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Larry Birkhead is the Father of Anna Nicole`s Child; Will Almost Definitely Get Custody
Aired April 10, 2007 - 23:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
A.J. HAMMER, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT ANCHOR: It`s official. Larry Birkhead is the father of Anna Nicole Smith`s baby! I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
BROOKE ANDERSON, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT ANCHOR: And Larry Birkhead`s former attorney right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. TV`s most provocative entertainment news show starts right now.
HAMMER: On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LARRY BIRKHEAD, FATHER OF ANNA NICOLE`S CHILD: I hate to be the one that told you this, but I told you so.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: A huge day in the Anna Nicole Smith saga. The DNA results are in, and SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is right there in the Bahamas for the explosive news. Larry Birkhead is the father of baby Dannielynn. So what happens next? Plus, Anna Nicole`s sister is right here in the interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
Don Imus suspended, and the women speak. For the first time, the Rutgers women`s basketball team comes forward to say what they really thought about Imus` outrageous comments about them. Will they meet with him face to face? Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT with the Don Imus outrage!
Hello, I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. And you know, A.J., this is the day that we`ve been waiting months for. Tonight we now know the paternity of Anna Nicole Smith`s baby daughter Dannielynn.
HAMMER: Finally Brooke, Larry Birkhead is the biological father of the only living heir of Anna Nicole Smith, the heir who could stand to inherit hundreds of millions of dollars. The DNA tests we have been waiting for for months have finally been announced in the Bahamas by the daddy himself, Anna Nicole`s ex-boyfriend Larry Birkhead. It is the dramatic high point of a story we`ve all been riveted by, and, as always, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT brings you the very latest.
BIRKHEAD: I hate to be the one that told you this, but I told you so.
HAMMER (voice-over): Cheers went up in the Bahamas as Larry Birkhead made the announcement that finally answered the big burning question in the riveting Anna Nicole Smith saga, did her ex-boyfriend Larry Birkhead or her companion Howard K. Stern father her baby Dannielynn? Now, it`s official. It`s Larry. How sure are we?
HAMMER: That`s pretty sure. Birkhead seemed elated as he emerged from the Bahamas courthouse, where the results of the DNA tests he fought for for so long were finally unveiled.
BIRKHEAD: I`m just happy to have this behind me and just to be able to start a life with my daughter.
HAMMER: As for Stern, who long claimed he was the dad, he didn`t look as elated.
HOWARD K. STERN, FORMER LAWYER OF ANNA NICOLE SMITH: I`m obviously very disappointed.
HAMMER: An exhausted-looking Stern conceded defeat, saying he`ll no longer fight Birkhead`s efforts to get custody of Dannielynn, who Stern had been caring for in the Bahamas since Anna Nicole`s death.
STERN: We are going to do what we can to make sure the best interests of Dannielynn are carried out. I would like there to be a gradual transition period for her so there`s no harm caused to her.
DEBRA OPRI, FORMER LAWYER FOR LARRY BIRKHEAD: I`m very excited.
HAMMER: Debra Opri, who was until recently Birkhead`s attorney, came straight to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT with her reaction to the announcement.
OPRI: From the moment Larry walked to into my office and sat in my chair, I believed he was the father.
HAMMER: It was a strange case that captured the nation`s attention. And SHOWBIZ TONIGHT shows you how we got to where we are now and what`s next in this tale that isn`t over by a long shot.
Dannielynn was born in the Bahamas last September, just days before Anna Nicole`s son Daniel died. Anna Nicole remained secluded in the Bahamas after Daniel`s death. And no one revealed the identity of Dannielynn`s father until Howard K. Stern appeared on "Larry King Live" and made this shocking announcement.
LARRY KING, CNN ANCHOR: So you are the father?
STERN: Yes, sir.
HAMMER: Stern, whom Anna listed as the father on Dannielynn`s birth certificate, claimed he and Anna had been lovers for a while, and because they were in love, Stern`s logic suggested, there was no need for a DNA test.
KING: Were DNA tests taken?
STERN: Based on the timing of when the baby was born, there really is no doubt in either of our minds.
HAMMER: Birkhead had a doubt, to put it mildly. Weeks after the baby`s birth, he filed a lawsuit in California asking a court to order Anna Nicole to bring the child back to the United States for a DNA test. As if that wasn`t weird enough, Zsa Zsa Gabor`s husband joined the daddy dispute. Prince Frederick Von Anhalt came forward and said he had a long affair with Anna Nicole Smith and may have fathered Dannielynn, a possibility he fretted about on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
PRINCE FREDERICK VON ANHALT, ZSA ZSA GABOR`S HUSBAND: Can you imagine being married since 20 years to Zsa Zsa Gabor and all of a sudden coming home with a baby? This is terrible for my wife, of course.
HAMMER: Still, despite the controversy, Anna and Howard kept the baby in the Bahamas and fought against the DNA test that`s would have settled the matter once and for all. The stalemate continued until Anna Nicole died of a fatal drug combination last February.
