''Election'' wins three top Independent Spirit Awards
Plus, the Razzies, Beck, Destiny's Child, Paul McCartney, Bill Cosby, and more
MORE AWARDS The Oscars weren’t the only trophies being handed out this weekend: On Saturday night the Independent Spirit Awards were distributed, and ”Election” got three, for Best Picture, Director, and Screenplay. Hilary Swank also got a chance to practice her speechifying by winning Best Actress, while Richard Farnsworth got a fine early consolation prize for his Oscar loss by winning Best Actor…. And on the other side of the quality coin, the Razzies — which herald the worst movies have to offer — were announced. ”Wild Wild West” won top crap honors, as Worst Picture, Director, Screenplay, Song, and Screen Couple (Will Smith and Kevin Kline). Adam Sandler (”Big Daddy”) and Heather Donahue (”The Blair Witch Project”) were named Worst Actor and Actress, while Denise Richards (”The World Is Not Enough”) and Jar Jar Binks (”The Phantom Menace”) won the Supporting trophies, the first time TWO computer-generated actors have won in that category.
HOSPITAL REPORT Beck had to cut his concert at London’s Wembley Arena short Thursday night when he accidentally fell on the neck of his bass player’s guitar and had to be rushed to the hospital. Fortunately he was only bruised and was able to play his next night’s gig, where he avoided any snare-drum related injuries…. Kate Moss was rushed to the hospital Wednesday with a severe kidney infection, caused by neglecting to finish antibiotic treatment for a previous kidney ailment, according to London’s Daily Mail. The 26-year-old model was released and is now resting at home.
LAWSUITS Two former singers for Destiny’s Child are suing the two other original members and their manager, Matthew Knowles, for allegedly forcing them out of the band and cheating them out of money. LeToya Luckett and LaTavia Roberson are looking for unspecified damages, according to MTV News. The pair, who left the group last year, claim that the three defendants tried to secretly force them out in favor of two new members by not telling them about future gigs (including the Grammys and the Soul Train Awards). Knowles had announced that the duo left over ”creative differences,” which they deny. Neither Knowles nor the two remaining founders, Beyoncé Knowles (Matthew’s daughter) and Kelly Rowland (for whom Matthew is the legal guardian) had a comment, and the group is currently on tour with the two replacement members…. Rock visionary Paul McCartney does not like his vision of rock technology’s future: His publishing company, MPL Communications, is suing MP3.com, alleging that it is violating copyright law by offering downloadable songs on its site, according to Reuters. The Recording Industry Association of America has already filed suit, but McCartney’s company is the first independent publisher to do so. (The former Beatle is not personally named in the lawsuit, but he is the principal owner of MPL.) MP3.com had no comment, but a legal expert told Reuters the issue was cloudy since you technically have to show you already own an album before you can listen to it online. Also, since the MP3.com technology is new, old laws might not apply: ”The danger of a lawsuit like this is that it attempts to control and shape the development of technology to serve an existing business model,” said NYU law professor Yochin Benkler. ”The business models need to change to fit the technology, not the other way around.”
BACK TO PUDDING SALES After four seasons, ”Cosby” is going off the air at the end of this year. Bill Cosby’s sitcom lasted four seasons, the first of which was a hit, but ratings steadily dropped over the next few. Somewhere Keshia Knight Pulliam is smugly saying, ”See, Cos? Without Rudy, you are nothing! Bow to the power of Rudy!”
CASTING Jason Bateman will play a gay man who rooms with a macho straight Italian-American in the pilot for the CBS comedy ”Kiss Me, Guido.” Thank you, Ellen DeGeneres, for paving the way for homosexuality to become acceptable as a hack sitcom premise…. French movie great Jeanne Moreau will play Marguerite Duras in ”Cet Amour La (That Love),” the true story of the author’s love affair with a younger man.
GUILTY If the Bay City Rollers ever make a comeback, keep the screaming teens away: The band’s former drummer, Derek Longmuir, was found guilty of possessing child pornography by an Edinborough court, which sentenced him to 300 hours of community service and no jail time, according to Reuters. The 48-year-old musician admitted to having naughty films, video, and photos, although he said they belonged to an American friend and he never looked at them. Ahhh, the old ”Hey, who put that porn there?” defense: If it doesn’t work for 13-year-old boys caught with Playboys under the bed, it sure won’t work in a court of law.