Jay Leno is auctioning off one of his Harley-Davidson motorcycles on eBay's Auction for America, The Associated Press reports. The 2001 Harley has been autographed by stars such as Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone and Pamela Anderson. Bidding started at $20,000; at press time, the highest bid had already reached more than $80,000--with more than a week left in the auction. Proceeds from the sale will go to the Twin Towers Fund.
Spike Lee is also getting into the game, auctioning off a courtside seat next to him at the New York Knicks' Oct. 30 opener at Madison Square Garden against the Washington Wizards. According to AP, the auction will benefit the UFA Widows and Children Fund, which was created by the New York Fire Department. Bidding for the ticket began Tuesday through the NBA and Yahoo. The game will mark Michael Jordan's return to basketball following three years of retirement.
Wheel of Fortune will tape a week of shows paying tribute to New York City in Los Angeles, PageSix.com reports. According to the show's executive producer, taping in New York would prove too difficult and take too much time to plan. The shows, which will air the week of Dec. 31, will feature prizes including Broadway show tickets and deluxe New York vacations.
Harvey Keitel married director and actress Daphna Kastner in Jerusalem on Oct. 7, Reuters reports. Keitel was previously married to actress Lorraine Bracco of The Sopranos from 1982 to 1993.
Porn star Kathryn Gannon's extradition hearing will be postponed until Dec. 10 because the regulators' offices in New York were destroyed in the Sept. 11 attacks, Reuters reports. Gonnon fled to Canada last year before she could be arrested on charges of trading on information illegally given to her during an affair with a New York investment banker.
George Lucas' Industrial Light & Magic will provide computer-generated visuals for Universal's action film The Hulk and Warner Bros.' Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Variety reports. This year, ILM's work was seen in Pearl Harbor, Planet of the Apes, Jurassic Park III and A.I. Artificial Intelligence. Financial terms of the deals were not disclosed, but most large-scale films allocate 20% or more of a picture's budget to computer-generated visuals.
Music publishers and recording companies have reached a deal for the use of songs online, Reuters reports. The deal was reached after months of talks between the Recording Industry Association of America, the National Music Publishers' Association and the Harry Fox Agency Inc. Under the deal, labels will pay a $1 million advance for music over two years until the rates are determined, after which royalties will be paid retroactively.
Quentin Tarantino said on Monday that his next film Kill Bill will unite two Asian cinema giants. According to Reuters, Hong Kong's Yuen Woo Ping would choreograph the Chinese kung fu action and Japan's Sonny Chiba would choreograph the samurai action. The film stars Uma Thurman as a female assassin who tries to leave a group of professional killers.
Garth Brooks unveiled his new album Scarecrow at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum on Tuesday, Reuters reports. This is Brooks's last album with Capitol Records, but the singer said it was not meant as a farewell.
Mick Jagger, Aerosmith, the Goo Goo Dolls and 'N Sync will perform the United We Stand concert at RFK Stadium in Washington D.C. on Oct. 21. The show will be comprised of about 18 to 20 acts, a Clear Channel spokeswoman told Reuters. All money raised from the show will benefit the American Red Cross Relief Fund, the Pentagon Relief Fund and the Salvation Army Relief Fund. Tickets go on sale on Oct. 12.
Los Angeles movie studios, which have already tightened security after the FBI warned they could be targeted if the U.S. strikes Afghanistan, have further increased their vigilance after the U.S. began bombing the country on Sunday. A spokeswoman for Warner Bros. told Reuters that a memo had been sent to all employees to reassure all steps were being taken to increase security. Guards at Warners are checking visitor's car trunks and visitors are being asked to pass through a metal detector.
Dougie Millings, the tailor who created the Beatles' famous collarless suit, died on Sept. 20 in London of unknown causes. He was 88. Millings also crafted the wardrobe for the Beatles' tour in 1964 and went on to make some 500 outfits for the band, the Associated Press reports.
Herbert L. Block, the Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist known by the name "Herblock," died of pneumonia at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington on Sunday. He was 91. Block drew every U.S. president since Herbert Hoover. His work was syndicated in more than 300 newspapers across the nation.
Actor Tom Laughlin, 72, best known for his role as the karate-kicking rebel from the 1970s movies Billy Jack and The Trial of Billy Jack, has been diagnosed with cancer that is inoperable because of his heart condition, the AP reports. Laughlin suffers from cancer at the base of his tongue. An angiogram showed one of his arteries is completely clogged, while the others are 75 percent clogged.
O.J. Simpson will return to court again for an alleged incident last December in which a man reportedly accused the onetime football star of reaching over his car and snatching off his glasses in a fit of road rage on their neighborhood of Kendall, Fla. Jury selection is set to begin on Tuesday, though it would take up to a month to seat a jury and less than two days to hear testimony.
