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Friday
Mar112011

Black Eyed Peas Match Chart Record Set by the Eagles

WireImage/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Black Eyed Peas have just set yet another chart record.  Their new single, "Just Can't Get Enough," has just become their 14th straight top-40 hit.  That's the longest streak of top-40 hits by a group since The Eagles scored 14 straight between 1975 and 1999. The Peas' list of top 40 hits dates back to "Where Is the Love," which reached #8 in 2003.

The group with the most consecutive top-40 hits ever is Paul McCartney's post-Beatles band, Wings.  They scored 23 straight top-40 hits between 1972 and 1980.  But the record for the the longest streak of most consecutive top 40 hits among all artists is held by Elton John, who placed an amazing 36 singles in the top 40 between 1972 and 1986.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio 

Friday
Mar112011

Madonna's 99-Year-Old Grandmother Passes Away

Jamie McCarthy/WireImage(BAY CITY, Mich.) -- Madonna's maternal grandmother Elsie Mae Fortin has passed away, just three months shy of her 100th birthday.  WNEM-TV reports that Ms. Fortin died Wednesday at her home in Bay City, Michigan, surrounded by family and friends.  It's not known if Madonna plans to return to her home state of Michigan for the funeral, which will be held this Saturday. 

In a statement to the Bay City Times, Madonna's publicist said that the star wouldn't be "issuing any statements or conversing with the media regarding her grandmother," adding, "It is a totally personal matter to her."

WNEM reports that Madonna has traveled back to Bay City several times to see her grandmother, who helped to raise her after her mother passed away when the future superstar was a child. 

Ms. Fortin is survived by four of her eight children, as well as 36 grandchildren, 47 great-grandchildren and six great-great grandchildren.

The Bay City Times reports that Madonna's father, Silvio "Tony" Ciccone, remembered Fortin as "very friendly, loving and caring," adding, "She had a big family to take care of and she did a great job of it."  Ciccone said his daughter Paula, Madonna's sister, was among the family present when Fortin passed away, but added that he had not yet spoken with Madonna about the death.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Mar112011

Lady Gaga Stays at #1 for a Fourth Week, 'Poker Face' Passes Six Million in Sales

ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Lady Gaga's hit Born This Way was born to be a chart-topper -- ever since it debuted at #1 a month ago, it hasn't relinquished that position at the peak of the Billboard Hot 100.  According to Yahoo!'s Chart Watch column, it's the first song by a female solo act to debut at #1 and then stay there for four weeks since Mariah Carey's Fantasy.  That Mariah song eventually went on to spend eight weeks at the top; it remains to be seen if Born This Way can do the same.

In other Gaga news, one of her previous hits, Poker Face, has just passed the six million mark in digital downloads.  Only three songs have ever sold more than six million copies, and two of them are by Gaga: Poker Face and Just Dance.  The other one is The Black Eyed Peas' I Gotta Feeling, which has sold more downloads than any other song in history.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Mar112011

Justin Bieber Causes Near-Riots in Liverpool

Peter Kramer/NBC(LIVERPOOL, England) -- Justin Bieber is in Liverpool, England gearing up for his performance at the city's Echo Arena Friday night, but die-hard fans just couldn’t seem to wait until the show to catch a glimpse of the Bieb. 

In a scene reminiscent of what happened in Liverpool 40 years ago with that city's favorite sons, The Beatles, huge crowds of screaming fans gathered outside Justin’s hotel Thursday and, MTV reports, shut down the entire block. Justin tweeted "This is crazy. There are like thousands of people out there. Love everybody but gonna try and get some sleep. Please don't scream. LOL.”

Both E! and TMZ reported earlier that Liverpool police asked Justin and his entourage to not leave the hotel or even step out on his balcony in fear that a riot might occur.  In fact, they were threatened with arrest if they did so.  Then, TMZ reported that police changed their minds, and advised Justin to step out onto the balcony and wave, in hopes that the crowds would begin to disperse.  Justin did just that, and then tweeted, "That was great! Got to say hi to everyone. We are following the rules." 

