- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Mariachi ‘Hero’

The Spanish heartthrob Enrique Iglesias is readying a new album this fall, the follow-up to 2001’s breakthrough “Escape,” which included the ubiquitous ballad “Hero.”

Before the as yet untitled release hits the streets, the singer’s fans will soon see him in a new role — as a mariachi gunfighter in director Robert Rodriquez’s “Once Upon a Time in Mexico,” opening tomorrow at area theaters.

Mr. Iglesias, the son of crooner Julio Iglesias, wasn’t too impressed by his performance, however.

“A moron could’ve done that role; it’s not that complicated,” he told The Washington Times while in town recently for a private party at the 9:30 Club.

Don’t expect to see Mr. Iglesias in a spate of movies.

Since his music career has taken off, he’s been offered movie roles left and right — and until now, he’s turned them all down.

“It’s not an ego thing,” he said.

“I just want to do small things for now. I’d rather do a 30-second role with David Fincher than a big role with a cheesy director.”

Mr. Iglesias’ biggest fear, at this point in his career, is overexposure.

“Whatever you do on camera, it stays there forever,” he said.

The dotted line

Associated Press

Colin Farrell has been named “best signer” in Autograph Collector magazine’s 12th annual poll of celebrity autograph givers.

The worst when approached by fans? Cameron Diaz.

“Colin is extremely generous with fans and collectors, and goes out of his way to sign for everyone he can at his movie premieres … He just flat-out loves to sign autographs,” said contributing editor Jeffrey Woolf, who helped compile the annual Best and Worst Signers list.

As for Miss Diaz, the 31-year-old star of the “Charlie’s Angels” films, Mr. Woolf said in a statement this week: “She might be an Angel for Charlie, but Cameron is nothing short of a witch … when it comes to signing autographs.”

Wedding day delay

Reuters News Agency

Hollywood lovebirds Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck said yesterday they have postponed their wedding because “excessive media attention” spoiled their efforts to keep the ceremony private.

“When we found ourselves seriously contemplating hiring three separate ‘decoy brides’ at three different locations, we realized that something was awry,” the couple said in a joint statement.

The pair, who reportedly planned to wed on Sunday at a swank estate in the hills near Santa Barbara, gave no indication when or where they would ultimately tie the knot.

A source close to the couple stressed that the wedding had merely been delayed, not canceled, saying, “They’re totally and completely together.”

Some celebrity watchers wondered whether the announced postponement was itself a ruse to throw media hounds off the scent. But Miss Lopez’ spokesman, Dan Klores, told Reuters, “I don’t see that as even remotely possible.”

He added that guests were being called to inform them the wedding was off.

For their part, Miss Lopez, 33, and Mr. Affleck, 31, blamed the glare of unwanted publicity for slowing their trip to the altar.

“We began to feel that the spirit of what should have been the happiest day of our lives could be compromised.”

For months, the couple and their representatives had been tight-lipped about wedding plans in hopes of keeping the media away from a lavish ceremony to which 400 guests had reportedly been invited.

But details have been leaking out during the past several days in various publications. Hotels in and around the usually quiet seaside town north of Los Angeles have been filling up as reporters, photographers and TV crews booked rooms.

A rehearsal dinner reportedly was set for Saturday, with the wedding slated for the following day. According to various media reports, initial invitations were made by phone with guests to be informed of details just days before the wedding in order to keep the ceremony a secret.

Doubts were cast about the couple’s engagement last month when stories surfaced in tabloids and celebrity magazines about Mr. Affleck visiting a strip club without Miss Lopez in July. Miss Lopez publicly shrugged off Mr. Affleck’s night out as no big deal, saying she knew he was going there.

The couple suffered more bad publicity when their first movie together, “Gigli,” was panned by critics and flopped at the box office.

Coldplay’s cause

Coldplay frontman Chris Martin may be living the high life and dating the lovely Gwyneth Paltrow these days, but he hasn’t forgotten the Third World.

The British singer turned up Tuesday in Cancun, Mexico, and he wasn’t there to soak up the sun.

He attended a World Trade Organization meeting and delivered a petition from Oxfam, the London-based charity organization, pushing for a reduction in U.S. and European Union agriculture subsidies, according to Billboard.com.

“When you hear George Bush and Tony Blair talk about free trade, it sounds like a great idea,” he told Billboard.com. “But it’s just not true — their markets are rigged against poor countries.”

Compiled by Scott Galupo from wire and staff reports and entertainment publications. Got a tip? E-mail [email protected] washingtontimes.com.

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