Across the nation
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. - Judge Judy will be handing down a verdict on a group of beauty queens instead of, say, two squabbling neighbors.
Judy Sheindlin, star of television's ''Judge Judy,'' will serve as a judge at the 79th annual Miss America Pageant, which airs Sept. 18 on ABC.
She and six other celebrities will pick Miss America 2000.
Among others chosen for the panel: Briana Scurry, goalie for the U.S. women's soccer team; actor Michael Badalucco of TV's ''The Practice;'' and Tia Carrere, from the movie ''Wayne's World.''
Oliver Stone enters rehab
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. - Oliver Stone was ordered into a rehabilitation program after pleading guilty to drug possession and no contest to driving under the influence.
The filmmaker appeared in court Friday after reaching a plea bargain that kept him out of jail.
Municipal Judge Judith O. Stein placed him on three years' probation and ordered him to attend drug rehab. During his probation, Stone can only drive to and from work and the drug rehabilitation program.
Stone, 52, was arrested June 9 after being spotted driving erratically. A search of his car turned up a small amount of hashish and other drugs.
Internet release scheduled for David Bowie album
LONDON - Fans won't need to push their way into the store to be first in line for David Bowie's new album - but they will need a computer.
For a fee, fans can download ''hours ...'' from the Web sites of about 50 music retailers beginning Sept. 21. CDs of the recording will not hit stores until Oct. 4 in Britain and the following day in the United States.
In a statement, Bowie said he is determined to help Internet music releases become the norm.
A credit card payment will allow customers to download the album to their hard drive. But to prevent piracy, they will not be able to transfer it to a disk. The price will be set independently by the retailers.