Saturday, January 5, 2008

"Penelope Cruz & Sister engage in Lesbian Lip-Lock : PHOTOS/VIDEO"

from - by Hollie McKay

LOS ANGELES — Penelope Cruz may have been nominated for an Oscar last year, but this year, the "Volver" star spices up her younger brother's music video with a lesbian lip-lock. And the other woman in the scene is ... her sister.

Pop Tarts has been told that the lesbian lip-lock between the Spanish siblings was the idea of their brother Eduardo, who was obviously seeking controversial PR. The video also features Penelope parading her top-half assets.

The video for "Cosas Que Contar" opens with Penelope and her sexy sister Monica sucking lollipops in school-girl inspired outfits before cavorting poolside in racy red swimsuits.

And while the steamy scene is already making media music, could it actually ruin Penelope's rep as a reputable rather than raunchy star?

"I don't think it was a wise move for Penelope, as she has always been considered a very classy actress and it wasn't like she was doing this for a ground-breaking film," said Adam Weiss, CEO of Weiss PR in New York City (who does not represent Cruz). "But then again, nothing in Hollywood is surprising. People have done worse things and become much more famous as a result."

But this isn't the first time that the captivating Cruz sisters have posed together for a project. Spanish fashion giant Mango recently brought 30-year-old Monica on board to design a collection and she was joined by her "Vanilla Sky" star sister for the promotional pages.

"I don't think the raaunchy video will affect the high-end feel of the MNG fashion line," a fashion-industry insider told Tarts. "If anything, it will put Monica even more on the map and people will be interested to see her work."

"Canada's record labels slam proposed digital tax'

TORONTO, CANADA (Billboard) - A revolutionary plan that would effectively legitimize file-sharing here has been slammed as "a pipe dream" by Canadian labels.

The Songwriters Assn. of Canada proposes to allow domestic consumers access to all recorded music available online in return for adding a $5 Canadian ($4.96) monthly fee to every wireless and Internet account in the country.

The SAC claims that the proposal, which has been presented to labels' bodies the Canadian Record Industry Assn. (CRIA) and Canadian Independent Record Production Assn. as well as publishers' groups, would raise approximately $1 billion Canadian ($993 million) annually. Although the SAC does not detail how revenue would be collected and distributed, it says it would go to artists, labels and publishers.

The idea doesn't strike a chord with everyone. The SAC proposal "would signal the death of paid music services in Canada," said Alistair Mitchell, CEO of Canadian music service Puretracks. "It would be saying we're just giving up on developing new models. The concept is so flawed, I don't know where to start."

"This proposal is incredibly well thought out and well constructed," acting SAC president Eddie Schwartz said. Producer/songwriter Schwartz, whose songs have been performed by Joe Cocker, Pat Benatar and Donna Summer, says the scheme would "allow people to gain access to the entire repertoire of Western music" for only $60 Canadian per year.

That, he added, "amounts to $0.16 ($0.159) per day. (Which) seems like a pretty good deal." Schwartz said it's unlikely that users with both a wireless phone and an Internet account would have to pay twice for access.


The Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Assn. estimates that Canada had 18.5 million wireless phone users and 7 million residential Internet users at the end of 2006. In 2006, according to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, the trade value of recorded music fell 9.1 percent to $598.7 million Canadian ($529.8 million); CDs accounted for 85 percent of that total.

CRIA president Graham Henderson said he has discussed the plan with Schwartz, but his organization is reluctant to become involved. "We don't want to pursue what amounts to a pipe dream that is presented as a quick fix," he said. "We'll lose focus on the real issues that will help us resolve the industry's problems."

Schwartz said he has received positive feedback from consumer groups. But he noted that the plan would require clearance from the Copyright Board of Canada, and the SAC has not yet taken the concept to the regulatory body.

The SAC also has yet to present its proposal to Canadian Internet service providers, although some are dismissive of the plan.

"It appears (the SAC) would ask wireless carriers and ISPs to collect this surcharge on their behalf," said a spokesman for Bell Canada, one of the country's largest telecommunications companies and the majority owner of Puretracks. "(That) would not go over well with our client base, especially with the large number already signed up for our (legal) mobile and online music services."

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled in 2004 that ISPs are not responsible for the actions of clients using their Internet services. One senior source at a Canadian ISP said, "ISPs are not required to -- nor would they -- police this kind of usage. Nor would they charge, collect and remit what is in essence a tax."

However, the proposal has received support from the Canadian Music Creators Coalition, a group of 187 acts, including the Barenaked Ladies and Avril Lavigne.

Artist Andrew Cash described the SAC suggestion in a statement on behalf of the CMCC as "the first progressive proposal we've seen in Canada to address file-sharing."

source: Reuters/Billboard - By Robert Thompson

"Russell Simmons sues web fraudster : Rush Card"


Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons is suing a California man for allegedly using a website to steal people's identities. Simmons claims that Daniel Adams' website,, and his company Devoted Inc. falsely used his image to obtain information on consumers seeking to sign up for his Visa-backed RushCard, reports

Simmons' UniRush Financial Services of New York company launched the RushCard in 2004.

The card is a pre-paid Visa/debit card for people who cannot or do not have traditional checking accounts.

