General News

NEWSMAKERS: Celine Dion vs. Tab

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Mar 19, 2001 | 11:50am EST

It's true Celine Dion took an extended break at the end of 1999, in part, to start a family, but for crying out loud, she's not there yet.

Celine Dion That's why the pop chanteuse is suing the National Enquirer for $20 million over a report saying she was pregnant with twins. The tabloid reported the "pregnancy" in its Feb. 1 issue, with a picture of Dion under the headline "Celine - I'm Pregnant With Twins."

"This thing has really upset me," said Dion in a statement read by her lawyer as the suit was filed Monday in Los Angeles Superior Court. "Since that story came out, everyone has been congratulating me and I have to keep telling them that it's not true. I only wish it was true and I hope and pray that some day it will be."

Added her attorney Martin Singer: "Not only is the news false, but the weekly gave the impression that Mme. Dion had revealed her pregnancy during an interview which, in fact, never took place".

The 31-year-old singer's suit alleges misappropriation of the right of publicity, "false light invasion of privacy", unfair competition and unfair business practices, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Dion knows the tabloid wars well. In 1998, she sued a French rag for saying she was unable to conceive a child.

Dion has said she is taking two years off from her career to spend time with husband/manager Rene Angelil, who is being treated for skin cancer.

BABY TALK: Actor Billy Baldwin and Wilson Phillips alum Chynna Phillips welcomed their first child, daughter Jamison, on Sunday night at a New York hospital, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The babe weighed in at 7 pounds 2 ounces. Baldwin says mother and daughter are doing fine.

"I'm ecstatic," says the actor, who happily added that his wife's delivery was "easy."

Baldwin, 37, and Phillips, 32, wed in 1995.

SUPERNATURAL HONOR: How does Carlos Santana top tying Michael Jackson's Grammy record? By getting a town square built for him.

The guitarist's Mexican birthplace, Autlan de Navarro, is planning to honor him by building a square, a statue and placing his name on a local street, town officials said Monday.

``The square is in the southern part of the town, and it's almost finished,'' Autlan spokesman Marco Rodriguez told Reuters. ``We want to inaugurate it as 'Carlos Santana Plaza' in the second half of the year.''

The plaza will be decorated with a statue of Santana and other local musicians, including one of the 52-year-old rocker's father, Jose.

``Carlos himself suggested that,'' Rodriguez said. ``He wanted to have statues of other musicians, including his father.''

QUICK TAKES: Best Actress nominee Annette Bening ("American Beauty") will serve as an Oscar presenter March 26 -- provided she's not at the hospital giving birth to her fourth child. ...

Meanwhile, Oscar nominees Kevin Spacey, Julianne Moore and Haley Joel Osment will be presenters at the March 12 Screen Actors Guild Awards, set to air on cable's TNT. ...

Non-Oscar contender Will Smith leads the field with four nominations going into Nickelodeon's 13th Annual Kids' Choice Awards, to be held April 15 at the Hollywood Bowl. The actor/rapper is up for favorite movie actor, favorite song, favorite male singer and favorite song for a movie -- all derived from the mostly adult-loathed "Wild Wild West." ...

OBITUARY: The widow of screen legend Gary Cooper died Feb. 18 in her New York home, it's been learned. Veronica Cooper Converse was 87. Gary Cooper died of cancer in 1961.

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