Monday, October 31, 2005
Michael Jackson has finally begun recording a song he wrote for Hurricane Katrina victims. According to America's Billboard magazine, the sessions have taken place in a Los Angeles studio with Jackson participating via phone and satellite from London. Artists Snoop Dogg, Ciara and Shirley Caesar have been spotted at Los Angeles' Conway Studios - sparking rumours they feature on the record. Jackson worked on the single at a London recording studio earlier this month. The track was originally called 'From The Bottom Of My Heart' but is set to be renamed, according to Raymone Bain, Jackson's spokesperson. Bain added: "Michael didn't need as many artists as he originally had planned for. "There are others who have to lay vocals as well. Michael plans on getting together with them for the chorus We still have several more steps before the song will be ready" [FemaleFirst]
David Beckham's car stolen
English soccer ace DAVID BECKHAM's high security BMW has been stolen in Madrid, Spain. The Real Madrid player's $180,000 (GBP100,000) armour-plated X5 was stolen from the La Moraleja region of the Spanish capital, while in the care of one of Beckham's employees. Unfortunately Beckham's assistant had forgotten to switching on the vehicle's tracking system, so police are still looking for the car. A friend tells Britain's The Sun newspaper, "He is gutted. David loves this car." [CM]\
Kelly O's b-day spat
Kelly Osbourne got into a furious argument with mother Sharon at her 21st birthday party. The reality TV star was annoyed when a group of people attending the bash tried to take her photograph. When Sharon stepped in to sort out the problem, Kelly's anger was soon directed towards her mother. "Kelly was heard complaining that her party was full of people she didn't know,'' a source told The People. "She was yelling, 'Everyone wants a f***ing piece of me'. "The party was full of people from the X Factor and loads of others Kelly didn't know, and she was clearly annoyed. It was embarrassing because mum and daughter were yelling at each other. Kelly started crying and her make-up was all smeared. She looked like a panda." A spokesperson for the Osbournes insisted, "I was told everyone had a good night." [Digital Spy]
Hawaiian wedding for Cameron and Justin?i
Are Cameron Diaz, 33, and Justin Timberlake, 24, about to say I do, island-style? Star reports that after more than two years of dating, the couple is preparing to wed in Hawaii. A friend of Timberlake's told the gossip mag: "Justin's words to me were, 'It just feels right.' And obviously Cameron feels the same way." If it happens, pals expect the ceremony to be very private. "Cameron's worst nightmare is having her wedding splashed all over the press," says the source. "She's willing to forgo a big shindig to keep her big day private." "Hawaii is their favorite, so they decided that's the place to do it," says the friend. "The plan is to invite a few close friends and family on a weeklong vacation, then have a casual sunset wedding. Then they'll stay another week to surf, relax and honeymoon." The pal says, despite rumors, that Cameron's been the one holding out, while Justin has been pushing for marriage for the past year. But, she's said to be ready for kids. Cameron's rep denies an engagement or wedding plans. [SPI]
Oprah honors Rosa Parks at memorial
Talk show host OPRAH WINFREY paid tribute to late civil rights pioneer ROSA PARKS yesterday (31OCT05) at a memorial service in Washington, DC. A large crowd of mourners made their way to the Metropolitan AME Church to pay tribute to the African-American woman whose refusal to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery, Alabama, city bus helped spark the modern civil rights movement. And Winfrey, who met Parks on numerous occasions, told the mourners, "I'm here today to say a final thank you, Sister Rosa, for being a great woman, who used your life to serve us all. "That day you refused to give up your seat on the bus, you changed the trajectory of my life, and the lives of so many other people in the world. I would not be standing here today, nor standing where I stand every day had she not chosen to sit down. I know that and I honour that... "I marvel at your will, I celebrate you strength to this day and I am forever grateful... I owe you to succeed." Parks, who died of natural causes on 24 October (05) at the age of 92, will be buried in Detroit, Michigan, tomorrow (02NOV05). [CM]
Lil Kim sings her way through jail
Hip-hop honey Lil' Kim has found an innovative way to channel her frustrations in prison — writing new songs and singing them in her cell. Inmates at her federal lockup in Philadelphia told The Post that Kim has become feverish in her intent to pen as many rap numbers as she can over the next year. And the second she's sprung from the joint, the curvy, 4-foot-11 ball of fire plans to race into the studio to record them, they said. Already, there appears to be enough new material for several CDs. "She's writing a lot of music in there," said Maricela Cuvlye, 30, an inmate who was released last week after serving six years behind bars. "She spends lots of time in her cell by herself, just to write." Prisoners say the fallen rap queen seems quite pleased with her new songs because whenever they pass her cell, she appears to be in her own world, furiously scribbling down lyrics, smiling and tapping out beats. "She's always happy, and she's always singing," one inmate said. [NYPost]
Harry Potter's girlfriend?
