- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Mark her words

Internet Movie Database

Catherine Zeta-Jones has vowed to stay with husband Michael Douglas for life because she’s can’t stand theidea of divorce.

Miss Zeta-Jones, 34, who married Mr. Douglas, 59, in 2000, insists it’s not in her nature to quit. She says: “I find divorces repulsive. I will never get divorced, never.”

She credits her upbringing for her philosophy on the subject. “I grew up in a small, strictly Catholic fishing village on the coast of Wales,” she says. “The people there have a different attitude to life than those in Hollywood; people stick together more.

“It’s in the genes. Look at other stars who have come from my area: Tom Jones has been married to his Linda for 47 years, and Richard Burton never really got over Elizabeth Taylor.”

Secret superstar

Associated Press

Prem Raja Mahat is to Nepal what Bruce Springsteen is to New Jersey.

The Nepalese music superstar, who is crafting his 47th album, also has another job: as a restaurant manager in Baltimore, where he makes about three times what he did as a musician in Nepal.

“I miss Nepal, because they love me there. I miss being famous,” Mr. Mahat said recently while watching the early dinner crowd stroll past the Mughal Garden restaurant, where he earns about $3,000 a month.

“But in my country, there is fighting and death and poverty. That is why I left,” he said.

“We call him the ‘King of Folk Songs,’” says Ram Kharel, who hosts an American public access television show on Nepalese news and culture. “At every Nepalese event in America, even if he’s not there, people sing his songs. He is that popular.”

The important thing, Mr. Mahat says, is that his children understand what he has given up — and why.

“They thank me for bringing them here and giving them this opportunity,” he says. “They understand my sacrifice, that I am giving up my name and good job — for them.”

Frat boy Farrell

Internet Movie Database

Wild man Colin Farrell’s penchant for debauchery already has offended his “Alexander” co-star Angelina Jolie: She fled to a different hotel to escape his wacky behavior.

Mr. Farrell, 27, and the “Tomb Raider” beauty are shooting the epic movie in Morocco, but his reported habit of exposing himself during drinking sessions has upset female members of the film crew.

An insider tells London’s Evening Standard: “He was always getting his bits out when he’d had a few… We thought it was hilarious, but Angelina didn’t and eventually had enough and said she was leaving.”

Contra ban

Associated Press

Several prominent actors, including Sean Penn, Holly Hunter, Frances McDormand and Willem Dafoe, have joined the opposition to a recent ban on sending special DVDs and videos to Academy Awards voters.

The Writers Guild of America also has added its voice to the argument.

Their protest follows a letter sent last week from 142 directors to Jack Valenti, president of the Motion Picture Association of America, urging the MPAA to immediately repeal its anti-piracy plan.

The actors, writers and directors contend that asking Oscar voters to see films only in theaters will put smaller, independent features at a disadvantage and will do nothing to stop piracy.

“This is an acknowledgment that actors are often the triggers for financing and distribution decisions on independent movies, so it’s really important their voices are heard,” Michelle Byrd, executive director of the Independent Feature Project/New York, told the trade paper Variety. The IFP is helping organize opposition to the ban.

An actors’ protest, to be published in the coming days, will include the names of Hilary Swank, Don Cheadle, Sissy Spacek, Ellen Burstyn, Nick Nolte and Steve Buscemi, among others.

Screen Actors Guild President Melissa Gilbert also disagrees with the ban on screeners. “It creates a hugely inequitable and hugely unleveled playing field,” she says.

The MPAA reiterated Monday that it welcomed debate on the policy but that the ban would remain.

Compiled by Scott Galupo from Web and wire reports.

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