Category: Must Read

Miss Universe 2011 winner is Miss Angola, Leila Lopes [Video]

2011 Miss Universe winner Leila Lopes is crowned by Ximena Navarrete, Miss Universe 2010

A new Miss Universe was crowned Monday night: She's Miss Angola, business student Leila Lopes, and she plans to work on HIV advocacy worldwide, in addition to helping her own country.

"As Miss Angola I've already done a lot to help my people," Lopes, 25, said Tuesday morning after taking home the crown. "I've worked with various social causes. I work with poor kids, I work in the fight against HIV. I work to protect the elderly and I have to do everything that my country needs.

"I think now as Miss Universe I will be able to do much more."

Photos: Miss Universe 2011 Top 10, formal wear and swimsuit pictures

Those who weren't watching the Denver Broncos notch a loss to the Oakland Raiders were treated to a parade of international hotties doing their pageant thing in Sao Paulo, Brazil -- and that "pageant thing" of course includes a final round of questions for the Top 5.

This year's questions included three that might've come directly from the Ministry of Gossip, plus a couple that clearly were not loaded with any political agenda whatsoever:

  • Nude beaches are common in some parts of the world. Is public nudity appropriate or inappropriate and why?
  • If you could change one of your physical characteristics, which one would it be and why?
  • If you could trade lives with anyone in history, who would it be and why?
  • Would you change your religious beliefs to marry the person you love? Why and why not?
  • What would you do to avoid fighting a war that you did not agree with it?

Miss Philippines stuck to her guns on the faith front, saying she wouldn't marry a person if she had to convert to do so, and that a person who loved her would respect her enough to love her God too. Miss Angola stuck with her own physical characteristics, thanking God for doing right by her in the looks department and reminding people that we should all respect one another.

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Madonna hates hydrangeas, though not to your face. Obviously.

Madonna at the Venice Film Festival

Madonna accepted a hydrangea from an admirer during a news conference at the Venice Film Festival, but despite her initial smile she obviously wasn't happy about it.

"This flower for you," said the fan, approaching the dais in front of the rest of the gathered media Thursday and presenting the purple-blue blossom. "You are my princess. Thank you so much."

The "W.E." director quickly passed off the offending flora underneath the table, rolling her eyes and making a face to those on her left and then telling actress Andrea Riseborough on her right, "I absolutely loathe hydrangeas. He obviously doesn't know that."

Perhaps it was advance payback for Madonna presenting "W.E." to the festival crowd?

Later on, as Madge walked away, the microphone-equipped flower-giver approached, asking what had happened to the hydrangea he'd given her.

Said Madonna: "Oh, um, my assistant took them."

Well, obviously.



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— Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Madonna arrives by boat at the 68th Venice Film Festival for her "W.E." news conference on Thursday. Photo credit: Domenico Stinellis / Associated Press.


Three 'Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' set a stage for premiere

"The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills"

With "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" set to premiere Monday night, Adrienne Maloof, Kyle Richards and Lisa Vanderpump spoke out for the first time since the suicide of Russell Armstrong, estranged husband of "RHOBH" cast member Taylor Armstrong.

The suicide came as "a complete shock to all of us," said Richards, appearing Monday on the "Today" show with her fellow "Housewives" and executive producer Douglas Ross.

Ross said that the "RHOBH" team and Bravo "took a hard look at the show ... and we decided to make some adjustments where appropriate in light of the circumstances."

One adjustment: The cast members, minus Taylor, participated in a taped sit-down in late August to discuss Armstrong's Aug. 15 death. That discussion will air ahead of Monday's premiere.

"In the first few episodes that we've completed editing, Russell is not included in those episodes," Ross said, "but ... Taylor's story is told throughout the season." The show, he said, tells the stories of all six women, not only the Armstrongs' situation.

Maloof said she'd never felt pressured by producers to create drama. "We lead and they follow," she said. "We kind of create and they document."

Richards said she doesn't think "Housewives" pushed Russell Armstrong over the edge. "He also signed up for this, season one," she said, "and came back for season two."

Lisa Vanderpump said the women never considered shelving the season, which was shot over the last six months or so.