As the boy who plays Harry Potter, Daniel Radcliffe is constantly attended by hairdressers and make-up artists. And one in particular seems to have caught his eye. Over the past year, the 16-year old actor has grown close to a trainee hairdresser seven years his senior. She is Irish-born Amy Byrne, a 23-year-old brunette. The couple met in the summer of 2004 during filming of the fourth movie in the series, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Since then they have regularly visited each other's homes and been on dates together. After filming finished they remained in touch even though Radcliffe has been on a punishing press schedule to promote Goblet of Fire in London while Miss Byrne has flown off to work as a hairstylist and make-up artist on a Turkish movie set. She will remain there for the next month working on a film version of Turkey's most popular soap opera. Friends say Radcliffe and Miss Byrne spend hours on the phone to each other and are constantly exchanging text messages. Miss Byrne rents a room in a small semi-detached house in Watford, close to Hertfordshire's Leavesden Studios where much of the latest Potter film was shot. It would seem strange for Radcliffe, who lives with his parents in Fulham, to make an hour's journey just to get his hair and make-up done there. But this, according to her landlord Douglas Jackson, is precisely the excuse she has given for the young star's regular visits. Mr Jackson said: "Daniel has called round on a number of occasions. Amy says it is so she can help him get dressed. "She does his hair and make-up before he goes to various publicity events in London. They are very close friends. As to whether there's a relationship, I have no knowledge of that." [Daily Mail]
After this, Jen A. won't talk about divorce
Jennifer Aniston has vowed never to talk about her divorce from Brad Pitt again - because it is too boring. The high profile split enticed a media circus culminating in Aniston appearing on Oprah Winfrey's US chat show to put the record straight. But now the actress, who is soon to begin promotion for new movie The Break Up, has decided to move on. She says, "Even I have had enough of my pity parties." [Handbag]
Another joins Commander
Polly Bergen will play Kate Allen, the mother of the first female U.S. president, played by Geena Davis on ABC's Commander in Chief. Bergen will make her bow on the Nov. 29 Thanksgiving-themed episode, The Hollywood Reporter said Friday. Bergen actually beat Davis to the punch as the first woman president, The Reporter noted. She was commander in chief for the 1964 movie Kisses for My President with Fred MacMurray. Bergen won an Emmy in 1958 for Playhouse 90. She was nominated for Emmys for the 1988 miniseries War and Remembrance and the 1983 miniseries The Winds of War -- both on ABC. (UPI)
A Prairie Home Companion gets distributor
Picturehouse has acquired all North American rights to Garrison Keillor's A Prairie Home Companion directed by Robert Altman. Keillor plays himself in the movie musical about the popular radio show he started broadcasting 30 years ago out of St. Paul, Minn., the Hollywood Reporter said. The film boasts an all-star ensemble cast including Meryl Streep, Lily Tomlin, Lindsay Lohan, Kevin Kline, John C. Reilly, Woody Harrelson, Virginia Madsen and Tommy Lee Jones. Altman finished the film ahead of schedule -- in only in 22 days, The Reporter said. (UPI)
Brad Pitt narrates documentary on global health
NEW YORK (AP) — Brad Pitt's voice is usually identified with movies such as ``Troy,'' ``Ocean's Eleven'' and ``Twelve Monkeys'' — not a six-hour documentary on global health. Starting Tuesday night on PBS and ending Thursday (check local listings), Pitt will narrate six hour-long episodes of ``RX for Survival: A Global Health Challenge,'' which follows health care workers and researchers struggling to contain disease among the world's poor. ``I've been involved with the issue of poverty — I've been studying it for about a year and half now,'' Pitt told The Associated Press in a phone interview Monday from Calgary, Alberta. ``I think one