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Short Takes

Trying to find a combination that works on Tuesdays, Fox Broadcasitng Co. will test “The Sinbad Show” and “The X-Files” again on the night in coming weeks , prior to the April premiere of “South Central.” Fox has scheduled back-to-back “Sinbad” episodes from 8-9 p.m. March 22 and “X-Files” in the same hour a week later. “Martin” returns to “Sinbad’s” post-“The Simpsons” slot March 24.

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Michael McKean, whose credits include “This Is Spinal Tap” and the HBO series “Dream On,” will join the cast of NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” beginning Saturday.

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Landmark Theaters has signed the WorldFest Houston Intl. Film Festival to an exclusive 10-day run next month at its new Greenway III and its Saks Center theaters. The festival runs April 15-24.

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CBS Entertainment Prods. has concluded an exclusive deal with Jonathan Axelrod and James Widdoes, A/W Prods. and the Producers Entertainment Group to develop new series (Daily Variety, Feb. 1). The pair produce the hit CBS sitcom “Dave’s World” in association with the web’s in-house division.

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Robert Norton, former exec VP of business and legal affairs for Harmony Gold, has formed Random Entertainment, a production company specializing in live events. Random’s slate includes the fifth annual GLAAD/LA Media Awards March 19, followed by a celebrity playreading for the Shakespeare Festival L.A. and Theater L.A.’s Ovation Awards. TV projects in development include a six-hour docu on the history of the American musical theater and two other award shows. While at Harmony Gold, Norton worked on several miniseries, including “Heidi” and “The Lost World.”

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Bernard Zukerman Prods. and Cinar Films have signed with CBS and Canada’s CBC network to produce “Million Dollar Babies,” an $ 8 million miniseries about a Canadian couple that has quintuplets. The project will star Beau Bridges, Remy Girard and Roy Dupuis. Zukerman also produced “Love & Hate,” a CBC miniseries later licensed by NBC.

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Brillstein/Grey Entertainment, the management and production company that has an overall distribution deal with Columbia TriStar TV Distribution, has added the syndicator’s talkshow host Ricki Lake to its roster of clients. Lake will continue to retain William Morris as her agent.

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The interfaith Religious Public Relations Council has given its Wilbur Award to “Schindler’s List,” citing the film’s powerful spiritual imagery. The award is given in recognition of excellence in the communication of religious values, issues and themes. The award will be given during the org’s annual convention April 9 in Birmingham, Ala.

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Warner Bros. animator Friz Freleng will receive the Santa Clarita Valley Intl. Film Festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award March 19 at Magic Movie Studios. Information: (805) 257-7977.

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Shari Lewis Enterprises will enter into a licensing agreement with newly formed Momentum Partners Inc. following expiration of a similar contract with Warner Bros. Consumer Products. There are nearly 100 licenses relating to Lewis’ Lamb Chop character.

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