Madonna was excused from jury duty in New York on Tuesday (27May14) after providing a doctor's note citing sickness for her absence. The pop superstar, who has lived in the Big Apple since the early 1980s, had been expected to perform her civic duty at Manhattan Supreme Court, but she appeared to be a no show after failing to turn up.
However, New York County Clerk Norman Goodman has since revealed the Material Girl hitmaker had asked to postpone the court appearance due to ill health and has instead offered to report for jury duty at a later date, according to the New York Daily News.
Details of what ails the singer have not been made public, but she showed no signs of illness over America's Memorial Day weekend (23-26May14) as she shared photos of herself riding a horse and spending time with her children on a beach via Instagram.com.
Madonna previously attended jury duty in Beverly Hills, California in 2008, but she was dismissed after four hours.
Columbia Pictures via Everett Collection
We've all seen it... two movies leads lean in for a kiss. It's a moment we'd been waiting for since the opening scene. And now that it's here, it's, well, horrible. Sometimes it's intentional, other times it's due to chemistry and occassionally there isn't a clear reason. No matter what the cause, the audience ends up cringing.
We're taking a look at the most memorable kisses in film from the '80s on, including the Best Kisses and the Most Perplexing Kisses. Here, however, are the kisses that made us long for a good old handshake.
Ashton Kutcher and Jennifer Garner, Valentine's Day
Director Garry Marshall's schlocky romance had more than its share of awkward couplings, but Kutcher and Garner's characters — best friends that are just coming out of relationships that ended badly — were supposed to be the saving grace as they finally figure out that they should be together. The characters even admit the awkwardness of moving from friendship to something more. The problem is that the chemistry doesn't get any better even when they're supposed to have figured it out. Maybe being friends wasn't so bad after all.
Liv Tyler and Viggo Mortensen, Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Maybe it's just that movie audiences aren't ready for Elven love. Tyler's Arwen and Mortensen's Aragorn played out a staid romance across three movies and the smooching didn't connect at any point. It didn't help that director Peter Jackson might have left in a little too much lip smacking on the soundtrack. When the two come together at the end, Mortensen looks more like he's going to headbutt Tyler rather than kiss her. And don't get us started on the creepy expression on Hugo Weaving's face as he watches.
Will Ferrell and Amy Adams, Talladega Nights: The Legend of Ricky Bobby
Yes, it's true that the kissing in a comedy isn't always supposed to make you think of romance — and it's also true that Ferrell's forced lip-lock with Sacha Baron Cohen was more laughable than anything else — but what earns Ferrell and Adams' passionate undertaking a spot on the list is Ricky Bobby's running commentary as it's happening. We're not sure which is worse: Ferrell comparing Adams to Tawny Kitaen in a White Snake video or her doing some of Kitaen's crawling-on-a-car-hood moves. With a bar full of people watching, it quickly becomes the PDA from hell.
Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher, The Empire Strikes Back
There's an old saying that earning a tie in a competition is like "kissing your sister." Thankfully, most people don't have enough experience in that area to challenge the axiom. But Hamill's Luke Skywalker knows way too much about sister kissing. Before we find out in Return of the Jedi that Luke and Leia are siblings, the princess lays a major smooch on Luke to make Harrison Ford's Han Solo jealous. The characters can be excused for not knowing that they're related — they were seperated at birth — but what's Star Wars mastermind George Lucas' excuse?
Pee-wee Herman and Valeria Golino, Big Top Pee-wee
For starters, watching Paul Reubens' man-child Pee-wee kiss anyone isn't exactly something that audiences normally clamor for. In Big Top, Pee-wee subjects Italian beauty Golino to one of the longest kisses in film history at somewhere around two minutes. The same year that Pee-wee's movie was released, Golino also played Tom Cruise's girlfriend in Rain Man, where she kissed Dustin Hoffman's Raymond. Now there's an epic year of uncomfortable screen kisses.
Michael J. Fox and Lea Thompson, Back to the Future
There's nothing wrong with kissing your mother. In fact, we strongly encourage it... she gave you life and she deserves a nice chaste smooch to show your appreciation. That does not extend, however, to going back in time and taking your future mom "parking." While it's good that both characters recognized that there was something amiss with the kiss, it still doesn't stop it from giving us the willies every time that we watch Fox's Marty McFly get accosted by Thompson's overly amorous Lorraine.
