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Ben Affleck`s Scary Medical Crisis; Why the Government Wants a Bestselling Author to Help Fight Terrorism
Aired May 30, 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, CNN NEWS ANCHOR: Ben Affleck`s scary medical crisis, I`m A.J. Hammer in New York
SIBILA VARGAS, CNN NEWS ANCHOR: And why the government wants a best selling author to help fight terrorism. I`m Sibila Vargas in Hollywood. TV`s most provocative entertainment news show starts now.
HAMMER (voice-over): On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, a star is born. Tonight SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is in Namibia as the multi-million dollar fierce fight begins for the very first photos of the Brangelina baby.
Plus, how Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are already spending a ton of cash to help other babies. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is right there in Africa where they`re going bonkers over little Shiloh.
Super smash singer, James Blunt, he`s battled his way to the top of the charts with "You`re Beautiful" but it wasn`t long ago, he was on a real battle field dodging bullets. James Blunt`s stunning story in the interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
VARGAS: Hello, I`m Sibila Vargas in Hollywood.
HAMMER: I`m A.J. Hammer in New York. We are here to tell that that Brangelina mania has in fact become a worldwide phenomenon. In fact, so much attention is being paid to the newborn baby of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, named Shiloh; you`d think the messiah had come. Well, as a matter of fact, one interpretation of the name Shiloh happens to be messiah.
VARGAS: And today we learn new dramatic details about the birth of the Brangelina baby just as the battle began to get that all-important first picture.
(voice-over): The Jolie-Pitt clan, they could very well be the most famous family in the world. And right now SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you, a multi-million dollar bidding war is on for the very first picture of the newest edition, baby Shiloh Nouvel, Brad and Angelina`s healthy, seven pound little girl.
JESS CAGLE, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: They are the most beautiful couple in the world. I mean, there is something very intriguing about them.
VARGAS: Shiloh, whose name means the peaceful one, was born Saturday in the African country of Namibia. Word is that the couple will reportedly sell the first picture of the baby to a U.S. based magazine for $5 million. The money will be donated to UNICEF.
CAGLE: I think that everybody just wants to know what the baby of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie is going to look like.
VARGAS: Well, with their genes, we can bet it won`t be ugly. The birth heard round the world happened at this private hospital, called The Cottage, and now SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can confirms that Angelina underwent a C- section and that Brad and Angie`s L.A.-based obstetrician was flown in for the birth. He released this exclusive statement to "People" magazine saying, "Angelina underwent a scheduled cesarean due to breech presentation. The baby was a healthy seven pounds. Brad was with Angelina in the operating room the entire time and cut the up umbilical cord of his daughter. The surgery and birth went flawlessly."
To show their gratitude, the couple donated $300,000 to Namibian hospitals to help rebuild maternity wards. Not all Namibian parents are fortunate enough to give birth in a private facility like Brad and Angelina. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you that most people rely on state-run hospitals.
Namibia has one of the highest infant death rates in the world, 48 deaths occur in every thousand births. U.N. goodwill ambassador, Jolie and boyfriend Brad decided to have their baby in Namibia to draw attention to the area. Still, security for the star couple was extremely tight.
CAGLE: You would have to think that it`s easier to deal with the media when you`re in Namibia. I think the Namibian government actually stepped in and really helped them keep journalists at bay because wherever they go a media storm follows.
VARGAS: Many paparazzi and reporters have been basically banned from the area, the government imposed restrictions on who from the press could enter the country.
CAGLE: The Namibian government made it very difficult to go in and cover the birth. However, I`m not sure how well that worked because the hospital where she gave birth was actually swarmed with media.
VARGAS: It`s not just the government. The people of Namibia seemed to also want to protect the couple who helped put the remote country on the map, and who might one day help boost tourism. Here`s African radio DJ, Deacon, he appeared on CNN this weekend.
DEACON, DJ, RADIO WAVE: The local tourism board could never afford the kind of publicity that they have given us, just by having come to the country in the first place.
VARGAS: As the world pays attention to the Brangelina baby, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT was right there as brad Pitt`s ex-wife, Jennifer Aniston, was in Chicago with her reported boyfriend, Vince Vaughn, for the premiere of their new movie, ironically called, the "Break-Up."
VINCE VAUGHN, ACTOR: What my baby wants, my baby gets, you know that.
VARGAS: But Jen wasn`t talking about the new baby of her ex-husband, matter of fact, her publicist warned reporters they better not go there. The Jen was willing to open up a little about her life. She tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT that she still can`t get used to paparazzi hanging on her every move.
JENNIFER ANISTON, ACTOR: I`m always upset about it, but I`m exhausted being upset about it. You know? I just don`t want -- it`s just such an unrealistic portrayal of where I am at all or who I am and who gives -- let them all -- let everybody be happy, you know? That`s the sad thing is that everybody`s really happy and everybody`s really doing really well.