So now we know Birkhead is the father. And Prince Anhalt is off the hook with Zsa Zsa. So what happens to Stern? He says he`s staying where he is.
STERN: I`m going to stay in the Bahamas regardless. I`m not going to leave Anna or Daniel here alone.
HAMMER: But despite the hug Stern shared with Birkhead before the TV cameras, things may not be so peaceful between the two. Back in February, Birkhead hinted in court that Stern that Stern had some fences to mend if he wants to have a relationship with Dannielynn.
JUDGE LARRY SEIDLIN, FLORIDA JUDGE: Let`s say you are the father, do you think you can develop a relationship with Mr. Stern to work something where everybody gets to enjoy and improve the life of Dannielynn?
BIRKHEAD: I`m not selfish, but there`s a lot of hurt and heartache. I missed the delivery of my child.
SEIDLIN: I`m sorry.
BIRKHEAD: I missed the delivery of my child. I have had to pay 4.99 for magazines to see what my child looks like. I have had to call and send gifts, FedEx Christmas gifts for my child and I have missed everything that you can`t get back.
HAMMER: There is some uncertainty for Birkhead and the girl he can now officially call his daughter. Anna Nicole`s estranged mother Virgie Arthur has also fought for custody of Dannielynn. For now, she says she wants to work with the father.
VIRGIE ARTHUR, MOTHER OF ANNA NICOLE SMITH: And I look forward to working with Larry in raising my granddaughter and doing what is best for her.
HAMMER: As for Birkhead, he says he`s happy to be a dad. And now, after months of legal wrangling, he`s got bigger things to take care of.
BIRKHEAD: I`m going to the toy store.
HAMMER: Well, the paternity matter has been put to rest at long last. But one issue remains up in the air: who will officially get custody of Dannielynn? Another court hearing is scheduled for Friday. Joining us tonight is the woman who stood by Larry Birkhead from the very beginning of this very passionate and tireless paternity fight, his California lawyer Debra Opri, Debra joining us from Hollywood.
And Debra, I suppose, congratulations definitely in order her, because it`s fair to say that today`s events would not unfolded, at least not today, were it not for you? Do you feel vindicated.
OPRI: I`m bursting with pride. It`s like my child. I nurtured a case and a client. I am so utterly proud of Larry Birkhead today. I`m going to call him later. I`m going to tell him so. I love the guy and when he first came onto my office, he said, what do you think my chances are? I can say this. I said to him, you just hired Debra Opri 100 percent and I delivered. I delivered. I`m very happy today.
I can`t say, however else it may be interpreted, I am very, very proud of him. I`m very happy.
HAMMER: I think that`s coming across just by the smile on your face. You spent an awful lot of time with Larry Birkhead from the very first time he came into your office, all the traveling you guys did together. What makes this guy tick that gives you the sense he`ll make a great father?
OPRI: Well, getting emotional, I saw that this was man who loved that baby from the day he walked onto my office. He`d never met her. He fought and the times were high and the times were low. He stuck at my elbow every time, every day and he did what he was told to do, and it worked. And he loved his girl. The journey they`re going to make now will be the two of them without the lawyers, without the courtroom proceedings, and he will be a great father, a great father. I`m getting too emotional, A.J.
HAMMER: That`s all right, Debra. You are certainly entitled. The culmination of everything that has transpired up until now to happen on this one day, how could you but be emotional? Certainly a fair amount of contention along the way. It was a tough, and at times a very bitter fight. Howard K. Stern, of course, on the other side, emphatically saying all along, I am the father.
The way you see it, does Stern, at this point, have anything to apologize for?
OPRI: I`m a lawyer, so I will tell you, it doesn`t matter at this point in time for the apologies. What was done to Larry and what was done in the courtroom and in the press to this young man, it was despicable. But it`s yesterday`s news. Whatever Howard K. Stern and Anna did, it`s over with. We never had so many contentious fights over nothing. We were in court in Los Angeles 25 times. We had to go to Florida to fight for Anna`s DNA.
We had to go and fight to kick out that birth certificate. It was fighting from the day we filed October 2, 2006. But I promised Larry in six months he would have his daughter, and I delivered, and I fully anticipate holding that baby and I love the guy to death, and America should stand behind him, as I did for six months, because he`s a wonderful guy.
HAMMER: Real quickly, Debra, with Virgie Arthur, Anna`s estranged mother stepping in and her rep saying that because she`s the only family member on the maternal side, she should have joint custody. Is there any chance that Larry would actually go for that? I know he doesn`t want Virgie in her life, in Dannielynn`s life.
OPRI: I`m going to tell you something, because I`m still Larry`s attorney of record in California. And today will be my Swan Song for this case, because I`m starting another one. All I can tell you about Virgie is this, and it`s important the public knows this: I believe personally, as a lawyer, that the agenda she had to be a grandmother to that daughter and the agenda perhaps her attorneys had may, at some point in time, deviated. I don`t know if this is the case, but that`s the opinion I formulated.
