Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Easy money

Los Angeles Times

With proof of identity, Mick Jagger can collect $919 from California. Maria Shriver is eligible for $258 in mystery loot. And Ben Affleck has a $1,598 bonanza awaiting pickup.

These and other celebrities are on a list of 6 million “lost” Californians who qualify for a cut of the $3.9 billion held by the state’s bureau of unclaimed property.

Most of the celebrities contacted for comment, however, declined to do so, the Los Angeles Times reports.

But former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan found something to say when told of his $91 jackpot from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. “I’m shocked they owe me money,” he said.

Filipino ‘Idol’

“American Idol” finalist Jasmine Trias got props from Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who called her an inspiration to Filipinos everywhere.

The Filipino-American from Hawaii visited the head of state at the presidential palace yesterday with her parents, siblings, grandparents and an uncle.

Miss Trias gave Miss Arroyo autographed photos, two boxes of macadamia nuts and an orchid bud, her signature hair accessory during the “American Idol” competition.

“It’s good that as part of the youth, you have a lot of energy, and the smile is always there,” Mrs. Arroyo told the 17-year-old singer, according to Associated Press. “And you’re a family idol as well.”

Home schooler

Opera god Luciano Pavarotti has decided on a part-time job to keep him busy in retirement: giving singing lessons in his hometown in Italy.

The BBC reports that the 69-year-old tenor, who bowed out of professional opera last year, will tutor students on a two-year singing course at a music conservatory in Modena.

Two dozen students will be selected for the Orazio Vecchi music school at the end of this month.

Beat the rap

Associated Press

Michael Jackson is reportedly angered by the way he is portrayed in rapper Eminem’s recently released video “Just Lose It.” The pop singer is said to be so upset that he has asked networks to remove the video from their rotations.

“Michael Jackson is very angry. He feels that Eminem has crossed the line,” Jackson representative Ramone Bain told the New York Daily News in yesterday’s editions.

In the video, Eminem appears dressed mockingly as Mr. Jackson with a group of boys jumping in the background. Then he sings the lyric in reference to the child molestation accusations Mr. Jackson faces: “Come here little kiddie, on my lap/Guess who’s back with a brand new rap….”

Later in the video, Eminem also ridicules plastic surgery done on Mr. Jackson’s nose and an accident in which Mr. Jackson’s hair caught fire during the filming a Pepsi commercial in 1984.

So far, Black Entertainment Television has agreed to pull the video.

College try

Troy McClain may have been fired by Donald Trump during the first season of the NBC reality show “The Apprentice,” but several universities and colleges want him to star on their campuses.

Mr. McClain, who doesn’t have a college degree, has been contacted by Boise State University, Columbia University and Albertson College of Idaho during the past six months, Associated Press reports. He’s also received offers from Hollywood, his manager, Ed Moore, said recently.

During an appearance on CNN’s “Larry King Live,” Mr. Trump offered to send Mr. McClain to the college of his choice.

Frank’s new ‘Night’

A new version of “Silent Night” graces “The Frank Sinatra Christmas Collection,” due Oct. 26 via Reprise Records, Billboard magazine reports.

Arranged by Johnny Mandel, with a newly recorded orchestral backing conducted by son Frank Sinatra Jr., the song uses an unreleased vocal track recorded by the late crooner in August 1991.

“It was an emotional day because he was doing it for the children,” daughter Nancy Sinatra said of the recording, initially intended for a charity project. “It is so sweet and tender that it is just heart-wrenching.”

Compiled by Scott Galupo from Web and wire reports.

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