Archive for the ‘Celebrity News’ Category

Bart Simpson a Scientologist?…

Saturday, January 31st, 2009


Scientology promoted in Bart Simpson’s voice


Nancy Cartwright-Bart Simpson

  Nancy Cartwright and her alter-ego, Bart Simpson


Nancy Cartwright recorded her robocall to boost attendance at an event


The Associated Press

NEW YORK – Bart Simpson is known for prank calls, but Nancy Cartwright, who provides Bart’s voice on the U.S. version of “The Simpsons,” has been heard this week in a phone message using the voice of the cartoon boy to promote Scientology.


Cartwright, long a member of the church, recorded her 60-second robocall to boost attendance at a Scientology event scheduled for Saturday.


Although she identifies herself, much of the spiel is delivered in Bart’s voice, wrapping up with, “See you there, man!”


The Fox network would not comment, but “Simpsons” executive producer Al Jean said the message wasn’t authorized by the show, which has never “endorsed any religion, philosophy or system of beliefs any more profound than Butterfinger bars” candy.



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Roddenberry’s In Space…

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009


Gene Roddenberry, wife to spend eternity in space


Majel Barrett and Gene Roddenberry


The Associated Press
January 27, 2009


LOS ANGELES — The creator of “Star Trek” and his wife will spend eternity together in space. Celestis Inc., a company that specializes in “memorial spaceflights,” said Monday that it will ship the remains of Gene Roddenberry and Majel Barrett Roddenberry into space next year.


The couple’s cremated remains will be sealed into specially made capsules designed to withstand the rigors of space travel. A rocket-launched spacecraft will carry the capsules, along with digitized tributes from fans. The Roddenberrys’ remains _ and the spacecraft _ will travel ever deeper into space and will not return to earth, company spokeswoman Susan Schonfeld said.


After Gene Roddenberry died in 1991, his wife commissioned Celestis to launch a part of his remains into space in 1997. She died Dec. 18, 2008.



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Travolta ‘Heartbroken’…

Sunday, January 4th, 2009


‘We are heartbroken,’ Travolta says of late son


Travolta family


Actor thanks fans, friends for wishes of condolence after Jett’s death


Access Hollywood
 Jan. 4, 2009

NASSAU, Bahamas – The Travolta family posted a message on their Web site,, on Sunday, thanking well-wishers for their support following the death of their son, Jett, on Friday morning.


“We would like to extend our deepest and most heartfelt thanks to everyone who has sent their love and condolences,” the note read.


“Jett was the most wonderful son that two parents could ever ask for and lit up the lives of everyone he encountered. We are heartbroken that our time with him was so brief. We will cherish the time we had with him for the rest of our lives.


“We have received many messages of condolence from around the world and we want to thank everyone for their prayers and support,” the message continued. “It has meant so much to us. It is a beautiful reminder of the inherent goodness of the human spirit that gives us hope for a brighter future.”


The message is signed John, Kelly and Ella — the Travoltas’ 8-year-old daughter.


Among those messages of condolences was one from the Kawasaki Disease Foundation, which Access Hollywood received on Sunday morning. Jett suffered from the rare disease.


“The members, families and supporters of the Kawasaki Disease Foundation wish to express our sympathies to the Travoltas on the loss of their son, Jett,” the Foundation said in a statement to Access. “We also extend our condolences to the families of the countless children who have been claimed by Kawasaki Disease. Although we do not know the cause of Jett Travolta’s passing, we are aware that he had KD as a child, which like other KD children, made him special in the hearts of other KD families who know first hand the challenges our children face. The loss of any child, whether in the days and weeks after having KD, or years later, is tragic.”


Jett, who was 16, passed away on Friday while on vacation in the Bahamas with his family. He is thought to have suffered a seizure and hit his head on the bathtub.


According to the New York Daily News, John attempted to save his son’s life, administering CPR and calling out to an arriving emergency medical technician for assistance after Jett was discovered on the bathroom floor by one of his two nannies.


“Help me! Help me! I’m losing him!” Travolta reportedly said.


Michael Ossi, the family’s lawyer, told Access on Friday that Jett had a “history of seizures.”


An autopsy will be conducted by two pathologists on Monday. Following that, Jett’s body will be flown to Florida for a likely burial in Ocala, where the Travoltas own a home, in the middle of the week.



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‘Big Bopper’s’ Caskett For Sale…

Saturday, January 3rd, 2009


‘Big Bopper’s’ son auctioning Dad’s casket


Beaumont, Texas — Rock ‘n’ roll’s most macabre historical artifact will go on the block when the family of the late 1950s pop star J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson auctions his casket on eBay sometime in the next few weeks – almost 50 years after “the day the music died.”    (Click on ‘Continue Reading’ for more)
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Sam Shepard Arrested…

Saturday, January 3rd, 2009


Actor Sam Shepard charged with drunken driving


 Sam Shepard


Sat Jan 3, 2009


CHICAGO (Reuters) – Actor and playwright Sam Shepard was arrested early on Saturday in central Illinois and charged with speeding and drunken driving, police said.


