Celebrity News for the week of November 24, 2006 -- Brief updates on births, divorces, court dates, and more

By Ken Tucker
Updated November 17, 2006 at 05:00 AM EST

Spider-Man 3 star Tobey Maguire, 31, and fiancée Jennifer Meyer (her dad is Universal Studios chief Ron Meyer), 29, welcomed a baby girl on Nov. 10.

Ellen Pompeo (Grey’s Anatomy), 37, will wed her record-producer boyfriend Chris Ivery, 38. No date has been set.

Daniel Baldwin (Paparazzi), 46, was arrested on Nov. 7 in Santa Monica after he allegedly pinched a 2003 GMC Yukon. His lawyer did not return calls for comment.

After separating on Oct. 30, Reese Witherspoon, 30, filed for divorce from Ryan Phillippe, 32, citing irreconcilable differences…. In response to a bid by estranged wife Britney Spears, 24, for custody of their two sons, Kevin Federline, 28, counterfiled for custody on Nov. 8.

On Nov. 6, journalist Anita Busch named Hollywood mogul Michael Ovitz, 59, as a defendant in her civil suit against PI Anthony Pellicano, 62, and his associates. Busch claims Pellicano and others threatened her when she was working for the L.A. Times as an entertainment reporter. Both Ovitz and Pellicano have denied any wrongdoing…. The Supreme Court ruled Nov. 13 that it would not hear a $150 million copyright infringement case against The Da Vinci Code scribe Dan Brown, 42. Lewis Perdue alleged that Brown stole ideas from Perdue’s 2000 novel, Daughter of God.

After being placed on EW’s Cancellation Watch, Aaron Sorkin’s Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (starring Matthew Perry, above) was picked up by NBC for a full season. The net also greenlit nine more episodes of struggling drama Friday Night Lights….Comcast ended negotiations with al-Jazeera International, leaving the Arab news net without a cable distributor days before its Nov. 15 launch in the States. U.S. viewers will be able to watch the premiere on the Internet and satellite TV.

Guns N’ Roses canceled their Nov. 6 concert in Portland, Maine, after officials told them state law prohibited drinking alcohol on stage. Axl Rose, 44, apologized to fans on the band’s website, faulting the ”particularly Draconian” authorities.

Denise Richards, 35, threw two computers from a hotel balcony on the Canadian set of her movie Blonde and Blonder during a Nov. 8 altercation with unauthorized photographers. (”They are lucky their laptops were the only things that were thrown off the ledge,” said Richards’ rep.) The hardware struck two women, 90 and 81, who suffered minor injuries. No charges were filed.

Actress Marian Marsh Henderson (Svengali), 93, of natural causes, Nov. 9, in Palm Desert, Calif…. Broadway press agent Robert Fennell, 48, who worked on hundreds of shows, including Wicked, of liver cancer, Nov. 12, in Yonkers, N.Y…. Sci-fi author Jack Williamson (The Humanoids), 98, Nov. 10, of natural causes, in Portales, N.M.

ELLEN WILLIS 1941-2006
One of the first major rock critics, a brilliant feminist thinker and teacher, Willis died Nov. 9 of lung cancer. She was an intellectual who valued pop culture, even the male-dominated bastion of rock. No ivory-tower academic, she wrote in 1979 that the Velvet Underground used ”a mass art form…for transcendence, for connection, for resistance to despair.” She could have been writing about herself.

Gerald Levert 1966-2006
Known for making the ladies swoon with his rich and silky voice, Gerald Levert, who suffered from a heart condition, died at his home outside Cleveland on Nov. 10. He was the son of original O’Jays singer Eddie Levert and founding member of R&B trios LeVert and LSG. Releasing 19 albums between 1985 and 2004, Levert remained a gold- and platinum-selling fixture on the R&B charts with singles like 1986’s ”Pop, Pop, Pop, Pop (Goes My Mind),” 1987’s ”Casanova,” and ”Baby Hold on to Me,” a 1992 duet with his dad. ”Gerald wrote and sang from his heart,” says singer and friend Patti LaBelle, who collaborated with Levert on her 1997 CD, Flame. ”He was warm, fun, and cuddly like a big ole teddy bear.”