Friday, January 4, 2008

"Happy Birthday Denise Katrina Matthews aka VANITY"

Happy 48th Birthday to Ms. Denise Katrina Matthews, aka Vanity - born January 4th, 1959.

Without a doubt one of the finest looking women ever created, PERIOD. Vanity was a protégé of The Purple One (Prince) who built the 80's girl group Vanity 6 around her. Vanity 6 went on to have a couple of hit singles - "Nasty Girl" being their signature track.

She was originally cast to play Prince's love interest in the film "Purple Rain", but broke ties with Prince to pursue a solo career before the film was to start production. Apollonia Kotero stepped into her role in "Purple Rain". Ms. Kotero also stepped into Vanity 6 (re-named Apollonia 6) and I suppose you could say Apollonia took on the role of Prince's girlfriend in real life as well.

After some solo releases, appearances in a few films, and reportedly quite an active partying lifestyle, Vanity found religion in 1997 and did away with the Vanity persona. As she states on her website, "Vanity is dead".

Below is the information has on Ms. Matthews with some random Vanity photos & Youtube vids thrown in for good measure. - Ace:)

Denise Katrina Matthews (born January 4, 1959 in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada), known under the most popular stage name Vanity (sometimes credited as Denise Matthews-Smith or D.D. Winters), is a singer, actress, and model.

She is a sister of Canadian model Patricia Matthews.

Early in her career, Matthews appeared in B-movies such as Tanya's Island and Terror Train. In 1982, she met Prince who re-named her Vanity, saying he saw his female reflection when he looked at her. Some versions of the story suggest that Prince coined the name Vagina initially, but she refused and renamed herself "Vanity" instead. Later that same year, she became the lead singer of singing group Vanity 6. Their trademark was explicit sexuality in their lyrics, performances, and attire. Prince produced the group's biggest hit "Nasty Girl."

After one album, Vanity decided to leave her role in Vanity 6 and the proposed film Purple Rain in 1983. Vanity signed a lucrative record deal with Motown Records in 1984. She recorded two albums, Wild Animal and Skin On Skin. She also starred in a handful of movies, including The Last Dragon and the 1988 action thriller Action Jackson, in which she starred opposite Carl Weathers, Craig T. Nelson, and Sharon Stone. She also played a villain torturing Nancy Allen's character in 1990's amnesia-plot TV movie Memories of Murder; the film has appeared on the Lifetime channel. She guest starred in an episode of Miami Vice in its third season; she posed for Playboy in 1988; and, in 1993, she appeared in an episode of Highlander opposite Adrian Paul.

After being turned on to cocaine, which resulted in near-fatal kidney failure, Vanity gave up her stage name and became a born-again Christian and evangelist on August 16, 1997. She travels America, and currently resides in Fremont, California.

In 2005, Vanity 6's "Nasty Girl" was redone in a tribal style by dance performer Inaya Day. Matthews is currently working on finishing her novel Blame it on Vanity.

Personal life

As Vanity, she dated Prince, Adam Ant and Billy Idol during the 1980's. Additionally, Matthews was engaged to Mötley Crüe bassist Nikki Sixx in the 1987. She joked during interviews that her new stage name will then be Vanity 6 (Sixx) again. They never married. Matthews was a contributor to Sixx's book, released in 2007 called The Heroin Diaries: A Year in the Life of a Shattered Rock Star. In the work, Sixx gives detailed accounts of his drug-filled year in 1987, which includes numerous and often bizarre incidents with Vanity.

Matthews has a German mother and an African-American father.

Recent photo of Ms. Matthews...

Vanity interview on Merv!

Vanity interview on Joan Rivers!

"Nasty Girl" music video!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

"Panasonic's 150-inch plasma TV part of Japan's push at CES"

from - by Michael Kanellos

Japan Inc. will put on the hard sell at the Consumer Electronics Show next week.

Panasonic is expected to unveil a 150-inch plasma television during a keynote speech Monday by Toshihiro Sakamoto, president of the Panasonic Audio Visual Networks Company. (Matsushita Electric goes by Panasonic in the U.S.) Sakamoto, a new speaker to the CES keynote circuit, is also expected to unveil a number of other products during his speech.

Rival Hitachi, meanwhile, will show off a series of ultraslim LCD TVs that have yet to be exhibited in the U.S. The 32-inch TVs, shown first at Ceatec outside of Tokyo last October, measure 19 millimeters wide. These TVs are expected to come out in 2009. In the meantime, Hitachi plans to release a series of 35-millimeter-wide TVs in 2008. Several Executives from Hitachi, which is making a push to expand market share in the U.S., will also attend the show.

Sharp and JVC, which showed off similar slim LCDs at Ceatec, will likely bring them to CES for a U.S. debut as well. Expect other slim TVs too. And, as usual, Sony will be there with a host of products and execs.

Back in 2004, traditional electronics manufacturers were besieged by competition from PC makers and small companies such as Westinghouse Digital entering their field. "Five or six years ago it was a peaceful marketplace, now people from the outside are coming in like hunting tribes," Hideki "Dick" Komiyama, then president and chief operating officer of Sony Electronics, said in 2004. (Komiyama is now president of Sony Ericsson.)

