George Michael bounces back; Alicia Silverstone tries Shakespeare; and Melissa Joan Hart launches a spin-off

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
December 07, 1998 at 05:00 AM EST
Malafronte Photo

HAPPY ENDING: In a BBC interview on Saturday George Michael shrugged off his bathroom rendezvous with a Beverly Hills police officer which resulted in his arrest on lewd-conduct charges earlier this year. The 34-year-old singer admitted that “for a day, I was humiliated as hell,” but that after a day or so he “saw the funny side of it.” Now, Michael has another major reason to smile: His greatest-hits album has staked a claim on the U.K. charts for more than a month, a success some attribute in part to his high-profile arrest. “I had to take my willie out to get on here,” Michael joked….

CASTING: Alicia Silverstone has signed to star opposite Kenneth Branagh in a film version of “Love’s Labours Lost.” While the dialogue will remain true to Shakespeare’s original writing, the play has been remodeled as a 1930s-style musical. Actors Nathan Lane, Matthew Lillard, and Adrien Lester are said to be up for supporting roles….

SPIN-OFF: Since the WB’s “Charmed” has proven the success of sisterly witches, ABC has revved up plans for a spin-off of “Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.” The show will feature Melissa Joan Hart‘s real-life siblings Emily Hart and Alexandra Hart-Gilliams. They’ll play spoiled witch sisters who lose their powers after their mother falls in love with a mortal plumber. The show could premiere as soon as next fall, and it would be set up on an episode of “Sabrina” during the February sweeps….

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