- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Bond ambition

Fans lined up in the London rain to catch a glimpse of the new, blond Bond as sandy-haired Daniel Craig made his screen debut as the suave 007 in “Casino Royale,” Associated Press reports.

“Royale,” the 21st Bond film and the grittiest to date, received its world premiere yesterday, with an array of stars — including Elton John and Beyonce Knowles — expected in the audience in London’s Leicester Square.

Mr. Craig, 38, is already being praised in some quarters as the best Bond since Sean Connery, who played the first 007 in 1962’s “Dr. No.”

An adaptation of Ian Fleming’s first-ever Bond novel, “Casino Royale,” was filmed previously as a 1967 spoof starring Peter Sellers.

The new Sony Pictures remake opens nationally on Friday.

Buffett sues vendor

Singer Jimmy Buffett has filed a lawsuit claiming that a Galveston, Texas, merchant is unlawfully using his trademark to sell goods at an online store.

The lawsuit, filed Monday in federal court, seeks to shut down Robert Akard’s Web site, https://www.underonehut.com. According to AP, the lawsuit claims the Web site falsely represents itself as “Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Online Store for Merchandise.”

A lawyer for Mr. Buffett said part of the problem is that some items on the Web site, which sells clothing and beach-themed novelties, are overpriced.

“Many of these products are ones [Mr. Akard is] not even authorized to sell, but primarily, the problem is that, in some cases, the markup on items is as high as 50 percent,” lawyer Anthony Buzbee said. “Jimmy Buffett’s not in business to make money, certainly not anymore, and he doesn’t appreciate what this guy’s been doing.”

Mr. Akard’s attorney, Darrell Apffel, said he would “vigorously oppose” Mr. Buffett’s efforts. He said Mr. Buffett is a financial empire trying to shut down a small business, and he called the complaint “a classic case of David versus Goliath.”

Mr. Akard already had modified his Web site in response to complaints from Mr. Buffett’s lawyers on what they said were implied ties between the site and the singer, Mr. Apffel said.

The site remained online yesterday. Mr. Apffel said neither he nor Mr. Akard had been given notice of a restraining order. A federal judge in Nevada shut down Mr. Akard’s last Web site related to Jimmy Buffett, which was called parrotsofthecaribbean.com.

Day of reckoning

Supermodel Naomi Campbell is due in a New York court today to face assault charges for reportedly throwing a cell phone at her housekeeper.

Miss Campbell’s lawyer, David Breitbart, said there would be no repeat of her last scheduled court appearance in September when the model failed to show up. If the case goes to trial, Miss Campbell faces a possible seven-year jail term on the current charge of second-degree assault, reports Agence France-Presse.

Miss Campbell, 36, was arrested by New York police in March after her maid, Ana Scolavino, accused her of throwing a mobile phone at her head. Police said the wound required several stitches.

Another former employee, Gaby Gibson, has filed a separate complaint accusing the model of personal injury, employment discrimination and assault. Miss Campbell was also arrested in London last month for reportedly scratching her drug counselor all over her face.

In 2000, she pleaded guilty in a Canadian court to assaulting another assistant, Georgina Galanis.

Compiled by Robyn- Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports.

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