The onslaught didn't turn out exactly as anticipated. Companies like Westinghouse and Vizio have succeeded, but Dell and Hewlett-Packard have not done as well as expected in electronics. Moreover, members of the old guard like Panasonic and Sharp are still standing and in some respects are becoming more aggressive in terms of pricing and product design.

"New Jersey may apologize for slavery"

(CNN) -- Legislators in New Jersey are debating whether to apologize for slavery.

The symbolic atonement, if approved, would follow apologies for human bondage made last year by legislators in Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia.

New Jersey was the last northern state to abolish slavery, in 1846. It could become the first northern state to apologize if the state's General Assembly adopts a resolution championed by Assemblyman William Payne.

"New Jersey, with as many as 12,000 slaves, had one of the largest populations of captive Africans in the northern colonies," Payne's resolution reads.

The assembly has scheduled a hearing on the resolution for this week.

The resolution says New Jersey also had one of the most severe slave codes in the north. In addition, it says, the state was one of the few in the north to sanction the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, which allowed authorities in non-slave states to capture escaped slaves and return them to their owners.

If the legislature adopts the resolution, Gov. Jon Corzine would decide whether to sign it into law.

Similar resolutions have stirred strong emotions and controversy elsewhere. Some legislators argue that the legacy of slavery has been so devastating to African-Americans that states should formally repudiate laws that allowed bondage.

Others say legislators should not apologize for things that happened so long ago.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

"Nude couple grapple over dog near shower"

BREMERTON, Wash. (AP) A 25-year-old woman was arrested for investigation of second-degree assault for getting into an argument with her boyfriend over whether his dog should be in the bathroom while the couple were taking a shower together.

A police report said the man, 26, wanted his dog to join them in the bathroom, but the woman objected on Thursday night.

The woman told her boyfriend that if the dog doesn't stay out, she didn't want to be his girlfriend anymore. He replied that maybe his next girlfriend would appreciate the dog more, and called her a name.

The police report said the woman punched him in the face several times and the man dislocated his shoulder after the naked couple grappled. He told police his girlfriend threw a picture frame, which broke and cut him.

The woman was taken to the Kitsap County Jail in Port Orchard. Bail has been set at $50,000.

"Lindsay Lohan : Candid photos via Riley Giles"

So.... Here are some of those pictures Lindsay Lohan's ex sold to INF Daily for a few bucks. The photos are rather uneventful, but that Lindsay sure is a bad bad girl, isn't she? LOL. - Ace:)

"Diggin' in the crates : San Diego's best record stores"

from - by Todd Kroviak

An obsessive's guide to San Diego's best record stores

San Diego, CA - Good record stores are a dying breed. Chalk it up to the digital revolution if you must, but the simple fact is that mom-and-pop shops seem to be on their way out. I should know—I used to work for one. On the other hand, it's music dorks like myself (and a number of you reading this) who can occasionally see light in this dark place. Various media reports have suggested that vinyl sales are surging—or at least holding steady—while CD sales continue to decline, meaning that some people still want the genuine article. The problem is finding it. Luckily, I've done a lot of the work for you by picking out the best area record store of all (Lou's), the archivist's dream (Folk Arts) and a slew of other local shops that are worth your while.


Lou's Records (434 N. Coast Highway 101, Encinitas)

In business since 1980, Lou's is unquestionably the king of area record stores. The only thing keeping city dwellers from discovering its greatness is its inconvenient North County location. From the outside, the place looks downright crappy, consisting of two taupe-colored bungalows—one housing new products, the other used, plus DVDs—that look like they could occupy the parking lot at a local high school. But inside is a music nerd's wet dream. Lou's has damn near everything, especially reggae vinyl and obscure experimental, which is categorized as "new music." The staff is friendly, though you might have to chat them up a bit to get some help. However, if you go off about that Phil Collins album you love, don't blame me when they make fun of you.


Folk Arts Rare Records (2881 Adams Ave., Normal Heights)

Folk Arts is a converted residence that looks like any other house on the block, except inside is one of the most expansive selections of vinyl imaginable. Owner Lou Curtiss was kind enough to show me his archives, consisting of thousands of live, locally recorded and self-produced reel-to-reel recordings, as well as his personal record collection. Honestly, all of it is a little mind-blowing. For me, the jewel was an album from a '73 Tom Waits show, but that's only because I don't know shit about music before the '60s. Curtiss spreads the wealth, too—the place is filled with stacks upon stacks of records, most of which are surprisingly inexpensive and well categorized. This isn't the place for modern music, but Curtiss does make a point of carrying a small variety of local CDs.


M-Theory Records (915 W. Washington St., Mission Hills)

Of all the stores in urban San Diego, M-Theory is the most comprehensive. I was surprised at how much stuff is crammed into a small space until I realized, after browsing the aisles, that it's all about taste. These guys don't waste their time with music they don't like, and that makes it easy to get the goods. They've obviously put a lot of time into organizing the vinyl, and the used-CD section isn't packed with old Spin Doctors and Hootie. A store this size is naturally going to lack in certain areas, but M-Theory makes up for it by selling all kinds of collectables not found in most record stores (would someone please buy me that mini Orange amplifier?).

