Enjoy these snack-sized bites of TV news — it’s the holidays, after all.
In the category of fastest rumor-squashing, Simon Cowell has knocked down speculation that George Michael will be a judge on “The X Factor” on FOX next fall. Reports of Michael’s supposed involvement started making the rounds Thursday morning (Dec. 14); within a few hours, Cowell had issued a statement saying Michael won’t be a judge on the show. [“Extra”]
It’s a bad time to be a spinoff at Syfy. The cable channel has decided not to renew “Stargate Universe” for a third season; the 10 episodes scheduled to air in the spring will be the show’s last. [Deadline]
A pair of “Smallville” episodes (“Shield” and “Abandoned”) are among the TV nominees for the American Society of Cinematographers 25th annual Outstanding Achievement Awards. The other series nominees are “Dark Blue” (episode “Shell Game”), “Boardwalk Empire” (“Home” and “Family Limitation”), “Mad Men” (“Blowing Smoke”) and “Nikita” (“Pilot”); the TV movie/miniseries nominees are “Jesse Stone: No Remorse,” “Part 2” of Syfy’s “Alice” and the “Okinawa” episode of “The Pacific.” [ASC]
Ex-Beatle Paul McCartney can still bring viewers to television. Last weekend’s “Saturday Night Live,” featuring host Paul Rudd and McCartney as musical guest, drew the show’s biggest audience (7.6 million) and adults 18-49 rating (2.7) of the season. [NBC]
NKOTBSB — that’d be New Kids on the Block and the Backstreet Boys — will be part of ABC’s “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” telecast. The no-longer-boy bands, who are touring together, join Taio Cruz and Ke$ha in the lineup of performers in New York’s Times Square. [ABC]
NBC’s genealogy series “Who Do You Think You Are?” has announced its lineup of celebrities for Season 2, which premieres Feb. 4. The stars tracing their heritage are Gwyneth Paltrow, Vanessa Williams, Rosie O’Donnell, Steve Buscemi, Tim McGraw, Kim Cattrall, Lionel Richie and Ashley Judd. [NBC]