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Archive for Wednesday, May 31, 2006

People in the news

May 31, 2006

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Taylor denies illness rumors

Los Angeles - Elizabeth Taylor on Tuesday dismissed tabloid reports that she was being treated for early Alzheimer's disease or was gravely ill.

The Academy Award-winning actress, who uses a wheelchair because of back problems, was asked about the reports during an appearance on CNN's "Larry King Live."

"Oh come on, do I look like I'm dying?" the 74-year-old actress asked King in a rare television interview. "Do I look like or sound like I have Alzheimer's?"

Taylor said tabloids report such things "because they have nothing else dirty to write about anybody else."

Moore, Kutcher pop in at bar

Des Moines, Iowa - Patrons at a West Des Moines bar were surprised when Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore showed up over the weekend - and stayed until closing time.

Kutcher, who is a native of the eastern Iowa town of Homestead, was visiting family with his 43-year-old actress-wife and her daughter Scout.

They received a text message from Los Angeles-based professional club disc jockey DJ AM - Adam Goldstein - who was working Sunday evening at the Aura nightclub, the couple told bar patrons.

Moore and Kutcher, 28, split their time between the VIP and DJ booths.

Kutcher tried to arrange for a helicopter to pick them up, said bar manager Mike Caudle.

"I contacted every pilot I know, and I couldn't get a hold of anyone with a helicopter," said Caudle. He said his security personnel drove them the 100 miles home.

Mira Sorvino delivers a son

New York - It's a boy for Oscar winner Mira Sorvino and her actor-husband, Chris Backus.

Sorvino gave birth to the couple's second child, Johnny, on Monday at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Beverly Hills, Calif. The infant weighed 7 pounds, 14 ounces.

"The baby is healthy and happy, and mother and the rest of the family are very, very excited," Sorvino's representative, Ed Choi, told The Associated Press on Tuesday.

Sorvino, 38, and Backus, 24, have an 18-month-old daughter, Mattea Angel. The couple were married in 2004.

Sorvino, the daughter of actor Paul Sorvino, won an Oscar for her role in Woody Allen's 1995 comedy, "Mighty Aphrodite."

Backus has appeared on the Fox drama "The O.C." and the NBC sitcom "Will & Grace."

Saddling up for peace

Jerusalem - The captain who dared to "boldly go where no man has gone before" has targeted a new destination: William Shatner believes he can contribute to Middle East peace by helping disabled children through horseback riding.

The former "Star Trek" star was in Israel on Monday to promote "therapeutic riding." He hopes to raise $10 million for nearly 30 riding programs in the country.

Shatner, 75, said that placing injured people on horseback has been shown to improve their conditions.

"We know that the use of a horse in their therapy takes them beyond their handicapped body, their injured body, and into another area of health," he said.

He hopes his new fund, launched with the nonprofit Jewish National Fund, will contribute to Mideast peace. He stressed that every citizen of Israel, as well as Jordanians and Egyptians, will be encouraged to participate.

Pavarotti concerts postponed

New York - A complication from back surgery has forced Luciano Pavarotti to postpone five June dates on his worldwide farewell tour, his manager said.

Performances at the Canadian cities of Calgary, Vancouver, Montreal and Toronto, and a U.S. date in Washington, have been delayed until October, Terri Robson, Pavarotti's London-based manager, said Tuesday.

The 70-year-old tenor released a statement in April saying he expected to recover in time for the June dates.

"However, he went on to develop an infection during his stay in the hospital," Robson said. "This condition has unfortunately delayed his recovery time."

His farewell tour was expected to resume in July with shows in the United Kingdom. Tickets from the postponed dates will be good for the October shows.

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