News, July 9: Bowie Recovers From Heart Surgery, Martha Stewart Denied New Trial, Thousands Compete for “Napoleon Dynamite” Fan Club Prez , More…

Bowie has emergency heart surgery

Rocker David Bowie, who canceled his concert tour last month due to shoulder pain, underwent emergency heart surgery for a blocked artery and is recovering at home, Reuters reports. Bowie, 57, sought treatment in a German hospital June 25 after complaining of a pinched nerve during a European concert tour, publicist Mitch Schneider said in a statement. Reuters reports the singer then had an angioplasty operation for an acutely blocked artery and was able to leave the clinic earlier this week. He is now convalescing at home with his family and hopes to start work next month. “I’m so pissed off because the last 10 months of this tour have been so fantastic. Can’t wait to be fully recovered and get back to work again. I tell you what, though, I won’t be writing a song about this one,” Bowie said in the statement.

Martha Stewart won’t get a new trial

A federal judge denied Martha Stewart‘s request for a new trial, which means the homemaking guru should be sentenced next week on charges of lying about a 2001 stock sale, The Associated Press reports. Stewart and her former stockbroker Peter Bacanovic made the request after a Secret Service ink expert, Larry Stewart (no relation), was arrested on charges of lying during the trial in February. U.S. District Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum told AP there was “no reasonable likelihood that this perjury could have affected the jury’s verdict.” She added that “overwhelming independent evidence” supports the guilty verdict. Stewart and Bacanovic are expected to get 10 to 16 months in prison, but Stewart‘s lawyer Robert Morvillo is expected to raise the issue of the ink expert with a federal appeals court after the sentencing, which could postpone the prison time until the appeal is heard.

Napoleon Dynamite searches for fan club president

Fox Searchlight announced Thursday it has over 20,000 candidates for president of its official Napoleon Dynamite Fan Club. The film, about a high school nerd named Napoleon Dynamite who becomes an unlikely hero, has performed very well at the box office since its limited released June 11 with a gross of $2 million. Voters can make their choices for president at Current frontrunners include a Los Angeles girl named Sakai who is most proud of her Robert Goulet karaoke skills and a cat named Badpenguin.

Ewan McGregor wins damages in privacy case

Ewan McGregor has won damages from British newspapers, including The Sun and The Daily Record, who printed photos of him and his family on a vacation in Mauritius, AP reports. The Scottish actor won a court ruling in November that deemed the pictures a breach of confidence and violated data protection laws. Details of the settlement weren’t disclosed in court Monday, but The Guardian newspaper said it amounted to about $74,000.

NBC allots time for political conventions

NBC will air one hour of prime-time coverage on three nights of the Democratic and Republican national conventions this summer, the network’s news division told AP Thursday. For the Democratic convention, starting July 26 in Boston, NBC will air a prime-time hour at 10 p.m. EDT on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Monday’s coverage is expected to include an appearance by former President Clinton; vice presidential candidate John Edwards will speak on Wednesday and presidential nominee John Kerry on Thursday. The Republicans meet for four days starting Aug. 31 in New York. That week, NBC will be on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, highlighting speeches by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, President Bush and Vice President Cheney. ABC and CBS have yet to announce their convention plans.

Rocker Weiland back in rehab

Former Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland was ordered back into a six-month drug rehab program, after pleading no contest to driving under the influence in Los Angeles, Reuters reports. Weiland, 36, who has had a long history of drug arrests, including serving jail time in 1999 for violating probation, was ordered to repay the owner of a parked vehicle he rammed shortly before his October arrest on the misdemeanor DUI charge.

Angels in America gets Humanitas Prize

Playwright Tony Kushner, who adapted his Tony-winning play Angels in America into the Emmy-winning HBO miniseries, and screenwriter Steven Knight, who wrote the dark feature Dirty Pretty Things, both picked up $25,000 Humanitas Prizes on Thursday, which honors written work that “entertains and enriches the viewing public,” AP reports. Other winners included JacQui Clay for Fox’s The Bernie Mac Show and Barbara Hall for CBS’ Joan of Arcadia.