of the major causes of that is health, global health.'' Pitt has made several trips to Africa in the past two years, including one in July to Ethiopia, where his ``Mr. & Mrs. Smith'' co-star Angelina Jolie adopted her daughter, Zahara. While tabloid coverage of Pitt and Jolie has been extensive, the 41-year-old actor told Diane Sawyer on ABC's ``Primetime Live'' in June that he wanted to redirect some of that attention to poverty in Africa. ``I think it could be one of the major issues of the century,'' he told the AP. ``There are two things at stake here: one is human interest and the other is self-interest. We're finding out that there's no safe haven from infectious diseases. It's a plane flight away.'' ``The human interest is enough — the fact that millions are dying from preventable, curable diseases,'' Pitt said. ``But if the human interest isn't enough, then wisdom will tell you that self-preservation is.''
Howie Mandel: Game Show host!
NBC has signed comic Howie Mandel as host of its new game show, Deal or No Deal. NBC announced plans for the show earlier this year, describing it as a big, exciting game show that contains nail-biting drama and hefty cash prizes, The Hollywood Reporter said Monday. Deal starts production this week but no premiere date has been set, an NBC spokeswoman said. Mandel -- best known for his six-year stint on St. Elsewhere -- is a frequent guest on NBC's The Tonight Show With Jay Leno and recently starred in Hidden Howie, a comedy/reality show on cable's Bravo network. [UPI]
Comedy Central renews Mencia
Comedy Central has signed a multifaceted deal with comic Carlos Mencia that includes a second season of his series, Mind of Mencia. Mencia will also have an hourlong special on the cable network and be host of Comedy Central Live cross-country tour, The Hollywood Reporter said. Comedy Central Home Entertainment will also release an uncensored DVD of the show's first season, The Reporter said. The Mind of Mencia DVD will be released in March when the second 13-episode season kicks off. [WebIndia]
A Happy Days musical is a bad idea, if you ask me
Richie, Mr. and Mrs. C, the Fonz, Potsie, Ralph Malph and the other characters of a beloved television sitcom will come to life in the new musical Happy Days set to debut in Los Angeles in 2006. The TV show's creator-producer Garry Marshall will stage the new musical version of his popular 1974-84 series at the theatre he founded in Burbank, California, Feb. 15 March 12, 2006. Opening night is slated for Feb. 24. "Kicking off 2006 will be the world premiere of Happy Days, a brand new musical which I wrote with Oscar and Grammy Award-winning composer/lyricist Paul Williams, with a book based on my successful TV series," boasted Marshall in the company's season announcement. "It's May, 1959 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and Fonzie is still the king of cool at his favorite malt shop, Arnold’s," reads show materials. "The school year is coming to an end and the rest of the gang, including Richie, Lori Beth, Potsie and Ralph Malph, are getting ready to graduate from Jefferson High School." The musical "celebration of nostalgia" will feature appearances by Pinky Tuscadero and the Malachi Brothers as well. Academy, Grammy and Golden Globe Award-winning composer Williams has provided music for the films "Bugsy Malone," "A Star Is Born," "The Muppet Movie" and the theme to TV's "The Love Boat" Among his songs include "Evergreen," "We've Only Just Begun," "Rainy Days and Mondays," "Just An Old Fashioned Love Song" and "Rainbow Connection." As an actor, he has appeared in the films "Phantom of the Paradise," the "Smokey and the Bandit" trilogy, "The Doors," as well as on Broadway in Tru. Marshall — a producer, director and writer of film, television and theatre — has directed the films "Pretty Woman," "Frankie & Johnny," "Beaches," "Overboard," "Runaway Bride" and "The Princess Diaries" movies. He is also known for his successful television shows including "Happy Days," "Laverne & Shirley," "The Odd Couple" and "Mork & Mindy." In 1997, he founded the Falcon Theatre which run by his daughter Kathleen Marshall. [Playbill]