Unfortunately, the screaming Beliebers weren't satisfied and stayed put.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Mar112011

Diddy Tops Forbes List of Richest Hip-Hop Stars

C Flanigan/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) -- Many people feel that Jay-Z is the greatest living rapper, but when it comes to being the highest-earning rapper, he falls a bit short.

According to Forbes' newly-published list of the top five richest hip-hop stars, Jay comes in at #2, behind Diddy.   The man whose mom knows him as Sean Combs tops the list with a fortune of 475 million bucks, thanks to income from his clothing line, his record label and his joint deal with the vodka brand Ciroc.  Meanwhile, Forbes notes that Jay has a fortune of a mere 450 million dollars.

Number three on the list is Dr. Dre, whose 125-million-dollar fortune comes thanks to his own career, plus his involvement with Snoop Dogg and Eminem.  Number four and five on the list are tied: 50 Centand Cash Money Records co-founder Bryan "Baby" Williams, aka Birdman, both of whom have fortunes of 100 million bucks.  Fiddy's spot on the list is mostly thanks to the cash he raked in when Coca Cola purchased Vitamin Water, a company in which he'd invested.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio 

Thursday
Mar102011

Spider-Man Musical Opening Delayed, Director Steps Down

Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic/Getty(NEW YORK) -- Producers of the Broadway musical Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark say the show's official opening has been delayed until early this summer. It was scheduled to officially open March 15, but producers say the oft-delayed show will undergo creative changes -- and that includes director Julie Taymor removing herself from the day-to-day show operations, though she will remain with the creative team. U2's Bono and Edge, who provided the music for the production, say they will add new songs to the show.

Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark has been plagued by injuries to cast members, prompting a government workplace safety inspection and causing at least one injured cast member to quit.  Wednesday's announcement of the show's delayed opening came just hours before a preview performance during which a stunt was canceled because the Green Goblin's steering mechanism failed in mid-flight.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar102011

Katie Couric Considering a Jump to Daytime TV?

Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Katie Couric could make the transition from evening TV to daytime TV within the next two years. The CBS Evening News anchor's contract with the network expires in early June, and according to The Hollywood Reporter, she's already exploring her options.

The publication's source says there is a "strong likelihood" that Couric will launch a syndicated program that would debut in the fall of 2012. She's believed to have already had discussions with CBS, NBCUniversal and Time Warner regarding her future. She reportedly could work on a potential syndicated program with former NBC Universal Chairman Jeff Zucker, who was the executive producer of the Today show for many years when Couric was its co-anchor.

Couric could stand to profit off of a syndicated deal, with a Hollywood Reporter source saying the show could earn 400 thousand to 500 thousand dollars per week in licensing fees. Couric's current salary with CBS is believed to be between 13 million and 15 million dollars per year.

CNN anchor Anderson Cooper will premiere his own syndicated program in September.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio 

Thursday
Mar102011

Charlie Sheen Sues Warner Bros. & Chuck Lorre for $100 Million

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic(LOS ANGELES) -- Charlie Sheen is on the offensive against his former employers.  According to the Hollywood Reporter, Sheen has filed a $100 million lawsuit against Two and a Half Men producer Chuck Lorre and Warner Bros.  He's also suing on behalf of the now unemployed crew of the sitcom, and is asking for punitive damages in addition to the 100 million bucks.

The Hollywood Reporter says Sheen's lawyer Marty Singer writes in the suit, "Chuck Lorre, one of the richest men in television who is worth hundreds of millions of dollars, believes himself to be so wealthy and powerful that he can unilaterally decide to take money away from the dedicated cast and crew of... Two and a Half Men in order to serve his own ego and self-interest, and make the star of the series the scapegoat for Lorre's own conduct."

In the suit, Singer blames the cancellation of the season's last eight episodes on Warner Bros., who he accuses of "capitulating to Lorre's egotistical desire to punish Mr. Sheen." As proof of this, the lawsuit cites the fact that in the past, Warner Bros. renegotiated Sheen's contract even when he was facing felony charges for allegedly assaulting his ex-wife Brooke Mueller -- so the actor's bad behavior had never previously been an issue for the studio.

