Sharon Stone sues plastic surgeon for slander
Sharon Stone isn’t happy about tabloid rumors insinuating she has had a facelift–so much so that she’s suing a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon for defamation and libel for falsely claiming he gave her one. Reuters reports the lawsuit, filed Monday in Los Angeles Superior Court, states: “Stone has never undergone a facelift in order to improve her physical appearance. … Stone prides herself not only on her acting ability and other talents, but also on her natural physical appearance.” US Weekly published a story in an August issue with the headlined “Did Sharon Stone Have Surgery?” while In Touch printed a similar story insinuating the Basic Instinct star had had some work done. The In Touch article quoted plastic surgeon Renato Calabri, who actually refused to comment on Stone in the feature. Calabria’s lawyer says Stone can relax, adding his client never represented to anyone that he performed plastic surgery on Stone. “All he has ever done is discuss vertical face surgery, a technique he innovated and articles have speculated that Stone had the procedure,” Arthur Barens told Reuters Tuesday. The 46-year-old actress is seeking unspecified damages.
Anna Kournikova secretly weds Enrique Iglesias
Russian tennis vixen Anna Kournikova secretly married her singer boyfriend Enrique Iglesias, the son of Spanish singer Julio Iglesias, Reuters reports. Kournikova and the Latin heartthrob, who have been dating since she appeared as his girlfriend in the 2002 music video for his single “Escape,” have claimed to be married before, but Us Weekly magazine reported Tuesday they were married in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, a few weeks ago. According to Us, the 23-year-old athletic bombshell was wearing a wedding band on her ring finger at a charity tennis event in Florida on Sunday and was heard telling spectators, “Enrique is great. Everything is awesome. We are married.” Kournikova’s publicist, however, told the magazine, “We never comment on her personal life.”
Rapper O.D.B. died from overdose
Rapper O.D.B., who died at the age of 35 at a Manhattan recording studio Nov. 13 after complaining of chest pains, died of a drug overdose, The Associated Press reports. O.D.B., whose real name was Russell Jones, died “as a result of intoxication by the combined effects of cocaine and Tramadol, a prescription painkiller but not a narcotic,” a spokeswoman for the New York City medical examiner’s office said. “The manner of death is an accident.” O.D.B., also known as Ol’ Dirty Bastard, was a founding member of the rap group the Wu-Tang Clan. He was the latest in a string of rappers to meet an untimely death, including Run DMC’s Jam Master Jay, who was fatally shot in 2002, and Notorious B.I.G. and Tupac Shakur, who were both gunned down in the late ’90s.
Star Jones is sued by her gardener
Star Jones was slapped with a lawsuit Tuesday by her gardener, Dimitri Gatanas, who claims The View owes him $7,000 for work he did in 2003 on her Manhattan penthouse terrace to prepare it for an Architectural Digest photo layout, the AP reports. Gatanas had accepted a deal with Jones in which he’d do the work for free if she mentioned his company in the magazine, but when the October 2003 issue came out with Jones‘ 1,400 square foot garden on display, there was no mention of Gatanas or his company. Jones denied Gatanas’ allegations and complained about his work, her lawyer, Howard Mann, told the AP. She has filed a countersuit for money damages because “it was a shoddily done job,” Mann said.
Prosecutors want Jackson’s prior sex offenses admitted
Prosecutors in Michael Jackson‘s child molestation case are seeking to admit evidence of the 46-year-old pop star’s “prior sexual offenses,” but the nature of the material was kept under wraps by Superior Court Judge Rodney Melville, Reuters reports. A young boy accused Jackson of molesting him in the mid-90s, but an out-of-court settlement was reached and charges were never filed. “This evidence will be used to rebut (Jackson‘s) stated defense that the charged offenses were fabricated by the victim and his family for financial gain,” Deputy District Attorney Gerald Franklin wrote in court papers filed Monday. Jackson is scheduled to stand trial Jan. 31 on charges of child molestation and conspiracy. He has pleaded not guilty and is free on $3 million bail.
Blake’s lawyer gets stolen computer back
Police have recovered the laptop computer stolen from actor Robert Blake‘s attorney, Gerald Schwartzbach–a theft that delayed the start of the proceedings by two weeks. Officials told Reuters Tuesday two young men were arrested for stealing the computer on Dec. 1, the day a jury was being selected for Blake‘s trial for the murder of his wife, Bonny Lee Bakley. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Darlene Schempp told jurors that opening statements would start next Monday and the trial would continue through Dec. 22 before being recessed for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, Reuters reports.
Elton John speaks out … again
After running into trouble for saying unsavory things about Madonna and Victoria “Posh Spice” Beckham, Elton John has now offended singer George Michael. In comments published last month in the British magazine Heat, John, 57, said that “George is in a strange place. There seems to be a deep-rooted unhappiness in his life and it shows on the (latest) album. All I would say to George is: you should get out more.” Michael has, in turn, written a letter to the mag, rebuking John for spreading unsubstantiated gossip, the AP reports. “To this day, most of what Elton thinks he knows about my life is pretty much limited to the gossip he hears on what you would call the ‘gay grapevine’ which, as you can imagine, is lovely stuff indeed … In other words, he knows as much as most of my fans do.”
Manilow signs Las Vegas deal
Singer-songwriter Barry Manilow has signed a long-term contract with the Las Vegas Hilton to perform exclusively for them, Reuters reports. “I’ve spent most of my performing life on the road all over the country and all over the world,” Manilow, 61, told a news conference, adding: “On the last tour, I would joke with the audience that maybe they could just come over to my house. And now, from now on, they can.” The contract, which will start in February, calls for Manilow to perform five 90-minute shows per week over 24 nonconsecutive weeks, for a total of 120 dates running into early 2006, Hilton executive vice president Ken Ciancimino told the AP.