Jackson shelled out $23 million in prior molestation case
Michael Jackson, who faces a trial on child molestation charges in September, paid more than $23 million to a boy and his family in the mid-1990s to settle similar accusations, Reuters reports. Although it is been widely publicized that Jackson paid millions in the former civil lawsuit, Court TV has reportedly obtained a copy of the legal agreement and is making it public for the first time. A spokeswoman for Jackson, Raymone Bain, told Reuters she was trying to find out if the documents shown on camera by Court TV were “the actual agreement” in that case. “That settlement had a very strict confidentiality agreement that was negotiated by parties,” Bain said. “We are going to abide by that and not comment.” She also added: “Whoever released this agreement, whether it is the actual agreement or not, did it deliberately and willfully with the intent to influence potential jurors in the current case, which is outrageous and an act of desperation.” The papers, which were signed by Jackson and his then-attorneys, Johnnie Cochran and Howard Weitzman, in January of 1994, show that Jackson agreed to set up a $15.3 million trust fund for the boy, as well as pay him a seven-figure lump sum, Reuters reports. Jackson also agreed to pay the boy’s parents $1.5 million each and pay $5 million, plus expenses, to their attorney.
Britney’s knee injury causes tour cancellation
Pop princess Britney Spears was forced to cancel the rest of her North American concert Onyx Hotel tour due to a severe knee injury she suffered while shooting a video for her latest single last week, Reuters reports. Spears, 22, who underwent arthroscopic surgery on her left knee in New York last Wednesday, must remain off her feet for six weeks with her knee in a hard brace, followed by at least eight to 12 weeks of rehabilitation, her Jive Records label said in a statement. The tour kicked off June 22 in Hartford, Conn., and was to run through Aug. 15 in Bakersfield, Calif. Jive said, Spears “hopes to revisit those cities in the future.”
J.Lo may reunite with Mottola
Actress/singer Jennifer Lopez is in talks to hire her former label boss, Tommy Mottola, as her new manager, Reuters reports. Mottola, former chairman and CEO of Sony Music Entertainment, already handles Latin pop star Marc Anthony, whom Lopez married earlier this month.
Campbell sees jail time over drunk driving
Singer Glen Campbell was sentenced on Tuesday to 10 days in jail for extreme drunken driving and leaving the scene of an accident last year, court officials told Reuters. Campbell, 68, will be allowed out each day for 12 hours on work furlough under a plea deal that was formally approved during a brief hearing in Maricopa County Superior Court. He also was placed on two years probation and must perform 75 hours of community service under the sentence, which begins July 1.
Wedding bells for Morissette?
Singer Alanis Morissette has definitely moved on from the angry, jilted women of Jagged Little Pill days. According to an interview with Us Weekly, The Associated Press reports she and actor boyfriend Ryan Reynolds (National Lampoon’s Van Wilder) are engaged. Morissette told the magazine in its June 28 issue that the couple started dating by e-mail two years ago. “I knew early on that he was someone I could spend the rest of my life with. I just feel like we’re family and we’re on this journey of evolving together. He’s courageous, he’ll talk about anything, he takes responsibility, he’s just unbelievable.” The magazine also reported Reynolds, 27, flew to Ottawa to ask Morissette‘s parents for permission to propose to her–which the singer didn’t know about. He also helped design her 2.5 carat emerald-cut platinum ring, and got down on one knee to give it to her. “We were at home,” she said. “It was very simple, pure and sweet–and shocking
Prince sues student for invasion of privacy
Prince is denying allegations he instructed his bodyguard to assault a college student who took the singer’s photo at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Anthony Fitzgerald sued Prince and his bodyguard in April claiming he was assaulted at the airport Dec. 29 when he took a photo of Prince as the musician was getting off a plane. He is seeking damages of at least $50,000. The AP reports Prince filed a $50,000 counterclaim Monday in Hennepin County District Court, alleging the student invaded his privacy and violated trademark and copyright law. Fitzgerald’s attorney, Kari Berman, called Prince‘s counterclaim baseless. “He is a public figure walking through a public airport. There’s no expectation of privacy, and he knows it,” he told the AP.
Rock Star winner to join INXS
Mark Burnett, the creator of such reality hits as Survivor and The Apprentice, has revealed the band at the center of his latest reality show, Rock Star: Australian rock band INXS, which lost singer Michael Hutchence to suicide in 1997. “After Michael died, we wanted to search the world for a new singer but didn’t know how we could effectively do that,” Tim Farriss said in a statement posted Monday on the band’s official Web site (http://inxs.com/). “By having Mark and everyone at MBP (Mark Burnett Prods.) embrace the concept, we’ve now found a fantastic way to make that happen.” The winner and INXS will record a studio album, the band’s first since 1997’s Elegantly Wasted and then head out on a world tour, Reuters reports.
Lorne Michaels awarded America’s top comedy prize
Lorne Michaels, a Canadian-born comedy writer who created Saturday Night Live and produced Wayne’s World and other movies showcasing SNL stars, will be awarded the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, the AP reports. The award will be given to Michaels at a ceremony at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington on Oct. 25. Michaels has won 10 Emmys as a TV writer and producer, most recently in 2002 when SNL won the Emmy for best writing in a variety/comedy series. Michaels also executive produces Late Night with Conan O’Brien. Previous winners include Richard Pryor, Jonathan Winters, Carl Reiner, Whoopi Goldberg, Bob Newhart and Lily Tomlin.
Role Call: Morgan Freeman enrolls for WWII film
Morgan Freeman is set to star in a film about the first black armored unit to enter combat during World War II. The DreamWorks project, written by Remember the Titans scribe Gregory Allen Howard, focuses on the relationship between two men–one a fearless black soldier from the streets of Detroit, the other a Yale-bred white officer–and their struggle to prove their worth to each other.
Guylaine Cadorette contributed to this report.