VARGAS: So she is doing well. What about the baby`s grandfather, John Voight, Jolie`s estranged dad? Well a spokesman tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT that Voight`s feeling great joy for Angelina and Brad and wishing them all the love in the world.
HAMMER: Well, the focus is certainly on the country of Namibia tonight, and joining us by video phone from Namibia, CNN correspondent, Robyn Curnow.
So Robin, the coverage of course has been incessant, and if we are to believe everything that we see, then we are to believe that everyone in Namibia is completely obsessed with the birth of Angelina Jolie and brad Pitt`s daughter and that they`re talking about nothing else. Now I find that kind of hard to believe. Is that really true?
ROBYN CURNOW, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT: No, not at all. There`s one thing Namibia is not and that is star struck. In fact, I`ve been speaking to a number of Namibians the past few days I`ve been here in this small sleepy west coast town of Flaukalment (ph), and the people I`ve been speaking to have really exhibited varying degrees of indifference. Some people just don`t care, some people say well, good for them, get on with their lives. And a lot of people, actually, don`t even know who they are. So that is, I suppose, quite indicative that people here in Namibia are not as obsessed with celebrity as perhaps everybody is in the U.S. or even in Europe. So there`s not that sense here, no, not at all.
HAMMER: I imagine the influx of the paparazzi has been a bit of a culture shock. Can you set the scene for me and give me a sense of the behavior of the paparazzi? Are they actually swarming? Does the government have tight control over the situation there with the paparazzi?
CURNOW: I spent the day with one paparazzi today, and he told me that there are just a handful of paparazzi here, at the most in the past few weeks there`s probably been about 10 paparazzi. So the image of foreign journalists swarming into this small town is not correct at all. In fact, they`ve been quite difficult to find and are laying quite low.
Now, the guy I spoke to today, his name was Steve, he wouldn`t give his surname, he`s from England, from London, he`s been here for three weeks and said that this is one of the most difficult assignments he`s ever had to cover. He said he`s taken photographs of Nicole Kidman and Tom cruise in Australia a few years ago and also of Paris Hilton in Grease, but he said it`s been really difficult to get a shot of Angelina Jolie and Brad and their children he said it`s just been really, really tough.
Now that`s for a number of reasons. The security detail here has been very, very, very good about keeping public and photographers away. Also, there`s been a lot of support from the Namibian government. The police have also helped maintain the privacy of this couple, so all of that together has made the life of the paparazzi here very difficult.
HAMMER: And the reports were that Brad and Angelina actually had power given to them by the Namibian government the help decide who gets to stay and cover the birth of their child and who gets kicked out. Now, we know that a few reporters have been detained along the way. I have less than 30 seconds, but did Brad and Angelina have any role in reporters being detained that you know of.
CURNOW: You know, I wouldn`t know just what kind of a role they have got in that. But we do know that they have been given quite a wide berth in terms of protection. A lot of people here talking about perhaps maybe some press freedoms have been trampled on slightly. But whether that`s because the Namibian authorities have perhaps allowed this couple to, you know, live a little bit more at liberty allowed this couple to -- you know, live a little bit more liberally, you know, with a bit more protection than some other people. Perhaps that`s the answer. But in terms of Brad and Angelina, perhaps not overstepping the line a little bit, I don`t know about that.
HAMMER: Well, thank you for joining us from the other side of the world. CNN correspondent, Robyn Curnow reporting for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT from Namibia, Africa. We appreciate you being with us.
VARGAS: Well, all this Angelina Jolie stuff about having the baby in Africa and donating money to help other babies out. What do you think? It`s our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day. Angelina Jolie: Is she the mother of the year? We`d love to hear from you so go to cnn.com/showbiztonight and send us your e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
HAMMER: Well, We`re not sure if Gwen Stefani is happy that the Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie baby arrived this weekend. That`s because Gwen herself gave birth and not for little girl Shiloh, you bet this would be the big baby story of our day. The solo pop star and No Doubt lead singer welcomed seven and a half pound Kingston James McGregor Rossdale into the world on Friday. That`s a long name. Did you it all? Kingston James McGregor Rossdale Yes, Rossdale, as in Gavin Rossdale. Gavin, of course, the former front man of the rock band, Bush. This is the couple`s very first baby. They got married back in 2002 and everyone is doing just fine.
VARGAS: Well, coming up, Michael Jackson makes his very first appearance since being acquitted of child molestation charges. Why we think where he showed up is absolutely ridiculous, next. Plus we`ll also get this:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
Don`t know where she`s going. She`s walking parallel with the building toward the park. Yeah, she`s with the Zahara, she`s with the young girl, her daughter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Now that the Brad Pitt and Angelina baby is born, well, things are really heating up with the paparazzi. In just a bit, we`re going to take you inside the nonstop pursuit of that perfect picture.
VARGAS: And James Blunt, he battled his way to the top of the charts with "You`re Beautiful," but it wasn`t long ago that he was on a real battlefield fight for his life. It`s the interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT tonight.