"We all had to reflect at some point" after the death, she said, "but then, it would really be sweeping suicide under the rug, and ... that's what we didn't want to do. We wanted to bring it to the forefront."

"The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" premieres Monday at 9 p.m. Watch the full interview below.


'RHOBH' will address Russell Armstrong's suicide

'Real Housewives' husband Russell Armstrong dead in apparent suicide

Russell Armstrong autopsy confirms 'Real Housewives' husband's suicide by hanging

-- Christie D'Zurilla


Photo: The cast of "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills." Credit: Bravo

Lady Gaga finally has a penis -- thanks to Jo Calderone [Poll]

Britney Spears and a penis-packing Jo Calderone

Lady Gaga reportedly wore a prosthetic penis to the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, making her Jo Calderone alter ego portrayal seem that much more, um, real.

The dish comes courtesy of an anonymous insider speaking to Us Magazine, and we're simply not going to question it, given the epic nature and societal significance of the revelation.

Another delicious detail? The "drag king" packed that package in Armani underwear, Us said.

Word of the penis no doubt comes as good news to those in the "Lady Gaga is a hermaphrodite" camp, circa 2008. No chorus of "We told you so," please -- it's just as fake as it ever was.

So, did Jo pick up his equipment in the "Entourage" prop room? According to Show Tracker, Vince's fake junk was notably smaller than the Mark Wahlberg falsie available on the "Boogie Nights" set.


Judging penis size by comparing index, ring fingers

MTV VMAs: Lady Gaga's Joe Calderone is theatrics gone wrong

Lady Gaga drags Jo Calderone backstage at the MTV VMAs [Updated]

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Britney Spears gets her Video Vanguard award from Lady Gaga in the guise of a parts-packing Jo Calderone at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards in L.A. on Aug. 28. Credit: Matt Sayles / Associated Press

'Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' will address Russell Armstrong's suicide

Russell Armstrong and Taylor Armstrong

The suicide of Russell Armstrong will be the subject of a Bravo special reportedly taped Monday with "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" cast members Lisa Vanderpump, Camille Grammer, Adrenne Maloof and Kyle and Kim Richards sitting down to discuss the recent events.

Word of the Bravo special came Monday, a day before the 911 call made after Armstrong's body was found went public via TMZ and less than a week after the first of two funerals was held for the estranged husband of "Real Housewives" star Taylor Armstrong.

Taylor, 40, was not present at the taping, a show insider told Show Tracker, which also reported that the premiere episode has been reedited and is still on the books to air Sept. 5. The original version included footage of Taylor shopping for lingerie to spice up her troubled marriage to Russell, and getting emotional over marriage counseling.

Russell Armstrong's body was found Aug. 15; the 47-year-old had hanged himself in a bedroom at a friend's home where he'd been staying since he and Taylor separated. She filed for divorce in July.

Taylor Armstrong can be heard crying in the background during the 911 call, made by a friend who'd accompanied her and her daughter to check on Russell after he hadn't responded to calls or texts for three days.

With police on the way to the house on Mulholland Drive, the friend delivered details to the 911 operator, comforted Taylor and directed another person on the scene to get 5-year-old Kennedy away from the drama.

The first funeral sevice for Armstrong was held last Tuesday at Forest Lawn in Los Angeles, with Lisa Vanderpump, Adrienne Maloof-Nassif, Dr. Paul Nassif, Kyle Richards and Camille Grammer among those in attendance. Still reportedly wearing her wedding ring, Taylor Armstrong delivered a eulogy, saying, "People didn't know the Russell I knew."

A second service will be held for the Dallas native early in September in Texas, according to People. His ashes will be divided between his estranged wife and his family in Texas, said attorney Ronald Richards. "They have a family cemetery there."

A guest list was strictly enforced and no photos were allowed at the private service, which ET said Bravo did not film.


How will 'Real Housewives' handle Russell Armstrong's death?

'Real Housewives' husband Russell Armstrong dead in apparent suicide

Russell Armstrong autopsy confirms 'Real Housewives' husband's suicide by hanging

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Russell Armstrong and Taylor Armstrong in February. Credit: David Livingston / Getty Images

Matthew Fox detained after altercation with female bus driver

Matthew Fox detained in Cleveland

Matthew Fox was detained by police over the weekend in Cleveland after the actor allegedly got into it with a 29-year-old female bus driver who wouldn't let him hitch a ride on the privately hired, not-Matthew-Fox's-party bus she was piloting.

