DEALS Hollywood’s agency landscape took a seismic hit Aug. 9 when former International Creative Management honcho Jim Wiatt, 53, was named president and co-CEO of the William Morris Agency, prompting the resignation of WMA president Arnold Rifkin. Such Wiatt clients as Eddie Murphy and Sylvester Stallone will reportedly follow him; others, like Kevin Williamson, may soon follow.
SENTENCED Actor Robert Downey Jr., 34, was sentenced to three years in prison for violating his probation from a June 1996 conviction for cocaine and heroin possession, Aug. 5, in Malibu. (At a June 22 probation hearing, the actor admitted to refusing to take drug tests.) Downey’s lawyer, Robert Shapiro, says, ”I’m shocked and saddened that a man with a severe drug addiction was not allowed to complete an in-custody [rehab] program.”
WINNERS Oscar honoree Geena Davis, 42, finished 29th among women at the National Target Championship, July 15, in Oxford, Ohio, getting one step closer to a spot on the U.S. Women’s Archery team for the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia. She’s scheduled to empty her quiver Aug. 21 at the Olympic trial semifinals in Bloomfield, N.J.
LAWSUITS Pop star Janet Jackson, 33, and former longtime companion and collaborator Rene Elizondo, 36, were sued by their former cook Richardo Macchi, Aug. 9, in L.A. Macchi alleges that the couple used his name to procure prescription drugs (including a hepatitis B vaccine, antidepressants, and appetite suppressants) and to enroll Elizondo in a drug rehab program. Macchi seeks unspecified damages; the defendants’ lawyer was unavailable for comment.
DEATHS Nerine Shatner, 40, wife of actor William Shatner, 68, was found dead, Aug. 9, in L.A. The Star Trek veteran returned home to find Nerine, his third wife, submerged in their swimming pool. Shatner tried to revive her with CPR, but she was pronounced dead at the scene. Although police do not suspect foul play, an autopsy will be performed…. Gargantuan gourmet Jennifer Paterson, 71, of complications from lung cancer, Aug. 10, in London. One of the Food Network’s Two Fat Ladies, Paterson also wrote for England’s The Spectator…. Cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa, 91, of kidney failure, Aug. 7, in Tokyo. Miyagawa worked with director Kenji Mizoguchi on Ugetsu Monogatari and with Akira Kurosawa on Rashomon and Yojimbo…. Head Deadhead Dick Latvala, 56, of complications from a heart attack, Aug. 6, in Petaluma, Calif. In 1985, Latvala, a Grateful Dead fan since 1966, parlayed his enthusiasm into a job as the band’s audio archivist…. Actor Victor Mature, 86, of cancer, Aug. 4, in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. The star had his first major role in 1940’s One Million B.C. Among his big-screen turns were Doc Holliday in My Darling Clementine (1946), a crook in Kiss of Death (1947), and the biblical beefcake in Samson and Delilah (1949).