Maybe perhaps today Virgie will understand that Larry always wanted her to be part of the baby`s life and she will be.
HAMMER: And with Howard K. Stern also today saying he will do whatever it takes for Larry to get sole custody, do you see Larry and Howard K. Stern as teammates fighting this fight together?
OPRI: You know, Larry is not the angry man. He was the man who wanted his daughter. For whatever anger Howard K. Stern has for Virgie or anyone else, that`s Howard K. Stern`s anger and that will be something he has to resolve. Larry is not angry. I`m not angry. I don`t think Virgie`s angry. I think we all suffered and we all lost. Today we start gaining.
Let the world know that Larry Birkhead, he was at the forefront of a father`s fight.
HAMMER: You worked hard, Debra, and you should enjoy the moment. Debra Opri, thank you, as always.
ANDERSON: What a day. Finally we know for sure Larry Birkhead is the father, A.J., but there`s still that custody hearing looming. Coming up next, we`ll go straight to the Bahamas to get more on the battle for baby Dannielynn. Also this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Of course, after Danny died they should have been taking extra care of her, knowing she was so depressed and everything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Anna Nicole`s sister tells it all. Who she thinks had a role in Anna`s demise, and what Anna Nicole would have to say about Virgie Arthur`s possible role in baby Dannielynn`s life. That`s ahead.
ANDERSON: And the team speaks. The women at the center of the Don Imus controversy say what they really think of his racially-charged comments, and whether they`re going to meet with him face to face. That`s coming up. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIRKHEAD: I hate to be the one that told you this, but I told you so.
STERN: I want to say that I`m obviously very disappointed, but my feelings for Dannielynn have not changed. I am not going to fight Larry Birkhead on custody. We`re going to do what we can to make sure that the best interests of Dannielynn are carried out, and I`m going to do whatever I can to make sure he gets sole custody.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s most provocative entertainment news show. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Well, it took months of legal wrangling, but tonight we finally know that Larry Birkhead is the father of Anna Nicole Smith`s baby daughter Dannielynn. Birkhead has been waging this fight, a legal fight, that has also been public relations fight.
With me tonight from the Bahamas, "Access Hollywood" correspondent Tony Potts, who has interviewed Larry several times. And Tony, I understand you just got finished speaking with Larry. What did he have to say? I know this has been a very emotional time for him, but does he feel a sense of vindication?
TONY POTTS, "ACCESS HOLLYWOOD": Yes, he does. He was actually very happy. He told me it felt very good to say, I told you so, because so many people on the other side, as he calls it, doubted him. He`s incredibly happy. I asked him, what will do you with the piece of paper, that legally here in the Bahamas says that you are the father? He says I`m going to frame that and I got a special spot, back home in Los Angeles, where I`m going to put that.
I said, would it happen to be in Dannielynn`s nursery? He said it might be.
ANDERSON: Well you were right there. When Birkhead emerged, we all saw him. It seemed to be shear joy on his face. Were these results a shock to you, let alone anybody out there?
POTTS: Not really. I can tell you also, Brooke, that I have travelled with Larry a little bit in the last couple of weeks, and anywhere that we happen to be, whether it was from the Bahamas in the airport to Miami, Miami connecting to Los Angeles, wherever we went, to connecting gates, people would stop him, whether it be grandmothers, mothers, daughters, sons, what have you, would stop him and say, hey, we`re with you. We hope the best for you. We`re pulling for you.
We checked into this one place, one little lounge and the lady didn`t say anything about acknowledging who Larry was. At the very end, as he walked away, she said to him, she goes, we`re pulling for you. I can tell you something right now, exclusively what he`s doing. He was back at his lawyer`s office. I did an interview exclusively with him there that will air on "Access" tonight.
He left there. You know where he went to celebrate? He`s at the hotel pool, because he promised his little nephews and nieces that he would go in the pool with them. So rather than go out and have a drink, what have you, he`s actually with kids in the pool right now frolicking with his nieces and nephews, as he promised them last night he would do.
ANDERSON: Well, you know, it sounds like, from what you are saying, and from what we`ve seen, he`s had a lot of support throughout this entire thing. He`s bonding with kids, with his nieces, his nephews and he is ready to bond with his child Dannielynn. You are a father, Tony. And, you know, Larry has been telling you that he`s preparing, he`s getting things ready for this baby.
In light of everything that`s happened, is he really ready to be the daddy? Because initially it could be a challenge. He hasn`t seen this child much or had an opportunity to bond with this child?
POTTS: Absolutely. Ask any parent who is watching right now, are you ever prepared to be a parent for the first time? You never are. I wasn`t. I have two girls and I`m still not prepared. I`m trying to do a good job. But I can tell you that he actually went on his own and told me a few minutes ago -- I said when is the last time you changed a diaper? He goes, well I have changed a few, but I went to diaper-changing class.
