BIRTHS On May 18, ex-MTV babe Jenny McCarthy, 29, and actor-director hubby John Asher (Going to California), 31, welcomed their first child, 7-pound 13-ounce Evan Joseph Asher.
WEDDINGS On May 5, office-managing Survivor: Marquesas champ Vecepia Towery, 36, formed an alliance with ski coach Leander Robinson, 44, in Lincoln, Calif. — the first marriage for both.
AILING On May 21, a rep confirmed that 7th Heaven hunk Barry Watson, 28, would begin treatment for Hodgkin’s disease, a form of cancer. According to a statement, his doctors are ”extremely optimistic about a full recovery.” He was expected to leave the show after getting hitched on the May 20 sixth-season finale.
DEALS Saved.com. On May 17, German media giant Bertelsmann AG agreed to buy embattled Napster’s assets, assume its $8 million debt, and relaunch the music-sharing website. Also, Napster founder Shawn Fanning, 21, has rejoined the company.
COURTS Dada Bing? On May 16, producer Steve Bing (Get Carter), 37, sued MGM owner Kirk Kerkorian, 84, for allegedly hiring a PI to search his trash for DNA proof that Bing fathered Kerkorian’s ex-wife’s daughter. The producer, who in a separate matter has questioned Elizabeth Hurley’s claim that he fathered her baby son, seeks $5 billion in damages (which he says he’ll donate to kids’ charities). Kerkorian’s lawyer did not return calls…. On May 15, New Jersey judge Robert Baer, who claims he gave Sopranos creator David Chase, 56, the idea for the Mob show at lunch in 1995 and then helped develop it, sued Chase for failing to pay him fairly. He seeks unspecified damages. Chase’s lawyer calls the suit ”frivolous.”
ARRESTS Sex and the City’s Cynthia Nixon, 36, and 11 others were arrested May 14 outside New York’s City Hall for disorderly conduct. She was among about 75 people protesting school-budget cuts proposed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The actress, whose 5-year-old daughter, Samantha Mozes, attends public school in Manhattan, is due in court June 19.
DEATHS Veteran L.A. newscaster Jerry Dunphy, 80, reputed to have been the model for The Mary Tyler Moore Show anchorman Ted Baxter, of complications from a heart attack, May 20, in L.A…. Paleontologist/author Stephen Jay Gould, 60, of lung cancer, May 20, in New York City. (See Legacy on page 101.)… Historian Walter Lord (1955’s A Night to Remember, an account of the Titanic sinking), 84, of Parkinson’s disease, May 19, in Manhattan…. Songwriter Sharon Sheeley (Ricky Nelson’s 1958 hit ”Poor Little Fool”), 62, of complications from an aneurysm, May 17, in Sherman Oaks, Calif. In 1960, she survived the car crash that killed ”Summertime Blues” singer Eddie Cochran…. Actor/publicist Ray Stricklyn, 73, who costarred with Bette Davis in 1956’s The Catered Affair and represented her in the ’80s, of chronic emphysema, May 14, in L.A…. Taiwanese actor Lung Sihung (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), 72, of liver failure, May 2, in Taipei.