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Girl, 13, Makes Case for Tough Laws Against Child Pornographers; David Blaine in Giant Fishbowl for Latest Feat; "High School Musical" Stars Talk about Phenomenon
Aired May 3, 2006 - 19:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
A.J. HAMMER, CO-HOST: Controversial photos of Madonna. They`re new. I`m A.J. Hammer.
BROOKE ANDERSON, CO-HOST: And how a song about women who drive SUVs has become a cultural phenomenon. I`m Brooke Anderson. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT starts right now.
HAMMER (voice-over): On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, a shocking tale of sexual abuse. A 13-year-old girl makes an emotional appeal, with Nancy Grace at her side.
NANCY GRACE, HOST, "NANCY GRACE SHOW": Her memories are fear and pain and sexual exploitation. The most horrific child pornography I have ever laid my eyes on.
HAMMER: Plus, new developments in the scary world of online sexual predators. A dramatic new idea to protect kids who could become the next victims.
Was Denise Richards betrayed? Tonight, Denise unplugged, talking on camera for the first time about her very ugly divorce war and her once best friend, Heather Locklear.
DENISE RICHARDS, ACTRESS: I`m sad that Heather has come out and portrayed it differently than it is.
HAMMER: It`s Denise in the no holds barred interview you will see right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Hello, I`m A.J. Hammer.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson.
A.J., I really have to hand it to Headline News Prime`s Nancy Grace for what she did today, because what we heard, it was enough to make your stomach sick.
HAMMER: Yes, it was terrible and really difficult at times to listen to.
What we saw today was a young girl telling the story of how she basically became a sex slave when she was just 5 years old. I said 5 years old. She also talked about how pictures taken of her are now part of the disgusting world of Internet child pornography.
Well, Nancy was with the girl at the congressional hearing in Washington, D.C., today to help push for tough new laws that will hopefully end the disgrace of kids being sexually exploited for sickos who prowl the Internet.
GRACE: Her memories are fear and pain and sexual exploitation at the hands of a man we now know to be a virtual clearinghouse for the most horrific child pornography I have ever laid my eyes on.
HAMMER (voice-over): Headline Prime`s Nancy Grace on Capitol Hill today supporting 13-year-old Masha Allen, a child, a repeated rape victim.
MASHA ALLEN, RAPE VICTIM: During the five years I lived with Matthew, he took hundreds of pornographic pictures of me and traded them over the Internet.
HAMMER: With cameras rolling for all the world to see, Masha tells of her private living hell, the sexual abuse at the hands of a monster who adopted her from Russia when she was only 5 years old.
ALLEN: The abuse started the night I got there. Matthew didn`t have a bedroom for me. He made me sleep in his bed from the very beginning. He molested me all the time.
HAMMER: Her story is horrific. She was just a little girl, repeatedly raped and photographed naked by this man, who was approved by an American adoption agency.
And Nancy Grace was there to help tell her story to lawmakers, hoping the authorities will crack down on child abuse and exploitation.
GRACE: Together, we join forces today to ask you for our voices to be heard.
HAMMER: Masha was adopted by Pennsylvania divorcee Matthew Mancuso, authorities say, for the sole reason, to be her personal sex slave.
ALLEN: Sometimes he kept me chained in the basement. Because he didn`t want me to grow up, he only let me eat a little bit of food.
HAMMER: Matthew Mancuso had specific requests about the kind of little girl he wanted to adopt. He asked several U.S. adoption agencies for a 5-year-old, blond-haired, blue-eyed girl.
ALLEN: I lived with Matthew for five years. The whole time he starved and molested me. The whole time he took pictures of me. I didn`t know until later that he was putting my pictures on the Internet to trade, maybe to sell to other pedophiles.
HAMMER: The photos soon became some of the most sought-after images on the Web.
HAMMER: But because Matthew put my pictures on the Internet, the abuse is still going on. Anyone could see them. People are still downloading them.
HAMMER: During the testimony Nancy told investigators how little Masha asked for the pictures to be taken down. It was too late. But not too late for Masha and Nancy to do something to prevent others from committing this sick crime.
GRACE: She has displayed more courage in her short life than many of us will in a lifetime.
HAMMER: That is an unbelievable story. Masha`s abuser is currently serving a minimum 35-year sentence.
Masha and Nancy Grace were on Capitol Hill to try and get legislation called Masha`s Law passed. It would toughen the punishment for anyone who downloads child pornography.
Now as Masha said at the hearing today, right now people who illegally download songs face harsher penalties than those who download child porn, which is simply outrageous.
In a separate case of sexual abuse that is currently prompting calls for even more regulation online has a 27-year-old man in Connecticut, who was arrested after police say he sexually assaulted a 13-year-old girl he met on MySpace.com. Well, that case has now led to lawmakers in Massachusetts demanding changes for MySpace, including raising the minimum age from 14 to 18.
