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Archive for Tuesday, March 31, 2009

People in the news

March 31, 2009

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Madonna’s adoption ruling is delayed

Lilongwe, Malawi — Madonna and her three children toured a day care center built by her charity Monday as critics slammed the star’s attempt to adopt a second child from this poor African nation and a judge delayed a ruling in the case until Friday.

Some child advocacy groups say the 50-year-old pop star’s plans to adopt a young Malawian girl have been fast-tracked because of Madonna’s money and status. One accused her of acting like a rich “bully.”

Madonna’s spokeswoman Liz Rosenberg in New York did not immediately return a call seeking comment Monday.

The girl Madonna is hoping to adopt is about 4 years old, according to a Malawian welfare official and another person involved in the proceedings who both confirmed an adoption application was under way. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the case is considered sensitive.

Monday’s court roll listed only the child’s name — Chifundo James, which means “Mercy” in a local language. Her uncle, John Ngalande, has said she was turning 4 soon.

The girl’s 18-year-old mother was unmarried and died soon after she was born, the uncle said. Her father is believed to be alive but has little contact with his daughter, he said.

Hartnett hospitalized with stomach trouble

Los Angeles — Josh Hartnett’s publicist says the 30-year-old actor has been taken to a Los Angeles hospital with gastrointestinal problems.

Publicist Susan Patricola says Hartnett was transported by ambulance at 1:45 a.m. Monday to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

She says in a statement that he “is under observation but is resting comfortably.”

Patricola says Hartnett had a flare-up of a gastrointestinal issue that affected him while he was starring in an onstage production of “Rain Man” in London last year.No other details have been provided.

Hartnett has appeared in the films “Black Hawk Down,” “Sin City,” “40 Days and 40 Nights” and “The Black Dahlia.”

John O’Hurley battles feathers in ’Chicago’

Washington — John O’Hurley gets plenty of love playing attorney Billy Flynn in the touring company of “Chicago,” but he also gets the occasional feather up the nose.

While O’Hurley sings “All I Care About Is Love,” he’s surrounded by showgirls carrying huge feather fans. Sometimes they cover the former “Seinfeld” cast member’s face and that’s when feathers tend to fly.

“I got a feather up the nose the other night,” he tells AP Radio, “the thing was waving around in my nose, I had to have it extracted, but that’s the beauty of live theater.”

Hurley’s wife, Lisa, and 2 1/2 year old son, William, are touring with him, watching the show from the wings.

O’Hurley, 54, says William “usually watches the first 40-45 minutes of the show and I can hear his voice, saying ’da da.”’

Once O’Hurley’s stop in Washington, D.C., ends, on April 12 he has two days before he opens in “Spamalot” in Anchorage, Alaska, where he won’t have those feathers from “Chicago” to keep him warm.

Matt Dillon pleads guilty to speeding

Chelsea, Vt. — Matt Dillon had his case dismissed after pleading guilty to speeding and paying an $828 fine.

The 44-year-old actor was stopped Dec. 30 on Interstate 91 while driving 106 mph in rural northern Vermont. Because of the excessive speed, he was also charged with negligent operation of a motor vehicle.

Prosecutor Will Porter said Monday that Dillon agreed to plead guilty to speeding in exchange for having the negligent operation charge dismissed Wednesday, which he said is common in such cases.

Dillon’s lawyer, Mark Kaplan, says the plea was a fair resolution for Dillon.

‘Dr. Zhivago’ composer Jarre dies at 84

Paris — Oscar-winning composer Maurice Jarre, who captured the majesty of the desert in his music for “Lawrence of Arabia” and wrote the haunting “Lara’s Theme” in his score for “Doctor Zhivago,” has died. He was 84.

Jarre died at his villa in California, where he had lived for decades, Bernard Miyet, a friend of the composer and leader of the French musicians’ guild SACEM, said Monday. No cause of death was given.

Born in 1924 in Lyon, France, Jarre studied music at the Conservatoire de Paris, training initially as a kettledrum player. He started his career composing scores for theatrical productions and worked 12 years as permanent composer at the Theatre National Populaire.

He soon branched into composing soundtracks for movies, and in 1961 worked on director David Lean’s “Lawrence of Arabia,” for which he won his first Oscar. He won a second for his work on another Lean film, “Doctor Zhivago,” based on the novel by Boris Pasternak. The movie’s song “Lara’s Theme” became a hit single and earned him worldwide recognition.

Jarre worked with Lean again in 1984 on “A Passage to India,” winning his third Oscar.

Jarre’s musical style was noted for his use of ethnic instruments, and later synthetic sounds.

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