Shepard, 65, told police in Normal, Illinois, he was passing through town and stopped at a tavern before heading to his hotel.


His blood alcohol was twice the legal limit and he was going 16 mph over the 30 mph speed limit while passing through town, the Bloomington, Illinois, Pantagraph reported.


He told police he was traveling to his home in Kentucky, according to the newspaper.


His long-time partner is actress Jessica Lange, with whom he has two children.


Shepard received an Oscar nomination for his portrayal of test pilot Chuck Yeager in the film The Right Stuff. He also appeared in The Notebook, Blackhawk Down and other films. His plays include Buried Child, for which he won the 1979 Pulitzer Prize for drama, True West and A Lie of the Mind.



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New 2009 Postage Stamps…

Monday, December 29th, 2008

Lucy, Ethel, Groucho on postage stamps in ’09


2009 Stamps


Postal Service to release set featuring Groucho, Lucy and Ethel in 2009


The Associated Press
Dec. 29, 2008

WASHINGTON – Lucy and Ethel lose their struggle with a chocolate assembly line. Joe Friday demands “just the facts” with a penetrating gaze. A secret word brings Groucho a visit from a duck.


Folks who grew up as television came of age will delight in a 20-stamp set included in the Postal Service’s plans for 2009 recalling early memories of the medium.


Besides commemorating black-and-white TV, the service’s 2009 postage stamp program ranges from commemorating President Abraham Lincoln to the Thanksgiving Day parade, civil rights pioneers, actor Gary Cooper, poet Edgar Allan Poe, Supreme Court justices and Alaska and Hawaii statehood.


Most of the commemorative stamps are priced at 42 cents, the current first-class rate. However, a rate increase is scheduled in May and the size will depend on the consumer price index.


The Early TV Memories stamp set is scheduled for release Aug. 11 in Los Angeles.


One recalls the quiz show “You Bet Your Life,” on which the unflappable Groucho Marx awarded prizes to contestants who answered questions. If they said a secret word, a toy duck dropped down with a cash reward.


In a memorable scene from “I Love Lucy,” Lucille Ball and sidekick Ethel Mertz work at an assembly line that speeds up and they can’t wrap the candy quickly enough, causing panic.


In the stamp commemorating the cop show “Dragnet,” star Jack Webb as detective Joe Friday gives his “just the facts, ma’am,” stare, while on another stamp sweetheart singer Dinah Shore throws the audience a kiss.


Other shows featured are “Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet,” “Alfred Hitchcock Presents,” “Ed Sullivan Show,” “George Burns & Gracie Allen Show,” “Hopalong Cassidy,” “The Honeymooners,” “Howdy Doody,” “Kukla, Fran and Ollie,” “Lassie,” “The Lone Ranger,” “Perry Mason,” “Phil Silvers Show,” “Red Skelton,” “Texaco Star Theater,” “Tonight Show” and “Twilight Zone.”



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Special Oscar for Jerry Lewis…

Thursday, December 11th, 2008


Jerry Lewis to receive special Oscar


By Gregg Kilday


LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – Jerry Lewis finally is getting some respect from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, whose board of governors has voted to honor him with a special Oscar for his humanitarian work.


The prolific filmmaker, who has never been nominated for an Oscar, will receive the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award during the 81st Annual Academy Awards ceremony on February 22.


“Jerry is a legendary comedian who has not only brought laughter to millions around the world but has also helped thousands upon thousands by raising funds and awareness for those suffering from muscular dystrophy,” Academy president Sid Ganis said.


Lewis, 82, who made his screen debut with nightclub-act partner Dean Martin in 1949’s My Friend Irma, began making local and national televised appeals on behalf of the newly founded Muscular Dystrophy Assn. during the early 1950s. He has been the organization’s national chairman since 1952 and has spearheaded the annual Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon, which has raised more than $2 billion, since 1966.


Lewis starred alongside Martin in 16 films before establishing a solo career as a screen performer, director and producer with such films as The Bellboy, The Nutty Professor, The Disorderly Orderly and Martin Scorsese’s The King of Comedy.


A series of lectures on filmmaking that Lewis delivered as an adjunct professor at USC was published as The Total Film-Maker in 1971.



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Bettie Page Hospitalized…

Friday, December 5th, 2008


Model Bettie Page hospitalized after heart attack



Associated Press
December 5, 2008


Bettie Page, whose magazine photographs in bikinis and see-through lingerie helped her become one of the most notable models of the 20th century, was hospitalized in intensive care after suffering a heart attack, her agent said Friday.


