Led Zeppelin rocker Jimmy Page did not don a robe, cast a Satanic spell and otherwise stand idly by whilst bandmate John Bonham choked to death on his own vomit. Yes, the British magazine Ministry today took it all back -- the robe thing, the spell thing, the standing-by-idly thing -- and apologized to Page for a story that claimed the guitarist acted right odd the night of his chum's death.
Unfortunately, the magazine could not take back the thing about Bonham choking to death on his (Bonham's) vomit. That part really happened.
It was Sept. 25, 1980, when the hard-living drummer died at Page's mansion near London, essentially ending the hard-rocking Led Zeppelin unit of "Stairway to Heaven" fame. The Ministry article appeared in its August/September 1999 issue.
In addition to the apology, the mag was ordered to pay Page damages. Undisclosed, but substantial damages.
GOOD-TIME CHARLIE: In a Malibu, California, court on Monday, onetime bad-boy Charlie Sheen was released from probation two months early on account of the judge doesn't think he's such a bad boy anymore. That sigh of relief you hear is courtesy the producers of "Spin City," the ABC sitcom on which Sheen will step into next season.
THEY SEE DEAD PRESIDENTS: Shut out at the Oscars or no, "The Sixth Sense" keeps rolling along at the box office. The thriller is now the No. 10 top domestic grosser of all-time. Through March 23, it had raked in $290.3 million at the box office, bumping 1980 "Star Wars" sequel "The Empire Strikes Back" ($290 mil) from the vaunted Top 10.
HEADLINE NEWS: CNN correspondent Christiane Amanpour is a new mommy, having given birth to son Darius, Monday in Washington, D.C. The dad (and Amanpour's husband) is U.S. State Department spokesman James P. Rubin.
GRUNGE LIVES: Pearl Jam has announced plans to launch a 39-date North American tour August 3 in Virginia. The caravan is tentatively scheduled to wrap on Nov. 5 in (where else?) Seattle.