But, first, tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly Great American Pop Culture Quiz." Who was not a cast member of the TV series, "In Living Color? Was it A. Chris Rock, B. Jamie Foxx, C. Chris Tucker, or D. Damon Wayans? You think you know the answer? Well, stick around. We`ll be right back.
VARGAS: So again, tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly Great American Pop Culture Quiz." Who was not a cast member of the TV series, "In Living Color? Was it A. Chris Rock, B. Jamie Foxx, C. Chris Tucker, or D. Damon Wayans?
Well, it was Chris Tucker who was not part of the wacky sketch comedy series that aired in the 1990s, so if you answered "C," you are absolutely correct.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT for a Tuesday night, yes, it`s Tuesday not Monday. And we are TV`s most provocative entertainment news TV show. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York. Time now for a little story that just made us day "That`s Ridiculous." So, of course, we know Michael Jackson was acquitted of child molestation charges last year in California. But, come on, Michael. If you`re going to make your first public appearance since hearing the words "not guilty," do you really think it`s a good idea to make that appearance at an orphanage? Yes, it`s true. Jackson was in Tokyo over the weekend to accept MTV Japan`s Legend Award. Now, as part of that little trip, he met up with 160 children at a Japanese or orphanage. Michael, you don`t want to be starting something right now. So, we say, "That`s Ridiculous."
VARGAS: Well, tonight it`s a miracle. That`s what doctors are saying about Kimberly Dozier serving a roadside bomb attack in Iraq yesterday. The CBS News reporter was critically wounded while traveling with the U.S. military convoy. Sadly, two other CBS journalists, a cameraman and a sound technician, along with a U.S. soldier and Iraq contractor, were killed. According to one of the doctors who treated Dozier, she was just inches from death.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LT. COLONEL BOB MAZUR, TREATED KIMBERLY DOZIER: At one point she -- her pulse stopped. She didn`t have a heartbeat. She was as sick as you get.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VARGAS: She underwent surgery to remove shrapnel from her head. She`s recovering at a military hospital in Germany.
ABC News anchor, Bob Woodruff, who has worked with Dozier, and two CBS Crew were killed is still recovering from a bomb attack he suffered in Iraq in January. Said he was devastated when he heard the news and that his thoughts are with the families.
HAMMER: So, imagine getting a phone call from the White House asking you to take part in a top secret program to help stop terrorists dead in their tracks. Well, it actually happened to bestselling author Brad Thor. He has been writing high-octane thrillers that revolve around a counterterrorism operative. Brad Thor`s new book, "Takedown" arrived in stores today. Brad joining me here in New York.
It`s good to meet you.
BRAD THOR, AUTHOR: Nice to meet you. Thanks A.J.
HAMMER: Welcome to the program. So, explain this to me. You`re, what? Jogging in the mountains in Utah, and you get a phone call. Oh, there`s this program called the Red Cell Program. We want you involved.
THOR: You know, it`s like a movie and I knew I had a lot of fans at the White House, the State Department, Department of Deference. And I had heard about these things where they got people together to kind of try to anticipate what terrorists might do. But I was shocked when my phone rang and the call said, will you come to D.C. and do this?
HAMMER: We have talked about these programs before. Tell me the types of people who are in it. Because there are film producers, people who come up with, you know, the big terrorist plots for films and there are scientists and people of that nature.
THOR: Futurists, basically the alphabet soup of agencies in D.C. and then I was one of two thrillers authors that they invited in to come up and brainstorm.
THOR: Because they love my books and I guess, well I know that my plots are so real to life of what`s happening out there, I get tons of fan mail from soldiers Afghanistan and Iraq and a lot of our intelligence men and women that say, you know what? You`re an author that, it`s fiction, but this is exactly what we`re facing on a daily basis and people just don`t know how much of this is really going on.
HAMMER: So, you really are saying that art is imitating life and you`re carrying that out in your book. And we`ll talk more about that in a second. Specifically, I want to talk about what you guys do in this Red Cell Program to the extent that you can. But, basically, you`re talking about different scenarios where opportunities might present themselves to terrorists. For instance, we`re coming up on hurricane season. We`re just into it right now. Obviously we saw what happened with Hurricane Katrina and our reserves were really tapped. Is that the kind of thing you`re talking about?
THOR: That is one of the things. Obviously, like you said, there`s only a certain amount we can talk about that was actually developed in there. But this was one of the things. Would terrorist it is exploit a hurricane, where all of the resources for an area have been redeployed someplace else to let the hurricane come in and would they take advantage of bombing a shelter or something like that? What might they do where they could have a high death count and a big psychological impact? So that`s what the government`s trying to do is stay several steps ahead of the terrorists by bringing creative thinkers from outside the beltway to help brainstorm these things.
HAMMER: And would you say that that is actually the scenario you`d spoke about, so that we should be concerned about?
