Shows Canceled Following Arrest: Scott Weiland, best known as the lead singer of the alt-rock band Stone Temple Pilots, has canceled the last four shows on his solo tour, including a Saturday date at the Palace in Hollywood, after his arrest for heroin possession Monday in New York. Weiland, who has battled heroin addiction for several years, admitted to police after his arrest Monday that he had bought the drugs in a New York housing project, authorities said Tuesday. The singer was released just before midnight Monday on his own recognizance by Manhattan Criminal Court Judge Ruth Pickholz and ordered to return to court July 31. The criminal complaint released Tuesday by the Manhattan District Attorney’s office said Weiland, 30, told the arresting officer: “No, I don’t live in the building. No, I’m not visiting anyone. I just bought drugs.” Police encountered Weiland at a housing project on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, which is known for drug activity. They found 10 bags of heroin worth a total of about $100. Weiland faces up to a year in jail if convicted on the drug charge. Tickets for the Palace show can be refunded at point of purchase. Weiland’s label, Atlantic Records, said Tuesday, “Scott is an exceptionally gifted artist, and our thoughts and prayers are with him during this extremely difficult time.”
Sinatra Projects: Investigative journalist David McClintick, who wrote the liner notes for Frank Sinatra’s “Trilogy” and “Duets” albums, is forging ahead with a long-planned biography of the late Chairman of the Board. McClintick, who wrote the Columbia Pictures expose “Indecent Exposure,” began the Sinatra project in 1983, but had become sidetracked. Meanwhile, cable’s A&E; network will air a new two-hour “Biography: Frank Sinatra: The Voice,” on Friday at 9 p.m.
Phil Conductors: The Los Angeles Philharmonic will introduce three new assistant conductors during the summer Hollywood Bowl season--replacing Grant Gershon, who single-handedly held the post from 1995 to 1997. The new faces are Peruvian Miguel Harth-Bedoya, most recently music director of the Eugene Symphony in Oregon and former artistic director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Lima and the New Opera Company of Peru; Estonian-born Kristjan Jarvi, founder and music director of New York’s Absolute Ensemble; and Australian Andrew Robinson, the Australian Broadcasting Corp.'s Westfield Young Conductor of the Year, a recent veteran of the Sibelius Academy Conductors’ Workshop and recipient of a conducting fellowship at Tanglewood Music Festival. Philharmonic music director Esa-Pekka Salonen said the orchestra made the unusual move of hiring three assistants because “one person simply cannot cover the entire, vast Philharmonic season.” The assistant conductor steps in for the music director if he is not available to perform.
TBS Snags ‘Reagans’ Miniseries: Cable’s TBS has acquired “The Reagans,” a four-hour miniseries about the former First Couple being produced with the full cooperation of Nancy Reagan. The project, slated to premiere in 1999, is executive produced by Mark Sennet, who met the Reagans when he followed them in 1976 and 1980 as a Time-Life photographer. Michael Deaver, Ronald Reagan’s former White House deputy chief of staff, is a consultant on the project. “The Reagans,” which Sennet has described as being about “their love story . . . against this great political backdrop,” will have competition from another planned Reagan project, an unauthorized miniseries coming on ABC.
Critics Pick ‘Ally,’ ‘Nothing Sacred,’ ‘South Park': Fox’s “Ally McBeal” has received an unprecedented four nominations from the Television Critics Assn., including nods for best comedy, best new program and best individual comedy performance (for series star Calista Flockhart). Among the critics’ other picks was the controversial priest drama “Nothing Sacred,” already canceled by ABC, which got three nods, including best new program (along with “Ally,” the WB’s “Dawson’s Creek,” ABC’s “Dharma & Greg” and Comedy Central’s foul-mouthed “South Park”). Nominated for program of the year, meanwhile, are “Ally,” “Nothing Sacred,” “South Park,” NBC’s “Homicide: Life on the Street” and the HBO miniseries “From the Earth to the Moon.” Winners will be announced in July.
‘Chicago’ Casting: Broadway veteran Stephanie Pope will play the role of Velma in “Chicago” when the current Ahmanson Theatre production moves to the Shubert Theatre on July 7, to be followed one week later by Khandi Alexander (“NewsRadio”), who will play Velma from July 14 through the scheduled Aug. 2 closing. As previously announced, Jasmine Guy--who is playing Velma at the Ahmanson--will perform it at Orange County Performing Arts Center July 7-12; she’ll join the same touring company that currently includes Pope.
Cable’s MSNBC will include live coverage of former U.S. Sen. Barry Goldwater’s Arizona funeral services during “Barry Goldwater: An American Original,” a tribute program airing today from 1 to 2 p.m. . . . Songwriters George and Ira Gershwin will be honored posthumously Thursday with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, to be unveiled during 11:30 a.m. ceremonies. The star--the walk’s 2,109th, will be at 7083 Hollywood Blvd. . . . The Geffen Playhouse has announced that it will stage the West Coast premiere of Martin McDonagh’s “The Cripple of Inishmaan” in October and Donald Margulies’ “Collected Stories” in January as the first two productions of the 1998-99 season.