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 Wednesday, 1 January, 2003, 09:41 GMT
Getting real in 2003
After a year of reality TV overkill, what is in store for the entertainment world in 2003? BBC News Online's Darryl Chamberlain peers into the future, aided by his trusty cracked crystal ball, and an old ITV Digital box.


Culture secretary Tessa Jowell steps in after both Popstars groups dominated the charts at Christmas. Competition authorities will investigate the running of the singles chart, but demands for the arrest of Pete Waterman are resisted.


Jennifer Lopez
Low-key location, high-class dress for the bride
Valentine's Day nuptials for Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck. But things get off to a shaky start, as the groom is bemused by his bride's insistence on having a low-key wedding in New York's Bronx, because she's still Jenny from the block.

A luxurious honeymoon follows on a Caribbean island, setting things back to normal.

Coldplay clean up, literally, at the Brit Awards, as singer Chris Martin and girlfriend Gwyneth Paltrow disguise themselves as cleaners to escape photographers. They are only rumbled when the cleaners' boss chases after them, complaining they haven't done enough work.


Sir Michael Caine
Oscar contender: Sir Michael Caine
Jubilation across the UK as Sir Michael Caine scoops best actor at the the Oscars for his part in The Quiet American. "I should have bloody won this for Dirty Rotten Scoundrels!", he yells from the stage. Alfie and Get Carter get cinema re-releases to celebrate.

Talent TV takes another knock as Popstars boy band One True Voice split up. It is revealed Girls Aloud's Nicola Roberts ("the ginger one") left the group in January, but nobody noticed as she barely featured in the group's videos anyway.

But Fame Academy contestants Sinead Roberts and Malachi Cush land their on TV show in Northern Ireland - which becomes a cult hit.


Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones
Back home: The happy parents try to hide their baby
Celebrity mania in south Wales as Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones take their new-born baby back home to be christened. "He looks just like his dad," an onlooker tells a local paper. "All wrinkly and without much hair."


Trouble at Channel 4 where Rise's relaunch takes an unexpected turn when the studio is invaded by local schoolchildren who moon at the cameras.

The Cheeky Girls' mother wins an Ivor Novello songwriting award for Christmas 2002 novelty hit The Cheeky Song (Touch My Bum).


Glastonbury is disrupted by freak sunshine, credible bands, edible foods and usable toilets. "REM were great," moans one punter, "but I never got diarrhoea once."

The event is put into doubt once more, as revellers find they can't justify taking a week off work to recover.

Liquidators for the long-forgotten ITV Digital abandon their plan to recover the old boxes from former subscribers after only collecting 55 ITV Digital boxes, 12 BSB squarials, two Betamax video recorders and a Rabbit telephone.


Robbie Williams
Summer sensation: Robbie Williams

Channel 4 finally cancels Rise after Five executives dress up as Bear from Bear In The Big Blue House and storm the studio, to taunt their rivals about their pitiful viewing figures.

Robbie Williams' shows at Knebworth are a huge success - although one night sees him expose himself, a little worse for wear.


ITV promotes Today with Des And Mel to be its replacement for This Morning, which is axed after more than a decade.

The Michael Caine revival grinds to a halt as the works of Des O'Connor are "reassessed", and the veteran entertainer returns to the singles chart.

Des O'Connor
Student icon: Des O'Connor
Popstars judge and train buff Pete Waterman is unveiled as the government's new "rail tsar". "If he can make stars of One True Voice, he can get the trains running on time," ministers declare at a King's Cross press launch - oblivious to the fact that two members of the group are now working in the station's Sock Shop just a few hundred metres away.


Des O'Connor takes a week off to tour university freshers' weeks. "It's great to be adored by a younger audience, but I wish they wouldn't wear those stupid pullovers for me," he grumbles. "That was Val Doonican."


Terry Venables
"Oi! Davina! Let me out!"

Channel 4 reveals the latest inhabitants of Celebrity Big Brother 3. They are former Leeds United manager Terry Venables, evergreen comedian Bob Monkhouse, glamour model Jordan, former EastEnders star Dean Gaffney, Lorraine Kelly and a Hollyoaks actress who is too obscure for even the most ardent fans to recognise.

Watching Venables singing in the shower becomes a cult pastime.


This year's Turner Prize nominees cause the usual ripple of indignation. Among the highlights is Life On Toast, which features secretly-filmed footage of a real 40-something man sitting in a London council flat watching daytime television - the real life upstairs neighbour of Damien Harley-Davidson, who says it "reflects real life for under-employed people like me in downtrodden Hoxton".

Another exhibit, Pavement, becomes a cause celebre after grinning culture minister Kim Howells takes his puppy Scooby to the exhibition for a spot of toilet training.

The new Harry Potter book is released. The Order of the Phoenix gets rave reviews, and breaks all records - obscuring the hype around the third Lord of The Rings film. JK Rowling's personal wealth now exceeds that of the Queen.

Kim Howells
Art fan: Kim Howells


Elton John issues an emergency appeal after his seasonal auction of old clothes goes wrong. "It was a present from my auntie Mary, she'll kill me if she find out I've sold it for 100!", he says of a lime green tie which went to a Japanese fan.

Terry Venables scores a surprise Christmas number one with his cover of Elvis Presley's Suspicious Minds, just beating Des O'Connor's bizarre cover of Fairytale of New York, performed with Kylie Minogue.

Looking ahead

Looking back



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