Now MySpace says it does take precautions, including using software to identify minors and flagging profiles with terms that are likely to be used by children under age 14.
ANDERSON: But are those precautions enough? And we now want to get your opinion on this whole thing. It is our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question on the day. Protecting kids online: should MySpace ban kids younger than 18? Vote at CNN.com/ShowbizTonight. Send us an e-mail, ShowbizTonight@CNN.com. We`re going to read some of your thoughts later on in the show.
HAMMER: Well, "Sopranos" star James Gandolfini is said to be home resting after an accident in New York City today. Gandolfini was riding his Vespa scooter when a taxi cab hit him.
His rep says the actor walked away with just a few scrapes, but otherwise he is fine. The spokeswoman says Gandolfini regularly gets around town on his Vespa, and he was just going about his daily business when he was hit.
No word on whether charges will be filed against the taxi driver.
ANDERSON: There`s a guy just up the block from the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT studios here in New York, living in a bubble, literally. He`s spending seven days in a human fish tank completely surrounded by water. And if that isn`t enough, he`s then going to try to break the world record for holding his breath underwater.
But for magician David Blaine, it`s just another death-defying day at the office. I had a chance to chat with him this afternoon to find out why in the world would anybody want to do this?
ANDERSON: David, you have done so many outrageous stunts. Do you think this one takes the cake? And why do you do it? People just think you`re crazy.
DAVID BLAINE, ILLUSIONIST: I do it because I love doing it.
ANDERSON: How did you train for this? I mean, you lost, what, 50 pounds to do this?
BLAINE: Yes. I lost 50 pounds and trained every day for seven months pretty hard.
ANDERSON: How do you sleep? Do you have a certain schedule or do you try to catch a cat nap here and there?
BLAINE: I haven`t had much sleep yet. It`s like sleeping at the bottom of a pool with the pressure in your head.
ANDERSON: And I see you`re rubbing your hands. You`ve been having some skin problems, right?
BLAINE: Just on the hands and feet.
ANDERSON: What`s going on?
BLAINE: Basically, the parts of my body that don`t have hair are very affected by the water, so the skin becomes really fair. So it`s tough.
ANDERSON: Yes. How are you eating?
BLAINE: I just have liquids.
ANDERSON: And I don`t -- I hate to even ask this. How are you relieving yourself? How are you doing all of that and with an audience?
BLAINE: Since there`s no solid foods, No. 2. And I have a good filtration system and a catheter tube. So I get to tuck it into the filtration whenever I have to go, and it sucks everything down into there.
ANDERSON: OK. You`ve got all the bases covered here. And I know you`ve got a doctor, you`ve got a dive team around here to make sure you`re safe and everything`s OK, but do you think about the risks? Do you ever worry about the damage you could be doing?
BLAINE: I`m not really worried about that. No.
ANDERSON: There are hundreds of people who are constantly watching you, waving at you. I know when you`ve done other stunts people have thrown things, exposed themselves. What`s the craziest thing you`ve seen?
BLAINE: Here? Everyone`s been great.
ANDERSON: Yes? And you mentioned Houdini. Is he who inspired you to get into this?
BLAINE: He was the water master. He used to get shackled up, and he would do it right here in New York. He`d get chained up and shackled up and dropped into swimming pools, and everybody would watch him escape before he drowned. So he really inspired a lot of us, yes. Even before I knew that he had done that, I was always the kid that wanted to stay underwater the longest and do the longest laps.
ANDERSON: You seem very calm. How do you remain calm throughout all of this?
BLAINE: I feel like I`m in outer space, basically. It`s very surreal, and even though it looks so bizarre it`s very peaceful.
ANDERSON: How are you ever going top this?
BLAINE: I don`t think this one can be topped. I think this is -- they`re getting harder and harder on my organs and my body. Because the one I did in London apparently did so much damage to my liver and kidney and heart and all my main body organs. So I can`t continue to keep doing this to my body. So this might be the last one, hopefully.
ANDERSON: A bunch of stars have come by to wave hello to Blaine in the bubble. I found out that Matt Dillon dropped by at about 1 a.m. this morning. Then five hours later at 6 a.m., Colin Farrell stopped by, but Blaine missed them both. He was actually sleeping during their visits.
And just as I was leaving today, I saw actress Gina Gershon. She and Blaine are friends. And get this: we learned she actually helped him get ready for all of this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GINA GERSHON, ACTRESS: I went training with him. So I went in the pool with him and held my breath and we did some really funny things. I always like to check out what he`s doing. When he`s trying, I like to go look at it a little bit, because you know, I get worried. I`m like his big sister.
I keep saying, you know, you should -- you need to learn yoga. Like you need to learn some breathing so you can just sit there and he`d never done yoga, before. So I was like come on, I`ll take you to a yoga class. He would just look at the positions, and things that were impossible. And he was so willful, and he would just do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: All right. Find out if David Blaine does it. Will he break the record for holding his breath? The record is about nine minutes. You can watch this Monday night. It`s live on ABC, A.J.
