Monitor: Rip Torn enters rehab after alleged bank break-in
Plus Will Ferrell, Samantha Harris, and more stars making news the week of Feb. 5, 2010
Will Ferrell, 42, and his wife, Viveca Paulin, 40, welcomed their third son, Axel, on Jan. 23 in L.A.
When in Rome costars Kristen Bell, 29, and Dax Shepard, 35, announced their engagement on Jan. 31.
Dancing With the Stars cohost Samantha Harris, 36, revealed on Jan. 28 that she won’t be returning to the show, opting instead to focus on her duties at CBS’ The Insider.
Phil Harris, 53, a crab-boat captain on the reality show Deadliest Catch, suffered a stroke Jan. 29 while in port at St. Paul Island, Alaska. Harris underwent surgery and is ”in the care of excellent doctors and nurses,” the Discovery Channel said in a statement.
Zelda Rubinstein, 76, who memorably played the psychic Tangina in 1982’s Poltergeist, died of natural causes Jan. 27 in L.A. ”I’ve always had great admiration for Zelda as an actress and as a woman,” costar JoBeth Williams tells EW…. Howard Zinn, 87, the historian behind the influential 1980 book A People’s History of the United States, died of a heart attack Jan. 27 in Santa Monica…. Actor Justin Mentell, 27, best known for his season 2 stint on Boston Legal, died Feb. 1 near Blanchardville, Wis., after his Jeep veered off a highway.
— With additional reporting by Stewart Allen
Christopher Guest, 62
Zsa Zsa Gabor, 93
Ashton Kutcher, 32
John Grisham, 55
Sheryl Crow, 48
Rip Torn Heads to Rehab After Alleged Bank Break-In
On Feb. 2, Emmy winner Rip Torn entered an alcohol rehabilitation program at an undisclosed facility after posting $100,000 bail on burglary and firearm charges. The actor — who has a recurring role as executive Don Geiss on NBC’s 30 Rock — was arrested on Jan. 29 in Salisbury, Conn., for allegedly breaking into a closed bank while carrying a loaded gun. According to a police report, Torn was disoriented and highly intoxicated (he blew a .203 on a Breathalyzer) when officers found him walking unsteadily around the bank’s empty lobby. Torn had apparently broken a window to gain entry, then removed his hat and shoes by the door. The 78-year-old, who lives nearby, ”believed he had entered his own home,” Torn’s attorney, Tom Waterfall, tells EW, adding that the actor will enter a not guilty plea when he returns to court on Feb. 17.
The Men in Black star has a history of alcohol-related legal woes, including a 2008 DUI conviction in Connecticut that sent him to a rehab program as part of a plea bargain. ”Mr. Torn suffers from problematic issues with alcohol,” says Waterfall. ”That needs to be addressed for him as a human being. Right now the concern is for Mr. Torn and his recovery.”
Torn, who earned six Emmy nominations from 1993 to 1998 for his role on The Larry Sanders Show, recently wrapped filming on the spoof National Lampoon’s The Legend of Awesomeus Maximus.
— Adam Markovitz