Steve Martin and Claire Danes, Shopgirl
Martin's novel, on which the movie is based, was a sweet and whimsical look at a young woman trying to transition into being a fully functional adult in Los Angeles. The movie, though, is frequently off in any number of ways, and nowhere more so than when Martin and Danes play out the May-December romantic scenes. The duo are both fine actors, but they don't look any more comfortable doing the kissing than we are watching it.
Jim Carrey and Lauren Holly, Dumb and Dumber
Poor Lloyd. Carrey's dimwitted schmuck couldn't even fantasize right. Taking the expression about sticking your tongue down someone's throat way too literally, Carrey appears to actually cut off Holly's air supply during the spirited game of tonsil hockey. While the scene might have been all in Lloyd's head, unfortunately for Holly they really had to shoot it. And, to think, Carrey and Holly engaged in an off-screen romance... imagine having to do that scene with someone you didn't like.
Emma Waston and Rupert Grint, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows, Part 2
Watson and Grint grew up together over the course of filming J.K. Rowlings' Harry Potter books. Since the books came out well before the movies were shot, the young actors playing Potter's pals Ron and Hermione had plenty of time to consider what was eventually coming. Fair warning didn't help any because Watson and Grint's discomfort at having to engage in a snogging session on camera comes across quite clearly. All that's missing is the two of them pulling away from each other and actually saying, "Ewww."
Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp, The Tourist
Depp and Jolie have both done their fair share of onscreen smooching and have shown plenty of chemistry with other costars. The two pretty people are still attractive even in this bad movie, but they couldn't possibly have less onscreen chemistry. In fact, there are times during what is supposed to be sexy encounters in The Tourist where the duo seem to be acting in different films altogether, and seem to have forgotten entirely that they are supposed to be attracted to one another. When Depp comes up behind the lingerie-clad Jolie, grabs her hair and lays a wet one on her, you half expect her to beat the crap out of him.
Dionne Warwick is set to have her debts cleared after filing for bankruptcy last year (13). The 73-year-old star was declared bankrupt at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Newark, New Jersey last year after running up more than $10 million (£6.25 million) in debts due to unpaid taxes.
A bankruptcy trustee filed legal documents on Tuesday (18Mar14) requesting that Warwick be excused from paying off the bill, which dates back as far as 1991.
If successful, she will also be able to keep her personal assets including furniture, artwork, diamond earrings, fur coats, and $1,000 (£625) in cash.
Director Michael Bay has blamed a technical mishap for prompting his walkout at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) on Monday (06Jan14). The action director was in Las Vegas for the annual tech convention to help promote Samsung's new curved UHD TV and preview exclusive footage from his upcoming Transformers: Age of Extinction film.
However in the middle of his speech, he flubbed a line and was unable to pick up where he left off. Clearly flustered, Bay excused himself and walked off the stage in silence, leaving hundreds of attendees bemused.
After the event, Bay took to his website to explain his sudden departure, insisting a problem with the teleprompter left him frustrated.
He wrote, "Wow! I just embarrassed myself at CES - I was about to speak for Samsung for this awesome Curved 105-inch UHD TV. I rarely lend my name to any products, but this one is just stellar.
"I got so excited to talk, that I skipped over the Exec VP's intro line and then the teleprompter got lost. Then the prompter went up and down - then I walked off. I guess live shows aren't my thing."
Chris Brown's lawyers have been granted a postponement in the embattled singer's Washington, D.C. assault case to allow them extra time to review evidence. The Kiss Kiss hitmaker is facing a misdemeanour charge related to a fight outside a hotel there last month (Oct13), but he won't have to return to court until 8 January (14).
His attorneys requested the delay during a hearing on Monday (25Nov13), revealing they had yet to sit down with their client to go over the case in detail as he is currently in a lockdown rehab.
Brown was ordered by a California judge to spend 90 days in anger management treatment last week (ends22Nov13) as part of his probation after he was kicked out of a medical facility for hurling a rock through his mother's car window during an argument.
The R&B star had been due to appear in Washington, D.C. in person on Monday, but was excused from attending as a result of his rehab sentence.
He has pleaded not guilty to misdeameanour assault.
Embattled star Chris Brown has been given permission to skip a day in court in Washington, D.C. so he can concentrate on a lockdown rehab stint. The singer was ordered into anger management rehabilitation this week (ends22Nov13) after he was kicked out of a treatment facility for hurling a rock through his mother's car window during a row.
