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Attempt to Contact John Lennon From Beyond the Grave; Nastiest Divorce in Hollywood

Aired April 24, 2006 - 19:00:00   ET


A.J. HAMMER, CO-HOST: Tom Cruise talks about Katie and Suri, and his own personal mission impossible. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
BROOKE ANDERSON, CO-HOST: And, the attempt to contact John Lennon from beyond the grave. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. TV`s only live entertainment news show starts right now.

HAMMER: On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, the nastiest divorce in Hollywood. The shocking things Denise Richards says went on as her marriage to Charlie Sheen fell apart. Startling claims of porn, prostitutes, pills, and paranoia -- and why she says she`s afraid for her life. Tonight, the he- said, she-said , Denise-Charlie smack down.

Chasing Angelina. The hunt is on -- the prey -- A-list stars.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Apparently Jolie is on the move.


HAMMER: Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT takes you on a dramatic and rare ride-along with the paparazzi to see what really goes on behind closed car doors. Plus, why we are so obsessed with the private lives and secrets of the stars. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT investigates.

Hello, I`m A.J. Hammer live in New York.

ANDERSON: I`m Brooke Anderson live in Hollywood. And A.J., it doesn`t get any nastier than this. Prostitution, pornography, even death threats. All allegedly involving two of the biggest stars in Hollywood.

HAMMER: Yeah, we could hardly believe it ourselves when we got our hands on the court papers that Denise Richards filed against Charlie Sheen. What she claims Charlie did to her, himself, is well, just the kind of stuff that makes you shake your head and ask, Could this all really be true?


HAMMER (voice-over): Here they are in happier times.

CHARLIE SHEEN, ACTOR: Denise and Charlie, it was like unbelievable.

HAMMER: But now, what`s unbelievable is how ugly and nasty the divorce battle between Denise Richards and Charlie Sheen has become. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has obtained the explosive divorce papers. And as you`ll see, Richards is not holding back. What she claims happened behind closed doors is remarkable.

SHEEN: I know.

HAMMER: The most explosive charge, Richards says Sheen threatened her life. This happened, she says, when Sheen came over to her Los Angeles home one day to see their two children. Richards says Sheen became enraged and pushed her to the ground screaming -- I hope you f-ing die." As Richards tells it, Sheen was angry at her for telling divorce attorneys that he was visiting pornographic Web sites. The sites, Richards says featured, quote, "Very young girls, who looked underage to me with pigtails, braces and no pubic hair performing oral sex with each other."

HARVEY LEVIN, TMZ.COM: Well this is truly about as bitter as I`ve ever seen in my career doing this.

HAMMER: Richards also claims that Sheen who stars on TV`s number one rated sitcom "Two and a Half Men" was involved with quote, "Gay pornography, also involving very young men who also did not look like adults."

Richards says Sheen belonged to several sex sites. His online profile, she says, included a photo of his erect penis.

LEVIN: Denise Richards is essentially saying that Charlie Sheen was out of control. Alleging things from accessing gay porn to hiring prostitutes to having a madam.

HAMMER: The most private parts of the couple`s life now out in the public. And Sheen is not taking any of it lying down. He says the allegations are vile and baseless. And are being used so that Richards can get custody of their children. He says quote, "This is a most obvious, immature and transparent smear campaign, designed to hurt, embarrass and ultimately extort me. I deeply regret her response to my request for the court to decide what`s best for our children. It`s taken the form of baseless allegations that I deny."

Whether he denies them or not, the 35-year-old Richards says she fears for her life. She claims Sheen told her she hopes he gets breast cancer or cancer in the face and dies. The actress claims 40-year-old Sheen cursed at her in front of their children. And that when she was expecting their first child, urged her to have an abortion.

LEVIN: I mean she threw everything in this including the kitchen sink. Basically trying to get a restraining order against Charlie Sheen which she did get as well as getting an order so that Charlie Sheen could visit his children only in the presence of a court monitor.


HAMMER (on camera): Well, a judge did grant Richards a restraining order against Sheen. He has to stay at least 300 yards away from Richards and the children. There is so much more to talk about here so we`ve got the right people to help us make sense of this craziness. Divorce attorney Raoul Felder is live with me in New York and Judge Alex Ferrer from the TV show "Judge Alex" joining me from Miami, Florida. Nice to see you both. Raoul, let`s get into this. Because these clams are unbelievable. It is just wild .

RAOUL FELDER, DIVORCE ATTORNEY: Believe it, A.J. He admits most of it. Draws the lines with pornography. Draws very faint lines. But he admits to gambling and prostitution, frequenting prostitution, addiction to drugs, addiction to alcohol. Most every other thing. Except he draws the line at pornography I guess.

HAMMER: But how common is this kind of stuff in Hollywood divorces? You`ve been at this a long time. They are just airing out the dirtiest of laundry here.

FELDER: Well here`s the problem. It`s involved in lots of cases. But lots of people have the common sense to kill it off before it ever gets public. This did not happen here. Part of the reason -- and she has a very fine lawyer. Part of the reason here is that there were two other orders of protection never filed. And then there was a lag between December when she started the case and now. So the lawyer, Neil Hirsch (ph) in this case had to explain why all this time passed by.