THOR: Actually that was developed in another -- in another set of think tank people than me. So I wasn`t involved with the hurricane scenario. But it`s very plausible. I mean, they are really gunning for us. And yes, we haven`t really had anything happen since 9/11, but we still need to be extremely vigilant because they`re doing their doing their own think tanks.
HAMMER: Anything that has come out of Hollywood that we have seen played out or we should be concerned play itself out?
THOR: You know, I`ve seen a lot of stuff that`s in Hollywood. I know it DHS raised concern about cruise ships and the safety on cruise ships and what could be done there and so we`ve seen -- there`s a lot of stuff. I don`t think anything is outside the realm of possibility. As a matter of fact, my new book is a perfect example, with taking advantage of sealing off Manhattan for six hours to achieve a particular end. I think the scary thing for me is the enemy is already among us. I`m not worried about border security and these guys getting in. I`m concerned about the bad guys that are already here.
HAMMER: They are here.
THOR: Yeah, they are here.
HAMMER: And the cells are developing. And in "Takedown" Scot Harvath, you recurring character is this counterterroris op, which is basically kind of what you have become, is dealing with these different types of scenarios. So back to that question of art imitating life, it really is what`s going on. It is not just fiction.
THOR: No. There`s no question about it. It is imitating life. And I think probably people really need to keep their eyes and ears open. And that`s what the government is doing, by bringing quick thinkers, artistic creative people in to say, hey, what could happen? Brad, things in your book are very plausible. I mean, that`s why I got asked in, because they`ve read my books and they said, all right, this guy`s really got his finger on the pulse of what`s happening.
HAMMER: And you do have a tremendous imagination, obviously. It`s what you do for a living. Your books are best sellers. Are you at all concerned that things that you write about could present real suggestions that we could see play out? And I`m sure, perhaps, you`ve had conversations about this with the government.
THOR: I do. I`m concerned about that, but that`s why I`m making sure that -- today`s the release date on this book, but the people I know at the White House in the State Department, Department of the Feds, got this a long time ago.
HAMMER: So they actually, the government, will vet your books and say, you know what, maybe take that out? And will you react to that?
THOR: I`ve worked with -- some of the people I`ve worked with who are my sources in the government within the military who help me with my books, they see them before they go to press. And I have been asked at time where they`ve said, oh, OK, we told you "A" we told you "C" all right, you figured out "B." "B" can`t be in the book. You need to pull "B" out of the ak book or reshape it. And of course I do it. I mean, that`s what I do as a patriot. I want to make sure that we`re not giving the bad guides too much stuff.
HAMMER: Hey, don`t want to tell them too much what they may not have already thought about. Brad Thor, it`s a pleasure to meet you. Thanks a lot with the book. Once again, the book is called "Takedown" and you`ll find it in stores now.
VARGAS: Ben Affleck rushed to the hospital. We`ll tell you what happened and how he`s doing in tonight`s "Hot Headlines." Plus, we`ve also got this:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chicken. Somebody`s going to get seriously injured or killed in a car accident.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Chasing celebrities for that perfect shot. Tonight, are the paparazzi going too far to get that got-to-have picture or is it a matter of time before somebody actually gets very hurt? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT investigates.
VARGAS: And singing sensation, James Blunt, he battled his way to the top of the charts with "You`re Beautiful," but it wasn`t long before he -- when he was in a real battlefield, dodging bullets himself. James Blunts stunning story in the interview, you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Tomorrow, how would you like Bon Jovi to play your bar mitzvah? How about 50 Cent at your company picnic? You can meet the man who makes that happen tomorrow. He books the biggest stars for private parties and we`re going to find out exactly how he gets the job done. That`s tomorrow on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
VARGAS: Well, "X" really marked the spot. The third time`s a charm. Whatever the cliche you want to use, "X-Men: The Last Stand" shattered the box office this weekend. It pulled in about $123 million, making it the biggest four-day Memorial Day weekend ever. For those of you playing along at home, 1997`s "Jurassic Park: The Lost World" had that title.
Well, more fun facts, Sir Ian McKellen stars "X-Men" and the No. 2 film this weekend, "The da Vinci Code." Now, those films have pulled in $550 million worldwide, so far. The question is, who would come out on top in a Ian versus Ian battle? Ian "Magneto" or Ian the religious researcher? Well, I don`t know. You`ve seen the comic booker hero, but he was pretty tough with those canes in "The da Vinci Code." Well, here`s the rest of the top five, the animated "Over the Hedge," Tom Cruise`s "Mission: Impossible III" and the cruise ship disaster remake, "Poseidon." And by the way, our executive producer bailed out of the "X-Men" before the credits were over, so if anyone knows what the secret scene was at the end, please write us so that he stops bugging us.
HAMMER: I actually saw -- I know what the secret scene is. I`m not telling. Moving on, in fact, another star split. Coming up, we`ll tell you which Oscar winning actress and her husband have decided to call it quits after eight years. We`ve also got this:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now that the parallel with the building toward the park. Yeah, she`s with Zahara, she`s with the young girl, her daughter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VARGAS: Now that the Brangelina baby is born, things are really heating up with the paparazzi, we`ll take you inside the non-stop pursuit of that perfect picture.
