Celebrity news for the week of Jan 23/30 2004
Sopranos tough guy James Gandolfini, 42, will marry former director’s assistant Lora Somoza. It will be the TV mobster’s second marriage.
Le Divorce’s Kate Hudson (left), 24, and rocker hubby Chris Robinson, 37, welcomed son Ryder Russell Robinson Jan. 7 in L.A…. Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres, 50, and wife Alejandra greeted son Hector Alexander Torres Jan. 9 in Jupiter, Fla.
Lauren Holly, 40, and her husband, investment banker Francis Greco, adopted their third son, Henry Charles, Dec. 2. He joins brothers Alexander, 2, and George, 1.
Comedian Jeff Foxworthy, 45, has offered $2,000 for information leading to the conviction of a poacher who trespassed on his 2,000-acre Georgia property Dec. 28 and pointed a gun at the land’s caretaker.
On Jan. 6, the estate of late Beatle George Harrison filed a $10 million suit against Dr. Gilbert Lederman, claiming the cancer specialist abused his position by coercing a ”weak and exhausted” Harrison to sign a guitar while on his deathbed in November 2001. In a statement, Lederman said that the instrument, which has been valued at less than $10,000, was ”freely autographed” and that he would be willing to donate it to charity…. A month after music producer Jay Rifkin sued his ex-business partner, composer Hans Zimmer (The Lion King), for ”conspir[ing]…to take business for himself,” Zimmer countersued on Jan. 5, claiming Rifkin embezzled more than $20 million from their company, Media Ventures.
Country songwriter Hugh Prestwood, 61, was charged with criminal possession of a weapon when airport security allegedly found a loaded .38-caliber handgun in his carry-on luggage in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., Jan. 10. Prestwood also faces one count of possessing a controlled substance without a prescription. He was released on bail and awaits a Jan. 16 court date. Prestman had no comment.
Actor-writer Spalding Gray (Kate & Leopold), 62, was reported missing by his wife on Jan. 11 after he failed to return to their NYC apartment. Gray has a history of depression.
Ozzy Osbourne, 55, scratched his 20-city British tour as a result of injuries he sustained in a Dec. 8 ATV accident. The recovery could take up to six months, though representatives don’t expect the accident to delay production on The Osbournes.
Rocker and reality TV star Ted Nugent, 55, needed 40 stitches to repair a gash in his leg after a chain-saw accident on the set of his show near Waco, Tex., Jan. 11. Production of VH1’s Surviving Nugent will not be affected by the injury.
Patrick Miller, 51, frontman for the 1980s avant-garde group Minimal Man, of undetermined causes, Dec. 14, in L.A…. Paul W. Keyes, 79, a writer for Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In, The Dean Martin Show, and The Jack Paar Show, of complications related to Alzheimer’s, Jan. 2, in Woodland Hills, Calif…. John Toland, 91, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Rising Sun: The Decline and Fall of the Japanese Empire, 1936-1945, of pneumonia, Jan. 4, in Danbury, Conn…. Actress Paula Raymond (right), 79, who starred in 1953’s The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms and played opposite Cary Grant in 1950’s Crisis, after a long illness, Dec. 31, in L.A…. Children’s book author Joan Aiken (The Wolves of Willoughby Chase), 79, of natural causes, Jan. 4, in West Sussex, England…. Actor Bill Morey, 83, who guested on shows from Mork & Mindy to Law & Order and was a regular on The John Larroquette Show, of natural causes, Dec. 10, in Santa Monica, Calif…. John Guerin, 64, drummer and founding member of L.A. Express, of pneumonia, Jan. 5, in West Hills, Calif…. Stage and screen actress Lynn Cartwright, 76, most recognizable as the older Geena Davis in 1992’s A League of Their Own, after a long illness, Jan. 2, in L.A…. Award-winning country songwriter Max Barnes, 67, who penned hits for Merle Haggard and George Jones, of complications from pneumonia, Jan. 11, in Nashville…. Six-time Emmy winner Steven Dorfman, 48, who wrote 50,000 clues for Jeopardy! during his 20 years at the game show, of cancer, Jan. 4, in L.A. Alynda Wheat and Karyn L. Barr, with additional reporting by Rhonda Richford