And he draws a compelling picture of this desperate wife or mother trying to keep his family together. Looking the other way. Threats, I`m going to kill you. I`m going to do this and that. And it`s all out in public now.

HAMMER: Well not unexpectedly Charlie Sheen says this is all just a big smear campaign. Judge Alex, what do you think? Is there a judge out there who is going to have sympathy for Charlie Sheen and go along with him? That she`s just trying to smear his name?

ALEX FERRER, "JUDGE ALEX": Well, absolutely. Judges keep an open mind. See these types of allegations are shocking to the public. But judges, as Mr. Felder will point out, they hear these allegations and actually much worse than this every single day in family court. People throw everything at each other in an effort to get an upper hand. The allegations may be true but they also may not be true. So judges are used to hearing this and ruling to protect the children immediately. But then taking a serious look at it when the evidence is presented.

HAMMER: Well then let`s talk about what may or may not be true here. And you`ve mentioned the pornography that she claims that he has been visiting these pornography sites. Does she have to produce evidence here?

FELDER: Well, yes. But part of it is he admitted a lot already. Now she claims and I assume she`ll be able to show that they arrived at an agreement some time back. The agreement was, I believe that he would give up hookers but he won`t give up betting and he won`t give up pornography. I guess if he gave up hookers he`d have more money for betting. That was his rationale. So he admits to a lot of this stuff. But of course the judge was right. You go to court tabula rasa. You start with a blank slate and she has to prove her allegations.

It may be a mistake for him to fight it though. Because the more she proves it, the more the story has legs and it goes on and on. Particularly the whole world knows that he had problems with prostitutes and drugs and alcohol.

HAMMER: Sure. And this is a nasty list. Let`s run down these claims one more time. Talking about allegations of him using pills, prostitution. He threatened to kill her according to Denise Richards. She says he assaulted her, told her to have an abortion. Told her he hoped she gets cancer. Judge Alex, which allegation here do you think could prove to be the one that is the most damaging to Charlie Sheen in this case?

FERRER: Well I think without question the ones that are most damaging to him are the ones that involve allegations of child pornography and also allegations of threats to kill her and her parents. Because a judge is primarily going to be concerned at the outset with protecting the children. And he was at that moment trying to get visitation. So of course it can be spun two ways. One is she`s trying to make sure he never gets custody. He was trying to get custody. Or, it could be that she`s just trying to protect her children. Those are the focal points I think at the outset.

FELDER: And the judge is right on target. I mean, child pornography. That`s a 1,000-pound gorilla in the ring with these two people. And any judge, as judge I`m sure will confirm, wants to be very careful when children are involved and in fact now he has to keep 300 feet away. Genghis Khan wouldn`t have to keep 300 feet away.

So yeah he`s going to have trouble with the child stuff.

HAMMER: What about the credibility issue here? We`ve been talking about the fact that Charlie has owned up to problems in the past with these things. The fact that he`s had problems with drugs. That he`s gone to rehab. Is that a huge issue for him here?

FELDER: I think he doesn`t come to court as somebody who has an unblemished record. He admits like three-quarters of it. But he says one- quarter I didn`t do. So he sort of tarred and burnished before he walks into that courtroom.

HAMMER: Judge Alex. The thing that bothers me the most here about what`s going on and about all of these claims that are being laid out by Denise Richards is the fact that they have two kids. This is all supposed to be in the best interest of these kids. Yet these kids are going to have access to this information. They are going to see this whole thing. That doesn`t seem like it would be in the best interest of the kids. Is a judge going to look perhaps badly at Denise for putting this all out there?

FERRER: Well, absolutely if it`s proven to the false. If it`s not proven to be false. If it`s proven to be true, the judge will not look badly on her at all. Because it`s going to be seen as her trying to protect her children. The children are young at this point so it`s not a factor. Years down the road they will be able to access the information.

HAMMER: I just think that`s a terrible aspect of the whole thing. The whole thing is pretty nasty and we are going to watch it all unfold. Raoul Felder, Judge Alex, I want to thank you both for joining us.

FERRER: Thank you.

ANDERSON: It looks like Denise Richards may be finding some comfort in this difficult time from another celebrity in the middle of a high- profile divorce. "People" magazine is reporting that Richards and Richie Sambora were spotted kissing and holding hands over the weekend at a restaurant in Southern California.

The Bon Jovi guitarist split from his wife Heather Locklear back in February and there were reports that an email that another woman sent to Sambora was at least partly to blame. Now SHOWBIZ TONIGHT contacted Denise`s publicist, she had no comment.

HAMMER: Time now for some Cruise news. Of course, I`m talking about Tom Cruise. He says it`s not easy to leave his fiancee Katie Holmes and his new baby girl Suri to promote "Mission Impossible III." But he just had to do it. Cruise surprised everyone in Rome today. He showed up in the middle of a press conference that he wasn`t expected to make it to. After hugging his co-stars including Philip Seymour Hoffman and Kerry Russell, he explained why he showed up after all.