POTTS: What rattled him, he said, I could get it done, but at the end they put a timer on me. That`s when things went haywire. I said, don`t worry. You are going to have the experience with a little girl. There will be things going on, you know, and you`ll be able to do it, no problem. He`s very excited. He can`t wait. He`s going to try to see Dannielynn tonight. If not tonight, for sure tomorrow.
ANDERSON: That wasn`t very nice of them to put a timer on him. He should take his time changing that diaper.
POTTS: That`s true.
ANDERSON: It`s not as if, you know, they are going to go back to Stern`s home, pack up a bag, head to the airport. It`s a little more complicated than that. There is still another hearing to determine the custody. What do you think? Is this going to be a quick resolution or could it drag on even longer?
POTTS: I would tend to think it will be a quick resolution on Friday. I do know Larry wanted to extend a hand to Virgie Arthur, as he has done in the past, to let`s meet behind closed doors, without the lawyers. You know, you are the grandmother. I want you to have a part in her life, Dannielynn`s life. He`ll have that on Friday. If everything goes according to plan, there will be a 30-day period where Larry will bring his caregiver over. They`ve already done all the behind the scenes work, as far as all the child services folks. So they`ve vetted everybody out.
And then there will be a transition period for those 30 days. Larry will probably get a place down here for the next couple of days to stay here for 30 days as that transition happens. Some time in mid May, he will take Dannielynn home to Los Angeles.
ANDERSON: Wow, well good for him. I think there`s been a collective sigh of relief that these results have now been released. Tony Potts, in the Bahamas, thanks for your insight. We appreciate it.
POTTS: My pleasure.
HAMMER: Well Brooke, with the big news today that Larry Birkhead is the father of Anna Nicole Smith`s baby, we`ve got to ask, what`s next? Will Larry take Dannielynn home? When could that happen? We got a little insight from Tony Potts, but we`ll look into it more at 30 minutes past the hour.
ANDERSON: Also, A.J., Anna Nicole Smith`s sister Donna Hogan tells all right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. She says Anna would feel very strongly about Virgie`s role in Dannielynn`s life. That`s coming up.
We`ll also have this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
C VIVIAN STRINGER, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY WOMEN`S BASKETBALL COACH: It`s not about they as black people or as nappy-headed. It`s about us as a people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: The coach and the students at the center of the Don Imus controversy say what they really think of his racially charged comments and whether they`ll meet with him face to face, coming up.
ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s most provocative entertainment news show. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Anna Nicole Smith`s last feature film is going to get a big premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in May. Now the film is called "Illegal Aliens," and it`s a sci- fi comedy in which Anna Nicole`s character saves the world. You can judge for yourself, but I`m guessing it`s going to be the only movie of its kind at the world-renowned Cannes Film Festival. Take a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They must be from some other planet.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why is my poopy sore?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Illegal aliens.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You were right.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Nobody sticks a Mento in a (INAUDIBLE) butt and gets away with it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are aliens on a strange planet. We can`t go around attracting undo attention to ourselves.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have the right of way.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Wee, summer time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: All right, well Anna Nicole also invested in the film, and her son, Daniel, was an associate producer. And if you can`t make it to France for the Cannes Film Festival, not to worry, the movie comes out on DVD May 1st.
HAMMER: That is some good casting. Well, Brooke, of course, the huge news today, Larry Birkhead is the father of Anna Nicole Smith`s baby. But what happens next? Will Larry take Dannielynn home? And then what would happen? And when would that happen? We`ll look into that at 30 minutes past the hour. We`ll also have this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Of course, after Danny died, they should have been taking extra care of her, knowing that she was so depressed and everything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Anna Nicole Smith`s sister tells all to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, who she thinks had a role in Anna`s demise and what Anna would have to say about Virgie Arthur`s possible role in baby Dannielynn`s life. She`s got some really strong opinions about that. We`ve got it straight ahead.
HAMMER: And the team strikes back! The women right there at the center of the Don Imus controversy say what they really think of his racially charged comments and whether they`ll meet with him. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is coming right back.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. It`s 30 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
ANDERSON: And I am Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. You are watching TV`s most provocative entertainment news show.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIRKHEAD: I hate to be the one that told you this, `I told you so!`
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Yes, with those words, it`s official. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you tonight, DNA tests have proved, with more than a 99 percent certainty, Anna Nicole Smith`s former boyfriend, Larry Birkhead, is Dannielynn`s daddy.
CNN`s Rusty Dornin for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is right there, outside the courthouse in the Bahamas where it all went down.
Rusty, give us the rundown on what happened and how it all happened today.
