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New face and show

Roger Ebert debuted a facial prosthesis along with his new public television show on film criticism.

The veteran critic was left disfigured after surgeries for a cancerous growth in his salivary gland.

He wrote on his blog that he'll appear on his new "Ebert Presents at the Movies" in a prosthesis for his lower face and neck. Since the operations left him unable to speak, Ebert communicates through a voice in his laptop.

The 68-year-old Ebert says the prosthesis "will be a pleasant reminder of the person I was for 64 years."

The show debuted Friday with co-hosts Christy Lemire of the Associated Press and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of It's being taped where Ebert and the late Gene Siskel made their iconic "Sneak Previews" show starting 35 years ago.


Critics like Franzen

Jonathan Franzen is back in the awards circle.

Franzen's "Freedom," among last year's most highly praised novels, is a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle awards. Franzen had been bypassed for the National Book Awards, judged by fellow authors, but was an obvious choice for a prize voted on by reviewers, many of whom placed "Freedom" on their annual best-of lists. None of the fiction nominees for the National Book Award, including winner Jaimy Gordon's "Lord of Misrule," were chosen for the critics circle prize.

Other nominees announced Saturday included Jennifer Egan's novel "A Visit From the Goon Squad" and memoirs by Christopher Hitchens -- "Hitch-22" -- and singer-poet Patti Smith, whose "Just Kids" won an NBA for nonfiction. German-Dutch novelist Hans Keilson is the oldest finalist, not just for the critics award, but perhaps for any major literary prize. Keilson, cited for "Comedy in a Minor Key," turned 101 in December.

Winners will be announced March 10. There are no cash prizes.


Zsa Zsa back home

Zsa Zsa Gabor's publicist says the actress returned home from the hospital, a week after doctors amputated most of her right leg.

John Blanchette says that doctors are pleased with Gabor's recovery and that she was transported by ambulance Saturday back to her Bel Air mansion.

Doctors at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center decided to amputate Jan. 14 when a persistent infection wouldn't heal. She had been expected to remain in the hospital for at least two weeks.

Blanchette says the 93-year-old "Moulin Rouge" and "Queen of Outer Space" star will be monitored daily by nurses.


Ivanka expecting

Ivanka Trump and her husband are expecting their first child.

The "Celebrity Apprentice" co-host announced Friday on Twitter that she's pregnant. In 2009, she married Jared Kushner, a New York real estate scion and publisher of the New York Observer weekly newspaper.

The 29-year-old Trump hasn't said when she's due.

Trump is the daughter of Donald Trump and his former wife Ivana.

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