TOM CRUISE, ACTOR: I have my daughter, a newborn. And I don`t want to leave her. And Kate. I wasn`t going to come. And then Kate said, you know, go. Go. You have got the whole cast in the world premier here. And so, so I`m here.


HAMMER: Cruise is going to be taking some more breaks from daddy duty to promote "Mission Impossible III" which opens in a couple of weeks.

ANDERSON: Rob Lowe is sounding off on Hollywood marriages. And the one thing that really bothers him. Rob Lowe is coming up in the interview you will see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

And we`ll have this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A couple of guys were doing the stake-out at Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt`s house in Malibu and apparently Jolie is on the move.


HAMMER: Chasing Angelina. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT takes you on a dramatic ride-along with the paparazzi as they try to catch up with Angelina Jolie and other A-listers.

ANDERSON: And why Kelsey Grammer says his drugs and hooker past may help him get elected to office. Kelsey running for office? All right. What he has to say coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT tonight.

But first -- tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly" Great American Pop Culture Quiz. Who was not a member of the short-lived band Blind Faith? Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Peter Frampton or Ginger Baker. Think about it. We`ll be right back with your answer.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Rob Lowe speaks out about Hollywood marriages but first here`s Brooke. Dissolve seven, go.

ANDERSON: So again. Tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly" Great American Pop Culture Quiz. Who was not a member of the short-lived band, Blind Faith?

Was it Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Peter Frampton or Ginger Baker? The answer is C. Peter Frampton.

HAMMER: And welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. We`re TV`s only live entertainment news show. I`m A.J. Hammer. Time now for the story of the day that made us say that`s ridiculous. Look at this Web site. This is a company in Reno, Nevada that wants to sell you a beer belly. That`s right. This is a fake belly. Can actually fill it with 80 ounces of beer. You can drink from a little straw that sticks out of your shirt which is really quite elegant. You can buy it online at the It will cost you about $35. That`s ridiculous. You guys out here on the floor. My camera crew`s paying close attention to this. To be fair you can put iced tea in it, you can put a margarita in it. They even say you can put water in it. Brooke?

ANDERSON: That`s right. And 80 ounces if you are worried about it getting warm. You can actually tuck a little ice pack in there they say. But I say, that`s ridiculous.

HAMMER: It`s on my Christmas list for you next year.

Moving right along. So "Frasier" star Kelsey Grammer may actually run for public office. That`s a pretty big piece of news in itself. But get this. He thinks his former coke habit, marriage to a stripper and his battle with alcoholism would help him get elected. Grammer, who is starring in next month`s "X-Men 3" movie tells "Maxim Magazine" that he wants to do the world some good by running for office. And that his past public struggles with drugs and booze and second marriage to an exotic dancer might actually give him an edge.

Quoting here. He says, "The opposition would hope it," meaning my past, "would harm me, but my frankness and openness about it would probably benefit me."

Kelsey didn`t say what office he would be interested in running for. And you can read more of Grammer`s interview in the May issue of "Maxim Magazine" that`s on newsstands tomorrow.

ANDERSON: You know, A.J., when I sat down with Rob Lowe, I asked him if he had any desire to be in politics. And you might be surprised at what he had to say. But first we talked about his role in the movie "Thank You for Smoking" and why he has had it with political correctness.


ANDERSON: You play a Hollywood super agent. Actuality biggest agent in Hollywood in this film. And in working with the tobacco companies you come up with this outrageous scenario. Brad Pitt and Katherine Zeta Jones lying naked in a space station lighting up, smoking cigarettes.

ROB LOWE, ACTOR: After getting it on.

ANDERSON: Right, of course. But is that scenario really so farfetched for Hollywood?

LOWE: Listen. I`ve been in this business for a long time. I don`t put anything past anybody.


LOWE: No way.

ANDERSON: Well you probably get more scripts than you know what to do with thrown at you. What are some of the most outrageous things that you`ve read that people have pitched?

LOWE: Oh, gosh. Somebody just pitched me the other day a TV series where everybody wanted to rob me. Actually me. Being robbed at the end of the season. So .

ANDERSON: Numerous times by numerous people?

LOWE: One can only guess. Believe me. I`ve had more bad ideas. More good ideas. Not sure maybe great. But I`ve seen it all pretty much.

ANDERSON: So you have to really sift through them. Is there one that you can remember that you just thought, they got to be kidding me.

LOWE: Let me see. You know, I guess I`ve been sort of fortunate in that there hasn`t been a complete utter, they got to be kidding me moment. But yeah, there`s still time.

ANDERSON: This film is about big tobacco. And how it tries to influence people to smoke. Were you ever uncomfortable with the scenario?

LOWE: Well you know, really to me the movie`s about -- It is about that. But it`s really about how I`m so sick of political correctness.

ANDERSON: What specifically do you really hate?

LOWE: Oh. What do I -- you know what, that list is so long.

ANDERSON: There have been books written about this.

