Lohan’s mom toes the line
A judge says actress Lindsay Lohan’s mother is continuing to attend substance abuse counseling sessions following her September arrest on drunken driving charges.
Newsday reports that Nassau County Court Judge Andrew Engel said at a court conference on Tuesday that Dina Lohan had finished half of her 12 counseling sessions. Engel said in November that the 51-year-old Lohan should undergo an independent evaluation.
Lohan pleaded not guilty to DWI charges following in her September arrest on a Long Island highway.
The judge also has referred Lohan to a community service program.
Queen latifah gets renewed
“The Queen Latifah Show,” the freshman syndicated talker from Sony Pictures Television, has been renewed for a second season on CBS stations.
At a time when just about everyone is entering the daytime talk show arena, the offering featuring the singer-actress has managed to hold its own amid the competitive clutter. It debuted last September to a strong 1.7 rating – putting it just behind Katie Couric’s talk show (which will end its run this summer after two seasons) as the top talker entry since “Dr. Oz” in 2009. So far, it remains the No. 1 new talk show, beating out “Real Housewives” alum Bethenny Frankel.
“We are proud to have the CBS stations as our partners as we continue to build the Queen Latifah show into a franchise brand,” John Weiser, president of U.S. distribution for Sony Pictures Television, said in a statement.
‘Downton’ breaks record
“Downton Abbey” drew a record-breaking audience for Sunday’s much-anticipated season premiere.
PBS and WGBH-TV announced Monday that the fourth-season debut of the lush British miniseries attracted 10.2 million viewers, according to Nielsen Fast National data.
This audience improves upon the viewership of the third-season premiere by 22 percent. PBS says it’s the highest-rated drama premiere in network history.
The two-hour episode picks up the action six months after the sudden death of Downton heir Matthew Crawley on last season’s finale.
“Downton Abbey” airs on the “Masterpiece” anthology, which is presented on PBS by WGBH Boston. Stars include Hugh Bonneville, Michelle Dockery and Maggie Smith.
SNL adds black female to cast
Good news for Jay Pharoah and Kenan Thompson; they won’t have to appear in drag anymore on “Saturday Night Live.” Or at least not as often. The show has added a black female to the cast.
After auditioning actresses in cities across the country, “SNL” has hired actress Sasheer Zamata as a featured player. Zamata’s first episode will be Jan. 18, the first new episode of 2014, with Drake as the host.
According to Zamata’s website, she appears regularly at the Upright Citizens Brigade theater in New York as part of the weekly variety show “School Night.” She is also on two improv teams that perform at the theater.
She will be the first black female in the cast since Maya Rudolph left as a regular cast member in 2007.