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Archive for Wednesday, July 23, 2003

People

July 23, 2003

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Queen of Queens gets hitched

Los Angeles -- Leah Remini plays a wife on the CBS sitcom "The King of Queens." Now, she's a wife in real life.

The Brooklyn-born actress married Angelo Pagan Saturday in Las Vegas in front of 150 guests, publicist Samantha Hill said Monday.

Remini, 33, and Pagan got engaged on Christmas Eve last year.

Pagan, a musician and actor, has made guest appearances on several television shows, including "The King of Queens," "24" and "Dharma & Greg."

Oprah tops pop icons list

Los Angeles -- Oprah Winfrey is No. 1 on VH1's assessment of the "200 Greatest Pop Culture Icons," a 10-episode ranking of actors, musicians, politicians, academics, sports figures and fictional characters.

Superman is in second place, followed by Elvis Presley. Eminem is No. 31, right after Bill Cosby at No. 30 and ahead of President John F. Kennedy at No. 32. The wrestler The Rock is at the bottom, with Queen Latifah at 199 and big-boned "South Park" cartoon character Cartman weighing in at 198.

The list, a result of months of watercooler-style arguing among the VH1 staff, was designed to reflect celebrities who've had the most influence on pop culture. The series aired Monday on the cable music channel.

Robert Weiss, a VH1 programming executive who oversaw the special, said the show tried to justify its rankings in each segment. Among the tests were: Can you dress as them for Halloween? Would you recognize them by a one-word name? And has "Saturday Night Live" ever parodied them?

Chef can take heat of kitchen

New York -- True, there are perks to owning a Manhattan restaurant -- appearing on television and toasting celebrity guests with fine wine, among them. But there are some unceremonious moments, according to Rocco DiSpirito, the chef and star of NBC's new reality show "The Restaurant."

"People fantasize about opening a restaurant. I hear it all the time. They think it's so glamorous, and it can be," DiSpirito told The Associated Press. "But most people don't know it's also part of my job to check the grease traps in the kitchen and make sure they're clean."

The 36-year-old is the chef and owner of the Italian-American-themed Rocco's, where the TV show takes place, and Union Pacific, a high-end global fusion restaurant.

Gore's daughter becomes author

New York -- Kristin Gore, daughter of former Vice President Al Gore, is writing a novel. "Sammy's Hill," the story of a health care analyst working for an Ohio senator, is tentatively scheduled to come out in 2005.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Gore, who will be published by Miramax Books, has a background in both show business and politics. She gave speeches during her father's 2000 presidential campaign and wrote for the animated Fox TV series "Futurama."

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