Published October 27, 2008
LOS ANGELES – It's hard for most people to even begin to understand what "American Idol" alum Jennifer Hudson must be going through having lost her mother and brother in a devastating double-homicide in their Chicago home last week, coupled with fear that the body of a 7-year-old boy found in an SUV in Chicago Monday may the remains of her missing nephew Julian King. Those close to Hudson in Hollywood are too struggling to come to terms with the tragic circumstances.
"I can't talk about it, I can't even think about it, I just can't go there," Jada Pinkett-Smith told us the morning after the news broke, shaking her head in horror. Pinkett grew very close to Jennifer during the filming of the dramatic new flick "Secret Life of Bees" which Hudson starred in and Pinkett executive-produced.
And for her companions in the "Idol" arena, the news is unfathomable.
"It’s just a huge shock; I think the whole country was shocked. It was one of those things that if you lose mother that’s terribly sad but to lose your mother in that way where she’s murdered is just horrific," Idol's former Executive Producer Nigel Lythgoe told Tarts at the star-studded Carousel Ball of Hope in Beverly Hills. "I can’t imagine what Jennifer must be feeling right now."
Fellow "Idol" contestant Katharine McPhee also expressed her sadness.
"It’s horrible. There’s nothing really positive about the situation other than just having her friends and the family that she has left to really come around and show the love they have for her and support," McPhee said. "I’m just praying for her."
Another of the 27-year-old's close friends in the film/music world, "Hustle & Flow" starlet Taraji P. Henson said she too had Hudson at the top of her prayer list.
"Jennifer, I know what it is to lose a close family member — I lost my father to liver cancer and I cannot imagine what you could be going through right now," Henson said. "But my prayers, my thoughts are with you. I just pray to God that you find the strength to get through this. I love you."
And according to fellow musician Josh Groban, the news has impacted the entire entertainment industry.
"We’ve all been reeling from the news of this tragic, tragic event. No matter who you are it comes down too how can someone do that, who is that person that can possibly do that. Words cannot describe the grief that she and her family must be feeling and the entire entertainment industry as well as the entire country. I'm praying for her," Groban added. "I hope that they can find some answers. I hope that they can find that little boy and I hope that some way, somehow there can be some closure and some peace to that family."
Pop Tarts also caught up with Hudson just a few weeks ago at the Los Angeles premiere of the "Secret Life of Bees" and she gushed about being at the height of happiness.
"My album just dropped last week, I'm getting married and now this amazing movie is coming out," she gushed. "Things are good, very good."
The family spoke out about the tragedy for the first time via Jennifer's MySpace Celebrity page on Sunday, thanking fans for their prayers and pleading for more information on missing Julian King.
"If anyone has any information about his whereabouts please contact the authorities immediately," the Hudson family wrote. "Once again thank you all for being there for us through this tough time."
The celebrated singer/actress was set to appear with her "Bees" co-stars to receive the honor of "Ensemble Acting of the Year Award" at the 12th Annual Hollywood Awards Gala this Monday evening.
Orlando Bloom Finds New Supermodels, David Spade and Nicolette Sheridan Get Cozy
While Orlando Bloom's "Victoria's Secret" Angel Miranda Kerr has been busy working in her homeland of Australia, the British-born actor has been busy getting cozy with a bevy of other beauties.
Bloom attended the ultra-exclusive tasting of Luau on Monday, the new Polynesian-inspired restaurant by Andrew Hewitt (co-owner of celeb haunt Il Sole) and celeb jewelry designer Loree Rodkin. Bloom reportedly laid low in a booth with four stunning models until the very end of the party.
At one point the "Pirates of the Caribbean" babe got up to leave to attend another event but was lured back down by the young ladies. Despite reports that his romance with 25-year-old Kerr is on the rocks, pals from her camp insisted that things are still going strong between the genetically-blessed duo.
But speaking of getting cozy, Pop Tarts also spotted the newly-single Nicolette Sheridan and ladies-man David Spade doing some very intimate catching-up at the restaurant’s star-studded opening on Wednesday. The Tinseltown twosome arrived holding hands (Spade told security he was her "plus one") but rather than working the room like Tom Arnold, Cher and Molly Sims these two then literally stayed joined at the hip. The two lightly touched one another while engaged in deep conversation before departing in the same car. ...
Reps for Sheridan and Spade did not respond for comment.
Caption: Bloom at the Luau Opening
Caption: David Spade and Nicolette Sheridan Together at the Luau Restaurant Opening
Health Concerns Escalate for "Porno" Director Kevin Smith
Big-wig director Kevin Smith was never exactly taut and tiny, but the 38-year-old seems to be teetering on the super dangerous after showing up to the premiere of his latest flick "Zack & Miri Make a Porno" looking particularly larger than life.
Smith did very few interviews and instead smoked like a chimney on the carpet (he even puffed the entire way through roundtables at his Los Angeles press day) and an insider confirmed to Tarts that friends, family and industry insiders have definite concerns for the Director's health.
Meanwhile the star of Smith's "Porno" flick, Seth Rogan, has gone the other way and shed quite a lot of pudge. Smith told Ryan Seacrest on KIIS-FM on Friday that he lost it the "lame" way: good ol' diet & exercise.
Spotted or Snapped a Star? Got a Good Scoop? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.