LOWE: And there`ll be more.

ANDERSON: That`s right. That`s right.

LOWE: And there will be more. I just think people, I think people know the truth when they hear it. And they know it when they see it. And one of the things I love about the movie is it`s really about being a free thinker and an independent thinker. And that`s sort of where I`m at. So when this came my way, I just really liked what it had to say.

Very quick story. I have an actor friend of mine playing a man convicted of being a mass murderer and going to the gas chamber. And he wanted - the actor wanted to smoke in the scene as a last wish. The network wouldn`t let him do it.


LOWE: OK to be a mass murder. Not okay to smoke. Weird.

ANDERSON: It is. Strange dichotomy there.


ANDERSON: Which you hate. OK. You are starring not only on the big screen but on the small screen as well. And the "West Wing" coming to an end. It`s had a great, great run. But there`s a lot of competition on television these days. The other television show out there now about the inner workings of the White House, "Commander in Chief."

LOWE: That`s right.

ANDERSON: Hasn`t been doing so well. What do you think about that? While "American Idol: is just thriving. Do you they people want escapism? Do they not want the politics?

LOWE: When the "West Wing" was in its heyday in the first four years and there was "The Sopranos." There was the "West Wing." "24" had just come out. "Six Feet Under" was on. "Sex in the City." A lot of those are gone now. We`re in a cycle now where those shows are not a lot of people are particularly interested in. Other than "24" which is great. But it all changes. It`s all about timing. We are living in the "American Idol" age.

ANDERSON: We are. Do you watch "American Idol"?

LOWE: I do.


LOWE: I do.

ANDERSON: So you`re a fan just like .

LOWE: I am a fan. It`s great. Addicting. It`s a great show.

ANDERSON: Speaking of politics with the "West Wing." Celebrities recently have been speaking out about their own political views. Particularly against President Bush at times.

LOWE: Right.

ANDERSON: Do you think celebrities have an obligation because their following to stand up for what they believe in? Because they can make a difference if they want to.

LOWE: Listen, I think it`s a great American tradition to stand up for what you believe in. And I always respect people who do it. The only caveat I think is that you have to be careful that it doesn`t effect your audiences` ability to see the art that you make for what it is. And that`s the fine line that I think you have to walk.

ANDERSON: Any aspirations for political office yourself, ever, you think?

LOWE: Oh, my wife would kick me out of the house so fast.

ANDERSON: You are a good speaker. I can see it.

LOWE: She would -- it would be divorce Hollywood style if I ever said honey, I`m thinking about running for something.

ANDERSON: Does your wife wear the pants in the family?

LOWE: Listen. That`s the key to a successful marriage. Come on. Let`s just call a spade a spade.

ANDERSON: What is the key to success in addition to that? Because you guys have been married what -- 15 years?

LOWE: It`ll be 15 years. Yeah.

ANDERSON: Yeah. You don`t see that very often in Hollywood.

LOWE: No. And I don`t think you see it very often anywhere. I mean, you know, it`s tough. Marriage is tough. I mean I have no answers. It`s up and down and it`s wonderful. And it`s a struggle and it`s all of these things that we all know. You know? But I love it. And if I have an answer, I would bottle it and sell it and I would retire.

ANDERSON: And make billions.

LOWE: Billions.

ANDERSON: Probably.


ANDERSON: Rob also told me that he thinks Hollywood has lost some of its creativity. But that he`s an optimist and that he believes it will get better. You can catch Rob Lowe in the final season of "The West Wing" on NBC and also in "Thank You for Smoking" which is in theaters now.

HAMMER: Sometimes an overheard word is a dangerous thing. A cussing congresswoman is just the most recent example. We`re going to take a look at others who seem to forget they are wearing microphones. That`s coming up.

Also ahead.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m coming behind you. No cops. The 405 is right here. The 10`s going to be right here. And she`s like right here on the 10.


ANDERSON: Chasing Angelina. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT takes you on a dramatic ride with the paparazzi as they try to get pictures of Angelina Jolie and other A-listers.

HAMMER: And an attempt to contact the late great John Lennon on pay- per-view. Needless to say, not everyone thinks it`s a great idea. We are going to look into it coming up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Also coming up. The five movies this summer that you cannot miss. Master roll the break.


ANDERSON: Coming up tomorrow. Hidden video cameras are everywhere. Bank, schools, the mini mart. We have some amazing video of crimes caught on tape by these cameras. But are they an invasion of privacy? We will look into it. That`s tomorrow on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

HAMMER: Well the horror movie "Silent Hill" made a lot of noise at the movies over the weekend. Final figures out late tonight showed the ghost town horror movie made about $20 million over the weekend. That put it on top of the weekend box office and it pushed last week`s number one down a spot. "Scary Movie 4" slipped to number two. "The Sentinel" starring Michael Douglas and Kiefer Sutherland debuted in third place. "Ice Age, the Meltdown" was in fourth place over the weekend. Followed by the animated Disney adventure "The Wild."

