23 February 2007
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Borat Passes On Presenting Oscar
Sacha Baron Cohen
will not be a presenter at Sunday's Academy Award ceremony, because he could not appear as his famous character Borat Sagdiyev. Baron Cohen has been reluctant to make appearances as himself, preferring to do interviews as the star of the faux documentary Borat: Cultural Learnings Of America For Make Benefit Glorious Nation Of Kazakhstan
. Oscar broadcast producer Laura Ziskin
tells the Los Angeles Times, "He was asked, but he declined." There had been speculation that the comedian's participation in the ceremony would bring a welcome shot of excitement to the broadcast. Baron Cohen's acceptance speech at the Golden Globe ceremony last month was one of the most talked-about events of the night. When he won an acting award, he paid homage to his co-star Ken Davitian
's naked backside, which was part of a memorable moment in the film. Although Baron Cohen passed on presenting, he could still appear on stage if the film wins for Best Adapted Screenplay.
Dannielynn's Appointed Guardian Wins Custody of Remains
The attorney appointed for Anna Nicole Smith
's baby daughter has been awarded the late model's remains with a Florida court's recommendation to bury her next to her son Daniel in The Bahamas. Baby Dannielynn's legally-appointed guardian, Richard Millstein, will now make a final decision as to where Smith will be buried after consulting with the late celebrity's mother, Virgie Arthur, her companion Howard K. Stern
and ex-boyfriend Larry Birkhead. In an emotionally-charged Florida courtroom, Circuit Judge Larry Seidlin broke down as he signed the order to release Anna Nicole's remains, sobbing, "She had to live all of her years under this kind of exposure. I just get a week and a half of it and it's ready to flatten me down." In awarding Millstein the remains, tearful Seidlin added, "This is not a happy moment. I want her buried with her son in The Bahamas. I want them to be together. She's gonna be with her son." Seidlin's decision was somewhat of a surprise - many expected the judge to award the remains to Smith's mother, who wanted to bury her daughter in her native Texas, or Stern, who both sobbed as the ruling was read out. Stern fought to bury Smith's remains in The Bahamas but his custody bid for the corpse was denied. Meanwhile, as the fight continues over the paternity of baby Dannielynn, Seidlin washed his hands of the battle, concluding, "I hope to God that you guys give the kid the right shot." As Arthur, Stern, Birkhead and their lawyers left the courthouse, they showed they were united at last in their efforts to lay Smith to rest. Stern, told waiting reporters, "I am very grateful that Anna Nicole's wishes are going to be carried out." Meanwhile, Birkhead, who is fighting Stern for paternity of Anna Nicole's baby, added, "I think we all understand that we loved Anna and it's in her best interests to come together and get this thing worked out and lay her to rest."
Motown Receives Apology from 'Dreamgirls' Filmmakers
Legendary record label Motown has received a public apology from the makers of Academy Award nominated musical Dreamgirls
, in two advertisements which stress the film is "fictional." Movie studio DreamWorks
placed the full-page ads in trade papers Daily Variety and The Hollywood Reporter and apologized to Motown boss Berry Gordy
for "any confusion." Motown and some of its artists, including Smokey Robinson
, had complained Dreamgirls
negatively misrepresented the soul label, while many saw the movie as thinly-veiled reconstruction of the career of Motown group The Supremes. The ad reads: "Dreamgirls
is a work of fiction. It is also an homage to Motown. For any confusion that has resulted from our fictional work, we apologize to Mr. Gordy and all of the incredible people who were part of that great legacy. It is vital that the public understand that the real Motown story has yet to be told." A satisfied Gordy says, "I applaud DreamWorks and (parent company) Paramount Pictures
for doing their part to clearly differentiate the fictional movie Dreamgirls
from the real Motown. I wish them all the best in the forthcoming Academy Awards." Dreamgirls
has been nominated for eight Oscars including Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress for Eddie Murphy
and Jennifer Hudson
Pitt and Jolie To Adopt Child from Vietnam?
and Angelina Jolie
have filed paperwork to adopt a boy from Vietnam, according to press reports in the US. The pair have three children, Maddox, five, Zahara, two and Shiloh, nine months. A source in Vietnam tells American publication Us Weekly the couple have filed papers with the US Citizenship and Immigration services to adopt a boy from the Tam Binh orphanage in Ho Chi Minh City, which they visited in November. The pair have long been vocal about their desire to raise more international children. Their son Maddox is was born in Cambodia, while daughter Zahara was born in Ethiopia. Jolie said recently, "If we're going to have ten kids, we'd like to raise them while we're young."
