A.M. Surf Report: Justin Timberlake Scores The 'Coolest Chick Ever'; Kelly Clarkson Gets An 'Idol' Apology; Maroon 5 Elbow T-Pain

Plus 'Star Wars' geek busted on laser-gun charge; 'The Sims' heads to a theater near you; Nicolas Cage drops Capone role and more.

The news happens all the time, even while you're catching up on beauty sleep. Check out this brief rundown to bring you up to speed this morning — a quick heads up from your friends at MTV News.

Here's what we've got:

You probably don't think of N.O.R.E. as a pioneer, but he was one of the first rappers to work with the Neptunes and Swizz Beatz — and now N.O.R.E tells he's us got T-Pain's real voice on a new track. "I think I got the first T-Pain record without him using the voice-box thing," he said, laughing. "The dude can actually sing without it." ...

Constantine Maroulis has been off "American Idol" for more than two years now, but between musical theater and soap opera roles, he hasn't gotten around to putting out an album. Until now. Maroulis' LP Constantine — "better than the one I could have made right off the show," he told us — is due August 4. Meanwhile, fellow season-four rocker Bo Bice tells us that his upcoming second album (due later this year) will bear more of his mark. "I didn't have a lot to do with the first record," he explained. ...

And DevilDriver frontman Dez Fafara tells us that working with "a total wing nut" — producer Jason Suecof — helped the band create an album that's both foreboding and inspiring. "He would criticize something and I would just be like, 'You suck, you've got no groove.' " Fafara said. "But the friction worked."

Quote of the Day: "I'mma go out there and bug out. If I fall on my face, I don't got anyone to blame but me." — N.O.R.E.

Here's what everyone else is talking about:

Leave it to that mysterious "source" to go spilling the beans on celebrity romance again. This time the big mouth is telling People that Justin Timberlake has got it bad for "the coolest chick ever": Jessica Biel. "Justin's in love," People's "source close to the singer" reveals. "He wants to be with her all the time. He's ready to be serious." Reps for JT and Biel had no comment. ...

TMZ.com reports that Kelly Clarkson has received an apology from her record label for Clive Davis' speech on Wednesday night's "American Idol" finale — not for the length of the extended monologue, but for its content. Davis, who has clashed with Clarkson over her upcoming My December, plugged new singles by Katharine McPhee and Taylor Hicks but not Kelly's "Never Again," and highlighted the record sales of other "Idol" vets in the presentation. Davis' rep denied the report to TMZ, and said that he was simply focusing on recent "Idol" successes, not freezing out Clarkson. ...

Maroon 5 take #1 back from T-Pain on Billboard's Hot 100 this week. "Makes Me Wonder" returns to the top after being dethroned by "Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin')" last week. T-Pain drops to #2, Avril Lavigne's "Girlfriend" (#3) and Timbaland's "Give It to Me" (#4) stay put, and Daughtry's "Home" climbs from #13 to #5 (thanks, "Idol"!) ...

Adam Levine and friends are likely to top the next Billboard albums chart as well. According to Hits Daily Double's one-day sales reports, Maroon 5's It Won't Be Soon Before Long is headed for a 400,000-copy first week. Ozzy Osbourne's Black Rain and Young Jeezy's USDA project are also predicted to score top 10 debuts, each on target for more than 100,000 sales. ...

A "Star Wars" fan toting a Han Solo-style pistol to a 30th anniversary celebration photo shoot was arrested in Australia on Thursday when authorities thought his prop gun was a real weapon, Reuters reported. The man, who was dressed in black and had the replica laser gun peeking out of his backpack, freaked out people at a food court in Melbourne. Although the gun was a fake, he still faces charges of possessing an illegal firearm. ...

"The Sims" are headed to a theater near you, Variety reports. Can't even begin to guess what a live-action version of the game will be like? Sims Studio head Rod Humble's description isn't terribly enlightening. " 'The SIMS has done an interactive version of an old story, which is what it's like to have infinite power and how do you deal with it," Humble said in the Variety report. "Given that that's an old story, you can imagine how easily that would translate to traditional story telling." ...

Looks like Nicolas Cage won't be starring as Al Capone in an "Untouchables" prequel after all. Variety reports that talks to cast the actor in Brian DePalma's "The Untouchables: Capone Rising" have ended due to Cage's scheduling conflicts. Gerard Butler is still onboard. ...

Good news, NYC rock fans: FreeFM is done. At 5 p.m. on Thursday, Nirvana's "All Apologies" announced the return of K-Rock to the 92.3 frequency in the New York metropolitan area.