Plus, Woodstock '99 has its first casualty, and the ''Scream'' murderer is found guilty

By Josh Wolk
Updated July 23, 1999 at 04:00 AM EDT

CASTING John Travolta may star for Nora Ephron (his ”Michael” director) in ”Numbers,” playing a TV weatherman who hits the jackpot when he and his friends figure a way to rig the lottery…. Seth Green (”Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me”) will star in ”Knockaround Guys,” playing one of four mobsters’ sons who follow in the family footsteps by traveling to a small Montana town to score some cash…. Dermot Mulroney (no, not Dylan McDermott) will join Nick Nolte and Nathan Lane in ”Trixie,” a wacky comedy about a security guard who inadvertently gets wrapped up in a blackmail plot against a senator…. Famke Janssen (”Rounders”) will play a journalist whose story on finding the perfect man reflects her own tumultuous love life, in ”Love and Sex.” Jon Favreau (”Swingers”) and Cheri Oteri (”Saturday Night Live”) costar.

WOODSTOCK UPDATE Woodstock ’99 has seen its first casualty, and it has nothing to do with the brown acid. Sugar Ray has had to back out of its Friday set, because singer Mark McGrath has come down with an undisclosed illness.

MEDIA VIOLENCE PATROL Blaming the influence of violent TV and the movie ”Scream” was no excuse for a Los Angeles teenager, Mario Padilla, who was just sentenced to life in prison for fatally stabbing his mother in January 1998 while his cousin held her down. (The cousin was sentenced to a lesser charge of 25 years to life because he was only 14 at the time of the murder.) The two boys said in their confessions that they killed her for money to buy ”Scream” masks, which they would wear when they went on a planned murder spree in their school. The judge wouldn’t allow the jury to hear this defense, saying it was too provocative, according to Reuters.

REEL DEALS David Cassidy is milking his ups and downs as a teen idol. He’s executive-producing ”David Cassidy and the Partridge Family Years,” a TV movie for NBC, which will have all the drama of his ”Behind the Music” special, except without the gravelly narrator…. Director Jan De Bont (”The Haunting”) will produce an adaptation of the Pete Dexter novel ”The Paperboy” with Pedro Almodovar (”Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!”) directing.

WEIGHING HIS OPTIONS Jerry Springer isn’t dismissing the offer to run for Senate outright. After being approached by the Ohio Democratic party to throw his name into the political ring, he released a statement saying he was flattered by the idea, but that ”at this time, I don’t know whether it’s practical or possible. In any event, I respect the seriousness of their inquiry and will respond in a timely, sincere, and appropriate manner.” A deal breaker may be whether or not there’s a ban on fistfights on the Senate floor.

WED Phil Collins, 48, will say ”I do, do, do-dio” on Saturday when he marries his girlfriend of four years, Orianne Cevey, 27, in Lausanne, Switzerland. This will be Collins’ third marriage…. Another middle-aged rocker has bid adieu to bachelorhood: The Grateful Dead’s Bob Weir, 51, married Natasha Muenter, 31, on July 15 in a California service that was performed by a Tibetan monk.

TOURING Sting will release his first album in three years, ”Brand New Day,” on Sep. 27, and will support it with a 71-date world tour that kicks off Oct. 14 in Las Vegas. This tour will include a New Year’s Eve 2000 show in New York City.

TV DEATHWATCH The news about whether this will be ”The X-Files”‘ last year is… that there is no news. Creator Chris Carter — whose contract with Fox ends at the end of this season, as does David Duchovny’s (Gillian Anderson still has another year to go) — told a press conference that he’s writing this year’s episodes as if they were the series’ last, but he hasn’t necessarily decided against returning for a seventh season. ”I have no absolute answer on this,” he said…. Also on Fox’s endangered-species list is ”Beverly Hills, 90210.” But even if the show does continue after the upcoming 10th season — which Tori Spelling says is unlikely — she won’t stick around to see its second decade. ”I think I need to move on,” she told the New York Daily News.

ROBBED The members of the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion were victims of a robbery right after the first concert of their new tour on Wednesday night in Vancouver: Much of the band’s instruments and equipment were filched from their van, according to MTV News. The Explosion will be able to continue their tour, however, which puts them one up on Sonic Youth, who had all of their customized instruments nabbed in a similar robbery earlier in the month that caused the band to cancel the rest of their tour.

SHUT DOWN The hosers have been hosed: ”Home Brew,” the sequel to the 1982 Bob and Doug MacKenzie comedy ”Strange Brew,” was set to start filming next week, but had to be shut down when producer and costar Dave Thomas (Bob) says he discovered that the financing production company, MEG Media Group, didn’t have all of the money and insurance in place, according to the Toronto Sun. Thomas is considering suing MEG, saying that he personally spent $750,000 to cover preproduction costs. An MEG spokesperson said the production was hardly kaput, and that it was still working with Thomas to reschedule the shoot.