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The daily dish ...

Confident contestant

Buffalo native Michael Empric believes he can beat the odds to win a bundle on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" starring Meredith Vieira.

Empric previously left his mark on Buffalo culture by helping to create the World's Largest Ice Maze during the 2010 Powder Keg Festival here. In a press release, he says that if he wins on "Millionaire," he will help pay for his sister's wedding.

Empric, who now lives in Brooklyn, can be seen at 1 p.m. today and tomorrow on WNLO-CW 23.

He is a 1996 graduate of City Honors, and his parents, Ronald and Margaret Empric, live in Buffalo.


Deschanel going country

Country Music Hall of Fame member Loretta Lynn is taking her life story to Broadway, and she has tapped film and TV actress Zooey Deschanel to play her on stage.

Lynn, 80, unveiled plans for a musical adaptation of "Coal Miner's Daughter" during a Grand Ole Opry show at the Ryman Auditorium on Thursday night. Wearing one of her signature long sleeve, floor length dresses, the singer blew through four songs before bringing Deschanel onstage to sing the title tune.

The two traded verses to the song and they ended the song holding hands.

"Coal Miner's Daughter" was a No. 1 hit for Lynn in 1970. It became the title of her 1976 autobiography and the basis for the 1980 movie,

Deschanel, 32, is the star and a producer of the Fox comedy "New Girl."


Show to spotlight Houston kin

A reality show featuring Whitney Houston's relatives, including daughter Bobbi Kristina and mother Cissy, is in the works.

Houston representative Kristen Foster confirmed the Lifetime show, "The Houston Family Chronicles," on Friday.

It will focus on Pat Houston, sister-in-law and manager of the late singer. Pat Houston is also helping care for Whitney Houston's only child, 19-year-old Bobby Kristina. The show promises to feature Bobbi Kristina and Cissy, as well as Houston's cousin Dionne Warwick, gospel singer CeCe Winans and other members of the Houston family.

Whitney Houston drowned in a bathtub in February at age 48 in Beverly Hills, Calif. Authorities said her death was complicated by cocaine use and heart disease.


Celebrity birthdays...

Sunday: Actor Harvey Keitel is 73. Comedian Stephen Colbert is 48.

Monday: Actress Cate Blanchett is 43. Actress Amber Tamblyn is 29.

Tuesday: Country singer K.T. Oslin is 70. Actor Chazz Palminteri is 60.

Wednesday: Actor Pierce Brosnan is 59. Actress Debra Winger is 57.

Thursday: Singer Taj Mahal is 70. Late-night host Craig Ferguson is 50. .

Friday: Actor Dwayne Hickman is 78. Comedian Tina Fey is 42.

Next Saturday: Author-director Nora Ephron is 71.

-- From News and wire services