HAMMER: It was wild. I walked by there today and one of the really weird things about it, he`s in, of course, like this fish bowl. So he`s severely magnified.
HAMMER: And he looks like three times the size.
ANDERSON: Looks gigantic. And he`s a big guy anyway, about 6 feet tall.
And I talked to a lot of people who were out there, just mouths agape and just staring at him for 10 minutes, 15 minutes. Some had been out there an hour. One lady told me she just wanted to see him with his shirt off. She thinks he`s hot.
HAMMER: No shirt on.
ANDERSON: To each his own.
HAMMER: There you go.
Well coming up, we`ll meet the new James Bond. Will Daniel Craig be able to live up to the slick image? Well, you`ll get to decide. We`ve got a sneak peek at the latest 007 flick, "Casino Royale".
And we`ll have this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARDS: I`m sad that Heather has come out and portrayed it differently than it is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Denise Richards uncensored. Her first on-camera comments on her nasty divorce from Charlie Sheen and the bitter end of her friendship with Heather Locklear.
HAMMER: Plus, are you a pushover? Do you find yourself saying yes when you really mean no? Learn how to say no and mean it. We`re going to take a look at the hot book that`s teaching people to stop people pleasing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bond, everybody. James Bond. We`ve got the preview coming up, but here`s A.J. Dissolve, go.
HAMMER: That was pretty slick.
Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer.
It`s time now for the story today that made us say, "That`s ridiculous!" An ousted judge in the Philippines wants his job back, but the country`s highest court says Florentino Floro is well, a little bit crazy.
The court fired Floro after he admitted to consulting imaginary mystic dwarfs. He said the dwarfs, Armand, Luis and Angel, helped him carry out healing sessions during the breaks in the chambers. Who doesn`t do that, really?
Well, the court decided it didn`t need a mystic judge. So, after a three-year investigation, Floro was fired. Floro is, of course, appealing the decision.
Dwarfs, healing sessions, a three year investigation? Now, that`s ridiculous!
Although I will admit to you, Brooke, every night before coming in to do SHOWBIZ TONIGHT I consult with my velvet painting of John Tesh.
ANDERSON: A.J., why did you tell us that?
ANDERSON: OK. Moving on now to the "SHOWBIZ Showcase," James Bond fans, get ready to be shaken, not stirred. We have your first look at "Casino Royale", the new Bond movie that`s coming out this fall. It stars Daniel Craig as 007. Take a look.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This may be too much for a blunt instrument to understand. Any thug can kill. I want you to take your ego out of the equation.
DANIEL CRAIG, ACTOR: So you want me to be half monk, half hit man?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I knew it was too early to promote you.
CRAIG: From what I understand 00s have a very short life expectancy.
ANDERSON: Action packed. "Casino Royale" is in theaters November 17.
HAMMER: All right. I have to let you know about a phenomenon that is definitely sweeping the country at this very moment. If you haven`t heard about it yet, trust me, you definitely will.
It`s a movie called "High School Musical" produced by the Disney Channel. And if you remember the wildly popular "Fame" film from the `80s, well, you can consider this the "Fame" of the 21st Century.
It is huge. It is only getting bigger. Its debut on the Disney Channel drew nearly eight million viewers. The CD hit No. 1 on the Billboard charts, not once, but twice. And I had a opportunity to sit down with the cast of "High School Musical". We chatted about the movie that has everybody talking, dancing and singing.
HAMMER: Look at you. Look at what has happened to your lives. I mean, this is pretty unbelievable. I have to imagine, you know, when you went in for the gig some of you thought just another audition. We`ll see how this one goes. Am I right about that?
VANESSA ANNE HUDGENS, ACTRESS: Yes.
HAMMER: OK. So fast forward to when you actually get the part and you see the script and you`re reading it. Could you even imagine then that this was going blow up into the phenomenon that it is?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
MONIQUE COLEMAN, ACTRESS: There were moments, there were little glimmers shooting a couple of scenes that there`s something special going here, specifically the finale. It was enough just to be able to do it.
ASHLEY TISDALE, ACTRESS: We never knew the album would be on the Billboard. Never.
HAMMER: And some of the comparisons that have been flying around, you know, to you guys being the "Fame" of our time, the "Grease" of our time, the "West Side Story". You guys -- and you`re all under 20, right, or right around that age.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
HAMMER: But do you know how what big a deal that is to be put up next to classics like that?
HUDGENS: Yes. We all grew up watching, like, everything. We all grew up doing musicals. So for us to be put up in that caliber, it`s phenomenal.
HAMMER: And obviously, you guys had quire a workout in the production of putting this thing together. There`s a little bit of dancing going on.
HAMMER: A little bit of movement going. Now, was it you who had to go to sleep with the ice packs every night on the legs?