After news of the lawsuit hit, Sheen wrote on Twitter: 'You corporate Trolls were warned. And now you've been served."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar102011

Judge Gives Lohan More Time to Consider Plea Deal

ABC News(LOS ANGELES) -- On Thursday,  A Los Angeles judge gave Lindsay Lohan a deadline of March 25 to decide whether she wants to accept a plea deal or go to trial on a felony charge of stealing a $2,500 necklace. The exact terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Clad in a gold leather tunic and black tights and accompanied by her mother, Dina, Lohan stayed silent for most of the hearing in a Los Angeles courtroom. She was also accompanied by her lawyer, Shawn Chapman Holley.

If convicted, Lohan could go to California state prison for up to three years. The 24-year-old actress already has been to jail three times in the past three years for DUI, drug possession, and probation violations.

California criminal defense attorney Dana Cole thinks it's unlikely Lohan will serve time for the jewelry case.

"No one's cutting her any breaks," he told ABCNews.com. "This is not a major felony case at all, I doubt she will do any jail time on this felony, it could get reduced to a misdemeanor. The question is the probation violation; that will only be dealt with after the necklace caper is resolved in one way or the other."

At her last appearance on Feb. 23, Judge Keith Schwartz set Lohan's bail at $40,000 -- $20,000 each for both the felony charge and for violation of her probation stemming from her 2007 DUI case. The judge warned Lohan that any plea deal would involve jail time.

"If you plead in front of me, you are going to jail, period!" Schwartz told Lohan during the Feb hearing.

Lohan's only public comments outside of court about the case have been to the TV show "Extra," saying she is embarrassed by the legal spectacle.

"I don't like the attention," she said on Extra. "I don't want that. I want my attention to come through my films, from the work that I'm doing."

But Lohan reportedly has said that the necklace in question was loaned to her by the jewelry store Kamofie & Co. and her assistant returned it to police.

After detectives started looking into the case and began preparing a search warrant, a friend of Lohan's brought the necklace to the Pacific Division police station.

This week Kamofie & Co. sold the rights to the security video of Lohan for an undisclosed price. The store owners said Wednesday they will auction off the necklace and donate the proceeds to charity but they wont be able to do so until the case is resolved since the necklace is being held by prosecutors as evidence.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar102011

Rob Lowe Won't Replace Charlie Sheen

Mitchell Haaseth/NBC(LOS ANGELES) -- Rob Lowe has no love for Two and a Half Men.

Despite Charlie Sheen's assertations that Lowe is "a beautiful man" and would make a "fabulous" potential replacement for him on Two and a Half Men, Parks and Recreation executive producer Michael Schur revealed at a panel in Los Angeles on Wednesday that Lowe has signed a "multiyear contract" with his show.

Schur added that "there's no truth" to the rumors that Lowe will replace Sheen. "The Internet lit a match and set itself on fire," he said, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

On fire indeed. Many online commenters wouldn't mind if Lowe -- or John Stamos, another name that's been bandied about -- stepped into Sheen's shoes. Sheen gave both actors a thumbs-up in an interview on Dan Patrick's radio show Wednesday and offered them -- or whoever his successor may be -- some advice:

"What I would advise them to do, though, is just make it their own," Sheen added. "Don't, don't, don't think about anything that I've done brilliantly on the show for 177,000 episodes...but I would just tell them, make it your own."

Indeed, Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre crafted the Charlie Harper character for Sheen, not for any other actor. Do both love to drink? Check. Both drawn to multiple women at a time? Check. Both prone to fits of rage? Check.

But surely a man not fueled by "tiger blood" or built with "Adonis DNA" could play the similarly-minded uncle, cousin, long lost best friend or secret half-brother of TV's most loved playboy. (Isn't that why they call it acting?) Considering the studio suits probably have their hands full with threats from Sheen's lawyer and the potential loss of hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue, we thought we'd throw them a line. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio