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Archive for Thursday, April 15, 2010

People in the news

April 15, 2010

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Hollywood sign land purchase pushed back

Los Angeles — The effort to preserve the land beside the world-famous Hollywood sign has taken a typical Tinseltown twist: “To be continued.”

The Trust for Public Land said Wednesday it has received a 16-day extension to finish raising the $12.5 million it needs to buy and preserve the hilltop property from private developers.

Its purchase option was originally scheduled to expire Wednesday. The group says it’s $1.5 million away from its goal.

The trust hopes to buy the land from its Chicago-area owners and give it to the city so it can be incorporated into the adjacent, 4,200-acre Griffith Park.

Aileen Getty, a billionaire daughter of oil baron J. Paul Getty, and The Tiffany and Co. Foundation have contributed

$1 million each to the effort.

Larry King, wife both file for divorce

Los Angeles — Larry King filed for divorce on Wednesday shortly before his seventh wife also sought to end the couple’s nearly 13-year-old marriage.

The 76-year-old host of CNN’s “Larry King Live” filed hours before Shawn King filed her own petition. Both cited “irreconcilable differences.”

The couple were married in a hospital room in 1997 three days before Larry King underwent surgery to clear a clogged blood vessel. They have two sons, ages 11 and 9. The petitions differ in that Larry King is seeking joint custody, while his 50-year-old wife wants physical custody.

Larry King is also asking a judge not to award his wife any spousal support and to invalidate an agreement in which he transferred property to her, court records show.

Shawn King’s petition seeks spousal support from her husband, along with ownership of the couple’s home in Beverly Hills, Calif., and two properties in Utah.

No legal action in ‘Jon & Kate’ labor probe

Horsham, Pa. — Child-labor permits should have been obtained for children appearing on the TLC television show “Jon & Kate Plus 8,” but the state will not take legal action against the producers, Pennsylvania regulators have concluded.

No action will be taken if a portion of proceeds from the now-canceled reality program are put into a trust fund for Jon and Kate Gosselin’s children and child-labor permits are obtained for future filming, the state Department of Labor & Industry said in a ruling made public Wednesday.

The new stipulations must be met or labor regulators may prosecute in the future, officials said.

Laurie Goldberg, a spokeswoman for Discovery Talent Services and TLC, said the companies have complied with state labor regulations and continue to do so. They agreed to get permits even though they maintain they are not required under Pennsylvania law, she said.

The state agency launched an investigation after receiving several complaints from the public beginning in late 2008, labor officials said Wednesday at a related legislative hearing.

Octomom reaches deal avoiding foreclosure

Los Angeles — Octomom Nadya Suleman’s mortgage holder has agreed to a six-month extension on a $450,000 balloon payment, allowing her and her 14 children to remain in their home, her attorney said Wednesday.

Suleman’s lawyer Jeff Czech said he reached the agreement with mortgage holder Amer Haddadin’s attorney after weeks of negotiations.

Both Czech and Haddadin expressed confidence Wednesday that Suleman will be able to come up with the money. Czech said she has several financial deals in the works that he can’t disclose.

“It’s taking awhile for them to come to fruition, but hopefully things will work out for her,” Czech said. “We’ll keep our fingers crossed.

Haddadin sold the home in the Los Angeles suburb of La Habra to Suleman’s father, Ed Doud, for $565,000 last year. Haddadin threatened to foreclose after Suleman missed a March 10 due date for the balloon payment.

Comedy Central picks up ‘Onion Sports Network’

New York — Viacom Inc.’s Comedy Central said Wednesday that it is picking up “The Onion Sports Network” series, a satire on the world of sports.

The half-hour series will premiere in the first quarter of 2011.

Comedy Central bills the pilot and 10-episode series as taking on “teams, players, leagues, sycophantic fans, ridiculous products and over-hyped coverage.”

The series is based on the Onion Sports Network’s online videos.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Shares of Viacom, based in New York, rose 10 cents to $39.16 in afternoon trading.

‘South Park’ creators plan Broadway musical

New York — The creators of the cheeky animated TV series “South Park” are taking aim at Broadway.

Trey Parker and Matt Stone have written a musical comedy called “The Book of Mormon” that will open on Broadway in March 2011. The two wrote the show’s book, music and lyrics, along with Robert Lopez, one of the creators of the Tony-winning “Avenue Q.” The musical will be directed by Parker and Jason Moore, who directed “Avenue Q.”

Producers Scott Rudin and Anne Garefino said Wednesday that a theater, casting and other production details would be announced later.

The Emmy-winning “South Park” premiered in 1997 on Comedy Central.

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