Actress Drew Barrymore has reunited with her estranged mother after almost a decade. In the November issue of Rosie magazine, Barrymore said she wanted to reunite with her mother after filming a childbirth scene of her upcoming movie Riding in Cars With Boys. The Penny Marshall-directed film, co-starring Brittany Murphy, James Woods and Lorraine Bracco, opens Oct. 19.
Advertising agencies across the nation are teaming up with the film community to pledge support to New York by rebuilding their ad campaigns around the city, Variety reports. A newly formed coalition, which includes the Assn. Of Independent Commercial Producers, the labor unions and the Screen Actors Guild, says advertisers are committed to studying every commercial job to determine whether there is chance to film it in New York, rather than Los Angeles, Canada or elsewhere.
Rap artist Eminem may sing about murdering his own wife and warble about his mother being a drug addict, but it's only to create controversy. The Grammy-winning artist says that everything he does is for his 5-year-old daughter Hailie.
Eminem told Q magazine that his daughter "knows at the end of the day Daddy is not what he says in his songs."
"When I say I'll murder my baby's mother, maybe I wanted to do it but I didn't do it. Anybody who takes it literally is a bigger idiot and 10 times sicker than I am," Eminem said.
The money the rapper earns is being saved for Hailie's college education, Eminem told the publication.
On Aug. 8, actor Rick Schroder's wife, Andrea, gave birth to the couple's fourth child, Faith Anne, Schroder's publicist David Pollack told People magazine.
Tupac Amaru Center for the Arts is being built in honor of slain rapper Tupac Shakur, The Associated Press reports. The Stone Mountain, Ga. arts center will open in March 2003, and will feature studio space for performing arts and a gallery containing art made by Shakur's fans following his death in 1996.
Red bathing suit-clad babes will grace the television screen again when Baywatch Blast is resuscitated as a two-hour TV movie to air during February sweeps on Fox Television, Reuters reports. Original cast members of the decade-old lifeguard drama, including David Hasselhoff, Carmen Electra and Pamela Anderson, are scheduled to appear.
The International Museum of Cartoon Art is leaving South Florida due to increasing debts, a looming mortgage payment and a shortage of paying visitors, The Associated Press reports. The $3.8 million building will be up for sale to pay for debts. Museum officials told the AP they are looking at several locations for a new home, including New York and Connecticut.
Rap star Nelly was refused entrance to Shooter's 21 nightclub on Saturday because an entourage of about 3,000 people followed him. The Missouri club's owner, John Teichman told the Lake Sun Leader newspaper that his nightclub was already full by midnight and that he had to call the police to help people from trying to get into the club through the locked doors.
When Spy Kids is released on video Sept. 18, audiences will not find any extra scenes that were added in a special re-release of the film on Aug. 9, Reuters reports. Writer/director Robert Rodriguez has been so busy filming Desperado 2: Once Upon a Time in Mexico and Sky Kids 2 that there was no time to make a special edition DVD.
Academy Award-winning director Robert Wise has added extensive tweaks to the sound mix and digital enhancements for more than 90 shots for the special edition DVD release of Star Trek: the Motion Picture--the Director's Edition on Nov. 6. "I'm happy with it now," Wise, 86, told Reuters. "This is the film that I really wanted."
U.S. filmmaker Taylor Hackford (Proof of Life) and Argentinean actress Cecilia Roth (All About My Mother) have been added to be juries of the 58th Venice International Film Festival, which will run from Aug. 29 to Sept. 8, according to Reuters. Italian actor-director Nanni Moretti will preside over the jury, which awards the Golden Lion in the traditional competition.
Louis Armstrong's estate is selling his very first cornet, which was on display at the Louisiana State Museum from the late 1970s until the mid-1990s, The Associated Press reports. Reputable auction house Sotheby's predicts it will bring up to $100,000 when it's auctioned on the Internet Oct.1-15.
Pieces of the airplane country singer Patsy Cline was in when it crashed March 5, 1963, near Camden, Tenn, are also up for sale. Two Tennessee brothers plan to auction the belly and tail of the Piper Comanche on eBay beginning Sept. 1 and lasting for 10 days.
Director Steven Spielberg paid $578,000 for Bette Davis' best actress Oscar for the 1938 film Jezebel. Variety reports.
It was Davis' second Academy Award, the first being for her role in Dangerous in 1935.
Spielberg will reportedly present the Oscar, which was sold Thursday by Christie's auction house in New York, to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.
The A.I. Artificial Intelligence director bought the Oscar anonymously in a telephone bidding war that started at $250,000 and soared to $520,000. It was the third-highest price paid for an Academy Award.
He also donated Clark Gable's Oscar for It Happened One Night, which he bought for $607,500 in 1996, to the AMPAS.