Off the Record (2912 University Ave., North Park)

I've heard a lot of complaints about Off the Record since it moved from its Hillcrest location a few years back. People bitch about the new store—how it's small, dumpy and the selection has diminished, among other grievances. To tell the truth, it really hasn't changed that much; it's just consolidated new and used CDs and concentrated far more on used vinyl. Sure, there's lots of kitschy stuff (the '80s are so, like, three years ago), but there's also a super-cool section for out-of-print soundtracks, an excellent selection of music magazines and some "Holy shit, I can't believe they have that" R&B records up on the wall.

Record City (3757 Sixth Ave., Hillcrest)

One of three great stores within two blocks in Hillcrest, Record City has been underappreciated for years, possibly because it played second fiddle to the old Off the Record for so long. This place has a ridiculous assortment of $1 vinyl, not to mention a clever use of sub-genres—when have you been to a store that has "'80s Alternative" and "Prog" sections? Not that anyone needs duplicates of their Adam and the Ants records, but it's still a great throwback to the days of 120 Minutes. Record City doesn't deal much in new CDs, but nobody buys those fucking things anymore, except for maybe, um, me.

Taang! Records (3830 Fifth Ave., Hillcrest)

For what it's worth, Taang's hardcore punk credibility will continue to remain intact as long as the store is open. It's one of the only stores you'll find that sub-categorizes its punk. Yeah, they take that shit seriously. Of course, the store is eternally dingy and haphazard, but therein lays its charm. There's something undeniably awesome about the attitude of the place—besides a smattering of soul records, it's all ROCK, or variations thereof (and it contains the first Soft Boys record, which I can never seem to find). Basically, if it ain't dirty and loud, look for it elsewhere.

Thirsty Moon Records (525 Evans Place, Hillcrest)

We all know at least one "music guy" who never steers us wrong. Thirsty Moon is run by three of those guys. Part of the reason the store is so unique is because it's operated by friends with similar musical interests—two of the dudes (Mario and Mike) play for local space-rock explorers Earthless, and the other one (Jeff) spends his extra time keeping the store going (he works another job and is the default weekend guy). Thirsty Moon might be the size of a large closet, but it's the top destination for rockers looking to spice up their collection with Soul Jazz comps, Harmonia records and Japanese psych-rock.


Access Hip Hop (1537 Garnet Ave., Pacific Beach)

Since almost every other store I visited seems to avoid hip-hop like the plague, I was elated to find this inconspicuous spot that is solely devoted to the genre. Founded six years ago by Mark Onstad almost strictly as a way to sell the work of his friends in Living Legends, the store has grown significantly and is somewhat of a hip-hop landmark in a city needing more of them. Let's put it this way—any store that has this many D.I.T.C. classics in stock is miles ahead of its competitors. Access doesn't sell used music but its consignment deals give MCs a shot at local stardom, and it has an excellent a selection of break records, new hip-hop vinyl and CDs.

California Sound & Lighting (1919 San Diego Ave., Old Town)

Considering that the store is in the process of expanding, CSL does a great job of managing its influx of groove-based vinyl. The selection covers everything from The DFA to Deltron because owners Shawn and Sasha stay in tune with the latest trends in DJ culture. Plus, California has a ton of turntables and supplies for sale, making it a healthy alternative to the unhelpful monolith Guitar Center. It amounts to somewhat of a DJ superstore, and there's no better place to test out records—there are eight listening stations to make sure the cuts are choice.

"An open letter to Paris Hilton & Kevin Federline"

Dear Paris & Kevin,

I see that the two of you have been enjoying each other's company lately, and that's really a great thing to see. But for the love of all that's sacred, I beg you both... Please - whatever you do, don't procreate. Seriously guys. This is not a joke. I have no ill wishes for either of you, I'm just simply looking out for the children.

Feel free to get your collective drink/groove/party on, but please abstain from reproducing. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Your pal,

PS: Oh yeah, and the world doesn't need to see any sex tape which could possibly 'leak' showing the two of you knockin' da bootz.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

"James Brown recordings locked in dispute"

(AP) The legal feud over the estate of James Brown is stalling the release of the Soul legend's final recordings, his longtime adviser said.

Brown cut an album in Los Angeles the summer before he died in December 2006, but the songs are not being released because of courtroom disputes about who should benefit from his legacy and music royalties, said attorney Buddy Dallas. There are also between 50 and 60 other previously recorded songs in vaults, Dallas said.

Brown's fourth son, Daryl, is one of five heirs trying to have their father's will voided because they say his former advisers — including Dallas — used undue influence to get the singer to create charitable trusts from which the advisers would profit. The other advisers named in the lawsuit are Alford Bradley and David Cannon.

Dallas quit as an estate trustee in November but now is trying to retract his resignation.

Daryl Brown, who is lead guitarist for his father's backing band, the Soul Generals, says he is not aware of any recordings done in California in 2006. Brown and the Soul Generals were working on an album at a studio in Georgia, but they only finished two songs before the singer died, his son said.

But he said there are dozens of unreleased songs stored in vaults and on master tapes at Brown's Beech Island, S.C., estate.