ZAC EFRON, ACTOR: oh, yes. I did that a few times. It was tough. I had no dance experience. I wasn`t ready. It was tough, man, it was very tough.
HAMMER: One of the things that is amazing about this phenomenon, and I know you guys have talked about this, is the fact that here we have something for Disney, which does not involve drugs or sex or swearing, you know? These days things that don`t have one of those worked into the mix often don`t do very well.
So now that you`ve really had some time since you`ve shot it and seen all the success, what do you really think this is the reason this has connected with so many people?
CORBIN BLEU, ACTOR: First of all, the fact that it`s a musical.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, if Troy can tell his secret, then I can tell mine. I bake. I love to bake. Sure, scones. Even apple pie (ph).
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BLEU: It`s funny because musicals sort of went into a high point and then they went low again. And I think after, you know, came with "Rent" and "Chicago" and "Moulin Rouge" and a whole bunch of those, just the musical section has started to really grow again. "High School Musical", I think, was very popular because of that. Also...
HUDGENS: And I think -- I think kids can relate to the movie as well because of the clique problems that there is in high school. There`s the movie, as well, and the characters representing Gabriela kind of break out of the cliques and kind of conquer.
HAMMER: This has transcended the audience that it was originally intended for, which was a younger audience, but obviously, adults have latched onto this thing, too, and not just adults because of their kids. Shaquille O`Neal reportedly singing one of the songs from your movie.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you serious?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where`s Shaq? Get Shaq!
HAMMER: Can you guess which song?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "Get in the Game".
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "Get in the Game".
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: "Get in the Game".
HUDGENS: That`s so cool.
HAMMER: There you go. Who would have thought?
BLEU: Why don`t they bring Shaq out for me?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right, Shaq!
HAMMER: Shaq`s a little busy right now, but tell me why it is that you think it has also now connected with adults in such a big way.
TISDALE: I think the characters are really relatable. They`ve gone to school with them. You`ve gone to school with our characters. I think they`re a little bit over exaggerated. But you know, everyone has a Sharpay and everyone has a brainy girl. And you -- it`s just actually, like, you relate to it, especially adults do.
HAMMER: Here we go. We`ve got a sequel. I understand you`re all onboard for the sequel.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
HAMMER: You`re currently in negotiation. I don`t know if all the papers have been signed yet. There`s a book.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A book?
HAMMER: They`re talking about doing a version in Bollywood over in India of this. Where would you like to see this go? Ultimate dream?
COLEMAN: I want an action figure.
HAMMER: Action figure?
COLEMAN: I really do.
TISDALE: I want a Barbie doll.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My gosh.
HUDGENS: I think I`d like to see "High School Musical" in school productions, because I mean, that`s what I grew up doing. So seeing other kid dosing it.
EFRON: We went to this school and these kids were actually taking scenes from this movie and acting them out. And it was these 10-, 11-, 12- year-old kids doing it. And it was just like -- it was amazing. It was the greatest feeling.
HUDGENS: That`s one of my favorite...
TISDALE: Whoever puts it on the first, I want the whole cast to be there and watch it.
LUCAS GRABEEL, ACTOR: I want it to be re-written and take it to New York. I would love to see -- yes, people on the big stage do it. I think that would be cool.
HAMMER: Some of them said they`d be happy just to see themselves on a lunch box. And just in case you were wondering, they are all that happy and get along that well.
The CD out in stores right now. The "High School Musical" DVD is coming out mid-May.
ANDERSON: They are nice kids.
Madonna`s hot new photo spread. Why is it causing a stir? We`re going to look into it and show you the pictures, coming up.
We`ll also have this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARDS: It`s really unfortunate that it`s gotten to this point, and Heather knows, you know, why we aren`t friends.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Denise Richards uncensored. What Denise had to say about the bitter end of her friendship with Heather Locklear, and how Richie Sambora figured into the mix.
ANDERSON: And SUVs and women, the hot new song that has become a phenomenon across the country. Hear the song and meet the women behind it, ahead on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Stay with us.
ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
Just seven months after her horseback riding accident, Madonna is, well, back on the horse. In a 58-page photo spread in "W" magazine, yes, I said 58 pages -- Madonna posed with six stallions on a soundstage in Hollywood for photographer Steven Klein.
As you can see, the photos are pretty provocative, even without the subtext of the riding accident that left Madonna with three cracked ribs, a broken collarbone and a broken hand.
SHOWBIZ TONIGHT spoke with "W" magazine`s creative director. He told us that during the shoot -- during the photo shoot, Madonna was absolutely fearless. We also asked what it is about Madonna that keeps people so fascinated with her.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP0
DENNIS FREEDMAN, CREATIVE DIRECTOR, "W" MAGAZINE: I think that we admire in Madonna is her courage, her passion, her -- her indomitable spirit. This is a woman who, at 47, has decided that she is going to ride after she`s fallen off a horse. Her body is something that she is proud of and that she works at.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: She has determination.