HAMMER: And for 30 years comedians everywhere they have been working Jimmy Hoffa`s name into their punch line. Tonight, will those laughs about the missing union boss come to an end? Find out when SHOWBIZ TONIGHT returns in just a minute.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, it is 30 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York
VARGAS: And I`m Sibila Vargas in Hollywood. This is TV`s most provocative entertainment news show.
HAMMER: Sibila, I know you know the words. I know you`ve been singing along as we`ve been playing clips of the song.
VARGAS: You`re beautiful.
HAMMER: Thank you very much. He easily has one of the catchiest hit songs of the year with, "You`re Beautiful." He`s got a multimillion selling album to go along with it. Everybody knows the song. It transcends cultural lines, age lines, all radio format, it doesn`t matter, you know the song. Now, James Blunt has a military background, a lot of people do may not realize, which is including dodging bullets on the battlefield and guarding the queen of England. We will speak with James Blunt here in our studio in just a few minutes.
VARGAS: So, you`ve got a lot to sing and talk about. Well, the search for Jimmy Hoffa hasn`t yielded much except 31 years of jokes and movie references and coming up, A.J. we`ll take a look at the comedy gold mine is the Hoffa case and what it`s become. Does it ever end? I don`t know.
HAMMER: Jimmy Hoffa, by the way, is buried under the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT set.
VARGAS: Oh, is that where he is?
HAMMER: But first tonight, as we reported earlier, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are the parents of a new baby girl. Shiloh Nouvel was born over the weekend in Namibia Africa where Jolie and Pitt have been holed up since April to avoid the paparazzi. Well now, the story really turns to when we`re going to see the first photo of the baby. Word is, the couple is actually going to sell the first picture of Shiloh to a U.S. based magazine for, are you ready for this -- $5 million. The money to be donated to UNICEF. That kind of money certainly ups the ante in what is already a high stakes paparazzi game. Here`s CNN`s Kyra Phillips for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Still on Angelina`s trail, Ben and his paparazzi pals follow the actress into a parking lot.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The aisle that I`m on is one more down all the way at the end. You see one truck, DirecTV, the DirecTV truck. That same aisle, four spots to her right.
PHILLIPS: They have her Range Rover cornered. She`s finally in their sights.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey Rob, I`m looking with binoculars. That`s not her in the driver`s seat. Is she in the passenger seat? Well, if she gets out and walks towards the building, then it will be fairly easy. Got to go through that back road.
No, I don`t see it. No. Where? Right here. Yeah? Jolie`s out. Jolie`s out. I don`t know where she`s going. She`s walking parallel with the building towards the park. Is she with Zahara, the young girl, her daughter. Going toward the building now. They`re going toward the building now. Straight to you. Straight to you.
PHILLIPS: And straight to the pages of "Celebrity Weekly," "In Touch" and "people." Ben and company have bagged a big bounty for their paparazzi agency, Bauer Griffin. But agency co-owner Frank Griffin is coy about how much their photos can fetch.
FRANK GRIFFIN, BAYER GRIFFIN CO-OWNER: If anybody tells it`s a lie. One week a picture can be worth $1,000. The next week it can be worth $10,000, the week after, nothing.
PHILLIPS: He admits though, that the exclusive images his agency snagged of Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn earned upwards of $250,000. "Us Weekly" reportedly paid $500,000 for their exclusive photos of Brad and Angelina on a beach in Africa.
So it`s not surprising the limits the paparazzi will go to for a hot celebrity shot. But how far is too far?
KEN SUNSHINE, PUBLICIST: They`re totally out of control.
JENNIFER ANISTON, ACTRESS: They are dangerous. These guys drive on sidewalks where there are pedestrians. They are -- they drive recklessly.
PHILLIPS: Back in December, Angelina Jolie was stampeded by a pack of paparazzi outside a New York fundraiser.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everybody back down now! Everybody back up!
PHILLIPS: Teen queen Lindsay Lohan got into two collisions last year she claimed were caused by paparazzi.
SUNSHINE: Lindsay Lohan almost did get killed by some lunatic that purposely rammed her car. What kind of behavior is that?
PHILLIPS: But the paparazzi were not charged in either incident. Other actors including Reese Witherspoon and Scarlett Johansson have also blamed traffic accidents on overaggressive paparazzi.
REESE WITHERSPOON, ACTRESS: I think there is criminal behavior going on.
SUNSHINE: Can you imagine driving up or down the Hollywood hills and having a team of desperate lunatics, one behind you, one in front of you, who are cutting you off purposely, playing chicken. Somebody`s going to get seriously injured or killed in a car accident.
GRIFFIN: I think every care is taken, and I have to emphasize. There`s never an intention of causing damage. And everyone wants to draw a parallel between Princess Diana and her tragic death in Paris.