Brown died on Christmas Day 2006 of heart failure. He was 73.

"PHOTO : Mariah Carey @ TAO in Las Vegas : 12/31/07"

Here's a photo taken last night by Johnny Nunez from Wire Images©

It's Ms. Mariah Carey bringin' in the new year @ Las Vegas hot spot TAO. I'm no Mariah cheerleader, but home-girl's not looking too shabby these days.

Perhaps she'll drop some fresh chunes on us this year. - Ace:)

"VIDEO: Rosie O'Donnell responds to being named Parade's Most Annoying Celebrity"

Rosie O'Donnell responds to being named Parade Magazine's "Most Annoying Celebrity of 2007"

Check the video below. - Ace:)

"Men shot with .357 as they traced It for tattoo pattern"

CHAPARRAL, N.M. (AP) —  Getting a tattoo can be a painful proposition, but usually it's just the needle you have to worry about.

Two men trying to trace a loaded .357-caliber Magnum as a pattern for a tattoo accidentally shot themselves, the Otero County Sheriff's Department said Monday.

Robert Glasser and Joey Acosta, both 22, were treated at a hospital in El Paso, Texas, after the shooting Thursday evening in nearby Chaparral.

Authorities said Glasser was struck in the hand when the gun accidentally went off, and Acosta was hit in the left arm. Their injuries were not life-threatening, authorities said.

"Happy New Year!!! 2008!"

Just want to wish everyone a very HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!

2008 has arrived!


Monday, December 31, 2007

"Led Zeppelin to rock U.S. / Bonnaroo in 2008"


Led Zeppelin will headline a US rock festival next year.

The legendary band are set to perform at Tennessee's Bonnaroo festival in June 2008 after lead singer Robert Plant had a "change of heart" over the decision to follow up their comeback concert at London's O2 arena earlier this month with further dates.

A source said: "They are going to play the Bonnaroo festival, which runs from June 12 to 15. This news will drive their fans absolutely wild.

"They have been bombarding their website to get back together for good but only lead singer Robert Plant wasn't keen to commit. -

"Now he's had a change of heart and if it all goes well they are also talking about touring."

It has been rumoured that 2008 will see the band - which also includes bassist John Paul Jones and guitarist Jimmy Page, with late drummer John Bonham' s son Jason on drums - embark on a world tour that could net them in the region of £1 billion.

The source added to Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper: "All ticket sellers have been told a world tour will take place, there's just some ironing out of contracts to be done. They are already talking about playing venues like Knebworth, Glastonbury and even returning to Madison Square Garden in New York where they played their legendary shows in 1973.

"They were looking to do it in March but now it will most likely be May. With ticket sales combined with merchandising it could make them as much as £1 billion."

"Timbaland / Nelly Furtado to form Rock band"


Nelly Furtado has told in a new interview, that she is planning to form a rock band with producer Timbaland.

The pair have worked before on Furtado's current album Loose, as well as the hit Timbaland single Give It To Me.

Speaking to Billboard, Nelly describes how the duo's next project would be their "version of alternative", before adding: "It wouldn't necessarily be like heavy and guitar-driven. It would be left field, and not necessarily Pop."

On the title of the new band, Furtado says: "We keep arguing over names. I want these really weird, subversive names, and (Timbaland) wants these mysterious, like, Lord of the Rings kind of names. We can't decide."

It's thought the pair won't begin work on this new project until the back end of the Summer, one Nelly Furtado has completed her live schedule.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

"Happy Birthday Davy Jones"

Happy 62nd Birthday to Mr. Davy Jones - born David Thomas Jones on December 30, 1945.

Davy is best known as one quarter of The Monkees, but I always think of that Brady Bunch episode before anything. Classic... - Ace:)

"Sacha Baron Cohen cast as 60's Activist Abbie Hoffman"

from - by John Harlow

The creator of Ali G and Borat has been persuaded by Steven Spielberg to move from comedy to serious politics by playing a hippie opponent of the Vietnam war.

In The Trial of the Chicago Seven, Sacha Baron Cohen will portray Abbie Hoffman, a figure from the 1960s counterculture who used a series of pranks to campaign against the war. Baron Cohen is expected to be paid about £3m for the film.

Baron Cohen, 36, became famous in Britain for his Ali G persona in the 1990s but won international acclaim with last year's film Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan. He has now "retired" his Borat character.

The Spielberg film is said to be closer to Munich, the director's exploration of the morality of political assassination, based on the 1972 terrorist attack on the Olympic Games, than to his next Indiana Jones frolic, due in the summer.

The Trial of the Chicago Seven follows protesters who disrupted the 1968 Democrat party convention with an anti-Vietnam-war "carnival" that turned nasty. Demonstrators threw bricks, police responded with tear gas and the centre of Chicago was engulfed in flames. Curfews only escalated the violence.

After the clashes, independent investigators blamed eight police officers and eight protesters including Hoffman, who had already disrupted the New York Stock Exchange with showers of fake money.

The police were not charged but the protesters were accused of inciting a riot. One was jailed for contempt, leaving the seven to fight the charges.

It was, said the late writer Norman Mailer, who testified for the seven, a noisy televised clash between the old order and the burgeoning counterculture.

