Diana Ross,

the Beach Boys'

Brian Wilson,


Martin Scorsese,


Leon Fleisher

, and wild and crazy

Steve Martin

went to the White House yesterday to be recognized by

President Bush.

They later attended a celebration at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts that will be broadcast Dec. 26 on CBS.

The center's board of trustees cited Wilson, 65, for his "era-defining transformation of the sound of music"; Scorsese, 65, as a "visionary"; Martin, 62, as a "renaissance comic whose talents wipe out the boundaries"; Ross, 63, for spreading "romance and joy throughout the world"; and Fleisher, 79, as a "moving testament to the life-affirming power of art."

Halftime show

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers

will perform at halftime during the Super Bowl on Feb. 3, it was announced this weekend. The XLII game will be played at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona. Nearly 140 million viewers in the United States watched last year's show with


Montel: I apologize

Talk-show host

Montel Williams

is offering an on-air apology to a newspaper intern he believed had followed him after an earlier interview.

Williams, who was in Savannah, Ga., on Friday to promote free prescriptions for poor people, issued a statement of apology to a Savannah Morning News high school intern,

Courtney Scott

, who had asked him questions related to rising drug costs.

On Saturday, Scott received a letter from Williams sent from the e-mail address of the producer of his show. "I'll accept, if he's really going to do it," Scott said. "I don't really think it's his statement."

Williams, a patient advocate since being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, had terminated an interview with Scott on Friday and later saw her among reporters at a hotel, unaware they had another assignment.

A witness said that Williams walked up and told Scott that "I can look you up, find where you live and blow you up." Scott filed a police report.

It's only rock-and-roll

Steven Van Zandt

says that in developing a curriculum to teach a new generation the history of rock-and-roll, he made it fun.

Van Zandt, guitarist for

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band

and former cast member of

The Sopranos,

is the founder of the Rock and Roll Forever Foundation.

Weekend box office

The fairy-tale romance


maintained its Disney magic at the box office, pulling in $17 million this weekend, according to studio estimates yesterday. Also in the top five were

This Christmas

at $8.4 million;


at $7.9 million;


at $6 million; and


at $5.8 million.