ANDERSON: "Silent Hill" got some really bad reviews but you`d never know it looking at the box office numbers. So now we want to hear from you. It`s our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day. "Silent Hill" is number one. Do you pay attention to movie critics? Go to Send us an email. We`re going to read some of your thoughts later on in the show.

HAMMER: For me it all depends on who that movie critic is. Well the summer blockbuster season almost upon us. The critics are going to be talking for sure. There`s so many movies coming out but so little time. We are going to tell you the five you just can`t miss coming up.

ANDERSON: I can`t wait for that. Plus, an attempt to contact this guy. The late John Lennon in a pay-per-view television special. Not everybody thinks it`s a great idea and we`ll look into it. Coming up.

Also coming up .


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A couple of the guys were doing the stake out at Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt`s house in Malibu. And apparently Jolie is on the move.


HAMMER: Chasing Angelina. We will take you on a dramatic ride along with the paparazzi as we try to catch up with Angelina Jolie and a few other A-listers. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is coming right back.



HAMMER: And welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, 31 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. And you are watching TV`s only live entertainment news show.

A.J., a group of people trying to contact the late John Lennon for a pay-per-view television special. Now, coming up, we will hear whether it was a success -- that`s right, creepy if, indeed, they did contact Lennon - - and why some people feel this is a really bad, bad idea.


Also, tonight, coming up, we`re going to hear some outrageous moments heard on tape. Now, you know very well, Brooke. You wear one of these little microphones on your lapel or whatever you happen to be wearing. As long as that thing is on you, somebody might be hearing you.

ANDERSON: That`s right.

HAMMER: What some people said who didn`t know the cameras were rolling. That`s coming up in just a few moments.

But first tonight, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are saying, "Please, leave us alone." South Africa`s "Sunday Times" reports that the couple has released a statement asking that their privacy be respected. Brad and a very pregnant Angelina are in the African nation of Namibia awaiting the birth of their baby.

And here`s the statement they released. They said, "To the local people who have been so kind and gracious, thank you for making us feel at home. As for the press, we kindly ask for privacy so that we can enjoy this beautiful country with our children."

ANDERSON: Well, of course, Brad and Angelina are no strangers to the paparazzi. Getting photos of them together is a high-priced, high-stakes game, so you can only imagine the race to snap those very first baby photos.

Tonight, we`ve got a very special inside look at this obsession with the stars. So come along for the wild ride, as celebrity photographers chase Angelina. Here`s CNN`s Kyra Phillips for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


BEN, CELEBRITY PHOTOGRAPHER: A couple of the guys were doing the stake out at Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt`s house in Malibu. And, apparently, Jolie is on the move.

KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The hunt is on.

BEN: I`m going to get on the 405 and go 405 south. Are you still south of PCH?

PHILLIPS: The prey: red-hot actress Angelina Jolie.

BEN: Copy that. Just keep me updated.

PHILLIPS: Ben, a 26-year-old photographer, works for one of the biggest paparazzi agencies in Hollywood, Bauer-Griffin. He`s asked us not to use his last name.

BEN: Copy, nothing. There`s absolutely nothing. I`m coming behind you. No cops anywhere.

The 405 is right here. The 10`s going to be right here. And she`s like right here on the 10 going this way. I`m trying to catch up as fast as I can (INAUDIBLE) give me your location. You guys past West Channel (ph) yet?

BEN: We`re on PCH.


PHILLIPS: Ben is coordinating with two other paparazzi from his agency, hot on Angelina`s tail. He finally catches up...

BEN: There she is. There she is.

PHILLIPS: ... but he`s on the wrong side of the freeway.

BEN: There`s other competition right there. Copy that. I just saw you guys go by. That`s funny.

PHILLIPS: Paparazzi aren`t the only ones desperately seeking Angelina.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s not fitting into her clothes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... not fitting into her clothes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, that happens.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She hates her body. She hates, you know, the hormones raging. She`s very uncomfortable.

PHILLIPS: "Star" magazine`s Bonnie Fuller is chasing down any salacious tidbits on the actress, her Hollywood hunk boyfriend, and the girl next door he left behind.

BONNIE FULLER, "STAR" MAGAZINE: I like this. Jennifer`s turning to hypnosis therapy to get over Brad?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yep, yep. We`ll be working on...

FULLER: That`s fabulous. I mean, how can you not be nosey about people that are fascinating to look at as Jen, Brad and an Angelina? How can you not?

PHILLIPS: Over at "People" magazine, managing editor Larry Hackett is salivating over a scoop Jolie`s camp is promising.

LARRY HACKETT, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: I got the call in the morning that something was going to be discussed, and then I got the call about what was being discussed. I was thrilled.

PHILLIPS: And Mark Lisanti, the blogger behind the Internet gossip site,, is snarking about official word that Brangelina is pregnant.

MARK LISANTI, DEFAMER.COM: Once you get a publicist`s real name on something, you know, it then becomes reality, and we can all rejoice and start knitting the baby booties.