RUSTY DORNIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, the tension built all afternoon, A.J., as you had tourists from all over the world, international media all waiting to hear the answer. Of course, Larry Birkhead here; Howard K. Stern here, the longtime companion and attorney; and Virgie Arthur, who is of course the mother of Anna Nicole Smith, who has been fighting for custody. They were mobbed as they came into the courthouse, of course. But it wasn`t long before Larry Birkhead came out and, you know, sort of tried to fake everybody out by looking very drawn and kind of down, but then gave the cheer, and the crowd responded with a great cheer.
Every time Larry Birkhead comes into the courthouse or is even the seen on the streets here in Bahama, he is cheered and greeted by the Bahamians and the tourists alike. A lot of people had a soft spot for him, and of course, he`s been fighting, saying he`s the father for months. So finally, he got his day in court - A.J.
HAMMER: Stunning that we`re actually sitting here, Rusty, and talking about the fact that this has happened, when there are a lot of us who thought, `Wow, this day would never come,` or at least not for some time.
But it certainly, that being said, is not over yet. What happens next?
DORNIN: It`s not over yet, because on - there was no ruling on custody. Now if you listen carefully on some of the interviews with Howard K. Stern, he says, `I will not fight Larry Birkhead for full custody.` But somebody who is still fighting for custody, of course, is Virgie Arthur, Anna Nicole Smith`s estranged mother. On Friday, she will be trying to convince the court that she has the right to have custody, she should have - if not custody, at least visitation rights with this child.
But it looks like Howard K. Stern and Birkhead, no longer are they are loggerheads. The judge will be deciding whether Birkhead is a fit father. Not only - he is the biological father, but certainly they - he does have to show some proof that he has - financially can support the baby, and of course, would be a good father emotionally.
HAMMER: Most people have told me they don`t think Virgie Arthur stands a chance of getting custody, and since Howard isn`t contesting the custody, as you just said, is there a sense that this hearing on Friday is going to be very quick, and then the whole paternity and custody cases are over and done with finally?
DORNIN: That`s what we have heard here, at least from the Bahamian legal experts. They doubt that this hearing will last for very long. Again, as I said, Birkhead can present evidence that he would be a good father, both financially and emotionally. He`s the biological father, and that trumps all in the Bahamas, as long, as I said, as he can prove that he`d be a good father.
So Virgie Arthur, at this point, probably, as one expert here put it - said - has a slim chance to none of gaining custody of that child.
HAMMER: Well, CNN`s Rusty Dornin, it has been quite a ride. Continue to enjoy your time down there in the Bahamas, and thanks for joining us tonight.
DORNIN: Thanks, A.J.
ANDERSON: OK, so one big question answered, but there are many more. Like why is Anna Nicole`s estranged mother, Virgie Arthur, hinting she may challenge Larry Birkhead for joint custody of the baby?
With me tonight from Court TV studios in New York is anchor and host of "Best Defense," Jami Floyd.
And in Hollywood, investigative journalist Jane Velez-Mitchell, author of the new book, "Secrets Can Be Murder," due out this summer.
Jami, I want to start with you. As we heard, Virgie Arthur clearly wants to be involved in Dannielynn`s life, possibly in - in rearing the child. But some say, due to the millions of dollars on the line that Dannielynn could possibly inherit, Virgie may have an ulterior motive.
What do you think about that?
JAMI FLOYD, COURT TV`S "BEST DEFENSE": Oh, those cynics. Why do they think anyone would be motivated by $450 million?
Look, she`s got a very high-power legal team. John O`Quinn (ph) is one of the best lawyers in the country. And that`s led a lot of people to speculate about her motives. He doesn`t get involved in basic family law disputes; he gets involved in multimillion-dollar litigation. So that`s one of the reasons.
And then, of course, there`s the estrangement. Everyone knows that Anna Nicole and her mother had a difficult time of it at best, especially in the later years. So all of that makes you wonder, why does Virgie Arthur want a piece of this baby?
I like to believe that her motives are pure, that she loved her daughter, that she lost her daughter to drugs and drug addiction, and that she wants to have a role in her granddaughter`s life. I - I give her the benefit of the doubt until I get some proof other wild (ph).
ANDERSON: Yes, let`s all hope - you know, she said she just wants to be the grandmother. Let`s hope that`s the case.
Jane, how much leverage do you think Virgie has as the grandmother, versus Larry Birkhead, who is now known to be the biological dad?
JAMIE VELEZ-MITCHELL, INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALIST: Well, she can make things difficult. I think she was kind of speaking out of both sides of her mouth today, because she said, `I just want to be the grandmother,` but at the same time, she`s raising all these issues about possible joint custody or joint guardianship. And so on Friday when they have that hearing, if she raises that - we`ve already heard Howard K. Stern say he`s going to do everything he can to make sure Larry Birkhead get sole custody, so you can see these two now at loggerheads.
So this tug of war over the child is not necessarily over. I pray that all three will act like adults and get it taken care of for the best interests of this child. Today was a good start, but, you know, with this team, anything can happen.