The issue of "W" magazine is on newsstands Friday in New York and nationwide May 19.
HAMMER: So are you a push-over? Do you find yourself saying yes, when you really mean no? Well, coming up, how to say no and mean it. We`re going to take a look at the hot book that`s teaching people to stop people-pleasing.
ANDERSON: Plus, Brad, Angelina and the rumor mill. Are they getting married? Where will their baby be born? We will set the record straight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARDS: I`m sad that Heather has come out and portrayed it differently than it is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Denise Richards uncensored. Her latest comments on the bitter end of her friendship with Heather Locklear and both of their divorces.
SHOWBIZ TONIGHT coming right back.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. It is 31 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson. You`re watching TV`s only live entertainment news show.
A.J., question for you...
ANDERSON: Do you ever have trouble telling people no?
HAMMER: No. Well, it depends. Sometimes, sometimes.
ANDERSON: Well, it`s good then that I`m doing the upcoming segment. We`re talking about this new book. It`s called "The Book of No: 250 Ways to Say It and to Mean It."
ANDERSON: And we`re going to talk to the author and hear all about it, learn some tips on how to say no.
HAMMER: I don`t know when to say no or yes. I don`t know.
Have you noticed, Brooke -- let`s just move on.
HAMMER: SUVs are getting bigger. The women driving them in suburbia are getting smaller, and they`re always talking on their cell phones. Two women made the same observation, wrote a song about the phenomenon that has become somewhat of a phenomenon itself. That whole deal, coming up in just a few minutes.
ANDERSON: Pretty funny. A lot of people can relate to it.
HAMMER: It is pretty funny.
But first tonight, the on-camera interview, the very first one, with the woman at the center of a nasty Hollywood battle. Denise Richards is finally talking about her divorce from Charlie Sheen and her feud with her former friend, Heather Locklear, who`s reportedly miffed because Richards has been seen with Locklear`s soon-to-be-ex Richie Sambora.
You get all that? Well, the upcoming issue of "People" magazine pretty much says it all: "Love, Lies and Betrayal." Even Locklear`s reported new boyfriend, comedian David Spade, is getting involved.
Harvey Levin from TMZ.com scored that exclusive interview with Denise Richards. We`ll speaking with him in just a moment. But, first, take a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HARVEY LEVIN, MANAGING EDITOR, TMZ.COM: Heather Locklear has made some kind of nasty comments about you, about your friendship with her, and I`m wondering, you know, given that you were good friends, that she seems to be suggesting, I guess, that there was something unsavory about you and Richie Sambora, if you have any reaction to her.
DENISE RICHARDS, ACTRESS: Well, you know, I wish Heather well and happiness. And it`s really unfortunate that it`s gotten to this point. And Heather knows, you know, why we aren`t friends, that I don`t want to get into with all of that.
But I`m sad that Heather has come out and portrayed it differently than it is, and Heather knows why and when her marriage ended with Richie, and she knows when and why my marriage ended with Charlie.
LEVIN: Does it hurt you that she`s done this?
RICHARDS: Yes. I think, any time anyone that you`ve been close to, saying things publicly, and especially -- I`m going through a very difficult divorce. And I`m in a custody battle. And, you know, Heather is privy to a lot of that.
But I understand why she`s hurt, as well. I understand that this would be very uncomfortable and it is upsetting. But, you know, it`s unfortunate that our friendship ended and the reasons why, and she knows exactly why that is.
So I think it`s best for everyone involved to just focus on our kids. We`re both going through divorces.
LEVIN: But you`re a person. Does this feel at all like a betrayal to you?
RICHARDS: Yes. I think any time -- you know, even David Spade saying stuff, and, you know, whoever else that it`s gotten back to me saying things, it is a betrayal, because a lot of it isn`t true, and they know that, and that`s what`s hard.
But, you know, I have to try and just stay focused on my kids and forget that part of it, as difficult as it is, and just focus on my children and getting through this really bad time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Well, as promised, here`s the man who got that interview, TMZ.com`s Harvey Levin, joining us from TMZ`s offices in Glendale, California, right now.
I have to tell you, Harvey, I was not expecting that at all. Denise is shockingly candid in that interview. Were you surprised by her candor?
LEVIN: I was a little bit surprised. I mean, this is a woman who has cause to be guarded right now. I mean, she has paparazzi following her almost everywhere she goes. There`s very little privacy in her life, and that usually does put people on guard.
But she really was. I mean, you know, A.J., she was kind of just this human being who`s got things crashing around her. And she`s trying to deal with a nasty divorce, and custody battle, and friendships ending, and publicity that she doesn`t want. And, you know, she just kind of put a human face on it all.
HAMMER: And she did speak with you about that divorce case with Charlie Sheen, which is just getting nastier by the day. In a court filing, of course, she accuses him of threatening her and accuses him of looking at pornography. Pills and prostitutes are brought up, as well.
