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July 2002
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2003 WALK OF FAME ADDITIONS

Next year's additions to the Hollywood Walk of Fame have been announced and will include stars Isabel Sanford, along with film director Martin Scorsese, singer Etta James, actress Carmen Zapata, actors Robert Duvall and Susan Sarandon, the Osmond family, Israel "Cachao" Lopez, Earl Scruggs and Kermit the Frog.


JANET'S COURT ORDER IS OUT

Janet Jackson, is caught up in a defamation lawsuit brought by music producer Eric Christian. He's suing the pop queen and her company Black Doll Inc., alleging that Jackson illegally filed and obtained a restraining order against him last November. Apparently, Jackson, filed the order after Christian threatened her and attempted to contact her by phone and fax more than 90 times. She filed the order in Los Angeles hoping to stop the harassment, but since Christian is from Maryland, it was illegally filed. So now he's asking for $20 million in restitution for defamation and mental and emotional stress due to the publicized suit.


COS UNHAPPY WITH OZ

Bill Cosby, TV Dad Cliff Huxtable, was the exact opposite of today's TV dad Ozzy Osbourne, and the former is saddened by the popularity of the latter. Cosby spoke out to "Access Hollywood," about the MTV reality series "The Osbournes." "First of all," he said, "you [the media] need to stop with the Ozzy Osbourne family. This is a sad family, it is a sad case. The children are sad, the parents are sad. And this is not entertainment." Cosby says the series is like "laughing at Tiny Tim." But with a second-season negotiated for $20 million, the Osbournes are laughing ... all the way to the bank


BRANDY DELIVERS

Singer-actress Brandy and her husband, Robert Smith, welcomed their new baby girl into the world last month. They named her Sy'rai, and both mother and daughter went home to relax.


BOBBY BROWN HOSPITALIZED

R&B great, Bobby Brown was taken to a Virginia hospital to be treated for an infection. Brown was traveling with wife, Whitney Houston, when he began to run a high fever. He was treated with antibiotics, but the nature of the infection was not revealed. Brown is expected to recover without problems.


CHRIS ROCK A DADDY

Chris Rock's wife of six years, Malaak Compton-Rock, has given birth to their first baby in New York. The former stand-up comedian separated from Compton in 1998 but the couple later reconciled. Rock has appeared in several hit films including "Nurse Betty" and "Lethal Weapon 4."


JACKSON'S MIB2 SCENE A HOOT

Movie fans are missing out on Michael Jackson's comedy lines in Men In Black II because they're too busy laughing. When screening the sequel, fans found Jackson's surprise cameo so hilarious, they laughed right over his lines. Director BARRY SONNENFELD admits, "If I'd have known what sort of reaction his appearance would have got I'd have re-shot the scene. Everyone is asking me what he says because they can't hear his lines over the laughter." Jackson was so serious about making a good appearance in the film, he turned to pal Marlon Brando for acting lessons. Apparently, Brando's many visits to Jackson's Neverland ranch in California on a weekly basis for tutoring paid off.



BRIDGES OUT OF TROUBLE

Grown up child star, Todd Bridges is finally recovering from a life that devolved into crime and drugs. He will return to television this summer. The "Different Strokes" star recently pummeled Vanilla Ice on the premiere episode of "Celebrity Boxing," but now Bridges will appear on the CBS soap opera "The Young and the Restless" beginning July 12. Bridges will play a bad guy named Juice.


DIONNE'S SON SOUNDTRACKING

Producer/songwriter Damon Elliot, son of Dionne Warwick, is making a name for himself in soundtracks. Elliot is the man behind the latest hits from Beyonce and Solange Knowles. Beyonce has a track with Elliot's work on the "Austin Powers: Goldmember" soundtrack and young Solange has a track on the "Scooby Doo" soundtrack. In addition, Elliot will also be adding to the soundtrack for the "Fat Albert" movie.


DEMONSTRATORS INJURED

Four demonstrators, including a grandmother and two children, were hit by a car in front of XM Satellite's Washington, DC headquarters last month. The National Association of Black Organizations (NABO) and the National Action Network (NAN) demonstration was organized to urge XM Satellite and other satellite and cable companies to provide positive programming for African Americans. Over 200 people were present at the time of the accident. The extent of injuries was not revealed.


