The WB has created an unusual schedule for its new series "Movie Stars": Episodes are slated for Sundays at 9 and Mondays at 9 and will run until all eight have been aired.
Harry Hamlin and Jennifer Grant star with Marnette Patterson, Zack Hopkins, Mark Benninghofen, Rachel David and Anne Haney. Frank Stallone, Don Swayze and Joey Travolta have recurring roles as themselves. See story on Page 7.
Also on the WB, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" airs the second half of its season finale Tuesday at 8. The story was to air May 25, but was postponed because of the high school killings in Colorado.
In the episode, the Sunnydale High School graduation is the climax of a war pitting the seniors, rallied by star Sarah Michelle Gellar, against the evil mayor, whose transformation into a demon occurs during his speech to the class.
Additionally, Buffy risks her life to save her beloved Angel from death. His departure sets up a new fall series for the character, played by David Boreanaz.
Sunday and Monday at 8 on PBS
Stacy Keach narrates a four-hour, two-night program recounting the immense power and inner workings of the world's oceans, which cover 70 percent of the planet and contain 90 percent of life on Earth. Undersea footage and first-person accounts are used to tell of harrowing encounters with sharks, shipwrecks and violent storms. The miniseries also offers scientific insight to explain phenomena such as El Nino/La Nina. "Killer Waves" and "Rescue" airs Sunday; "The Deep" and "Killer Storms" air Monday.
THE BATTLE FOR TITANIC
Monday at 10 on MPT
The modern story of the Titanic is one of greed, obsession, Cold War intrigue and courtroom struggles over who owns the rights to the wreck and what should happen to it.
Titanic lay submerged in the icy waters of the North Atlantic for 73 years, a grave-marker for the 1,500 lives lost and a time capsule of the treasures enclosed, until Sept. 1, 1985, when the ship was located by Robert Ballard and his crew.
Ballard, a U.S. Navy Reserve officer and friend of John Lehman, former Secretary of the Navy, had struck a deal with the U.S. Navy in the early 1980s. The Navy agreed to let Ballard use its vessels and equipment to find the Titanic in part to prove to the Soviets, in a highly visible way, the superiority of American military technology.
Ballard also enlisted the help of the French oceanographic institute. After the French searched for 56 days to no avail, Ballard and the Navy cameras spotted the wreck.
But in violation of an agreement between the French and Americans, pictures were published in the United States ahead of those in France. The French retaliated by renting their ships to a Hollywood-based television company that staged a live special of the salvage of Titanic artifacts.
"When we saw the god-awful display that was put on TV worldwide, I felt sad for the survivors," said Ed Kamuda, president of the Titanic Historical Society.
George Tulloch, head of RMS Titanic Inc., the company that controls the wreck, stages exhibits of some of the 5,000 items he has removed from the ship to provide revenue for his firm.
Many people decry what they view as debasement of the ship's memory; some oppose the removal of any items from the wreck. Among those is Ballard, who believes that all items removed from the ship should be returned.
The Titanic is big business. In addition to the blockbuster Oscar-winning movie, the hit Broadway musical and a new theme park in Orlando, Fla., Russian submersibles have taken tourists to the wreck site, and two cruise ships took onlookers to the site in 1996 to witness the raising of part of Titanic's hull.
MALCOLM & EDDIE
Tuesday at 9 on UPN
This week's repeat, "Daddio," features rapper Coolio as Troy, a Chicago contractor who hopes to win the bid for Malcolm and Eddie's new club but who must watch his three lively children. What makes a second look worthwhile is that UPN is considering making a spin-off series based on this episode.
P.O.V. "Corpus: A Home Movie for Selena"
Tuesday at 11 on WETA, Thursday at 10 on MPT
Tejana singer Selena was on her way to crossover stardom when she was murdered at age 23 by the president of her fan club in 1995. Mexican-born filmmaker Lourdes Portillo looks at Selena's life and death, placing what happened in a cultural context and at the social forces that transformed the singer into a Chicana cultural icon for some girls and women. The portrait offers recollections from family, friends and fans in Selena's home town, Corpus Christi, Tex.
THE GREAT BALLOON RACE
Wednesday at 9 on PBS
On March 20, Swiss psychiatrist Bertrand Piccard and British aviator Brian Jones floated across an invisible finish line in Mauritania after 20 days aloft, becoming the first team to fly a hot-air balloon nonstop around the world.
This two-hour special uses footage taken aboard their Breitling Orbiter 3 balloon and interviews with balloonists and ground crews to tell the story of the contest and those of the people who set out to win it.
The first hour focuses on key flights made during 1997-98, all of which failed. The second hour surveys the '98-99 season of attempts.
CAPTION: Breitling Orbiter 3
CAPTION: SARAH MICHELLE GELLAR