Meg White to do a soundtrack
WHITE STRIPES drummer MEG WHITE has gone solo to record the soundtrack for new movie YOU ARE GOING TO PRISON. Comedian BOB ODENKIRK approached the FELL IN LOVE WITH A GIRL hitmaker about the project and was delighted when she agreed to create pounding rhythms for the film. White's unaccompanied drumming will serve as the theme music for a character played by former PUNK'D star DAX SHEPARD. [CM]
Don't go trick-o-treating at Jane's house
MALCOLM IN THE MIDDLE star JANE KACZMAREK is so frugal she saves excess candy from Hallowe'en to give to trick-or-treating children the following year. The actress, a mother of three, insists there's nothing wrong with the aged sweets she's been handing out to youngsters knocking on her door. She says, "I'm practical. You get too much candy and I found a couple of years ago that you keep that candy and before you know it it's Hallowe'en again. You use that candy and just give it out again. "It's delicious. It tastes exactly like the new stuff."
Jen G. takes on thriller
LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Jennifer Garner is going on "Sabbatical." The "Alias" heroine will star in and produce the Disney erotic thriller, follows a couple that hits the doldrums in their seventh year of marriage. To inject some life into their union, they decide to take a two-week sabbatical from each other during which, within a set of rules, they can do whatever they want. When the wife returns to the agreed-upon meeting place two weeks later, however, she discovers that her husband has disappeared. Garner's Vandalia Films banner sold the project to Disney, along with production company LivePlanet ("Matchstick Men") and Chuck Weinstock, who came up with the idea. A writer will be named shortly. Garner, who won a Golden Globe and a SAG Award for her performance on ABC's "Alias," will next be seen on the big screen in Sony's "Catch and Release." She is currently awaiting the delivery of her child with Ben Affleck. [Reuters]
Madonna wants you to lay off Tom, focus on her new album instead
Superstar MADONNA has leapt to the defence of TOM CRUISE, after witnessing the actor receive criticism over his controversial Scientology religion. . After years of subtly practicing the religion, Cruise has began to speak more openly about his love for the Church of Scientology and has converted his pregnant fiancee KATIE HOLMES. . Madonna, who has been slammed over her following of the Kabbalah, insists Cruise is happy as a Scientologist and the public and media should respect his religion. . She tells the New York Daily News, "I find it very strange that it's (Scientology) so disturbing to people. It's not hurting anybody. "If it makes Tom Cruise happy, I don't care if he prays to turtles. And I don't think anybody else should." When discussing her love for the Kabbalah - a mystical offshoot of Judaism - Madonna is disgusted when critics label it a 'cult'. . She says, "We're all in a cult. In this cult we're not encouraged to ask questions. And if we do ask questions, we aren't going to get a straight answer. "The world's in the cult of celebrity. That's the irony of it." [FemaleFirst]
Mary Kate opposite Sienna in Factory Girl?
Reese didn't mean to insult Jessica
Hollywood actress REESE WITHERSPOON has hit back at comments she slammed JESSICA SIMPSON as a dumb blonde who cashes in on her stupidity, insisting she was misquoted. The LEGALLY BLONDE star allegedly maintained Simpson's reality TV show NEWLYWEDS made her "want to throw daggers" - but now says her words were manipulated. She says, "Actually I didn't name anyone, I was misquoted." Nevertheless Witherspoon retains strong convictions that female Hollywood leads are often paid to celebrate their stupidity: "I believe there's a movement among young women to play dumb, and I don't think that's a good message to promote if you're a public figure. "In the past too many women had to overcome being told that they weren't smart enough to vote, smart enough to go to college, smart enough to hold high paying jobs." [CM]