“She’s critically ill,” Mark Roesler of the Curtis Management Group told The Associated Press.


He said she had the heart attack on Tuesday and was hospitalized Friday in the Los Angeles area.


A family friend, Todd Mueller, said Page was in a coma. When asked to confirm, Roesler said, “I would not deny that.” Roesler would not comment further on her condition.


Page, a secretary turned model, is credited with helping set the stage for the sexual revolution of the rebellious 1960s. She attracted national attention with magazine photographs of her sensuous figure that were tacked up on walls across the country.


Roesler said CMG has represented some of biggest celebrities over the decades, and that Page has been “one of our biggest clients. She’s right up there with Marilyn Monroe.”


Page’s photos included a centerfold in the January 1955 issue of then-fledgling Playboy magazine, as well as controversial sadomasochistic poses.


She later spent decades away from the public eye, and during that time battled mental illness and became a born-again Christian.


After resurfacing in the 1990s, she occasionally granted interviews but refused to allow her picture to be taken.


Mueller credits his business dealings with the model for bringing her out of seclusion. He said he first met her in 1989 when he offered her “a bunch of money” to show up at autograph signings.


“I probably sold 3,000 of her autographs, usually for $200 to $300,” he said. “Eleanor Roosevelt, we got $40-$50. … Bettie Page outsells them all.”



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A Prediction by Kenneth Anger…

Wednesday, October 29th, 2008

Will Kenneth Anger die on Halloween?


 (Photo courtesy Mark Berry)


By Allan R. Ellenberger


Kenneth Anger, the controversial filmmaker, is probably best known as the author of Hollywood Babylon and its subsequent follow-up. Among his other claims, Anger has said that he was the Changeling Prince in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, even publishing pictures from the film in his books. It turns out that Anger obviously exaggerated this fact (imagine that) and the role was actually played by a girl named Sheila Brown. Reportedly, costars Mickey Rooney and Olivia De Havilland have confirmed this and the Warner Bros. studio casting forms and call sheets have identified Sheila Brown as the child actress who played the Prince.


Much has been written about Anger and the inaccuracy of many of his stories, including the infamous (and erroneous) tale of actor Ramon Novarro and his so-called death-by-dildo. In 1992, while researching my biography of Novarro, I interviewed Anger’s friend, Samson De Brier (there is a photo of De Brier with Anger at the grave of Virginia Rappe on page 11 of Hollywood Babylon II) who met Novarro on several occasions. During our chat he mentioned Kenneth Anger and gave me his address, suggesting that I ask him about Novarro.


So I requested an interview but what I received was a brief response stating that he was moving and needed some cash, and would I be interested in buying a Swedish poster of Ben-Hur – for $2,000. There was no mention of an interview or an explanation of the dildo story.


Anger was a lifelong friend of filmmaker Curtis Harrington and both shared an interest in the occult. When Harrington died in May of 2007, Anger attended the funeral held in the chapel at Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Actor Jack Larson (Jimmy Olsen in the Superman television series) gave the eulogy but was constantly interrupted by Anger, who blurted out remarks to almost everything Larson said.



Curtis Harrington’s cremation niche at Hollywood Forever


Near the end, Anger once again interrupted and proclaimed that he was dying of prostate cancer (which Harrington also had but did not die from) and that he told Harrington he would outlive him. He then announced that his memorial would also take place at Hollywood Forever and proclaimed, “Oh yes, it’s been confirmed. I know the date of my death. On Halloween 2008. My memorial. Right here! Halloween 2008!” He then added, “Invitation only! Sorry!”


So will Anger’s prediction come true? Halloween is in two days. Stay tuned.




Click HERE for Lisa Jane Persky’s account of Curtis Harrington’s funeral from ForteanTimes.



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O’Neal’s Charged…

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

Ryan O’Neal charged with meth possession



Actor’s 23-year-old son, Redmond, has also been charged


The Associated Press

MALIBU, Calif.Ryan O’Neal and his son, Redmond, were charged Wednesday with possession of methamphetamine.


Both face felony drug possession charges, deputy district attorney James Garrison said. Redmond O’Neal, 23, also faces misdemeanor charges for possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of pepper spray.


He and his 67-year-old actor father are scheduled to be arraigned Nov. 13.


The father and son were arrested Sept. 17 after deputies searched their Malibu home, part of Redmond’s probation. Police said drugs were found on Redmond and in Ryan O’Neal’s living area.


Ryan O’Neal’s attorney said the drugs did not belong to his client.


“It’s unfortunate because Ryan O’Neal didn’t possess methamphetamine, doesn’t use methamphetamine and it wasn’t his methamphetamine,” attorney Mark Werksman said. “He never should have been prosecuted for this. We intend to vigorously challenge these charges in court, where they should be dismissed.”



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