The "Lost" star allegedly punched driver Heather Bormann in the chest and crotch, which earned him a punch in the face Saturday night, according a police report obtained by several media outlets.

"I took one hand to his jaw and he was spitting blood," Bormann told TMZ, explaining that she swung in self-defense. "He stumbled backwards."

She had first tried to explain to the actor that he wasn't welcome to board the bus, she said, but he appeared to be too drunk to understand.

After being detained, Fox was released to the custody of a friend and taken back to his hotel, the Hollywood Reporter said.

Fox has been in Cleveland filming "I, Alex Cross" with Tyler Perry. He's also working on the Brad Pitt zombie flick, "World War Z."


Hockey's Sean Avery arrested in L.A., accused of shoving cop

Jenelle Evans of 'Teen Mom 2' gets arrested -- again, and yet again

Brad Pitt saves woman from being trampled on 'World War Z' set in Scotland

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Matthew Fox in November 2010. Credit: Sang Tan / Associated Press

Will Smith-Jada Pinkett Smith separation report denied [Updated]

Are Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith getting a divorce?

A report that Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith have separated after almost 14 years of marriage was met Tuesday by a declaration from Trey Smith, Will's son from his first marriage.

"Did #WillandJada split? No they did NOT split ! False information," Trey said on Twitter, repeating that sentiment several times over the course of the morning and asking his followers to retweet the information.

InTouch magazine, citing an unnamed "insider," reported the alleged separation online Tuesday and teased to its print edition for more information.

[Updated, 1:45 p.m. Aug. 23: "Although we are reluctant to respond to these types of press reports, the rumors circulating about our relationship are completely false," the Smiths said Tuesday in a joint statement. "We are still together, and our marriage is intact." The statement was released shortly after this post was written.]

Us Weekly cited an "insider" alleging word of the split between Will, 42, and Jada, 39, to be "total" bull. Radar Online had an unidentified family member describing the couple as "totally together" and another source from Will's production company saying, "All is good in their relationship."

While the Ministry had queries out to the Smiths' reps, who by midday Tuesday had not commented on the reports, TMZ appeared to have woken up Jada's rep Karynne Tencer, getting the reply, "What? In Touch said that? I know nothing about this ... Lord. I'm going back to bed."

A rep for Marc Anthony, recently separated from Jennifer Lopez and also Jada's "HawthoRNe" costar, "unequivocally" denied to People any rumors linking Anthony and Smith — yes, those are out there too —  adding, "Enough is enough. There are families involved, children involved, friendships involved. This is NOT true."

Tencer also denied the Anthony-Smith rumors to People.

Rumors are certainly nothing new around Smith Central, which of course is home to famous kids Willow and Jaden Smith, she with the much-whipped hair and he of "Karate Kid" and Friend of Bieber fame.

"I've heard all the things — their marriage is not real, he's gay, she's gay, they swing," Jada Pinkett Smith said on an Atlanta radio show in 2009.

"But at the end of the day, people have to believe what they have to believe. I'll tell you what, it's too hard to be in a pretend marriage. Life's too short for that one."


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Will Smith upsets SoHo neighbors with super-sized 'Men in Black 3' trailer

Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie settle lawsuit over false News of the World breakup story

— Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith at the BET Awards in June. Credit: Mario Anzuoni/ / Reuters.

Leonardo DiCaprio gets the keys to a $100,000 car — a hybrid

$100,000 DiCaprio car

Leonardo DiCaprio has a new toy: He's been seen getting behind the wheel of a $100,000 sportscar that happens to be a hybrid — and it's a $100,000 car DiCaprio and his trusty Toyota Prius helped to inspire.

"A couple of years ago it started, by people who were maybe a little ahead of their time. You saw some movie stars like Leonardo DiCaprio buying a Prius," car designer Henrik Fisker told Reuters in 2009, describing how he married the idea of a good-looking, fast car with the notion of going green.

"He could have bought any car in the world," Fisker said at the time, "and I remember seeing that on television and thinking to myself, you know, when you've got a guy who could buy any Ferrari or Rolls-Royce and he's buying a Prius, you know something is changing dramatically."