Hoffman went on to become an irascible celebrity who, later diagnosed with a bipolar disorder, killed himself with pills in 1989.

Baron Cohen will not have to undergo a big transformation to play the part. Hoffman, who was Jewish, attended Berkeley University in California, while Baron Cohen, an urbane Orthodox Jew more than 6ft tall, cut his teeth entertaining friends at Christ's College Cambridge with subversive wit and surreal pranks.

Baron Cohen is already planning a return to the screen in the guise of Bruno, a camp Austrian fashion show presenter with an unpleasant line in Nazi jokes. It is reported he will receive a £7m advance and 15% of box-office receipts for the role, a record for a British comedian.

He is still fighting writs for slander and fraud from several people lampooned in the Borat movie, including the villagers of Glod in Romania where the opening sections of the film were shot.

"2007 : Words of the Year" presents Words of the Year for 2007. For each month, we chose a word or phrase that was prominent or new according to our search logs and research regarding searches elsewhere on the Internet.
January: water intoxication
"Jennifer Strange had taken part in the 'Hold Your Wee for a Wii' game, which promised the winner a Nintendo Wii. Afterwards she reportedly said her head was hurting and went home, where she was later found dead. Initial tests have shown her death is consistent with water intoxication." — BBC News
February: coffee art
"Coffee art: Creative images are made in coffee." — CNN
March: bracketology
"Bracketology — the practice of parsing people, places, and things into discrete one-on-one matchups to determine which of the two is superior or preferable works because it is simple. It is a system that helps us make clearer and cleaner decisions about what is good, better, best in our world. What could be simpler than breaking down a choice into either/or, black or white, this one or that one?" — The Enlightened Bracketologist: The Final Four of Everything by Mark Reiter and Richard Sandomir, excerpt courtesy of Slate
April: nappy
"The controversy over using the book 'Nappy Hair' at a Brooklyn elementary school has had predictably distressing effects. Now a principal at an intermediate school in the same district has decided against using two excellent books in the sixth grade, apparently for fear of parental protests." — The New York Times
May: diatribe
"When Meyer launched into a diatribe, was dragged away by campus cops and subdued with a Taser gun, Jessup, 22, quickly sent the footage to CNN -- because, she says, she wanted national attention and does not like Fox News." — The Washington Post
June: virtual dissection
"Point-and-click versions of scalpels, scissors and even saws allow students to find, remove and examine organs without ever smelling formaldehyde. Hundreds of schools, which are already using software as an alternative to animal dissection will receive the fetal pig module later this month.
"Nearly a dozen states have laws or regulations requiring public schools to offer students such an option. Animal protection groups have lobbied against dissection and many students have decided that dissecting real animals is not for them." — The New York Times"
July: dogfighting
"Michael Vick's lead lawyer left open the possibility of a plea agreement after the suspended NFL star was scheduled for an April 2 jury trial on state dogfighting charges. The Atlanta Falcons quarterback pleaded guilty to a federal dogfighting conspiracy charge in August and voluntarily reported to jail last week, even though he will not be formally sentenced until Dec. 10." — The Canadian Press
August: itch mite
"Health officials believe the Oakleaf Itch Mite may be responsible for a mysterious outbreak of itchy, red rashes in the Chicago area." — ABC News
September: teratoma
"M.R.I. scans revealed a teratoma in Megan's skull — a noncancerous mass of rapidly dividing cells, the result of natural developmental processes gone awry." — The New York Times
October: fire
"Fire crews watched for flare-ups Wednesday afternoon as high winds and low humidity levels increased the danger of a new blaze in fire-scarred Southern California." — The Mercury News
November: steroids
"A quarter of Blackwater security guards in Iraq use steroids and other 'judgment-altering substances,' according to a lawsuit filed by the families of several Iraqis killed or wounded in a Baghdad shooting in September." — CNN News
December: subprime mortgage
"Andy Weissman, publisher of the weekly Energy Business Watch, said the current focus in Cgress on housing market woes and the subprime mortgage meltdown are understandable, but both parties need to refocus on energy policy." — Fox News

"Getting to know Dita Von Teese : Photos Images Pictures"

So Dita Von Teese's divorce to Marilyn Manson is final... Blah blah blah...

I figured I would post some Dita information along with some random images of her for those who may have wondered to themselves - "Who's that girl"?

Here's some information gathered from

Dita Von Teese (born Heather Renée Sweet on September 28, 1972) is a popular American burlesque artist, model and actress.
She is one of the instigators of the burlesque revival and has been a considerable factor in bringing burlesque to mainstream attention. Her fame increased during her relationship with Marilyn Manson, whom she married and subsequently divorced.

Early life

Dita Von Teese was born in Rochester, Michigan. Her mother was a manicurist and her father was a machinist.

Von Teese is well known for her fascination with 1940s cinema and classic retro style. This began at a young age and was fostered by her mother, who would buy clothes for Dita to dress up in. Her mother was a fan of old, Golden-era Hollywood films, and it was from her that Dita developed a fascination with the actresses of that day, especially Betty Grable, an actress that she frequently cites as her favorite.