On Friday (22Nov13), Brown's lawyer asked a judge to excuse his client from a court hearing in Washington D.C. next week (beg25Nov13) so the star can remain in Los Angeles, where he is currently seeking treatment for his temper troubles.
The Kiss Kiss hitmaker was due to appear before a judge on Monday (25Nov13) in relation to a charge of misdemeanour assault following a fight outside a Washington, D.C. hotel last month (Oct13), but Superior Court Judge Robert Tignor has agreed to let Brown waive his scheduled appearance.
Tom Hanks has defended his decision to sit for jury duty in the U.S. even though his fame brought about the premature end to a case. The Forrest Gump star spent a day on jury service in Los Angeles earlier this month (Sep13) but officials were then forced to offer the defendant a plea bargain after a lawyer made inappropriate contact with Hanks during a break in the hearing.
However, the Oscar-winning actor is adamant he was right to carry out his "civic duty" and questions the "entire judicial system" for allowing an innocent conversation to torpedo a case.
Hanks tells British magazine Event, "I don't know how it works in the U.K. but here you are sitting around and then one day you get a summons in the mail to appear for jury duty... You can ask to be excused... but you cannot lie and you have to have very specific reasons why you need to be excused.
"And if you don't have them... then what you really need to do is show up. And it just so happens that other than cancelling some really important interviews for the worldwide media, I had no reason not to show up for jury duty - so down I went."
Hanks says he was enjoying a lunch break on the day of the case when he was approached by a lawyer: "Somebody was eating lunch and said to me, 'Hello, thanks for coming down, most people try to get out of jury duty.' And I said, 'I know, but I'm just doing my civic duty.' But nobody is supposed to talk to the jury, I believe.
"It was a very informal, seven-second interchange during lunch. But justice was either served or the entire judicial system was discovered to have a fault in it because of where I chose to eat my lunch that day. But you know, I did my duty."
The Pixies are refusing to be drawn on bassist Kim Deal's exit from the band after 27 years, revealing only that she left for "personal reasons". Deal quit the group in June (13) while on tour in Europe with her side project The Breeders, and although her former bandmates insisted she will always have a place in the line-up, no reason for her departure was released.
The rockers have now revealed Deal had previously agreed to go into a studio to record new tracks with the Pixies, but quit before the sessions began.
Frontman Black Francis tells Mojo magazine, "She signed up for the making of these recordings, but then she excused herself. There was no argument or any creative struggle or something like that. She had her personal reasons. It was all amicable."
Charlie Sheen has been dismissed from jury service a day after signing on to take care of his civic duty. The actor was excused from a court in Los Angeles on Tuesday (24Sep13) before he was even considered as a prospective juror in an upcoming case.
Speaking to TMZ.com on Monday, the former Two and a Half Men star revealed what type of case he was hoping for: "Probably, like, a multiple homicide case, something really interesting."
Michael Jackson's mother Katherine is set to return to the witness stand next week (begs16Sep13) as her wrongful death lawsuit against concert promoters AEG Live draws to an end. Defence lawyer Marvin Putnam plans to call the Jackson family matriarch to give evidence in Los Angeles County Superior Court for a second time as he wants to question her about the "absurdity of the damages" she is demanding from AEG amid claims company bosses were responsible for hiring Dr. Conrad Murray as the King of Pop's physician. The medic is currently serving time behind bars after he was convicted of involuntary manslaughter for administering the fatal dose of anaesthetic propofol which caused the superstar's death in 2009 - weeks before he was due to make his live comeback with a string of concerts in London.
Katherine Jackson, who is suing along with the singer's three children, is seeking more than $40 billion for loss of future earnings and other damages.
She previously testified in July (13), when she broke down on the stand and admitted she had no idea who Murray was when she first heard his name. She also told the court that she did not believe her son had any responsibility for his own death.
AEG Live executives maintain Jackson had prescription drug and addiction problems, and that they're not to blame for the King of Pop's demise. Two bosses, Randy Phillips and Paul Gongaware, were excused from the trial earlier this week (09Sep13), after Judge Yvette Palazuelos insisted there was not enough evidence to hold them personally accountable.
Defence lawyers are expected to rest their case following the 83 year old's testimony on Monday (16Sep13).