Performance-wise, DiCaprio's 2012 Fisker Karma hybrid easily kicks the Prius' rather shapeless butt, going from zero to 60 in 5.9 seconds, compared with the Toyota's Edmunds-clocked 10.1. That 5.9 is in the Karma's "sport mode," which adds some internal-combustion oomph to the car's battery power. In "stealth mode," using  battery power alone, it takes an additional 2 seconds to hit 60.

No telling which mode DiCaprio was about to engage when photographers got a picture of him getting into his new ride — though we'd love to think that "stealth" would've make it easier to avoid the paparazzi.

The Karma also laughs at the Prius' 80 horsepower, but in a laugh so complicated we have to trust the details to the folks at Car & Driver.

When it debuted at the 2009 L.A. Auto Show, the Irvine-manufactured Karma had an estimated base price in the $87,000 range. The 2012 Karma, however, clocks in at $96,895 for the base model and closer to $110,000 for the fancy-pants version.

Still, and if anyone wins a big-screen car chase in one of these babies any time soon, you'll know the driver's probably acting: "[T]he physics conspire against it keeping pace with other $100K sports sedans," C&D noted. "In spite of the joys of low-rpm electric torque, the realities of a curb weight well above 4000 pounds and only one gear ratio mean that mileage is where this car excels."

Yeah, well, the earlier numbers look pretty impressive until you remember they're going up against a Prius. A Bugatti Veyron like the $1.7-million ride that Flo Rida was in when he was pulled over on suspicion of DUI does the zero-to-60 thing in, what, less than 3 seconds? So, yeah.

That said: The Karma, which averages around 67 mpg, can go 50 miles on a single battery charge and 300 total when the gas engine kicks in. And really, what A-lister drives himself any farther than that?


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Blake Lively says nude photos aren't real -- but what about the Leonardo DiCaprio rumors?

— Christie D'Zurilla

Photos: A Fisker Karma hybrid is shown by Henrik Fisker, left, at the 2009 L.A.  Auto Show. A 2012 model of the $100,000 car now belongs to Leonardo DiCaprio, right, shown in 2008 at the Golden Globes. Credits: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times, left; Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times, right.


Peeing on a plane, did Gerard Depardieu target floor or bottle?

Gerard Depardieu

Gerard Depardieu gave it a shake on a plane Tuesday night, reportedly urinating on the floor of the aircraft after he was denied a bathroom pass during takeoff on a Paris-to-Dublin flight -- or perhaps he simply relieved himself into an empty bottle as said plane awaited takeoff.

Though City Jet didn't identify the passenger, who was promptly escorted off the aircraft along with two friends and their luggage, a woman who'd witnessed the scene named names later to a French radio station.

According to the passenger, an apparently inebriated Depardieu had declared that he needed to relieve himself. The cabin crew reportedly told him to remain seated as they were taxiing toward the runway for takeoff, and to hold his water until the restrooms were opened. Ignoring the crew's request, she said, Depardieu allegedly stood up and aimed down.

Some friends of the French actor told the tale a bit differently on Wednesday, however, explaining anonymously to Agence France-Presse that the 62-year-old was definitely not drunk and had been OK with waiting -- until a further 20-minute delay was announced. At that point, they said, he attempted to relieve himself into a bottle he'd been offered by a traveling companion, actor Edouard Baer, even offering to help clean up the mess after some urine spilled onto the floor.

Depardieu was "mortified," said one of the friends, noting that no charges had been brought and no fines were levied. The real problem, as it was explained? The "inflexible attitude" of a flight attendant.

Acknowledging the incident Wednesday morning on Twitter, City Jet pointed out, "We'd also like to remind all passengers that our planes are fully equipped with toilet facilities." Never fear: It was budget UK airline Ryanair, not City Jet, that was floating the idea a while back of charging passengers to access the potty.

Not surprisingly, cleanup delayed the flight for two hours.


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-- Christie D'Zurilla

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Photo: Gerard Depardieu at the 64th Locarno International Film Festival, in Locarno, Switzerland, on Aug. 8. Jean-Christophe  Bott / European Pressphoto Agency


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