PHILLIPS: Diana`s death in 1997 while being pursued by photographers, unleashed a backlash against the paparazzi. But French investigators blamed the crash on this man, Diana`s chauffeur who was drunk and speeding, not the paparazzi.
PETER HOWE, AUTHOR: Even though they you could say, well, they weren`t a direct cause. A lot of people would say will they were absolutely an indirect cause.
PHILLIPS: Critics accuse the paparazzi of trespassing on a celebrity`s right of privacy.
GRIFFIN: They create a monster, the press publicity, then they try to cage the beast. They will to anything to get the picture published or appear in the news, they`ll literally cartwheel down Sunset Boulevard in their underpants on.
Then when they`re successful and they try to cage the monster, they try and control it, they can`t.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, hey, hey. Relax.
PHILLIPS: Even Lindsay Lohan admitted in a CNN interview, before her accident, how the paparazzi and fame go hand in hand.
LOHAN: No one has a reason to complain when they are following you. It`s when they are not following you. That`s when you should get scared.
SUNSHINE: There are some obvious examples out there of celebrities who crave that attention. There are a lot of celebrities that don`t. And they should have the right to be protected from absolutely abusive behavior. There is just something weird about a human being whose livelihood, quote, unquote, means living in the trees outside a celebrities` house.
GRIFFIN: Contrary to what Ken Sunshine says, it doesn`t happen. I have a thousand magazines in the next room and if you can show me one picture that`s been taken inside someone`s house or of children playing inside the yard, it simply doesn`t -- it`s not the case.
PHILLIPS: But the public wants to know what goes on behind closed doors. So who is at fault for stocking Angelina? Is it the paparazzi who are accused of going to any extreme to snap a money-making shot?
GRIFFIN: We can go all day. We can spend the whole week and take lots and lots of pictures of famous people. And if it`s not what the market demands, then we are not going to sell them.
PHILLIPS: Or is it the fault of the celebrity weekly who splash their pages with high-priced photos to sell magazines.
ANISTON: You know you have sick women out there like Bonnie Fullers of the world who are just feeding it.
FULLER: We work only with reputable agencies and we are very careful that we would only buy photographs that were not taken in any way that would endanger a celebrity.
LARRY HACKETT, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: And if magazines like ours don`t run photographs of people being stalked and harassed, perhaps eventually the bottom will fall out of this market and that`s all we can do right now.
PHILLIPS: Or, in the end, is the public`s obsession to blame, a celebrity obsession that shows no signs of fading away.
PETER CASTRO, EXECUTIVE EDITOR, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: Yes, 20 years from now we will be as interested and obsessed with celebrities. Because that`s just about the time that Brad and Angelina`s child will be going to college, so we`ll be there.
HAMMER: While seeing a footage of Angelina Jolie in her SUV, and you have a team of cars with their walkie-talkies telephones communicating with one another, just to get that shot. Imagine that being your life. But, as they say, it does come with the territory. That was CNN`s Kyra Phillips for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
And we have been asking you to vote on-line on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s question of the day. Get on the World Wide Web and tell us. Angelina Jolie: Is she the mother of the year? What do you think? Keep voting at cnn.com/showbiztonight an write to us if you`ve got more to say, email@example.com is our e-mail address. And we`ll read some of your e-mails tomorrow.
VARGAS: Well, time now for tonight`s "Hot Headlines." Tonight Ben Affleck is said to be recuperating at home after being rushed to the hospital for a migraine. Affleck`s wife, Jennifer Garner, drove him to the emergency room at a Cambridge, Massachusetts hospital yesterday afternoon. He was treated for a migraine and released about two hours later. Affleck is in Massachusetts directing a movie called "Gone, Baby Gone."
And it looks like Hilary Swank and Chad Lowe haven`t been able to work out their differences. "People" magazine reports the couple has decided to divorce. They announced in January that they were separating but said they were hopeful they would be able to get through it. Swank and Lowe have been married since 1997.
Well, the actor who is perhaps best known as his role as the principal in the "Breakfast Club" has died. Paul Gleason`s wife said Gleason died at a California hospital from a rare form of lung cancer linked to asbestos. He was 67 years old. Gleason was a minor league baseball player before he became an actor appearing in more than 60 movies. Amd those are tonight`s "Hot Headlines."
HAMMER: All right, Sibila, well when you think of Paris Hilton, what word comes to mind? Probably not shy, but, you heard me right, why Paris Hilton had to overcome shyness. I`ve got that coming up next. We`ll also:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JON STEWART, "THE DAILY SHOW": Jimmy Hoffa, still looking for Jimmy Hoffa. That means we`ll find Osama bin Laden in 2037. (END VIDEO CLIP)
VARGAS: The search for Jimmy Hoffa and the 31 years of jokes that Hollywood and comedians have dug up. We`ll show you the highlights. That`s all coming up.
