- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 3, 2006

Magazine launch

Hunter S. Thompson’s widow will co-edit a new magazine called the Woody Creeker, which is expected to hit newsstands next month.

The gonzo journalist shot himself in his kitchen Feb. 20 last year, apparently despondent over health problems.

“We have some good writers already,”Anita Thompson told the Aspen Times for yesterday’s editions. Satirist and political commentator P.J. O’Rourke plans a profile of her husband based on interviews in 1987 and 1997, she said.

Mrs. Thompson continues to work on a book she calls “Hunter’s Wisdom,” a collection of witticisms, aphorisms and other expressions from Hunter S. Thompson’s bibliography of 14 books, along with her personal notes.

The magazine is named after the community where the Thompson property is located. Mrs. Thompson says she came up with the idea for the magazine mainly as a way to celebrate the oddities and richness of her neighborhood.

“We’re living the Woody Creek lifestyle,” she says. “We should be recording it, at least.”

She likes land

Lorraine Bracco of “The Sopranos” follows a simple strategy when it comes to investing: She sticks to real estate.

Miss Bracco said she has never bought stock in her life and doesn’t understand it, but real estate “is like porn for me.”

“Listen, if I am going to get in a cab to go home, and I see a sign for an open house, I will go in. I like real estate because I am the boss,” she said in Sunday’s New York Times.

Miss Bracco filed for bankruptcy in 1999, the same year “The Sopranos” debuted.

“It was horrifying and embarrassing: getting foreclosure notices; lawyers knocking on your door wanting their money and no work to be found,” she recalled.

Since then, Miss Bracco said, she has paid off much of her $2 million in debt as well as nearly $500,000 in back taxes.

“I owe my last $50,000 to the bankruptcy lawyers,” she said, adding that the show has given her financial security.

Tom is tops

Tom Cruise has been voted the Top Money-Making Star of 2005 in Quigley Publishing Co.’s 74th annual Top Ten Money-Making Stars poll. Mr. Cruise, who appeared in “War of the Worlds” last year, has won the poll seven times, the most of any actor since 1932, and has placed in the Top 10 18 times. This was his first top finish since 2001, when he starred with Penelope Cruz in “Vanilla Sky.”

The Quigley Poll, conducted every year since 1932, is an annual survey of motion picture exhibitors that asks them to vote for the 10 stars who generated the most box-office revenue in the preceding year for their theaters.

Market Wire reported that Johnny Depp finished second in the voting and Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt tied for third based on “Mr. & Mrs. Smith.” This is Miss Jolie’s first appearance in the poll and Mr. Pitt’s fourth. Vince Vaughn made his first appearance in the poll at fifth place, acting in “Wedding Crashers,” “Mr. & Mrs. Smith,” “Be Cool” and “Thumbsucker,” all released in 2005.

The rest of the Top 10 in order were: George Clooney 6, Will Smith 7, Reese Witherspoon 8, Adam Sandler 9, and Tom Hanks (last year’s winner) 10. Five on 2004’s list who did not make it in 2005 were Leonardo DiCaprio, Nicolas Cage, Denzel Washington, Jim Carrey and Julia Roberts.

Compiled by Kevin Chaffee from Web and wire reports.

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