She was classically trained as a ballet dancer from an early age, and danced solo at age thirteen for a local ballet company. Though she originally wanted to be a ballerina, Von Teese states that "By 15 I was as good as I'd ever be". She was later to incorporate this element into her burlesque shows, where she frequently goes en pointe.

At age twelve she moved from Michigan to Orange County, California with her parents and her two sisters. Von Teese attended University High School in Irvine.

As a teenager, Von Teese's mother took her to buy her first bra, made from plain white cotton, and gave her a plastic egg containing a pair of wrinkly, flesh-coloured tights. Von Teese says she was disappointed as she had been hoping to receive beautiful lacy garments and stockings, of the type she had glimpsed in her father's Playboy magazines. This fueled her passion for lingerie. She worked in a lingerie store as a salesgirl when she was fifteen, and eventually as a buyer. Some people believe that this is the store where she purchased her first corset, however Dita states in her book that she purchased her first corset in a sex shop. Von Teese has been fond of wearing elaborate lingerie such as corsets and stockings since.

In college Von Teese studied historic costuming and aspired to work as a stylist for period films. She is a trained costume designer.


Von Teese began her career in a local strip club when she was nineteen. Disappointed with the lack of originality in all the other strippers' acts, Von Teese created a vintage-inspired outfit, with beehive hairstyle and elbow-length gloves, piquing the interest of the clientele.

Fetish and glamour modeling

It was during this time at the strip club that she began some glamour modeling, before she eventually became a fetish model. Her retro pin-up look, frequently emulating Bettie Page in photo shoots, set her apart from most other fetish models.

Her official website, often referred to as one of the first model sites on the internet, was created in 1992. Von Teese has maintained meticulous care to own the copyright to the majority of her images, very aware of what became of models, such as Bettie Page, who did not.

Von Teese achieved some level of recognition in the fetish world as a tightlacer. Through the wearing of a corset for many years, she had reduced her natural waistline to 22 inches, and can be laced down as far as 16 and a half inches. A diminutive person already, Von Teese stands at only 5'3" and weighs 105 pounds.

Von Teese appeared on a number of fetish magazine covers, including Bizarre and Marquis . It was around this time when she appeared, bound and partially suspended, on the cover of Midori's book, The Seductive Art of Japanese Bondage.

Von Teese was featured in Playboy magazine in 1999, 2001 and 2002. It was her Playboy cover in December of 2002 that gave her her last name. Originally known simply as "Dita", a tribute to silent film actress Dita Parlo, Playboy insisted she use a last name. She picked "Von Treese" out of the phonebook, but it was misspelled "Von Teese". Dita, preferring the typo, adopted it as her name. Dita says that it is her appearances in Playboy that finally won her father's respect for her profession.

The German metal band Atrocity revealed that the cover model for their new album, Werk 80 II, will be Dita Von Teese. The album is due in 2008.


It is Von Teese's burlesque routines that she is best known for, and is frequently dubbed "the Queen of Burlesque" in the press. Von Teese began performing burlesque in 1993 and, as a proponent of New Burlesque, has helped to popularize its revival. In her own words, she "puts the tease back into striptease" with long, elaborate dance shows with props and characters, often inspired by 1930s and 1940s musicals and films. Some of her more famous dances include numbers involving a carousel horse, a giant powder compact, a filigree heart and a clawfoot bathtub with a working shower head. Her feather fan dance, inspired by burlesque dancer Sally Rand, features feather fans that are the largest in the world and are now on display in Hollywood's Museum Of Sex. Her signature show features a giant martini glass.

Her burlesque career has included some memorable performances, including once performing at a benefit for the New York Academy of Art wearing nothing but $5 million worth of diamonds. Additionally, Von Teese became the first ever guest star to perform at the Parisian Crazy Horse cabaret club in the show's history when she appeared there in October, 2006.

Cameron Diaz performed a tribute to Von Teese's martini glass routine in the film Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle. Von Teese's name appears in the credits, listed under "Special Thanks". It is rumoured that this was only added after Dita threatened to sue the film makers for stealing her idea.

Von Teese's first book, which consisted of her opinions on the history of burlesque and fetish, Burlesque and the Art of the Teese/Fetish and the Art of the Teese, was published in 2006 by HarperCollins. Vanity Fair called her "a Burlesque Superheroine."


Von Teese is also an occasional actress. In her early years she appeared in fetish-related movies, such as Romancing Sara, Matter of Trust, in which she is billed as Heather Sweet, and also in two films by Andrew Blake: Pin Ups 2 and Decadence.

In recent years she has appeared in more mainstream features, such as the 2005 short film, The Death of Salvador Dali, written by Delaney Bishop, which won best screenplay and best cinematography at recent festivals, including SXSW, Raindance Film Festival and Mill Valley Film Festival, and Best Actress for Von Teese at Beverly Hills Film Festival. She is due to appear in the upcoming feature films Saint Francis and The Boom Boom Room, both expected in 2007.

In addition to this, she has appeared in a number of music videos, including the video for the Green Day song "Redundant", the video for Zip Gun Bop by swing band, Royal Crown Revue, Agent Provocateur's video for their cover of She's Lost Control, and performed her Martini Glass burlesque routine in the video for "mOBSCENE" by Marilyn Manson.