PHILLIPS: The Brangelina saga is just one of the real-life soaps feeding the public`s growing obsession with celebrities.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The personal lives of Hollywood celebrities these days, it really is the best reality TV show out there. It`s not a fascination; it`s long, long since passed fascination. We are celebrity- drenched and -obsessed.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I wouldn`t be attracted to a man who would cheat on his wife.

PHILLIPS: So obsessed that you can hardly change the channel without landing on one of the many entertainment news shows.

HAMMER: Paris Hilton...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tanya Harding`s...


PHILLIPS: And the number of star-studded magazines has exploded. There are at least six celebrity weeklies on the newsstands now with a combined circulation of more than 8.5 million. And while traditional news magazines are losing readers, the circulation of celebrity magazines is soaring.

PETER CASTRO, EXEC. EDITOR, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: That`s when I realized this is a whole different game, and it`s a really ruthless one.

PHILLIPS: Add to that mix a new media outlet, Internet gossip blogs.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Things happen faster. A piece of gossip gets out into the world and, within literally hours, it`s everywhere.

PHILLIPS: One leading gossip blog,, even includes a map pinpointing New York celebrity sightings. The site, called Gawker Stalker, has angered a number of celebrities and their flacks. Is celebrity coverage spinning out of control?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ve never had so much media that it seems to be desirous of printing or covering every possible aspect of so-called celebrities` lives. I think the world`s gone a little crazy.

PHILLIPS: The HBO cult hit "Entourage" is capitalizing on the public`s fascination with celebrities` innermost lives.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get a picture with me and my brother.

PHILLIPS: The TV comedy features an aspiring young actor and the pack of friends and Hollywood power players surrounding him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All the hotties are out tonight. Check out the (bleep) on the girl from "Extra!"

DOUG ELLIN, CREATOR, "ENTOURAGE": Everything about all these characters in the show is sort of taken from somewhere in real life, so almost none of it is pure fiction.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You want to hug it out?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, not really.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let`s hug it out, bitch.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let`s hug it out?

ELLIN: They are based on a lot of different people.

PHILLIPS: People, like publicists and power brokers hired to control one of the most precious commodities in Hollywood: access to the stars.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They have to be protective, because, listen, everyone is out to exploit the stars they represent. So they`ll catch it from their clients, but they`ll also catch it from the media.

PHILLIPS: Just who are these image-makers guiding celebrities through the media minefield? How much control do they have when their clients` private lives are exposed to the public? And what do they do when an A- list client, like Tom Cruise, appears to go off the deep end?


ANDERSON: That`s a good question. I`m sure it`s quite a challenge. That was CNN`s Kyra Phillips for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. And you can catch the rest of "CNN PRESENTS: CHASING ANGELINA, PAPARAZZI AND CELEBRITY OBSESSION" on May 13th.

HAMMER: Longer days, warmer weather, and a lot of movies. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is going to help you decide what you have to see in our summer movie preview. That`s next.

ANDERSON: Also tonight, did a group of people actually contact the late John Lennon beyond the grave? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT investigates, next.

Plus, we`ve also got this...


REP. CYNTHIA MCKINNEY (D), GEORGIA: Anything that is captured by your audio that is captured while I`m not seated in this chair is off-the-record and is not permissible to be used. Is that understood?


HAMMER: Loose lips sink ships. Tonight, the outrageous things overheard from some pretty well-known people. I`m talking about Britney Spears and President Bush, and this is after they thought the cameras stopped rolling. That is next.

But first, we`ve been asking you to vote online on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Even with the pretty lousy reviews, the horror flick "Silent Hill" topped this weekend`s box office. So we want to know: "Silent Hill" is number one. Do you pay attention to movie critics?

Keep voting at or write to us at Your e-mails coming up a bit later.


ANNOUNCER: This summer`s must-see movies, coming up in six minutes. Here`s A.J. Push forward, dissolve, go.

HAMMER: I just like seeing the back of the head of our executive producer there in the camera.

Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York. This is TV`s only live entertainment news show.

Well, it`s something we`ve all done and possibly regretted, talked behind someone`s back. But when you`re in the public eye, you have to really watch what you say, because you never know when those TV cameras are rolling. Tonight, a look at some outrageous moments overheard on tape.

Here comes CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For a politician, it can be a tiny but deadly weapon: the open mic that you forgot you had on. Congressman Cynthia McKinney was all cheery...


MOOS: ... as she arrived for district day, a time to meet with her constituents. But as reporters kept asking about the alleged scuffle with a security guard at the nation`s Capitol, McKinney got miffed.

MCKINNEY: Well, you`re a distraction, because that seems to be all you want to talk about.

MOOS: McKinney finally got up and left, telling WGCL`s reporter, "I`ll be back." That`s when her open mic picked up this.

MCKINLEY: Well, crap. Now, you know what? They lied to Coz, and Coz is a fool.

MOOS: Coz is Coz Carson, McKinney`s aide who set up the interview.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s a pleasure to work with someone who believes in taking care of the people.

MOOS: After McKinney realized her mic was on, she returned to the interview.

MCKINNEY: Anything that is captured by your audio, that is captured while I`m not seated in this chair is off-the-record and is not permissible to be used. Is that understood?

