Top Story: Jackson’s Former Bedmate Defends Singer
Australian entertainer Wade Robson, 21, said he shared a bed with Michael Jackson when he was a kid, but that nothing “strange” ever happened. In an interview with Sydney’s The Daily Telegraph, Reuters reports Robson–who met Jackson in 1987 after winning a dance impersonation contest and was later cast in three of the singer’s music videos–said he did not think it was “weird” for a grown man to share the same bed as a child. “Everything in life is so complex, [Jackson] just wanted something around that was simple–to hang out with kids,” also adding that the pop star had no concept of reality. “He is on one level a genius, a creative artist, an intellectual man. But on the other hand, he is still a kid because he has never lived through regular things that men go through, that people go through in growing up,” Robson said.
Country Star Campbell Apologizes
After being released from jail on suspicion of extreme drunken driving and leaving the scene of an accident, country singer Glen Campbell offered an apology Tuesday, Reuters reports. “Yesterday, I was arrested and put in jail,” Campbell said in a brief statement released through his Los Angeles-based publicist. “Even at my age, I learned a valuable lesson. I apologize to my wife, my family, my friends, and my fans.” Campbell, 67, allegedly hit another vehicle Monday at a Phoenix, Ariz., intersection and when he didn’t stop, a witness followed him to his home and alerted authorities. They arrived and arrested the singer, who had a blood alcohol level of .20, two-and-half times above the legal limit in Arizona.
Topless Diaz Photos Banned
Los Angeles photographer John Rutter has been barred from selling topless photos he took of actress Cameron Diaz before she was famous. Reuters reports Rutter was issued a permanent court injunction Tuesday that also prevents him from publicizing the photos in any way or keeping them in his possession. The photographer has been charged with attempted extortion for allegedly demanding $3.3 million from the Charlie’s Angels star, as well as forging her signature on the model release.
Rocker Neil Charged With Battery
A trial date was set for former Motley Crue singer Vince Neil, who was charged with misdemeanor battery in July after allegedly grabbing a prostitute by the neck and throwing her against a wall, The Associated Press reports. Neil had gone to the Moonlight Bunny Ranch in Nevada after a concert in Reno with Poison and Skid Row and, according to the criminal complaint filed, used “force and violence” on one of the girls named Terry, aka TrixXxie Blue. The 42-year-old singer posted $1,000 bail and will enter a plea before the trial starts next April.
Penn May Join Press Corps in Iraq
Actor Sean Penn, who made a controversial visit to Iraq last winter and wrote some unpublished accounts of his experiences there, is seriously contemplating going back to the war-torn area and reporting his experiences for the San Francisco Chronicle, Reuters reports. “He brings a very keen director’s and actor’s eye to slices of life in Baghdad,” Phil Bronstein, the paper’s editor and an old friend of Penn‘s told Reuters. Bronstein said the arrangement with Penn remains informal, and adds the actor’s writings would probably focus on everyday life more than scenes of violence. Bronstein, who read Penn‘s earlier dispatches from Iraq, described them as “short vignettes that caught moments in people’s lives and what they were doing–kind of like a reporter’s notebook.”
CBS Pulls Out on Top in November Sweeps
Although the network had to scrap some higher profile programs, including TV-movie The Reagans and the Michael Jackson special, CBS claimed its best November sweeps ratings since 1980. For the week of Nov. 17-23, CBS averaged 14.2 million viewers followed by NBC with 11.6 million; ABC (10.7 million); Fox (6.8 million); UPN (4.4 million) and the WB (4.4 million). The top 10 shows included: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CBS; ER, NBC; Friends, NBC; Friends, NBC; Survivor: Pearl Islands, CBS; Everybody Loves Raymond, CBS; CSI: Miami, CBS; The Bachelor, ABC; 60 Minutes, CBS; Law & Order, NBC.
Warner Bros. Crosses $1 Billion Mark
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Bros. Pictures will gross more than $1 billion for the domestic box office for a third consecutive year, as well as the fourth time in the company’s history. The recent Halle Berry starrer Gothika helped matters by opening strongly last weekend while The Matrix Revolutions is still in the top 10. Also included in the billion dollar haul was Matrix Reloaded, which took in $281.5 million and Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, which chipped in $150.4 million.