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Archive for Wednesday, February 20, 2008

People in the news

February 20, 2008

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New 'Dancing With the Stars' cast announced

An Oscar winner, an Olympic gold medalist and an original host of "The Man Show" are among the new crop of celebrities who will fox-trot for your votes on "Dancing with the Stars."

The show, which returns for its sixth edition Monday, March 17, revealed its new cast during the finale of ABC's "Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann" on Monday. Past contestants Kenny Mayne (in full pancake makeup), Jerry Rice and Lisa Rinna revived "Dancing's" ongoing "DanceCenter" bit to announce the names of the 12 competitors.

Among those hoofing for the cheesiest trophy on television will be actress Marlee Matlin, who won an Oscar for the 1986 film "Children of a Lesser God" and also has a handful of Emmy nominations to her credit. Kristi Yamaguchi, the 1992 Olympic figure skating gold medalist, will be competing too, as will radio host and former "Man Show" ringleader Adam Carolla, Tony winner Marissa Jaret Winokur and actor and bon vivant Steve Guttenberg.

Pink, motocross racer call marriage quits

New York - Pink and motocross racer Carey Hart have separated after two years of marriage.

"This decision was made by best friends with a huge amount of love and respect for one another," Pink's representative, Michele Schweitzer, said Tuesday in a statement. "While the marriage is over, their friendship has never been stronger."

Pink, whose real name is Alecia Moore, met Hart at the 2001 X Games in Las Vegas and proposed to him four years later during a race in Mammoth Lakes, Calif. They were married Jan. 7, 2006, in Costa Rica.

Pink, 28, won a Grammy for best female rock vocal performance for her song "Trouble" in 2003. Her hits include "Get the Party Started," "Stupid Girls" and "Don't Let Me Get Me."

Marilyn Monroe posed as a nude hitchhiker?

Las Vegas - Imitation can be the sincerest form of confusion.

So learned a Las Vegas man who alerted the media this week that he thought he had his hands on a rare photo of Marilyn Monroe posing nude as a hitchhiker. What he had was a famous photo of Madonna.

The image of the Material Girl, who often cast herself as a sort of latter-day Monroe, appeared in "Sex," her 1992 book of risque photography. In it, she posed in heels and handbag, with a cigarette in her mouth.

Lawrence Nicastro, 73, said he found the grainy, poster-size photo last year while going through storage items at his home in Las Vegas. He believed it had been left by a customer at his service station in the Bronx in 1962.

Nicastro and his wife, Phyllis, said they had spent about four months researching the origin of the photograph and called in Chris Harris, a publicist and Monroe expert, for help authenticating it.

Harris said it was a dead ringer for Monroe and scheduled a news conference for today to unveil the image to reporters.

The two men gave The Associated Press a sneak peak Tuesday.

"You're right; it's Madonna," Harris said after being told of the mix-up. Harris said he believed someone had slipped the poster into Nicastro's storage as a prank.

"If there ever was an embarrassing moment," he said, adding that he planned to go ahead with the news conference to "face the music."

'GMA' host Chris Cuomo conquers fear of heights

Atlantic City, N.J. - To conquer his fear of heights, "Good Morning America" host Chris Cuomo jumped from the roof of an Atlantic City casino Tuesday morning.

As part of the ABC morning show's series about overcoming fears, Cuomo and a stunt coordinator used cables to zip nearly 40 stories down the side of the Trump Taj Mahal.

The stunt was carried live on "Good Morning America" as a crowd of onlookers cheered from the ground.

Before the trick, Cuomo told himself he was on "an elevator with no walls."

And after?

Cuomo, the son of former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo, says he was happy he did it.

Little Richard gets impromptu ovation

Nashville, Tenn. - Little Richard got a standing ovation at the Ryman Auditorium - and he didn't even perform.

The 75-year-old rock 'n' roll pioneer was seated at the rear of the auditorium during a concert by 1960s Motown stalwarts The Temptations and the Four Tops.

He got an extended ovation from the sold-out crowd of about 2,400 Sunday night after being introduced by Otis Williams, an original member of The Temptations.

"We've done some shows together," Williams said.

Little Richard, a native of Macon, Ga., now lives in Tennessee.

He recently performed with Jerry Lee Lewis and John Fogerty on the Grammy Awards.

Stewart to pay $50M to Emeril for franchise

New York - Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. is bringing in a new celebrity: popular TV chef Emeril Lagasse.

The New York-based media and merchandising company founded by domesticity maven Martha Stewart announced Tuesday that it bought the rights to the Emeril Lagasse franchise of cookbooks, television shows and kitchen products for $45 million in cash and $5 million in stock at closing. The final price could rise to up to $70 million if certain benchmarks are achieved.

Martha Stewart did not acquire Emeril's Homebase, which includes Lagasse's 11 restaurants and corporate office.

Lagasse remains the host of the Food Network's "Essence of Emeril," but the food network channel ceased production of "Emeril Live" late last year, though it continues to air new episodes in 2008.

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