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General News

News, Oct. 22: Minnelli's Husband Files Domestic Abuse Suit, Blaine Begins Recovery, Baseball Knocks Out Ratings

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Oct 22, 2003 | 9:28am EDT

Top Story: Minnelli's Husband Files Domestic Abuse Suit

David Gest, estranged husband of famed entertainer Liza Minnelli, has filed a $10 million spousal abuse suit against the singer and actress for damages he claims to have suffered during several of her "drunken rages," Reuters reports. The 11-page suit, which was filed in Manhattan Supreme Court on Tuesday, details several incidents in which Gest said that Minnelli inflicted many serious injuries, including those to his head, during alcohol-induced brawls. The ailments that Gest says are the direct result of the spousal abuse include, "throbbing pain, severe headaches, vertigo, nausea, hypertension, scalp tenderness and insomnia." The suit points out that Gest must take 11 different medications each day to treat these injuries. As of yet, no comment or official statement from Minnelli's lawyer has been released.

David Blaine Undergoes Recovery After Starvation Stunt

Having completed his 44-day stint inside a transparent box in London, American illusionist David Blaine is now on the road to recovery. According to Reuters, Blaine spent two restless nights in a London hospital, as his body gradually becomes acclimated to normal nutritional habits. The medical team overseeing Blaine's recuperation reports that the reintroduction of food to his body is going as planned. They expect him to make a full recovery. While Blaine insists that water was his only nourishment during the fast, critics of the stunt have remained skeptical. Attempts to thwart Blaine's mission included one man climbing a tower to disrupt his water supply, and other spectators pelting the transparent prison with eggs and dangling food in front of the showman.

Eminem's Ex-Wife Misses Second Court Date

Kimberly Mathers, who was formerly married to rap star Eminem, has missed a second court date in St. Clair Shores, Mich., in a cocaine possession case, according to AP. Mathers was expected to stand trial next month for 25 grams of the illegal substance, as well as driving with a suspended license and unsafe driving near a stopped emergency vehicle. In Macomb County Circuit Court, a judge gave Mathers until Tuesday morning to appear, before issuing a bench warrant. Since her arrest on June 10, Mathers has been free on bond. Though she could be slapped with several additional charges because of her absence, Assistant Prosecutor David Portuesi has stated that this will probably not happen.

Fox Baseball Overpowers Opposition

According to AP, the Fox network's coverage of postseason Major League Baseball dominated television ratings last week. With other networks opting to air reruns in order to avoid fighting over prime-time viewership, Fox's coverage of the American and National League Championship Series' drew over 26 million viewers each. Fox averaged 19.1 viewers for the week, followed by CBS (11.8 million), NBC (9.7 million), ABC (8.8 million), the WB (4.3 million), and UPN (3.4 million). For the week of Oct. 13-19, the top 10 shows were: American League Championship Series, Game 7: Boston vs. N.Y. Yankees, Fox, National League Championship Series, Game 7: Florida vs. Chicago, Fox, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CBS, World Series, Game 2: Florida vs. N.Y. Yankees, Fox; National League Championship Series, Game 6: Florida vs. Chicago, Fox, Survivor: Pearl Islands, CBS, Everybody Loves Raymond, CBS, World Series Game 1: Florida vs. N.Y. Yankees, Fox, CSI: Miami, CBS, and American League Championship Series, Game 4: N.Y. Yankees vs. Boston, Fox.

Elton John Inks 3-Year Vegas Deal

Beginning in February of 2004, singer Elton John will make good on his promise to return with the extravagant performances his fans have come to love, AP reports. Though the exact details of his contract with Caesar's Palace have not been released, the deal is at least worth an estimated $50 million over the next three years. The 56-year-old performer is set to do 75 shows starting next year. John brushed off reports that he had been experiencing throat problems by bursting into song with, "My voice is fine." Tickets for the Vegas performances, which range in price from $100 to $250, are expected to rake in some $61 million in total sales.

Western Villain Jack Elam Dies

Jack Elam, a popular Western movie villain who appeared in films such as Rawhide and Wichita, died Monday, AP reports. Character actor Elam was best known for his unmistakable facial expressions and unrelenting force with a gun. "He was cantankerous in a great way, in a funny way…He smoked, drank, all that stuff. He lived one of the best lives I've ever seen," said Elam's longtime friend Al Hassan. Elam once remarked, "I've played all kinds of weirdos but I've never done the quiet, sick type. I never had a problem--other than the fact I was just bad."

Roll Call: Bullock To Do Second Congeniality, Another Classic TV Series To Come to the Big Screen

According to Reuters, actress Sandra Bullock has signed on to produce and star in a sequel to the hit 2000 comedy Miss Congeniality. Though there is no start date for the project as of yet, Bullock's television and film production company, Fortis Films, has extended their distribution agreement with Warner Bros. At the box office in the U.S., Miss Congeniality grossed over $100 million…Dimension Films will adopt the classic television series The Six Million Dollar Man into a feature film. Superstar actor Jim Carrey and director Todd Phillips have signed on to this project.

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