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Monitor

Celebrity news for the week of September 7, 2007

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BIRTHS
Actress Bridget Moynahan (Six Degrees), 36, and her ex-boyfriend, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, 30, welcomed a boy, John Edward Thomas, on Aug. 22 in L.A…. Actress Jacinda Barrett (The Namesake) and her husband, actor Gabriel Macht, both 35, greeted their first child, daughter Satine Anais Geraldine, on Aug. 20 in L.A.

ACCIDENTS
Nick Hogan (né Nick Bollea), 17, son of professional wrestler Hulk Hogan and star of the VH1 series Hogan Knows Best, was injured in a car crash Aug. 26 in Clearwater, Fla., that police believe occurred while he was speeding. Hogan’s car was destroyed after it hit a raised median, flipped, and collided with a palm tree. Hogan was released from the hospital the next day with non-life-threatening injuries. Passenger John Graziano, 27, was hospitalized with critical injuries…. Oscar-nominated director John Singleton (Boyz N the Hood), 39, accidentally struck and killed jaywalking pedestrian Constance Russell, 57, on Aug. 23 in L.A. Police say Singleton, who was not speeding or under the influence of drugs or alcohol, hit Russell when she stepped in front of his car in the Jefferson Park neighborhood. No charges are being filed against the filmmaker.

COURTS
On Aug. 9, thieves broke into the NYC hotel room of Kirsten Dunst (Spider-Man 3), 25, and allegedly stole credit cards, a $13,000 handbag, and other personal belongings. Two suspects have been taken into custody: Jarrod Beinerman, 33, was arrested on Aug. 21, and his alleged accomplice James Jimenez, 26, turned himself in on Aug. 26. Both face burglary charges. Lawyers for the two say they will plead not guilty…. Austin Nichols (John From Cincinnati), 27, was arrested on Aug. 24 in Jackson, Mich., on suspicion of DUI. Police say they smelled alcohol on the actor’s breath after he was pulled over for allegedly driving the wrong way down a one-way street. He was released after five hours in jail, and is expected in court on Oct. 2…. Police raided the Cave Creek, Ariz., home of rapper DMX (né Earl Simmons), 36, on Aug. 24 after neighbors complained that dogs on the property were subjected to extreme heat and being mistreated. Police say 12 distressed canines were found on the property, along with the remains of three dogs and a half pound of suspected marijuana. No charges have been filed and an investigation is ongoing. DMX’s lawyer says the rapper ”is guilty of nothing.”… Emmy-nominated writer Morris ”Buddy” Sheffield (In Living Color), 57, sued the Disney Channel for breach of contract on Aug. 23 in L.A. claiming its hit show Hannah Montana bears a strong resemblance to a show he pitched the company in 2001 called Rock and Roland.

AILING
Rock & roll pioneer Bo Diddley, 78, suffered a heart attack on Aug. 24, in Gainesville, Fla. He underwent surgery and is in stable condition at North Florida Regional Medical Center.

DEATHS
Theater, TV, and film actor Robert Symonds (Dynasty, Catch Me if You Can), 80, of complications from cancer, Aug. 23, in L.A. — Additional reporting by Stewart Allen


Grace Paley 1922-2007
”The tendency, I suppose, is to forget,” she once wrote, but Paley — who died of breast cancer Aug. 22 at age 84 — had no reason to fear. The Bronx native wrote three beloved books of fiction (her Collected Stories was nominated for the 1995 Pulitzer Prize), and her legacy as a teacher, antiwar activist, and women’s rights advocate will endure as long as her indelible characters. — Whitney Pastornek


Was Ang Lee Overrated?
Suddenly, the Brokeback Mountain controversy seems quaint. Oscar-winning director Ang Lee’s erotic espionage thriller Lust, Caution (out Sept. 28) has been rated NC-17 by the MPAA for strong sexual content. The decision could affect its box office, since most major theater chains refuse to show films with the rating, which denies admission to those under 17. In a statement, Focus Features CEO and Lust co-writer James Schamus said, ”As with so many of his previous films, Ang has crafted a masterpiece about and for grown-ups.” Lee does not plan to alter Lust‘s content for a softer rating. — Adam Markovitz

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