Federline Never Requested Custody Hearing
' estranged husband Kevin Federline
insists he never called for an emergency hearing on the custody of his children and believes someone was playing a vile prank. Michael Sands, a publicist for Federline's attorney, claims someone made up the news of the hearing and then told Los Angeles Superior Court spokesman Allan Parachini about it. Federline and his attorney, Mark Vincent Kaplan
, say they never called for a hearing and that no court papers for a hearing were ever filed. Parachini later issued an update after receiving a call from Kaplan saying no hearing request had been filed by Federline. Parachini explained, "A lawyer has called the bailiff and indicated nothing is going to happen today." Meanwhile, Federline's lawyer issued a statement saying, "Kevin continues to be a very focused father with his children with hands-on management." Federline sought spousal support and sole custody of the boys after Spears filed for divorce in November, but a temporary order issued February 1 granted joint custody throughout this month.
Lohan Skips Funeral Service for Altman
was a no-show at director Robert Altman
's memorial service on Tuesday in New York City - but instead was seen partying in Los Angeles with Jackass
. Lohan became close to Altman when her directed her in A Prairie Home Companion
and was reportedly devastated by his death in November. After his death, she released a statement saying that he "was the closest thing to my father and grandfather that I really do believe I've had in several years." Among those honoring the film legend at the Majestic Theatre in Manhattan were Lily Tomlin
, Harry Belafonte
, Julianne Moore
, Kevin Kline
and Tim Robbins
. Lohan was recently released from a rehab facility and has regularly spotted out clubbing in Los Angeles. On Tuesday she was photographed leaving The Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood with the Jackass prankster.
Oprah Backs Obama
Media titan Oprah Winfrey
is throwing her considerable weight behind Barack Obama
's bid to become America's first black president after dismissing public opinion suggesting she should make a run for office. Winfrey admits she's a huge fan of Obama's opponent and fellow Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton
, but Obama has her vote. Speaking on Ellen DeGeneres
' chat show yesterday, Winfrey admits, "I'm feeling Barack." She continues, "I don't just love him. I respect him. I think he's a fresh new voice in politics. I think what he can do for this country would be amazing." Winfrey has spent the past four years dismissing reports she's planning a political charge for the White House.
Timberlake Snubs Biel After Sundance Tryst
The brief romance between Justin Timberlake
and rumored fling Jessica Biel
is over. The Stealth
star stayed with Timberlake at a resort during the Sundance Film Festival last month, but the two avoided each other recently in Los Angeles. The singer ran into Biel on Valentine's Day at Los Angeles club Social Hollywood. Despite briefly exchanging whispers, the pair spent most of the night on opposite sides of the lounge. They took great pains to avoid each other and, at one point, were both out on the dance floor with other partners, dancing back-to-back. A Timberlake pal tells Us Weekly, "He doesn't want a girlfriend. He doesn't want to settle down." The singer has also been romantically linked to Scarlett Johansson
Jackson In Talks with 'American Idol'
Pop star Michael Jackson
is reportedly in talks with the producers of American Idol
, despite reports earlier this month he would not be appearing on the hit TV show. Media reports claimed the star was going to have his own "Idol" theme-week and would mentor the remaining contestants. American Idol
host Ryan Seacrest
tells American publication Us Weekly, "It's certainly a possibility. It would definitely make compelling television." Seacrest confirms that Jackson met with the show's creator, Simon Fuller
, in Las Vegas a few weeks ago. A spokesman for Jackson says any plans to appear on American Idol are still "unconfirmed" at this stage. A source close to the pop star adds, "Michael is in talks."
Cannon Weds Victoria's Secret Model
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Actor and singer Nick Cannon
has stunned fans by marrying Victoria's Secret model Selita Ebanks
after a whirlwind three-week romance. The couple wed in Las Vegas last weekend. The pair met at a Super Bowl weekend party in Miami, Florida, and have been smitten with each other ever since. Cannon's past loves include singer Christina Milian
and socialite Kim Kardashian, who he reportedly split from last month. According to friends, Cannon and Ebanks are planning to hold a wedding reception party in Los Angeles this weekend.