Miss Alabama Deidre Downs, an aspiring doctor who put off medical school to compete for the Miss America crown, won it Saturday night.
Downs, 24, of Birmingham, Ala., outsmarted and outperformed 51 other women in a spiced-up version of the 83-year-old pageant that included a head-to-head showdown between the last two contestants.
Downs, who sang I'm Afraid This Must Be Love for her talent routine, bested Miss Louisiana Jennifer Dupont, who performed a jazz dance for hers.
Miss North Carolina Kristin Elrod was second runnerup, followed by Miss Arkansas Lacy Fleming and Miss California Veena Goel.
Downs earns a $50,000 college scholarship, a modicum of overnight celebrity and a yearlong reign that can net up to $200,000 in appearance fees.
Travolta to publish autobiography in 2006
NEW YORK _ John Travolta is taking a stab at posterity.
His autobiography, not yet titled, will be published in fall 2006, Hyperion announced this week. In it, the actor will share stories from his life and career.
"I've hit a milestone this year in my life, turning 50, and if I waited any longer I'd have to write two books," Travolta, an Oscar nominee for Saturday Night Fever and Pulp Fiction, said in a statement. "I've had such a full life that I really want to share it."
Travolta's new film, Ladder 49, also starring Joaquin Phoenix, will be released Oct. 1.
Recording of Hendrix concert found in Sweden
STOCKHOLM, Sweden _ Technicians at Sweden's public television have unearthed an unexpected delight for music lovers: a complete original recording of a Jimi Hendrix concert in Stockholm from 1969 on a tape long thought to have been destroyed.
The unmarked tape was recently found stashed on a shelf deep inside the station's enormous archives during a project to transfer archived material from tape and film to digital, SVT spokeswoman Catarina Wilson said.
The black-and-white recording from Stockholm's concert hall was ordered destroyed by a producer in 1969, a time when it was too expensive to keep all raw footage, Wilson said.
Wilson said it was likely that one of the state-run network's workers stashed it on the shelf, where it sat for 35 years gathering dust.
Tarantino may release spliced-together "Kill Bill'
Quentin Tarantino is thinking about releasing a third Kill Bill movie, which will be a version of the first two films spliced together, reports Ananova.com.
The double-bill release was originally meant to have been one film, but the maverick filmmaker had too much footage.
The director also hinted that there would be brand new footage.