HAMMER: And the beautiful voice, the beautiful songs of James Blunt, the singer`s story you might not have heard. James Blunt joins us coming up in the interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT for a Tuesday night. We are TV`s most provocative entertainment news show. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York. Time now for another story that just made us say, "That`s Ridiculous." Now, you may have hear, Paris Hilton has an album coming out. Yes, an album of music. Today we learned it is actually going to be a mix of reggae, pop, and hip-hop. Let`s just stop and imagine what that would be like for just a moment.
Anyway, the first single is going to be released soon, it`s a reggae song, and it`s called, are you ready for this? "Stars are Blind." Now, she happened to tell a magazine in Hong Kong that, to become a singer, she had to overcome, are you ready for this coming from Paris Hilton? Shyness. Yes, the oh so shy Paris Hilton singing reggae. Now, "That`s Ridiculous.
VARGAS: OK. So where in the world is Jimmy Hoffa? The FBI has been searching for Jimmy Hoffa`s remains at a horse barn in suburban Detroit. Now, ever since Hoffa disappeared in 1975, his story has been enduring mystery and a veritable gold mine for comedians. Here`s CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): As long as they keep digging for Jimmy Hoffa, the comedians will keep unearthing those Jimmy Hoffa jokes.
DAVID LETTERMAN, "THE LATE SHOW": They said he was last seen on a duck hunting trip with Dick Cheney.
MOOS: Missing for 31 years, Hoffa has come to symbolize that which cannot be found.
JON STEWART, "THE DAILY SHOW": Jimmy Hoffa, still looking for Jimmy Hoffa. That means we`ll find Osama bin Laden in 2037.
MOOS: For many who weren`t even born yet when Hoffa disappeared, he`s a complete mystery.
(on camera): Who is Jimmy Hoffa?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have no idea.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who is it? I don`t know.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have skirts older than that boy. Jimmy Hoffa was a racketeer.
MOOS (voice-over): But those under 30 know him best as a movie line ...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They`re going to bury you right next to Jimmy Hoffa.
MOOS: ... or the punch line to a fat joke in "The Nutty Professor."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think I found where they hid Jimmy Hoffa.
MOOS: But there`s one place that everyone jokes about, even "The Simpsons."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I always knew him actually from -- supposedly he was buried under Giants Stadium.
MOOS: A self-described hit man spread the story that Hoffa was buried in the end zone, near section 107. Even players joked about hearing something underfoot.
CARL BANKS, NEW YORK GIANTS LINEBACKER: I heard somebody talking one time, too. You know, he said help, help.
MOOS (on camera): But wait, somebody`s already found Jimmy Hoffa on eBay.
(voice-over): Jimmy Hoffa found on a piece of toast, just like that grilled cheese with the outline of the Virgin Mary. In Milford, Michigan, site of the latest dig, they`re posting digs of their own. "FBI, you`re outstanding in your field," T-shirts saying "The FBI digs Milford. Do you"? And those famous hand reaching out of the ground cupcakes, they`ve sold over 1,800 of them, some to FBI agents.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I discovered him through the "Weekly World News." They had a ridiculous article about saying he wasn`t buried under Giants Stadium, he`s actually buried on the moon.
MOOS: After three decades of comedians counting on them, there`s only one thing that could kill of those Jimmy Hoffa jokes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of these days they`re going to find that son of a gun!
VARGAS: And it looks like the jokes can continue. The FBI is wrapping up its search in Michigan after just two weeks with no trace of his remains. That was CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Well, these days, you can`t turn on the radio without hearing this. "You`re beautiful. You`re beautiful. You`re beautiful, it`s true."
Everybody knows it. Everybody sings along. I defy you to tell me otherwise. But, James Blunt, the man behind that song, isn`t just your every day crooner. In the years we didn`t know his name or that song he was a captain in the British army. From the war in Kosovo to guarding the queen mother, Blunt served his country and never loss site of his dream to become a fulltime musician. The album is called "Back to Bedlam." James Blunt joining me here in New York.
It`s a pleasure to welcome you to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, James.
JAMES BLUNT, MUSICAL ARTIST: Hey, nice to be here.
HAMMER: You know, they say the music business is tough, but I think with your background, particularly in the military, you`ll have absolutely no problem no matter where you go. It`s interesting, I mentioned you were a captain, you were in Kosovo, you wrote one of the songs on "Back to Bedlam" while you were stationed in Kosovo. I imagine seeing the news everyday coming out of Iraq, you can really directly relate to what the soldiers are going through there.
BLUNT: Well, yeah, in many ways. I have friend and family who were over there so I hear firsthand what it`s like.
HAMMER: But you were actually in harm`s way when you were on the battlefield, weren`t you? I mean, you were dealing with daily situation where you could have gotten yourself hurt or killed.
BLUNT: Yeah, it was a war zone. Yeah, I guess also you expect those things as a soldier. That you`re with a team and you`re trained as such. And so it`s to expect, and you deal with it.
HAMMER: And you did your time, and as I mentioned, you actually had the opportunity, when given any assignment of your choice, you guarded the queen mum in England.