ANDERSON: Anything can happen; you`re right about that.
And you mentioned Howard K. Stern and what he said. Let`s take a listen to that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STERN: I just want to say that I`m obviously very disappointed. But my feelings for Dannielynn have not changed. I am not going to fight Larry Birkhead on custody. We`re going to do what - what we can to make sure that the best interests of Dannielynn are carried out, and I`m going to do whatever I can to make sure that he gets sole custody.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: OK, not going to challenge Birkhead for custody of this baby.
So Jami, what`s next for him? Because he is still named as executor of Anna Nicole`s properties in her will. What - what now?
FLOYD: Well, he continues to care for this baby in the Bahamian legal system for at least another 30 days or so. The transition isn`t abrupt. And so Larry Birkhead and Howard K. Stern, if we`re to believe we heard today, will now work together to make that transition a smooth one. And that`s what the court will probably order in the coming days.
It seems clear that he`s going to fight to maintain what he believes are Anna`s wishes - that she have nothing to do with the baby - and that takes me to your question about the estate as well. As executor of the estate - as one of those, by the way, he`s not the only named executor - he will be the one who will ensure that the baby receives what is coming to her. And there was that whole issue, you`ll remember, about the will because it disclaimed all potential children after Daniel. So all that still has to be worked out.
But it seems that Howard has the best interests of Dannielynn at heart. Whoever is going to be raising her now - it appears it`ll be Larry Birkhead, but even if it`s Virgie, Howard will have a role in how that money - how the estate is disposed of.
ANDERSON: Jane, we`ve only got about 30 seconds left. But, you know, watching that press conference, watching Howard speak, it didn`t seem like he was too emotional about potentially losing custody of this child. But he was more focused on retaliating against the media, it seemed.
What do you think?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: It was absolutely fascinating, Brooke. He got the most passionate when he started attacking the media as irresponsible and malicious. And certainly he has gotten raked over the coals. But you`d think that his primary passion would have been losing, essentially - the prospect of losing this little girl.
ANDERSON: You would. OK. Investigative journalist Jane Velez- Mitchell and Court TV`s Jami Floyd, thank you both so much for you time.
FLOYD: Thank you.
ANDERSON: OK, a lot more coming up on this huge day in the Anna Nicole Smith saga. Next, right here, Anna Nicole`s half sister Donna. Why she says Anna would never ever want her mom, Virgie, to get custody of Dannielynn.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s not about they as black people, or as nappy-headed. It`s about us as a people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Shocking new developments today in the Don Imus racial controversy. Tonight, the basketball team he insulted speaks out for the first time. But I still got to ask: is Imus getting off too easy?
ANDERSON: Some say so, A.J.
Also, switching gears a little bit, I go one-on-one with Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie. They really open up about their day-to-day battle with the paparazzi. And why in the world is Nicole giving people enemas? Uh huh. Straight ahead.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s most provocative entertainment news show. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
Of course, the big news tonight - it is official, Larry Birkhead has been named the father of Anna Nicole Smith`s baby daughter, Dannielynn. But there were also some shocking allegations now coming from Anna Nicole`s own family.
Just before we learned that Larry Birkhead was the father, I spoke with Anna`s half sister, Donna Hogan. She`s the author of an explosive, unauthorized biography called, "Train Wreck: The Life and Death of Anna Nicole Smith."
Donna gave me some startling insight into the former Playboy Playmate`s troubled life.
HAMMER: So Donna, last week, the Broward County medical examiner revealed that the cause of Anna Nicole`s death was an accidental overdose. She had a lot of drugs in her system. He had implied that it was preventable, and therefore, I think the implication is that the people around her in her life didn`t do enough to prevent her death.
Did you find that surprising?
DONNA HOGAN, AUTHOR, "TRAIN WRECK": No, I agree.
HAMMER: Why is that?
HOGAN: Because there was other times that they let her, you know, be in the public and (INAUDIBLE) - I don`t want to say doped up or whatever, but, you know, she was - didn`t seem all there and everything.
HAMMER: Well - well - well we used to see her, in - in several cases, including when she was eight months pregnant in that tape that was shown of her court with clown makeup on - certainly not looking like a person...
HOGAN: That made me sick.
HAMMER: .who wasn`t under the influence.
HOGAN: That made me very sick.
HAMMER: But - but - but I guess specifically to the people who were in her life, it did not surprise you that they weren`t doing more to keep her healthy?
HOGAN: No, I mentioned it before. Like a couple of years ago, on the American Music Awards, you know, I specifically said, the people around her was not taking care of her. Because if they really cared for her, they would not have let her get on stage to begin with, you know?
And then, of course - of course, after Danny died, they should have been taking extra care of her, knowing that she was so depressed and everything.
HAMMER: A - a lot of people have been saying - Daniel aside perhaps - but a lot of people have been saying through the course of this saga, where was the family in all of this? Of course, we know that she was famously estranged from - from Virgie Arthur, her mother.
