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Thursday July 19 1:01 AM ET Showbiz people briefs

Showbiz people briefs

HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - ``Just Shoot Me'' scribes Gabe Sachs and Jeff Judah have inked a multiyear deal with Studios USA to produce comedy, drama and reality programming.

Sachs and Judah will also be free to write for current non-Studios USA series, though the pair said developing projects is their priority.

Most recently, Judah and Sachs were consulting producers on the upcoming Fox laffer ``Undeclared.'' They served as co-executive producers of ``Just Shoot Me'' last season.

HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - Veteran helmer James Frawley, whose pilot direction established visual templates for ``Ally McBeal (news - Y! TV),'' ``Ed'' and ABC's upcoming ``Thieves,'' has inked a one-year deal with Warner Bros. Television.

Development pacts for TV helmers aren't as common as writer deals, though locking in directors has become more popular in recent years. Warner has recently inked pacts with Thomas Schlamme (``The West Wing (news - web sites)'') and David Nutter (``Smallville'').

Frawley snagged an Emmy nomination last week for the ``Ed'' pilot. He has also directed episodes of numerous series, including ``Law & Order,'' ``Chicago Hope,'' ``The Practice (news - Y! TV)'' and ``Judging Amy (news - Y! TV),'' as well as last season's ABC TV movie ``The Three Stooges'' On the feature side, Frawley's films include ``The Muppet Movie'' and ``The Big Bus''

HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. gave almost half a million dollars to various film-related organizations at its annual charity luncheon Wednesday at the Beverly Hills Hotel. As a not-for-profit organization, the scribe group must donate a portion of the revenues generated by the telecast of its Golden Globe awards (news - web sites), held in January.

Clint Eastwood accepted a $200,000 check on behalf of Film Foundation, which restores motion pictures.

Kirk and Anne Douglas were awarded a small sum for their foundation, which supplies elementary schools in L.A. with new playgrounds. Julia Ormond accepted for FilmAid, which sends films to refugee camps.

The luncheon went off with only a few hitches, which included association president Dagmar Dunlevy's omission of Ormond as a ``special guest'' at the beginning and Eastwood nearly calling the Golden Globes the Academy Awards (news - web sites). But at least no one missed receiving their check because they were in the bathroom.

HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - It was Joe Roth's night in the spotlight.

The summer's largest swarm of industry heavyweights descended on the Village Theatre Tuesday to see how the Revolution Studios chief handled helming duties on ``America's Sweethearts.''

With all this wise and expensive talent on hand, it seemed like a good time to ask them what advice they'd give Roth. As a guy who seems to have options galore -- run a studio, direct, produce -- what should he do next?

``He's got the best gig in town. Why would he change anything?'' -- producer

``Why in God's name would you want to direct a movie and get up that early in the morning?'' -- producer

``One of the things he should not be is head of Sony. Who wants all those headaches?'' -- marketing exec

As for himself, Roth said: ``I like what I'm doing right now. Ninety percent of my time is spent overseeing material. All the deals are set up, the company's set up; now it's about overseeing material. Maybe in a couple years I'll get another shot at directing. For me, it fulfills all the things I like about being an executive.''

Among those on hand for the lavish after-party (masseuses should be mandatory at all premieres) were stars Julia Roberts, Billy Crystal, Catherine Zeta-Jones and John Cusack; plus guests Michael Bay, Kirk Douglas, Sid Ganis, Brian Grazer, Jennifer Lopez, Michael Mann, Rob Reiner, Adam Sandler and Eddie Van Halen.

Reuters/Variety REUTERS

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