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[Lawsuit & Order: Jerry Orbach Takes On The 'Net]
[Lowell And Gere's New Production]
[Great Legal Minds Think Alike]
[From Entertainment Weekly: The Law Won]
[Wolf Gets Edmonton Award]
[Jill Hennessey: Director!]
[Etcetera: Adios, Rene Balcer and Ed Sherin; Buy A Walk-On Role!; More Sex For Noth]



Lawsuit & Order: Jerry Orbach Tackles Cyberspace

New York - February 6, 2000 - When cybersquatters stole Jerry Orbach's name, they picked the wrong guy. The star of
TVs hit series "Law and Order" is striking back, turning to his friend, native New Yorker, technologist and internet
privacy advocate Justin Page to take back JERRYORBACH.COM. This will be the first time a celebrity's domain fight will
be fought using newly established administrative procedures, rather than in the courts.

Page, whose complaint for Mr. Orbach as attorney-in-fact has been accepted for filing on Friday and issued complaint
number FA0093551 with the National Arbitration Forum (a "provider for the Internet Corporation of Assigned
Names and Numbers - (ICANN)).  Prior to its filing, Page stated, "I think people are clearly tired of slackers trying
to extort five, six or seven-figure settlements."

Page likens Cybersquatters to "The carjackers of the Information Superhighway. They buy the 'domain' or 'dot-
com' names of celebrities and well-known corporations and organizations for a nominal sum, hoping that the victim
will pay hefty ransoms. Famous people and successful companies should not work for years building up their
reputations and good will, only to have it encroached upon by a stick-up artist, armed with a mouse and seventy
bucks."

Page has now formed an association of technologists, attorneys and celebrities, called GetMyDomainBack.Com.
Describing their approach to assisting his clients take back their names, Page states "We have confidence that the
new ICANN processes will help people resolve these matters quickly and inexpensively."

Orbach isn't the first celebrity to be dot-commed, but if Page has his way, his client may be one of the last.

Former President Reagan named Page, a product entirely of New York City's public educational system, a United States
Presidential Scholar in 1985.  He attended New Yorks High School for the Performing Artists with Orbach's son (Chris
Orbach, who appears on Law & Order's Special Victim's Unit, and is developing his own site at www.chrisorbach.com) and
Jennifer Aniston.  Page has been a technologist for major New York companies for the past thirteen years.

(The same Respondent as in Mr. Orbachs case, CelebSites Inc. has, allegedly wrongfully taken Ms. Aniston's name, as
well as the name of several hundred other celebrities.) Celebsites Inc., reached an out-of-court settlement with entertainer John Tesh yesterday by simply relinquishing the domain name JohnTesh.Com.

Through his work in films like "Prince of the City" and "Crimes and Misdemeanors", and on TV's "Law and Order",
Jerry Orbach has earned a reputation as the quintessential no-nonsense New Yorker, receiving two Tony awards and a
1997 Crystal Apple Award from the Mayor's office of Film, Television and Broadcasting.

And....

Actor sues eBay over Social Security number

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Actor Jerry Orbach is a court regular as Detective Lennie Briscoe in NBC's television drama ``Law & Order,'' but Monday the action was real when he sued online auctioneer eBay Inc. for displaying his Social Security number on the Internet.

The suit, filed in Manhattan federal court, alleges that eBay began posting the confidential information on its Web site last Wednesday when it advertised the sale of two of Orbach's contracts from 1958.

The suit alleges that eBay said it was selling the contracts on behalf of The History Store, a dealer of used books, documents and autographic materials. The History Store is also named as a defendant.

The the 64-year-old actor alleges that the defendants did not get his permission to use his name and Social Security number. By disseminating the information over the Internet, Orbach has allegedly been exposed to "identity theft,'' credit card fraud and his credit-worthiness could be affected, the suit said.

The suit says the amount of damage Orbach has suffered has not yet been determined.



Carey Lowell And Old Whatsis Name Guy Have Baby

Cindy Crawford is no longer the only member of Hollywood's former Most Beautiful Couple to enter the Parent Hood. Her ex-hubby, Richard Gere, and his girlfriend, Carey Lowell, have had their first child together.