HAMMER: Where were you, for instance?
HOGAN: You know, the people that do drugs and have habits and stuff usually push themselves away from other people that would try to prevent her from doing that. And every time we tried to get her help, she pushed more.
HAMMER: Did you attempt to intervene at any point yourself?
HOGAN: Yes. A couple of years ago, like I said, after the American Music Awards and stuff. And that just, like, really made her angry. And - and she said some bad things and everything, that I wasn`t her sister and everything. And that really hurt, because I was just trying to get her help.
HAMMER: We do know that Daniel, according to the private investigator that he tried to hire - he told me - that PI told me - that Daniel did want to get her help, but he was being pushed away by Howard K. Stern.
Does that surprise you?
HOGAN: No, it doesn`t surprise me. I mean, like you said, when she was eight months pregnant, he`s holding up the camera. And the only thing he was concerned about was, he was talking about making - the tape would be worth money someday. Instead of worrying about her unborn child, what kind of health she was in, or even how my sister was.
HAMMER: In your book, you make some startling claims about Anna Nicole`s life. One of them that I found particularly fascinating is how she got so skinny so fast. And you say it was not from the diet supplement that she represented as their spokesperson?
HOGAN: I said it could not be. Just because I know she lied before. Well (INAUDIBLE) now we know that she came out and said she did have liposuction. But in the early `90s, she had liposuction before. So I just said that she had had that done before, you know?
And she had all the cameras around her all the time. So, I mean - so she went from big to small, and there was no in between.
HAMMER: Faster than you think some kind of diet pill or.
HAMMER: .might have done.
As - as I mentioned, she was famously estranged from Virgie Arthur, her mom. Virgie still fighting.
What would Anna think of that?
HOGAN: I - I think she would be (INAUDIBLE) horrified about it. I don`t think she should be fighting for her.
HAMMER: Well, I also asked Donna Hogan what she thought about the criticism that she is not profiting off of Anna Nicole`s life and death. And Donna says, "no way," and that the book is a message to Anna Nicole she actually started writing while Anna Nicole was still alive.
"Train Wreck" is in stores now.
And now on to the other story that everybody is talking about: explosive new developments in the Don Imus racial controversy. The Rutgers University basketball team - those are the young women he called "nappy- headed" hos live on the radio - well, they spoke out for the very first time, and they - and they said that they will meet up with the shock jock.
But even though Imus has now been suspended for two weeks from the radio, from the TV show, tonight, I have to got ask: is he just getting off too easily?
DON IMUS, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: But I didn`t talk about anything I do.
HAMMER (voice-over): Don Imus gets paid big bucks to run his mouth. But now, he`s working overtime to pull his foot out of it.
IMUS: I`m not a racist.
HAMMER: Imus went on the "Today" show, Stop 2 of his expanding "sorry" tour.
IMUS: What I did was made a stupid, idiotic mistake in a - in a comedy context.
HAMMER: Here`s what got the I-man into this whole mess in the first place:
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
IMUS: That`s some rough girls from Rutgers. Man, they got tattoos..
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Some hardcore hos.
IMUS: That`s some - that`s some nappy-headed hos there. I`m going to tell you that now.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HAMMER: Oh but wait; there was more.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
IMUS: The girls from Tennessee, they all look cute, you know? So I`d kind of like to - I don`t know.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Spike Lee thing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The jiggaboos versus the wannabes? That movie that he had?
(END AUDIO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s not about they as black people or as "nappy-headed." It`s about us as a people.
HAMMER: And tonight, the women of the Rutgers basketball team, the Scarlet Knights, are red with fury. They held a press conference today at the university, slamming Imus and his racist, sexist and basically inexcusable comments.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would like to express our team`s great hurt, anger and disgust towards the words of Mr. Don Imus.
HAMMER: And while the coach and players described their pain, they came short of saying whether Imus should be fired. Instead, they said they`ve agreed to a meeting.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right now, I can`t really say if we - you know, if we come to a conclusion of, you know, whether we will accept the apology.
HAMMER: And while the players, coaches and parents wait to hear what Imus has to say, CBS and MSNBC, which air Imus` show, has suspended him for two weeks - a punishment the shock jock says is appropriate.
IMUS: I am going to try to serve it with some dignity.
HAMMER: And while Imus appeared on the "Today" show, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you, weatherman Al Roker fired off this angry entry on the "Today" show`s Web site, writing - quote - "Don Imus should do the right thing and resign. Not talk about taking a two-week suspension with dignity. I don`t think Don Imus gets it. It is time for him to go."
Al Roker right on par with what the Rev. Al Sharpton has been saying.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
THE REV. AL SHARPTON, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: What you said was racist. I`m going to say what you said was abominable. I`m going to say you should be fired for saying it.
You see this young lady?
IMUS: Yes, sir.