BLUNT: Yes. Actually the queen`s mounted bodyguard. So I actually I pranced around with the horse in a ridiculous outfits, really, for Japanese tourists.
HAMMER: Basically for the tourists to see.
BLUNT: Yeah, it`s a very special job, and a huge honor to do.
HAMMER: And that was basically how you wrapped up and wound out your service. But, if you were approached about serving in Iraq, is that something that you would have considered doing.
BLUNT: You don`t really get a choice as a soldier. You don`t pick and choose your wars, actually. You go where you`re sent. But I think, whether you believe in it or not, I still would have like have, you know, had I been in the army at least with your contemporizes, at list try and bring a little bit of sense to a place where there`s a lot of chaos, it is a confused place. It`s interesting. You know, you asked about that, the press doesn`t give you a full picture and politicians don`t give you a genuine true picture and the only time I got a real view of what was going on is Kosovo is when I went into Kosovo and met the people whose country it really was. It`s difficult to exactly see the truth in Iraq without having actually been there.
HAMMER: What do you think we would be most surprised about that is going -- from your experience in Kosovo, that goes on at a time of war that we don`t see back at home?
BLUNT: Well, you know, I think we probably do get a lot of clarity in how obscene it is, how destructive those environments are and how desperately sad it is that humans, who are nearly very similar to each other, but in those environments, turn upon each other, and lose all sense of compassion.
HAMMER: Yeah, that is definitely the case. And, you know, you were pursuing your music before you became a military man. You took the time off to be -- you know, to serve your country. When you were in Kosovo and you were on the battlefield, dreaming of your future, could you ever have managed it would have achieved the level of success that it now has achieved? I mean, that song in particularly, lightening in a bottle, it`s rare when a hit of that magnitude comes along.
BLUNT: Sure, no, I hadn`t imagined it at all. I started writing songs when I was 14 years old and that`s when I decided to be a musician. And I really did it because I wanted to -- well, I wrote songs to express what I felt inside about different experiences through life and my am ambition was to then document these in the form of an album and that`s why I wrote "Back to Bedlam" as an album and I wanted to just hold that one copy and say that I enjoyed it -- be on that -- in order to make a second album, a subsequent albums, I needed a few people to like it. And maybe go out and buy it, but I had no idea quite so many people would do so.
HAMMER: Now, that being said, obviously you want people to like it, you want them to buy it so more people will get to know your music. But is it a fantasy to have that -- you know, you`re the first artist from the U.K. to go No. 1 here in the states in a decade. That`s pretty big.
BLUNT: Yeah, it`s mind blowing, really. And nothing I`d expected. I just enjoy being a musician and I wanted to carry on being a musician. And so it is remarkable what it`s done. But I`m very lucky. I`m on a world tour and it`s the second U.S. tour that I`ve done this year and I`m coming back in the fall.
HAMMER: See, we can`t get enough of you.
BLUNT: So, well, I`m very lucky to be doing so. And I tour with a band, and I`m a musician and I do so -- play music with a band every single day, so I`m very lucky for that.
HAMMER: And as intensely a personal song as "You`re Beautiful" is, and of course, songs take on meanings to different people, but basically this song is about seeing your girlfriend, your ex-girlfriend on a subway with another guy. And, as the video tells the story, you actually end up ending it all. Have you managed to separate yourself from that? You sing the song all time, but do you still feel a little bit of that pain when you`re performing it?
BLUNT: Well, as a performer, I feel where the song came from every single song...
HAMMER: Every time you sing it?
BLUNT: Well, that song was only about one second in my life. There are other songs that I sing that are much more meaningful and last the test of time and there are some that are great fun and others that are sad. The album is -- of ups and of downs. And, yeah, s a performer, it is my job to feel emotional about the songs otherwise it wouldn`t be worth turning up.
HAMMER: Well, congratulations on the success of the song and the album because there`s a lot more to it than just that song everybody has come to know. And we appreciate you dropping by.
BLUNT: It`s a pleasure.
HAMMER: All RIGHT, James Blunt. The album, "Back to Bedlam" in stores now. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s coming right back.
VARGAS: It`s time now to see what`s coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Here`s your SHOWBIZ Marquee.
Tomorrow is Katie`s big goodbye. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT right there at the "Today Show" at the Katie Couric era ends. Watch what happens at the big bon voyage. That`s tomorrow.
Also, would you like Bon Jovi to play at your bar mitzvah? How about 50 Cent at your company picnic? I`d like 50 Cent rapping (UNINTELLIGIBLE) at my bar mitzvah, that`s what I`d like. Tomorrow, meet the man who can make that happen. He books the biggest stars for private parties. We`ll find out how he gets the job done, tomorrow on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. And that is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Thanks for watching. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
VARGAS: And I`m Sibila Vargas in Hollywood. Stay tuned for the latest for "CNN Headline News." Goodnight everyone, goodnight A.J.