Homer James Jigme Gere was born in New York, a spokesperson for the couple has revealed. The multiple-named bambino weighed in at 8 pounds, 12 ounces. Little Homer is the first child for the American Gigolo star and the second for Lowell, who has a 9-year-old daughter named Hannah from a previous relationship with ex-husband Griffin Dunne, the actor, producer and director.

Gere, 50, and Lowell, 38, have been a twosome since 1995 --the same year Gere and Crawford officially terminated their four-year marriage. Like Crawford, Lowell is a veteran of the catwalk scene, earning her keep as a cover-friendly fashion model before scoring her big Hollywood break as a Bond girl in 1989's Licence to Kill.

Unlike Crawford, who flamed out after 1995's Fair Game, Lowell's acting career has plugged along. She is best known for playing prosecutor Jamie Ross on NBC's Law & Order from 1996-98. Gere's career, meanwhile, got a box office boost over the summer when he reunited with Pretty Woman costar Julia Roberts in the hit comedy Runaway Bride.

(Reuters)



Great TV Legal Minds Think Alike
 
Nathan Purdee (Hank, One Life To Live, near l.) poses with S. Epatha Merkeson and her husband, Toussaint Jones at a Court TV reception honoring Great Legal Minds In African-American History at B. Smith's restaurant in New York City on Monday, January 31. Great Legal Minds is an interstitial campaign celebrating Black History Month, hosted by Phylicia Rashad and aired throughout February on Court TV.
 

Photo courtesy Court TV



From Entertainment Weekly: The "Law" Won

Perhaps ABC should consider renaming its quiz-show smash Who Wants to Be an Actor.  After reading our recent On the Air
item about that father of a Millionaire contestant who had his plea for a role on NBC's Law and Order edited out of the game show, L&O producers tracked down the would-be thespian and offered him a job.  "I'd love to play a judge, but under five lines will do fine for me," says 62-year-old retiree Patrick Farrelly, who holds no grudge against the Millionaire folks: "The people there were extremely kind and very professional except for that," he says. It's likely that L&O coexec producer Dick Wolf will only give Farrelly the role of a jury foreman.  Still, says Wolf, "It's wonderful to make people's dreams come true and not pay them a million dollars."



Dance Card For Banff Television Festival Rapidly Filling Up

By Richard Helm, Edmonton Journal Television Writer

The creator and producer of NBC's Emmy-winning series, Law & Order, is this year's winner of the Banff Television     Festival's Award of Excellence. Dick Wolf will accept the body of work award at the 21st annual gabfest later this June, following in the footsteps of writer/producer David E. Kelley last year and 60 Minutes creator Don Hewitt the year before."Dick Wolf's outstanding career to date is a shining example of our conviction that mainstream, popular television has a legitimate claim to excellence," said Pat Ferns, festival president and CEO.Wolf's television credits include Hill Street Blues, Miami Vice, New York Undercover, South Beach, Feds and Players.His current slate includes not only long-running Law & Order and its spinoff, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit -- NBC's top-rated new series -- but also a new political series, D.C., coming to the WB. In January 1999, Wolf was appointed Honorary Consul to Monaco, serving as a cultural liaison and assisting in the development of the entertainment industries in both Mocaco and Los Angeles.

The festival, based in the Banff Springs Hotel, runs June 11-16 with the annual Banff Rockies awards gala scheduled for June 12.



Maryland Film Fest: Jill Hennessey, Director!

By Ann Hornaday
Sun Film Critic

The world premiere of a film by actress Jill Hennessy and a documentary about the career of former House Speaker Newt
Gingrich will be two highlights of this year's Maryland Film Festival, organizers are expected to announce today.

The Maryland Film Festival will take place April 27 through 30. The 43 programs of shorts and feature films are varied thematically and aesthetically, according to festival founder Jed Dietz. "What's interesting to me is the diversity of films that have come in," Dietz said. "We worked at it last year, we wanted to celebrate film in all its different versions, but it's started to feel more organic."

Dietz said that the Baltimore Community Foundation has given the festival a grant for $30,000 and the Abell Foundation has ponied up $90,000 for the next two years. "They both see the festival as an economic development effort for the community, and they were very excited about what happened last year," Dietz said.