MOOS: Understood, but ignored.

MCKINNEY: Well, crap.

MOOS: McKinney is in royal company. Remember Prince Charles hissing about a BBC reporter during a photo-op with his sons?

PRINCE CHARLES, BRITISH ROYALTY: These bloody people. I can`t bear that man. I mean, he`s so awful, he really is.

MOOS: President Bush was even more graphic, referring to a "New York Times" reporter.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: ... major league ass(bleep).


MOOS: It`s incredibly easy to forget that you`re wearing a mic like this. After all, it`s completely wireless. We`re always having to remind folks to turn it off.

Right before President Reagan made a radio speech, he famously joked into a live mic about bombing Russia.


MOOS: Everybody -- a pop star sometimes pops off her mouth, forgetting she`s mic`d. At a concert in Rio, Britney Spears was backstage letting her dancers have it.

BRITNEY SPEARS, SINGER: Oh, my god. This is retarded. They told me they were going to do a `vamp. Oh, no. What are they doing?

MOOS: Though her people said later that wasn`t her voice, in this age of the sound bite, when you get bitten, you can`t take it back...

MCKINNEY: Is that understood?

MOOS: ... no matter how much you smile.


HAMMER: Bathroom rule, by the way, a very important one. That was CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

ANDERSON: Tonight, John Lennon speaks. Well, that`s what the producers of a televised seance called "The Spirit of John Lennon" are claiming, even though it`s been 25 years since he was shot and killed outside of his New York City apartment. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Sibila Vargas joins us now live from Hollywood with that eerie story.

Hi, Sibila.


Well, tonight there`s a battle brewing over the former Beatles star. The producers of a new special say they`ve contacted his spirit, and they want you to cop up $10 to see it. Of course, plenty of critics think this idea doesn`t stand a ghost of a chance.


VARGAS (voice-over): Pay-Per-View is hoping to give John Lennon fans the chance to do something they could only "Imagine": watch him make contact from the afterlife.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What we`ve got now, we`ve got an active energy, which means John`s presence is actually in the (INAUDIBLE) building.

VARGAS: It`s all part of a planned televised special called "The Spirit of Lennon," where psychics hold a seance in hopes of capturing the spirit of the late Beatle. And mediums try to channel him in Lennon- related sites, like Liverpool`s Strawberry Fields.

They also visit the Beatles` American record company, Capitol Records here in Hollywood. But some critics say it`s in in bad taste.

KURT LODER, MTV NEWS CORRESPONDENT: It`s amazing that people are even interested in it, and it seems to be some sort of grotesque off-shoot of the national fascination with celebrity.

VARGAS: Paul Sharratt, the show`s producer, has been criticized before. His Pay-Per-View special, "The Spirit of Diana," attracted some 500,000 viewers.

PAUL SHARRATT, PRODUCER, "THE SPIRIT OF LENNON": People were very, very, very angry about that particular show. I personally can`t see these sort of people who believe in the spirit world, that believed in the afterlife, why shouldn`t they want to speak again, if they can?

VARGAS: Sharratt was hoping Lennon`s widow, Yoko Ono, would participate.

SHARRATT: She hasn`t spoken herself, but through representatives, she denied that John Lennon was interested in the spirit world, but that`s certainly not the case as we`ve researched it. I`m sorry that she`s not happy, but I guess that`s life.

VARGAS: Yoko`s spokesman Elliot Mintz calls the special "tasteless, tacky and exploitative." But the producers are hoping "The Spirit of Lennon" will make believers out of skeptics.

(on camera): So in this special, we will have some type of guarantee, you`re saying?

JOE POWER, "PSYCHIC MEDIUM": You`ll have more than a guarantee.

SHARRATT: We do actually have a voice on a track of audio which is unexplainable how it got there. If this is what it appears to be, it is actually the voice of John Lennon.

VARGAS (voice-over): Audiences who tune in will have a chance to judge for themselves.


VARGAS: ... but I`ve got to tell you, I didn`t get a chance to hear it myself. I guess we`ll just have to tune in to see if it really is him tonight when "The Spirit of Lennon" airs on Pay-Per-View.

Brooke, back to you.

ANDERSON: I guess we will, although I have my serious doubts about that. But, Sibila, thanks so much for the story.

VARGAS: I was sketchy myself.

ANDERSON: Sibila Vargas, live in Hollywood.

HAMMER: Oh, wait a second. I thought I just heard a refrain of something. Let`s move on.

If you like watching movies -- and, come on, who doesn`t? -- well, you`ve got a little bit of a problem. I`m here to tell you about it. It`s a huge problem, because the summer movie season is about to begin. There`s just too much stuff out there to see.

Good thing that we have live with me in New York tonight "Entertainment Weekly" correspondent Michelle Kung. "EW" just out with its summer movie preview issue. It`s a look at 114 new films that are coming out in the next few months. Michelle is going to let us know which are the five absolute must-sees from the whole batch, the five you just can`t miss.

Michelle, it`s nice to see you; 114, that`s unbelievable.