However, Von Teese has said that acting is not at the top of her agenda and she would only take roles that she feels are right for her, stating, "I don't understand why women feel the need to go into acting as soon as they become famous...But I suppose if the part were aesthetically correct, then maybe I could consider it."

Fashion and modeling

In recent years, the fashion world has come to accept Von Teese and her retro look, and she has appeared on a number of best-dressed lists. Von Teese frequents the front row of fashion shows, particularly Christian Dior and Marc Jacobs, labels she is often seen wearing.

She has also done various catwalk work. During Los Angeles Fashion Week, Spring 2004, she modeled for former-club kid Richie Rich's fashion label, Heatherette. In 2005 she appeared in the Autumn/Winter Ready-to-Wear show for Giambattista Valli, a former designer for Ungaro, in Paris. In the 2006 Milan Fashion Week, Von Teese was on the runway, opening for the Moschino diffusion label, Moschino Cheap & Chic, autumn/winter 2006/7 show. In 2007, she appeared twice in the Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture show during the Paris Fashion Week. Additionally, she has starred in several ad campaigns. She appeared in Vivienne Westwood's spring/summer 2005 collection adverts and became the face of Australian clothing range Wheels and Dollbaby for their 2006/7 Spring/Summer advertising campaign. Currently, she is a spokesmodel for MAC Cosmetics. Von Teese has appeared in Vanity Fair, Vogue, Elle, and international issues of nearly every fashion magazine.

In spite of this, Von Teese states that she never uses a stylist. "The one time I hired a stylist, they picked up a pair of my 1940s shoes and said, "These would look really cute with jeans." I immediately said, 'You're out of here.'" She does her own make-up, and dyes her naturally blonde hair black at home.

She has also campaigned on behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), and appeared in their ads.

Personal life

Von Teese currently resides in Hollywood. She is a collector of vintage china, particularly eggcups and tea sets, and she drives a 1939 Chrysler New Yorker and a 1965 Jaguar S-type.

Von Teese frequently mentions that her best friend is fellow burlesque performer, Catherine D'lish, who designs all of Von Teese's burlesque costumes.

Prior to her marriage, Von Teese had been romantically linked to vocalist/guitarist Mike Ness of Social Distortion and to actor Peter Sarsgaard. She has also admitted to having several lesbian experiences including a long-term relationship with a woman when she was 20.

Relationship with Marilyn Manson

Marilyn Manson had been a long time fan, and was a member of her website. They first met when he asked her to dance in one of his music videos. Though she was unable to, the two kept in contact. On Manson's 32nd birthday, in 2001, she arrived with a bottle of absinthe, and they became a couple. Manson proposed on March 22, 2004 and gave her a 1930s, 7-carat, European round-cut diamond engagement ring.

On November 28, 2005, they were married in a private, non-denominational ceremony in their home. A larger ceremony was held on December 3 at Gurteen Castle in Kilsheelan (County Tipperary), Ireland, the home of their friend, Gottfried Helnwein. The wedding was officiated by surrealist film director and comic book writer Alejandro Jodorowsky. They reportedly exchanged vows in front of approximately 60 guests, including burlesque sensation Catherine D'lish, Lisa Marie Presley, Eric Szmanda, Jessicka (Ex-Jack Off Jill) of [Scarling] and Christian Hejnal also of Scarling. She wore a royal purple silk taffeta gown, made by Vivienne Westwood plus a tri-corned hat designed by Stephen Jones and matching Mr. Pearl corset. Moschino designed an additional wardrobe for the rest of the weekend, exclusively for Von Teese. The reception music was provided by the retro German band "Palast Orchester mit Max Raabe". Guests were invited to participate in skeet shooting, archery and falconry in the days following the wedding. The wedding pictures appeared in the March 2006 edition of Vogue under the heading "The Bride Wore Purple".

The couple lived in Laurel Canyon with their four Devon Rex cats, Lily, Aleister, Edgar and Hermann, and two dachshunds, Greta and Eva.

On December 29, 2006 Von Teese filed for divorce from Manson citing "irreconcilable differences." Von Teese left their house empty-handed on Christmas Eve, and was not able to get in touch with Manson to inform him of her intentions of divorce. In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Von Teese says "I wasn't supportive of his partying or his relationship with another girl. As much as I loved him I wasn't going to be part of that". The 'other girl' is believed to be 19-year-old actress Evan Rachel Wood, with whom Manson has continued his relationship after his divorce from Von Teese, despite scathing comments from critics. Von Teese also stated that she gave Manson an ultimatum, but says "it didn't work. Instead, it made me the enemy." Von Teese is not seeking spousal support and seems to have no interest in his assets. The news broke for the public and for Manson on his birthday on January 5, 2007, when he was served the divorce papers.

"I think it's unfortunate that he's had to exploit our divorce for the sake of record sales, but you do what you gotta do, I suppose," muses Dita. "I think most people at this point understand what happened and what they're dealing with when he's doing interviews drunk and offering journalists drugs. It kind of tells you what I might have been up against. I'm just trying to put it past me, I'm happy to be a single girl and have that drama out of my life."

Be sure to visit Dita's official site at Dita.Net - Ace:)