He is denying all of this. I want to take a listen now to what Denise Richard had to say about all of that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEVIN: Charlie has gone on television now and essentially said that what you alleged in court, they were a pack of lies. Do you have any reaction to that?
RICHARDS: I think why people are so surprised by my declaration is that, you know, I never publicly revealed why I filed for divorce in the first place. And I was very, very private, and even when we tried to reconcile, I was very private about that.
You know, it`s extremely unfortunate it`s gotten to this point. It`s very sad. And all I can say is, you know, I did my declaration under oath, so...
LEVIN: You stand by it?
RICHARDS: I stand by it, and it`s sad that it`s gotten to this. And I know that he and I will get through this. And, you know, we just have to -- my focus is just getting my girls through this, because it`s very, very difficult and very sad.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: And as we know, America absolutely obsessed with this story, as we saw before, right there on the cover of "People" magazine, "Love, Lies and Betrayal." That pretty much tells the story right there. Why is this story getting such a huge response?
LEVIN: Well, I mean, A.J., this in some ways is a real-life "Melrose Place." You`ve got these two people, Heather and Denise, who were neighbors, literally next-door neighbors, best friends or really good friends, anyway. They were going through the breakup of their marriages at the same time, confiding in each other.
Then their marriages fall apart, and then after Denise Richards and Charlie split up, and after Heather and Richie Sambora split up, she starts dating Heather`s estranged husband. I mean, you can`t write this stuff.
And, you know, I just -- A.J., if I may, I want to make one kind of clarification here. When I talked to Denise and I asked her about, you know, that Heather had made some nasty comments -- she had made one kind of sarcastic comment coming out of a restaurant -- but maybe the better word I should have used is a sarcastic comment, because really neither person, at least publicly, has come out, you know, swinging.
David Spade did, you know, who has been linked romantically to Heather Locklear. He talked about, you know, pulling the knife out of Heather`s back. But that aside, really, Denise and Heather have been kind of guarded about what they said about each other in public.
HAMMER: But there`s a lot of nasty stuff generally floating out there, or at least the sentiment seems like it`s there. And you have Denise; you have Heather Locklear; you have Richie Sambora; you have Charlie Sheen. Basically, it feels like everybody is going to come out of this thing tarnished, don`t you think?
LEVIN: Well, they`ve got to figure this out. I mean, at a point, people have got to move on. That`s the trick to divorce, it`s getting over divorce and moving on with your life.
My guess -- and this, I think, is a pretty educated guess, because I`ve seen it -- at least as far as Charlie and Denise go, A.J., I think you`re going to see an abrupt settlement in this case, because they`re going to realize they`ve got two kids. And for their benefit and for the benefit of everybody, I think they`re just going to say, "Enough," and they`re going to settle this thing.
HAMMER: Yes, as I`ve said before, it would be nice to see them put the kids first.
Harvey, thanks so much for that. Harvey Levin from TMZ.com.
LEVIN: See you, A.J.
ANDERSON: Tonight, the real deal on Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. We`ve heard all the rumors, about everything from movie deals to child birthing. Well, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT sets the record straight at the rumor mill.
According to "People" magazine, Brad and Angelina currently have no plans to marry. As for their child, Angelina is not planning a water birth, as rumor had it, nor do she and Brad plan to name the baby after the African continent.
And Angelina`s mom, though ill, is not near death and did not make a dying wish that her daughter gives birth in her native France. So there you have it.
HAMMER: Well, coming up, it is a cultural phenomenon, to be sure, tiny women in big cars. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has the SUV song.
Plus, why some people just can`t say no.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SUSAN NEWMAN, AUTHOR, "THE BOOK OF NO": It`s hard to say no, because you`re always afraid of hurting that person`s feelings.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: But that little two-letter word just got a little easier to roll off the tongue. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT thumbs through "The Book of No." How you can turn yes, sir, into no way, Jose. That`s coming up.
HAMMER: Plus, Baldwin versus Basinger, the never-ending custody battle for their daughter. Hear what Kim Basinger is demanding a judge do about her ex-husband. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has the court papers. That`s coming up.
ANNOUNCER: Question. Open her mic.
ANDERSON: I think we want to ask you now to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." It is this: Protecting kids online: Should MySpace ban kids younger than 18? Keep voting at CNN.com/showbiztonight. Write us to at showbiztonight@CNN.com. Your e- mails are coming up a bit later.
ANNOUNCER: Stand by the break, everybody. And roll your break.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer.
They`re calling it a national phenomenon: teeny, tiny women driving big, old SUVs. Now, two Connecticut women have penned a song all about it, and this little ditty is truly catching on. Here`s CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): You`d dance, too.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP (singing): Oh, she`s a 90-pound suburban housewife...
MOOS: If it was your song, step on the gas and pump up the volume.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP (singing): Ninety-pound suburban housewife, driving in her SUV, talking on her cell phone, oblivious to you and me.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s a national phenomenon.