HAMMER: Number one, of course, the big blockbuster, everybody`s waiting for a variety of reasons to see is "Mission: Impossible III." I know a lot of people who are just burnt out on Tom Cruise. Are they going to have to put those feelings aside and actually go see this? Is it going to be good enough?

KUNG: Oh, yes. This film is definitely going to be great. And judging from the buzz that`s just coming from the trailer, it`s definitely going to be a hit.

They`ve got a new director on it, J.J. Abrams, who is the creator of "Lost" and "Alias." And he`s there to infuse more emotion into this series that`s, you know, the third film in, like, 10 years.

HAMMER: See, I like the fact that J.J. Abrams is on board, because I`m a huge fan of "Lost." It is really one of the best television shows that`s on there for its second -- second season? Yes, they`re in their second season now. And I think he`ll bring a nice touch to it, so we`ll have to get over our Tom Cruise-it is, if that`s what we`re experiencing.

Well, one of the most highly anticipated films of the year certainly is the "Da Vinci Code." That`s coming out on May 19th. A lot of controversy swirling around this film, a lot of different Catholic groups saying they want disclaimers, they think it should be protested or boycotted. I think they need to relax a little bit, because it`s a work of fiction.

Is that controversy going to keep people away from this one?

KUNG: I think it`s just going to help. You know, the more people talk about it, the more magazine covers it`s on, it`s going to fuel even more interest in a book that`s already, you know, the most read thing in the last three years.

HAMMER: And Tom Hanks in the lead role here. I have a feeling he`s probably putting in one of his best performances.

KUNG: Oh, definitely. And he`s working with Ron Howard, who he`s worked with on "Apollo 13" and "Splash." And so this is -- you know, it`s a dream team behind this movie.

HAMMER: Well, let`s talk about "X-Men III." I guess they`re all highly anticipated, so I`ll just stop saying that. May 26th the third in the franchise is coming out.

Now, I remember when this franchise first began. A lot of people thought, "Oh, just for people who are into the comic books." But, look, it keeps on ticking, and it has a huge audience.

KUNG: Oh, definitely. And everyone was saying how the second film was so much better than the first film because, you know, there`s all these emotional elements to all of these characters, and it draws in definitely a lot more than just a fan-boy audience.

HAMMER: And I`m hearing that this one even better than the last two. I don`t know.

KUNG: Yes, and they`ve got -- you know, they`ve got more characters in. They`ve got, you know, Kelsey Grammer in as the Beast, and they are introducing like Angel and a whole other, like, favorites from the fans.

HAMMER: Sounds like we`re not going to be disappointed with any of these. "Cars" is going to be what it seems like the big animated hit of the summer. Pixar is putting this out. Now, to remind people, they did "Finding Nemo" and "The Incredibles," among their other hits.

KUNG: Right.

HAMMER: Basically, if Pixar is doing a film, does it even have a chance of failing?

KUNG: At this point, no. You know, this is the seventh film that they`re doing, and all of the films up to this point have been hits. And, you know, they got great celebrity voices coming into this. And it`s a great film for families.

HAMMER: And if you look, the technology just keeps improving. The paint even looks more realistic in this one.

All right, I want to move on to "Superman Returns," because it`s been almost 20 years since the last "Superman." I`m excited. I`m a fan of the franchise. Brandon Routh, relative unknown actor coming in as Superman, but I was thinking nobody really knew who Christopher Reeve was when he was in the very first "Superman." So is that going to stop people from going to see this film?

KUNG: Oh, definitely not. Like, this is, you know, one of our candidates to be, like, the top grosser for the summer because it appeals to people whether you are eight or 80. And, you know, Brandon Routh being a newcomer is a plus, actually, because people aren`t bringing in baggage when they`re seeing this new story.

HAMMER: Well, that one comes out on June 30th. A hundred and fourteen films, Michelle, you are required to go see every single one of them.

KUNG: I`ll try.

HAMMER: Michelle Kung from "EW," thank you very much with joining us.

KUNG: Thank you.

HAMMER: You can pick up "Entertainment Weekly`s" summer movie preview issue. It`s a look at all 114 new films coming out this summer. It`s on newsstands now. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s coming right back.


ANDERSON: We have been asking you to vote online on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Horror movie "Silent Hill" topping the box office, despite a lot of bad reviews. So we want to know: "Silent Hill" is number one. Do you pay attention to movie critics?

The vote so far: 21 percent of you say, yes, you do. A lot of people don`t: 79 percent of you say no.

Here`s some of the e-mails we`ve received. R. Clark writes, "I don`t pay attention to movie critics. They`re about as right as the weather forecasters."

And Hasani from Michigan writes, "I usually listen to movie critics, but in this case I have to say that whatever they said fell on false ears."

You can keep voting,

Or, A.J., fell on deaf ears, maybe.

HAMMER: Leah Rozen, I will go to anything she says to go see.

ANDERSON: I listen to Leah. I do.

HAMMER: That is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: Thanks for watching, everybody. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Stay tuned for more from CNN Headline News.


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