It’s Thanksgiving — time to be thankful for all the treasured headlines celebrities give us throughout the year (granted, the “gift” Michael Richards gave us this week is one we all could have, and should have, done without). Here’s my take on the latest star stumbles.
Now that Tom Cruise’s wedding performance is over, let’s talk about the performing he gets paid for — his career.
Lots of folks were in awe when it was announced that he would be taking over United Artists. But a source close to the deal tells me he thinks it's bad news for Tom — as one of the leading box office champs, Cruise could have waited to get a bigger deal with another studio.
While once great, United Artists is now merely a shell company, existing mainly in name only. Parent company MGM has been trying to sell it — with no takers in sight. Having a big box office star in the fold is good business for the studio — and risky business for Cruise.
They talk about the “Seinfeld” curse, but no one ever thought it’d be the kind of cursing and racial slurs exhibited by Michael Richards. I interviewed Richards back when the “Seinfeld” curse simply meant that he and his co-stars flopped in their solo shows post-“Seinfeld.” He was very dark and angry that his show about a bumbling detective was quickly cancelled by NBC. He told me he got so depressed that he thought about quitting show business altogether — never performing again. Sadly, that may just be the case for a while.
This Sunday, the big Christmas movie “The Nativity Story” — about the birth of Jesus — will be the first film ever to premiere at the Vatican. But here’s an interesting twist: Sixteen-year-old star Keisha Castle-Hughes, who plays Mary in the film, is pregnant with her boyfriend’s baby.
Funny, a source tells me she will not be at the Vatican premiere, and is not doing any publicity for the film at all because she’s in her native New Zealand working on another film. Is that the real reason she’s not be promoting “The Nativity Story?”
As the youngest person ever nominated for a Best Actress Oscar for her role in “Whale Rider,” Castle-Hughes should be an asset for promotion. But as an unwed teenage mother, she could be a PR liability for this Christian film. A rep for the movie swears the actress’ invite to the Vatican didn’t get lost in the mail. We report, you decide.
If you can’t stand the heat of being a celebrity, get out of the kitchen. And now TV chef/talk show host Rachael Ray is the latest to get fried. The National Enquirer is reporting that her husband carried on a 5-year affair with a woman who claims he paid her for kinky sex acts.
Jeaninne Walz says she and Ray’s husband, Bob Cusimano, carried on both before and after he married Ray, and that they also did drugs together. Cusimano vehemently denies the charges — which include him paying money to Walz to spit in his face.
And my final two cents … by now, you’ve probably seen both “Bond” and “Borat.” Now, go see the really great film of the fall: “Stranger Than Fiction.” Will Ferrell’s understated pathos played against Emma Thompson’s comic neuroses combine to make this the funniest and most poignant film of the year.