Singer Michael Jackson paid the top price for any Hollywood memorabilia in 1999 when he purchased for $1.54 million David O. Selznick's best picture Oscar for 1939's Gone With the Wind for $1.54 million.
Other Davis items included in the sale were scripts, pictures, earrings and a bible inscribed "Ex Libris Bette Davis".
All items were being sold to help the Bette Davis foundation for aspiring young actors.
Six thousand dollars for a Madonna ticket?
Yeah, you heard it right.
The cost of seeing your favorite performer is getting steeper, and the number of fans who are able to afford going to concerts decrease day after day.
Rock concerts and live tours have seen a significant drop in ticket sales for the first six months of this year. The top 50 acts sold two million fewer tickets-from 12.9 million to 10.9 million--and suffered a 12 percent drop from the first six months of last year, the concert trade magazine Pollstar said in its midyear report.
According to Pollstar's editor-in-chief Gary Bonjiovanni, ticket prices in 1998 cost $32.71, whereas in the first half of 2001 they have gone up to $46.69. He added that concert tickets "are nonessential items that people have to buy out of their discretionary funds."
One reason cited for the increase is the introduction in the 1990s of premium pricing for the best seats, which the industry enacted in response to the high prices some concertgoers would pay for a scalper for their tickets.
But, according to ABCNews.com, the downturn in the economy may have kept some fans from attending concerts, while the high sales for some of the hottest tours will prompt concertgoers to be more selective.
Let's take the Material Girl--for some reason that name is almost suitable--as an example. When tickets for the American leg of the Drowned World Tour went on sale in May, the concert tickets valued at $150 each sold out within 15 minutes.
Though music fans complain about the high cost of seeing Madonna, they continue to shell out money to buy the tickets. Some, in fact, decide to purchase better seats through brokers and scalpers, often paying hundreds of dollars more than face value.
The ticket agency Todd's Tickets.com is one of the many ticket brokers selling Madonna tickets on the Internet. Their tickets to her opening night show in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., in August are being sold for an unbelievable sum of $6,000 per seat. Now how is that for a bargain?
"We serve like a travel agent," Daniel Gentry, sports manager at All Events Tickets Inc., who specialize in re-selling sports and concert tickets, said. "When people call us for a ticket, we go out there and find it for them."
Brokers serve as second buyers, who will buy the ticket from ticket holders, whether it is Ticketmaster or even an artist's fan club member, and then resell them to third parties.
"We resell the tickets for more depending on how hard it is [for the public] to find the seat," Gentry said. "But it is very justified to pay a lot of money for a show, depending on the performer such as Madonna."
Celebrities such as Mick Jagger, Elton John, and George Michael might not think the same way, after they were declined free tickets to Madonna's London performance in July.
"If you want a ticket for one of her shows, you have to pay," Madonna's spokeswoman Liz Rosenberg told the New York Post on July 11.
Yeah, like Madonna needs the money that badly. Somehow, my gut feeling tells me Madonna would have no problem granting free tickets to her pals Rosie O'Donnell and Gwyneth Paltrow.
Pollstar revealed the top four most grossing artists for the first half of 2001.
The Irish rockers of U2 had the highest grossing concert draw of the first sixth months of 2001, generating $69 million in ticket sales after 50 shows. Billy Joel and Elton John come in second grossing $57.2 million after 31 shows. In third place, the Backstreet Boys, with $51.6 million in sales so far into their Black and Blue tour (currently postponed until A.J. McLean leaves rehab for treatment for alcoholism). The boys of 'N Sync pulled in fourth place with $38.7 million in ticket sales.
Not too long ago, I ran across an old The Doors concert handbill, with Jefferson Airplane as an opening act for a New York performance in 1966. The cost? Five dollars at the door.
Wow, times have changed.
Sometimes it's hard to say "no" to an opportunity to see an artist whom we'd really like to see. Spending $150 dollars at a concert with a big production is not as outrageous (I confess, I did that for 'N Sync). But when the price for a single seat reaches $6,000, it's time to give it a second thought.
Lawmaker Pete Slipper, a member of Prime Minister John Howard's Liberal Party, has asked the Australian government to ban rap artist Eminem from performing in later this month in the country.
Slipper said he believes in freedom of speech, but that Eminem's homophobic and violent lyrics go too far. "There is no way the Australian government should allow those who pray on the disenchanted and disillusioned youth of Australia to visit our country and promote a culture of drugs, violence and foul language," Slipper said in a statement. Reuters also reports that although concert tickets have already gone on sale, a spokesperson for Immigration Minister Philip Ruddock said the government has not yet received a visa application from Eminem. Prime Minister John Howard told Reuters that the decision to ban the artist from Australia was not his to make, but he was concerned about any possible negative impact that Eminem would leave as a result of his tour.