Kate Walsh, M. Night Shyamalan, and David Cook made news the week of April 25, 2008


+ Those signature three-inch heels are back. Private Practice won’t be returning to ABC until the fall, but fans of Kate Walsh (a.k.a. Dr. Addison Montgomery) can get a quick fix May 1 when the siren returns to Grey’s Anatomy ”to explore the thought that you can never go home again,” teases executive producer Shonda Rhimes. In the episode, Addison flies to Seattle Grace at the behest of the chief (James Pickens Jr.) — and she’s ready to set a few people straight. Explains Rhimes, ”There are some things only Addison can do surgically, but there are also things that she can say to people that nobody else in that world will.” (In other words, prepare yourselves for a tongue-lashing, Meredith and Derek!) Just don’t get too comfortable with her homecoming, since she’s only staying for one episode. Says Walsh, ”I’m here to do my business in Seattle and then I go back to L.A.!” Well, not immediately: Production on Practice‘s second season doesn’t start until May, which gives Walsh enough time to costar as a ”crazy lady” in the supernatural thriller Legion opposite Paul Bettany. Practice was this season’s most popular new drama before the writers’ strike sent it on hiatus, but the break may have been a blessing in disguise, says Walsh. ”How do you promote it when American Idol is on?!” she asks of the series that Practice would have faced had it remained on the air. ”I’m cool with coming back in the fall.” — Lynette Rice


+ ”I love martial arts and Asian culture,” says M. Night Shyamalan. Good thing, because his next film will be The Last Airbender, based on the Nickelodeon anime series. The writer-director, who’s putting the finishing touches on The Happening for Fox, starts shooting the live-action epic for Paramount in March 2009. (It’s slated for a July 4, 2010, release.) ”This has an intensely spiritual Buddhist substory that I really dug,” he says.

+ Isaiah Washington and Forest Whitaker are teaming up for Weinstein Co.’s high school basketball flick Patriots, which begins filming this week. Patriots, which is based on a true story, marks Washington’s first role in a studio movie since he exited Grey’s Anatomy last spring. He’ll play Assistant Coach Simmons of Louisiana’s John Ehret High, who led the school’s squad to the state championship a year after Hurricane Katrina displaced students. — Nicole Sperling


+ iTunes doesn’t include live individual American Idol performances in its weekly chart of the most downloaded songs, but if the online music retailer did, they might be landing near the top. Just consider the artists they’ve covered: After David Cook name-checked Chris Cornell‘s version of ”Billie Jean,” sales jumped from 224 to 14,861 weekly downloads, while Jeff Buckley‘s ”Hallelujah,” sung by Jason Castro, shot to the top with sales of 174,553. As for video performances? After April 9’s Idol Gives Back, six clips hit the top 10, including the Idols’ cover of Rihanna’s ”Don’t Stop the Music,” which went all the way to No. 1 and even beat Madonna and Mariah Carey. — Shirley Halperin

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Episode Recaps

American Idol

Ryan Seacrest hosts as Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan guide aspiring singers on their way to superstardom.

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