ROZANNE GATES, SONGWRITER: The cars are getting bigger, and the ladies are getting smaller, and they practically need a step ladder to get up into these rigs.
MOOS: Rozanne Gates and Suzie Sheridan drive the opposite of an SUV.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP (singing): In my little Corolla...
MOOS: Everywhere they drive around Westport, Connecticut, they see little women driving big SUVs.
GATES: There goes one.
MOOS: So they penned a song about it.
SUZANNE SHERIDAN, SONGWRITER: It`s something that`s meant to be light-hearted, but perhaps...
MOOS (on camera): There goes one. Wait, there goes one. Hey.
SHERIDAN: There goes another one. Yep, yep.
MOOS: Oh, look, she`s 90 pounds.
SHERIDAN: Yes, she`s our next-door neighbor.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP (singing): You know she may be your neighbor, she may be your wife...
MOOS (on camera): Speaking of wives, you`re a couple.
GATES: Yes. We are.
SHERIDAN: When you`re cool, say a couple of what?
MOOS (voice-over): Sealed with a civil union, they want America to wean itself off oil, and they`re hoping their SUV song drives home the point.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP (singing): Tons of steel and four big wheels, she`ll be driving like an SOB.
MOOS: They had a singer in Nashville record the song. It started to take off when the radio show "Car Talk" played it. Now you can buy it on iTunes. It`s no wonder people who don`t drive SUVs like it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That is so true!
MOOS: But it seems to strike a chord even with those it skewers.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it is so dead-on.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That`s pretty funny.
MOOS: In fact, the only quibble female SUV drivers had was with the 90-pound part.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ninety isn`t it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m a little more than 90 pounds, though, but this is awesome.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP (singing): Kids in the backseat, watching a little TV, she`s a 90-pound suburban housewife...
MOOS: Rozanne and Suzie dream of a certain singer for their song.
(on camera): Dolly Parton?
GATES: I have to tell you something: This is going to be the biggest hit you have ever had.
MOOS (voice-over): But so far, Dolly hasn`t bitten.
GATES: You have an SUV.
MOOS (on camera): Yes, but we have all this equipment we have to carry.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP (singing): Got a Diet Coke in one hand and a cell phone in the other, suburban housewife.
MOOS (voice-over): If you want to get mileage out of the song, try making sightings while you listen.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, she`s got her cell phone in her ear.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s talking, baby.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There`s another one.
MOOS (on camera): There`s another one, yes.
HAMMER: I don`t know if it would be Dolly`s biggest hit ever, but it certainly has Dolly`s name written all over it. That was CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
ANDERSON: Question for you: Are you one of those people who constantly says yes to everything? Do friends, family and co-workers always hit you up for favors because they know you won`t turn them down? Well, if you`re ready to take back your life, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has the book for you. It`s "The Book of No."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`d like to redeem my credit card miles.
DAVID SPADE, COMEDIAN: Yeah, no.
ANDERSON (voice-over): David Spade says it back in the Capital One "No Hassle Rewards" campaign, which spoofs lousy customer service agents who only know how to say no.
"Sex and the City" girls know when to say no. Carrie Bradshaw just said no when her publisher had the idea to put her naked -- yes, naked -- on the cover of her book.
SARAH JESSICA PARKER, ACTRESS: No, no, no, OK, OK, let me see it again. No, no, absolutely not. I would sooner die.
ANDERSON: "The Book of No: 250 Ways to Say It and Mean It" gives actual scenarios to help make saying no easier. Here`s something we`ve all faced. How do you say no when a friend asks you for money?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People are funny about money.
ANDERSON: "The Book of No" suggests saying this. "No, I would love to, but I am strapped." Or, "I don`t think our relationship should involve money."
Let`s see if Charlotte got it right when faced with whether or not to lend money to her friend Carrie.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I love you, but it`s not my job to fix your finances.
ANDERSON: Right on the money, Charlotte.
SHOWBIZ TONIGHT hit the streets and found out that, when it comes to money, saying no is no problem.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... say no if they want to borrow money. "I just don`t have it right now. I`m sorry."
ANDERSON: And what else do people have no problem saying no to?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I don`t want to marry you. No, I don`t want to take that job.
ANDERSON: But it`s not always easy saying no.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everybody wants to be liked. Nobody wants to be, like, the bad person or -- everybody wants to please everybody.
ANDERSON: And joining us now here in New York is Susan Newman, author of "The Book of No: 250 Ways to Say It and Mean It."
SUSAN NEWMAN, AUTHOR, "THE BOOK OF NO": Hi, good to be here.
ANDERSON: Oh, it`s good to have you. Why do so many of us just want to please everybody? Why do we have a tough time just saying no?
NEWMAN: Well, when you were two years old, you had no problem saying no, and then it got drummed out of you. When you were a toddler, if you didn`t share your toys, you were sent to your room.