Among the highlights this year: The world premiere of "The Acting Class," a feature filmed on video by co-directors Jill Hennessy and Elizabeth Holder. The team will make its second appearance at the Maryland Film Festival, which showed Holder's short film "Weekend Getaway," which starred Hennessy, last year. "The Acting Class," about the world of an acting guru, also stars Hennessy, who appeared on "Law & Order" in the 1993-1996 seasons, and features cameo appearances by her former "Law & Order" co-stars Jerry Orbach, Chris Noth and Benjamin Bratt, as well as Alec Baldwin.
mission.

Like last year, this year's festival will feature its share of celebrities, either accompanying films that they've made or introducing films that they love. Hennessy will appear with "The Acting Class," perhaps with some of her former co-stars.

Callie Thorne, who recently appeared in "Homicide: Life on the Street," will be in town in support of "Double Parked," a drama in which she plays a single mother determined to build a better life for herself and her ailing son. Ned Beatty is expected to attend the closing night screening of "Spring Forward," a dramatic feature directed by Tom Gilroy. And organizers are hoping that James Gandolfini will travel to Baltimore along with "Whole New Day," a short film he starred in last year.

Dietz said that although the festival sold nearly 1,500 more tickets than the 3,500 they expected last year, they want to encourage even more people to attend this year. Toward that end, the festival will offer $8 tickets to students and senior citizens (the regular ticket price is $10 per film) and a three-film package for $20.

"We want to get people who came in for one film to stay and try some more," he explained, adding that he was encouraged to try the new pricing when the festival held a Barry Levinson movie marathon last year. "People bought all-day passes with no intention of going through the day, and they did go all through the day," he said.



Et Cetera

Latest buzz from the Law & Order set doesn't bode well for the future of the show: Both long-time Executive Producers (though not Supreme Being And Creator Dick Wolf) will be departing imminently. Ed Sherin, who has helmed the East Coast operation of the show and Rene Balcer, who has served as a crucial script consultant on numerous scripts as well as EP duties, are set to depart, which had been speculated on last year in Et Cetera. Sherin was to have already departed, say setside insiders, but the inside man the powers that be had scheduled for the gig didn't have the, shall we say, fortitude to take the helm. Now, says the buzz, the show is going outside of the usual players -- and recruiting from another TV show for the EP position. Meanwhile, the loss of Balcer is immeasurable -- as the show's true heart and soul and Wolf's right-hand man, big changes will have to be in the works for the 11th season. Additionally, Balcer has been responsible for the beefing up of his admittedly favorite character these last few years: Jack McCoy. With Balcer gone, can Sam Waterston be far behind? Thus far, all cast members are signed for the next season, but after that, the cards are in the air. Meanwhile, questions immediately arise from the loss of both coastal EPs: Can Lynn Mamet, brought in just this year to ostensibly take over his position, carry the show? If the 10th season is an indication of her abilities, Et Cetera has serious doubts. And on the East Coast, a non-Law & Order-ite taking over? Bad, bad, bad all around. What happened to longtime producers and writers like Bill Fordes (who is profiled in this edition of apocrypha), Richard Sweren, or even Kathy McCormick? Et Cetera bows its head for the loss and expects sharks to start jumping..... Inspired by Kitt's recent appearance on "Gunshow"? Well, thanks to the generosity of said exiting Sherin, you can now bid for the chance to have a "walk-on role" (that is, an extra) on Law & Order. It isn't one of those hinky Ebay auctions -- this time, it's for real. Sherin has donated a spot as a walk-on in support of the ZazAngels fund started by the late Michael Zaslow's (Willard Tappan) family, to raise funds for his ALS Charity. You have to bid by April 10, so get over to www.michaelzaslow.com quick! Also, read the fine print: You have to work when they tell you to, and you need to be within driving access of NYC. If you win, though, let us know and we'll see what you think of your experience! .... Chris Noth's post-L&O vehicle Sex And The City started production on its third season for HBO on March 20 -- and for Noth fans, Mr. Big will be returning.


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