the debate sketch isn’t 100 percent locked — and a final decision might not come down until Saturday. There’s also no official word as to whether Tina Fey would be back as Palin, but this much I know for sure: If she loved me, she’d do it. 

•    The New Adventures of Old Christine: Talk about a stretch: Megan Mullally is playing a homophobe! This November, the Emmy-winning Will & Grace laugh riot will guest star on Old Christine as the head of the family values-based organization that owns Christine’s gym. Her character threatens to shut down the fitness center when she learns of Christine and Barb’s marriage.

•    Desperate Housewives: Fat Actress‘ Rachael Harris will appear in a November episode of Housewives as a reporter doing a profile on nationally renowned domestic goddess Bree Van De Kamp (Marcia Cross).

•    Grey’s Anatomy: I’m happy to report that negotiations between Grey’s and Alias alum Melissa George have produced a signed contract. It remains unclear when exactly George’s bisexual intern will first show up at Seattle Grace, but if I know Shonda Rhimes, it’ll be the precise moment Erica and Callie find true happiness. 

•    Damages: An Emmy can do wonders for one’s career, but can it also raise the dead? Apparently so! Fresh off his Supporting Actor win as Damages‘ Ray Fiske, who shot and killed himself in last season’s penultimate episode, Zeljko Ivanek has inked a deal to make what my source calls “several appearances” in season 2. Hope Patty Hewes isn’t afraid of ghosts!