SHARPTON: This young lady just graduated (INAUDIBLE) - went to Temple. She is not a "nappy-headed ho." She`s my daughter.
This is not about whether you`re a good man; it`s about how you devalue how my daughters and the daughters of a lot of people listening are going to be looked at in this world.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
APRIL RYAN, AMERICAN URBAN RADIO NETWORKS: I think right now it`s about women and minorities. It`s not just about minority women; it`s women and minorities he`s offended, and humanity as a whole.
HAMMER: SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you this is not the first time Imus has pushed the envelope. He once described PBS anchor Gwen Ifill as "a cleaning lady" covering the White House. And SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you, that`s just one example.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This was not the first time that he or those around him have made what is perceived as racist comments. His sidekick, Sid Rosenberg (ph), once said that Venus and Serena Williams, you`ll never see them posing in "Playboy"; likely in "National Geographic." Called them animals.
So it is not as if this is an isolated incident.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
IMUS: Would you be willing to come on my program to discuss your point of view?
SHARPTON; Are you going to announce it as your last show?
IMUS: No, I`m not. I`m.
SHARPTON: Well, no. Then I`m not coming on now.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HAMMER: While many called for Imus` show.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The NACP (sic) said Imus must go. Two weeks is unacceptable.
HAMMER: .SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you there are actually some who support him, including presidential candidate John McCain.
IMUS: Senator John McCain.
HAMMER: .who`s just one of many political heavy hitters to have appeared on Imus` show.
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: He has apologized. He has said that he`s deeply sorry. I`m a great believe in redemption.
HAMMER: And as Imus takes a page from the Michael Richards` playbook, meeting personally with the Rutgers basketball team.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This meeting will be a private meeting at an undisclosed location in the near future.
HAMMER: .the world waits to see if they will offer him forgiveness.
HAMMER: Tonight, for our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day," we`re asking "Don Imus Suspended: Should he be fired instead?"
Vote at cnn.com/showbiztonight, or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Your e-mails tomorrow.
ANDERSON: Up next, I go one-on-one with Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie. I get them to reveal just how frightened they are of the paparazzi. And yes, why is Nicole Richie giving people enemas? Gross.
ANDERSON: Well, Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie are all fired up over the paparazzi. I went one-on-one with them for the fifth season of their reality show, "The Simple Life," and they`re totally fed up - even scared.
PARIS HILTON, "THE SIMPLE LIFE": I don`t think it`s right. I can understand if you`re paparazzi and you`re going to go to an event or a premiere and you know you`re going to get your picture taken. But, you know, it`s everyday, I have - people are camped outside my house when I come home at night. It`s like, they`re always there, jumping out of the bushes and - you know, sometimes if I`m walking out by myself I get scared if I see some random guy that`s, you know, come of the bushes.
And it`s just - I don`t know. I just think it`s really invading.
NICOLE RICHIE, "THE SIMPLE LIFE": I feel like it`s really dangerous. I feel like it`s hit a point that it`s never hit before. Like she said - I mean, when people are running out of the bushes, I feel like I`m getting mugged, you know? And I don`t understand why there`s not some sort of law or, you know, something. Because you`re literally being harassed.
ANDERSON: And yes, that is Tinkerbelle in Paris` lap.
By the way, what`s shocking is that Paris and Nicole are counselors at a wellness camp for this season of "The Simple Life." I mean, Nicole has had weight issues; Paris certainly isn`t the poster girl for wellness, either.
And listen to this: Nicole told me about her giving enemas to the campers - yes, too gross for me to even talk about. And she also said she stitched up a camper`s finger and that she was qualified because she`s a big fan of "Grey`s Anatomy."
HAMMER: Uh. Tinkerbelle, please.
Yesterday, we asked you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day," asking, "Don Imus: Should he be fired for his racial remarks?"
Forty-six percent of you said "yes, he should"; 54 percent of you - the majority, not by much - say he shouldn`t.
Among the e-mails, one from Latiffa (ph) in California. She thinks Imus should go: "America does not need someone so insensitive to young college students and black women as a whole."
But Deb from Ohio says now way: "Imus apologized. What more do they want? This is his show. Making jokes, but he also has a big heart, and he is not a racist."
Let us now find out what is coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
Tomorrow, why do some celebrities keep their relationships undercover? You know, Beyonce and Jay-Z, Marc Anthony and JLo. They all stay hush-hush about hooking up. So why do they do it when so many other stars aren`t shy at all about showing off their significant others? That`s tomorrow.
Also, here`s a controversial story of a lovely lady. I go one-on-one with "Brady Bunch" star Maureen McCormick. Of course you remember her as Marcia, the oldest of the Bradys. You may not have known this, but she`s got some startling stories about her battles with cocaine and bulimia. That`s tomorrow.
And that`s it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
ANDERSON: I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood.
"GLENN BECK" is coming next, right after the latest headlines from CNN Headline News.