updated 05/30/2003 AT 1:00 AM ET
•originally published 05/30/2003 AT 10:00 AM ET
WRONG NUMBER I: One of the gags in Jim Carrey’s “Bruce Almighty” is a phone number that flashes across the screen, allowing viewers to ring up and talk to God. But Donna Augustin, of Parrish, Fla., has the very same number – and since the movie opened last Friday her phone has been ringing constantly, reports Florida’s WBBH-TV. “They would call up to midnight, 1 a.m. and it just kept happening,” says Augustin. A spokeswoman for Universal Studios told Colorado’s Rocky Mountain News that the number was picked simply because it doesn’t exist in Buffalo, N.Y., where the movie is set.
WRONG NUMBER II: Cinergy Communications, claiming it handled more than 240,000 misdialed calls during last week’s three-hour voting period for “American Idol,” says it received more than 169,000 calls for runner-up Clay Aiken and 72,000 for champion Ruben Studdard, the Associated Press reported. (Out of 24 million votes cast, Studdard beat Aiken by a relatively slim margin of 130,000 votes.) The “AI” numbers were (866) IDOLS01 to pick Ruben and (866) IDOLS02 for Clay. A FOX spokesman tells AP that the network cannot be responsible for voters who dialed wrong.
LYRICS RYDER: Point Loma High School in San Diego has unveiled “Sticky Fingers: A Tale of Saks, Lies and Videotape,” a new musical lampooning Winona Ryder’s shoplifting trial, in which the actress was convicted of taking $6,000 worth of merchandise from Saks Fifth Avenue, AP reported. “We’re inspired by the old Mickey Rooney-Judy Garland ‘Hey, let’s put on a show,’ kind of spirit,” said literature, film and drama teacher Larry Zeiger, who plays piano for the show and stars as CNN interviewer Larry King. Ryder, 31, was invited to see the show but did not attend.
WHITNEY WANDERS: Whitney Houston spent her Memorial Day weekend in Israel on a spiritual journey for her upcoming Christmas album, AP reported. The singer, 39, accompanied by family members, arrived Sunday to stay in the desert town of Dimona with a group calling themselves the Black Hebrews – said to be comprised of nearly 2,000 African-Americans who believe they are descendants of one of the lost tribes of Israel. “She is loving it,” said Patricia Houston, Whitney’s spokeswoman and sister-in-law.
ALWAYS HOPE: In anticipation of Bob Hope’s 100th birthday Thursday, the veteran comic’s daughter, Linda Hope, 63, told AP: “We’re going to have kind of a quiet family birthday celebration because Dad’s pretty much confined to his room to the house. So the family will be coming in. … We’re going to have a celebration at home with a huge cake.” As for her father’s physical condition, she said, “He has days when he is good and is on top of things very much like the dad that I remember.” And the legendary sense of humor? “He doesn’t really tell jokes anymore. But he loves to hear (them).”