ANDERSON: And it was called the terrible twos.
NEWMAN: The terrible twos, but then the terrible teens. If you didn`t listen, you had your curfew cut back. We all want to please people. We want to be helpful, but we`re not protecting ourselves. We`re on this yes treadmill at home, at the office, with our children.
We`ve got cell phones and e-mails to answer, and we just keep going, and going, and going, and we don`t stop to think: Can I do this? Do I have the time? What do I have to give up?
Because every yes means you`re going say no to something else, or every no means you`re going say yes to something else, and we can`t do it all.
ANDERSON: It can get overwhelming. Your schedule can become too packed.
Well, I want to talk about a few scenarios that your book covers. And the first one, I don`t really have a tough time with this one, because I love talking to my mom on the phone. We talk nearly every day, but some people think their mom pesters them, calling them four, five times a day. How do you say no to your mother?
NEWMAN: A lot of moms do that. And what happens to the people who can`t say no is they go back to their 12-year-old self, and it`s, "Yes, mom, yes, mom." And what you have to say to your mother is, "I can`t talk now. I`m busy," or come up with a schedule. "Mom, let`s talk every Friday at 4:00," and let her know that you`re busy and then, as a last resort, always let her know you love her. That`s the key. If you say, "I love you, mom," you`ll be off the hook.
ANDERSON: You`re in.
NEWMAN: You`re in. But let her know that, but she`ll start to respect you. And the last resort, use your caller I.D.
ANDERSON: Ah, screen those calls, and don`t be impolite with saying no. And another one, the friend. Say a friend asks you to be at her bridal party and you just can`t do it for some reason. How do you say no?
NEWMAN: OK, well, the first thing most of us do is we say yes before we think, before we say no. And what you have to say to her or say to yourself is: Can I afford this? Can I fly to wherever the wedding is?
If you`re the maid of honor, you have more duties, so you really want to think it through, no matter what you`re being asked, to be in the bridal party or any question, you always have a choice and you can always stall. So think it through and say, "Maybe, I`ll get back to you." And if you say no, this isn`t going to end the friendship. If she`s a true friend, she`ll understand.
ANDERSON: She`ll understand.
NEWMAN: You got it.
ANDERSON: Your book also says to watch out for people who might manipulate you into saying yes. What are some common ways that people manipulate you?
NEWMAN: Oh, they`ll flatter you. They`ll say, "Oh, I can`t put my makeup on. I can`t shop by myself. I really need you to help me." So that`s one way: They`ll beg. Begging is good. And they`ll just kind of suck you in and say, "You do it better."
ANDERSON: So watch out for manipulation.
NEWMAN: "I need you." Yes, and the scatter-brain who can`t ever get anything done and she`s always saying, "Bail me out."
ANDERSON: Well, there are 250 ways in your book to say it and mean it. Thank you for sharing some of them with us, Susan Newman.
NEWMAN: Thank you. Good to see you.
ANDERSON: We appreciate it. And the book is on store shelves now.
HAMMER: And now let`s get to tonight`s "Hot Headlines."
It`s the custody battle with no truce in sight. Kim Basinger now wants a judge to contain her ex-husband. According to TMZ.com, Basinger asked that Alec Baldwin be declared a vexatious litigant. That would mean that Baldwin would have to ask the court`s permission before filing papers of his own in the ongoing custody battle for their daughter.
Now, Baldwin`s lawyer says there is no legal or factual basis for Basinger`s request.
Sad news tonight for Tiger Woods` family. His beloved father, Earl Woods, has died. Earl fought a long battle with prostate cancer which eventually spread to other parts of his body. He died in his California home at the age of 74.
Tiger released the following statement. He said, "My dad was my best friend and greatest role model, and I will miss him deeply. I wouldn`t be where I am today without him." Funeral services have not been made public.
"Commander in Chief" has been impeached, on TV, anyway. ABC announced it`s yanking TV`s first female president for the rest of the season. Ironically, just last night, star Geena Davis accepted an award at the United Nations for her portrayal of President Mackenzie Allen. The final three episodes will air sometime next month.
And those are tonight`s "Hot Headlines." SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is coming right back.
ANDERSON: We`ve been asking you to vote online on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Protecting kids online: Should MySpace ban kids younger than 18?
The vote so far very one-sided: 81 percent of you say yes; 19 percent of you say no.
Some of the e-mails we`ve received. Kirsten from Ohio says, "Younger people tend not to have the life experience to realize that they are being duped."
Laura from Tennessee writes, "Aren`t parents supposed to be monitoring their kids?"
Thank you for your e-mails. Keep voting, CNN.com/showbiztonight.
HAMMER: And that is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Thanks a lot for watching. I`m A.J. Hammer.
ANDERSON: I`m Brooke Anderson. Have a great night, everybody. Stay tuned for more from CNN Headline News.
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