LIL BOW WOW CHARITY DRIVEN

Touting his new film, "Like Mike," Lil Bow Wow sat with fans in Detroit to lend support for a local charity. The rapper-turned-movie-star met fans in Auburn Hills to suppoprt a charity to help low-income families and senior citizens.


OJ HAS TO PAY

A judge has thrown out O.J. Simpson's latest petition to overturn the $33.5 million wrongful death judgment against him for the deaths of Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman. It's not the first time he's tried to get the verdict reversed and probably won't be the last.


FREEMAN GETS CEMENTED

On June 5, veteran actor Morgan Freeman put his hand and footprints in cement at Grauman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood. Freeman is one of America's most admired actors by audiences, critics and fellow artists alike. His breakthrough performance in "Street Smart" in 1987, earned him the first of three Academy Award nominations, the other two being for Best Actor in "The Shawshank Redemption" and in the Oscar-winning "Driving Miss Daisy," which earned him a Golden Globe. Freeman's most recent role is that of CIA Director William Cabot, opposite Ben Affleck, in the Tom Clancy thriller, "The Sum of All Fears."


COSBY WINS MEDAL

President George Bush announced the honorees for the Presidential Medal of Freedom award. The honor will be bestowed on TV personalities Bill Cosby and Fred Rogers, (that's Mr. Rogers), baseball legend Hank Aaron, opera singer Placido Domingo and former first lady Nancy Reagan. According to People, Cosby was chosen for his contribution in revolutionizing the portrayal of Blacks on TV.



SMITH BABY NOT AN ACTOR

Will Smith's new music video for "Black Suits Comin,' features a cameo of his oldest son Trey, but his youngest boy Jaden was camera shy. "Knowing my son as I do, I brought along one of his friends,
[Jordy], and she does the scene," Smith said.


DIONNE GETS CHARGES DROPPED

Dionne Warwick was arrested in May for possession of marijuana cigarettes, but the charges have now been dropped. The singer struck a first-time offender plea bargain with prosecutors and will complete a drug treatment program. She'll also make a donation of a $250 to Project Cradle, an organization that supports children born with HIV, as part of the deal. "To this day, I am puzzled about exactly what happened at the Miami International Airport," Warwick said in a statement. "But through the grace of God, I can now put this unpleasant chapter behind me."


DMX TOUR ON HOLD

Rapper/actor DMX is putting his Bloodline Tour on hold to finish up a movie and two albums. He just finished the movie 'Cradle 2 the Grave' where he stars with Jet Li and he's also a featured artist on the recently released "Bad Company" soundtrack, plus he's working on his fifth album. "I'll put out one (single) this fall, and the soundtrack in January," he said.


FREEMAN SPEAKS OUT ON 9/11

About a month shy of his 65th birthday, Morgan Freeman sat at the media day chaos in Beverly Hills for his latest film "The Sum of All Fears." Freeman stars as CIA director William Cabot, in charge of hunting down a nuclear weapon that has made its way to downtown Baltimore. Production wrapped three months before the events of September 11, and the movie’s graphic nuclear explosion on US soil made some test-screening viewers leave the theaters in tears. "Is this going to be overkill? Are we going to traumatize people that are already slightly traumatized? " Freeman asked rhetorically. " It’s like, happened [9/11]. The bulk of us are here and we’re going to prevail and we’re going to be alright. We still need our entertainment. The truth of the matter is that we do have these weapons, enough to kill ourselves and future generations going on for a hundred years. We only have just a modicum of control over where they are and what they’re doing and who has them. We’re constantly developing new technologies for delivering them. And this technology is winding up in the hands of people who are maybe less trustworthy than you and I are. So I think we’re doing a good thing when we continue to bring these things to the fore."


WILL/DENZEL WIN MTV MOVIE AWARDS

At the MTV Movie Awards held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, Will Smith won best actor for "Ali." "I'm a baaaad man," Smith said accepting his award. "But it wasn't all bad, because I got in real good shape." Denzel Washington, who won the best actor Oscar for "Training Day," won the MTV award for best villain.