Friday, September 10, 2004

Nick and Jessica will be
'Newlyweds' once again



By Lauren Bishop / Enquirer staff writer

It's official: Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson, those popular Newlyweds, will return for a third season of the MTV reality show.

Lachey, a Cincinnati native and former member of 98, tells the Enquirer that after weeks of speculation, the show will resume taping in the next few months and that new episodes will air early next year.

Simpson previously implied that the couple would call it quits after a season or two, possibly because they wanted to start a family. It has also been reported that pop singer Britney Spears and fiance Kevin Federline were in talks to become the new Newlyweds.

"I think we could have gone either way, to be honest with you," Lachey says. "We certainly have enjoyed the show and everything that the show has done for us and our careers, but by the same token, it is a little taxing to do.

"I think that we could have easily walked away, but at the same time, we pretty much just assumed that we would do another one."

Although the couple will celebrate their two-year anniversary Oct. 26, Lachey says the show still will be called Newlyweds for continuity's sake.

He says he doesn't yet know how they'll celebrate, in part because he's scheduled to sing at a Bengals game the day before. But Lachey says the presence of the TV cameras could inspire a bigger than normal public display of affection.

"I'd like to think that I'm romantic anyway, but yeah, there's definitely a little more pressure when you're being watched and judged," he says. "You've got to do it up a little better."

Lachey fans can see him this fall on another network. He'll appear in six episodes of the WB's Charmed as Phoebe Halliwell's (Alyssa Milano's) love interest starting at 8 p.m. Sunday on Channels 64, 26.

E-mail lbishop@enquirer.com



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