LOS ANGELES – Britney Spears wasn’t the only starlet to suddenly shave her head last year. Not long after the pop princess did the deed, actress Mena Suvari took to the clippers — and then had to explain that she wasn’t crazy.
“It didn’t really hit me until I was getting ready to come back to L.A. and I was like ooh, just wait. I think I know what’s going to happen. The comparison is going to come up,” Suvari said. “It really sucks that people could look at me and the first thing they think is 'Oh, Mena lost her mind.'"
The head-shave led Suvari to observe that in America, hair really seems to “make a woman." So many ladies came up and commented on her hairless head in shock, saying that their hair was such a part of who they were as a person.
"That was exciting to me, a psychological experiment. To me it’s just hair, it grows back,” she said, touching her now shoulder-length blonde locks. “But people are going to look at it any way that they want to, and it's sad that this industry and our society have gone to that level. It's like all about how can we knock someone down. How can we tear someone apart?”
But shaving her head isn’t the only action Mena has taken in attempt to be taken more seriously in Tinseltown and break out of her pretty girl persona.
“Basically there were two female roles and you were either the pretty girl or you were the character role that wasn’t so pretty, but the character role had the personality,” Mena said. “I always identified with the character role. It was something that I felt was more realistic, but I would be turned down for that because of looks and I never understood that and I don’t feel that that’s realistic. So I guess I'll keep pushing the envelope more."
'Dancing' Disaster: Karina and Mario's Messy Split
Pop Tarts has confirmed that after almost two years together, "Dancing With the Stars" sweethearts Karina Smirnoff and Mario Lopez have ended their romantic relationship.
Despite reports earlier this year that the couple had split, a rep for Smirnoff told Tarts that this is the first time they have broken up. But while both Smirnoff and Lopez released statements last week wishing each other well, an inside source said that the breakup was far from clean.
The twosome reportedly ended it all over the phone on Wednesday evening in New York City, where Mario is guest starring in "A Chorus Line" on Broadway while Smirnoff was in town for numerous public appearances.
"I don't think they'll be best friends anytime soon," the source said. "The circumstances are too upsetting for Karina to discuss, but she knows she'll be better off having time to focus on her career."
Speaking of which, Smirnoff isn't taking time off to wallow in any tears. The in-demand dancer is off to Sin City this weekend for a string of appearances, followed by a whirlwind schedule that will take her straight to Connecticut and San Antonio, Texas.
She'll also be promoting her upcoming dancing workout DVD set and possible book, and doing a cameo appearance on "Project Runway." Phew.
Paris Performs While Nicky Locks Lips
After a hard day’s work in Las Vegas shooting scenes for her upcoming MTV reality series “My New BFF," Paris Hilton hit up hotspot The Bank on Saturday night to celebrate nightlife impresario Danny A’s birthday.
The hotel heiress hung with her beau Benji Madden and boogied on the banquettes while sis, Nicky, spent most of her time making out with her boyfriend Dave Katzenberg.
However, the younger Hilton was reportedly a little red-faced about her ex Kevin Connolly also being at the bash. Eyes on the scene told Pop Tarts that it was all very awkward and that Nicky never approached her former flame and totally avoided the end of the VIP balcony where he was chillin’ with fellow actor Lukas Haas.
Danity Kane: Diddy's Divas Squabble in Sin City?
It seems as though the girl group Danity Kane (produced by Sean "Diddy" Combs) is falling apart — again. Rumors of a breakup started circling earlier this year, and although they’re officially still together, we’re starting to question how long it will last.
According to an insider, two members of the five-gal band got into fisticuffs backstage before their Sin City concert at The Pearl on Friday night and delayed the show by 20 minutes.
But apparently the bitching blew up even more at the after-party held at hotspot Prive. Arriving at 1 a.m. (an hour past their scheduled appearance time), we’re told the singing sensations fake-smiled for the cameras yet were anything but friendly to each other once inside. Three members sat at one VIP booth while the other two positioned themselves away throughout the party, adding to the already mounting tension.
Danity Kane member Aubrey O’Day, however, refused to let the squabbling spoil her night in Sin City as she reportedly got friendly with numerous different guys well into the wee hours. …
Reps for the group did not respond to requests for comment.
Schwarzenegger Picks Marilyn
David Beckham did it, now California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has done it too.
Last year, Becks purchased a near-naked portrait of Marilyn Monroe from the swanky Beverly Hills-based gallery The Celebrity Vault to hang in the master bedroom of his Hollywood home as a gift to his wife, Victoria Beckham. But it seems "Terminator"-turned-politician Schwarzenegger also has an expensive soft spot for the screen siren.
Pop Tarts confirmed that Schwarzenegger just purchased an original portrait of Monroe (covered only by a bedsheet) from the same place to complement the James Dean he also bought recently.
“Initially he was interested in some of the male music figures,” our source said. “But then he fell in love with the very candid Marilyn shot.”
The sassy snap is rumored to be worth several thousand dollars.
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Hollie McKay has been a FoxNews.com staff reporter since 2007. She has reported extensively from the Middle East on the rise and fall of terrorist groups such as ISIS in Iraq. Follow her on twitter at @holliesmckay