"THE NANNY" WANTS to be the junior senator from New York.

That's Nu Yawk.

This is not a joke.

Fran Drescher's publicist, Jordan Brown, said Drescher is serious.

Brown cited Fran's experience as an actress, an advocate for women's health and a public-diplomacy envoy for the State Department.

Not to mention her ability as a busty, nasal yiddishe momma to win the affection of a family of wealthy, repressed WASPs.

Drescher joins a field headed by Caroline Kennedy and New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo. New York Gov. David Paterson will appoint Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's successor if she is confirmed secretary of state in Barack Obama's administration.

Fantasia misses a note

Another day, another celebrity housing crisis.

Court documents obtained yesterday show that a home owned by "American Idol" winner Fantasia Barrino in Charlotte, N.C., is up for auction after a company said Fantasia had failed to repay money it lent her to cover her taxes in 2006.

The Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office is scheduled to sell the home, valued at $1.1 million, next month.

The home isn't in foreclosure, but rather is being used to compensate the company that lent Fantasia the scratch to cover her tax.

Even if January's sale proceeds, Fantasia won't be homeless. She still has a $529,000 house a few miles away.

Pixar wows L.A. critics

The Los Angeles Film Critics Association has gone populist on its picks for best movies of 2008, choosing the animated smash "WALL-E" as No. 1 and the Batman blockbuster "The Dark Knight" as runner-up.

Sean Penn was named best actor for the film biography "Milk," while Sally Hawkins received the best-actress prize for the British comic drama "Happy-Go-Lucky."

The late Heath Ledger won the critics group's supporting-actor honor for his turn as the Joker in "The Dark Knight," and Penelope Cruz was chosen for supporting actress in the Woody Allen romance "Vicky Cristina Barcelona," as well as her role in the drama "Elegy."

Danny Boyle took directing honors for "Slumdog Millionaire." "Happy-Go-Lucky" director Mike Leigh won for best screenplay.

Tattle docket

Donna West, who accused Tyler Perry of stealing material from her play "Fantasy of a Black Woman" for his movie "Diary of a Mad Black Woman," has lost her federal lawsuit against him.

The Marshall News Messenger reports that jurors in the East Texas town of Marshall found yesterday that West had not presented evidence that supported her claim of copyright infringement.

* Coldplay has fired back against

accusations they copied Joe Satriani's work for their hit "Viva La Vida."

In a statement released yesterday, the band responded to a copyright-infringement lawsuit filed by the guitarist last week in L.A. That lawsuit says the Grammy-nominated song contains "substantial, original portions" of his 2004 song "If I Could Fly."

"With the greatest possible respect to Joe Satriani, we have now unfortunately found it necessary to respond publicly to his allegations," read the statement. "If there are any similarities between our two pieces of music, they are entirely coincidental, and just as surprising to us as to him. Joe Satriani is a great musician, but he did not write the song 'Viva La Vida.' We respectfully ask him to accept our assurances of this and wish him well with all future endeavours."

Satriani wants a federal judge to order an accounting so he can determine how much money he may be owed, or else stop using the song.

In response to Coldplay's statement, Satriani's attorney, Howard E. King, said Coldplay's public reaction was dramatically different from how the guitarist's claims were treated before the lawsuit was filed.

"We attempted to have a dialogue on this before we went public," King said. "We felt almost forced to file suit.

"As far as the 'coincidence,' ultimately that's for a jury to decide," he added.

King said it's common for musicians to be influenced by other works and incorporate it into their own, sometimes a little too closely. But he said that the reaction is usually different when the similarities are pointed out.

"It doesn't mean you don't owe something to the original composer," he said.

Tattbit

* One way Taylor Swift seems to be

getting over her breakup with Joe Jonas is by talking about it every second.

She tells TheBoot.com, "I'm not typically the girl who dates a lot of guys or is in relationships a lot. Most of my life, I've been single."

Most of her life? Taylor is 19. *

Daily News wire services contributed to this report.

Send e-mail to gensleh@phillynews.com