- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 11, 2007

More bare facts?

In the wake of revelations about a nude photo of Vanessa Hudgens, a source close to the situation tells People magazine that the “High School Musical” actress once sent risque photos of herself to Nickelodeon star Drake Bell, 21.

According to People, the unnamed source says Miss Hudgens e-mailed photos to the “Drake and Josh” actor a couple of years ago, before she was famous. However, Jill Fritzo, Mr. Bell’s representative, tells the magazine, “Drake says he never received those photos.”

Miss Hudgens, 18, appeared in a 2006 episode of Mr. Bell’s Nickelodeon show as his character’s girlfriend. In real life, Miss Hudgens is dating her “High School Musical” co-star Zac Efron, 19.

On Friday, she apologized for the pictures — which began hitting blogs on Thursday — and said she is “embarrassed over the situation” and regrets “having ever taken these photos.”

The Disney Channel has said it is continuing negotiations with the “High School Musical” cast, including Miss Hudgens, for a third installment of the movie series, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Spaced out

Buzz Aldrin says a former astronaut charged with attempted kidnapping should be “admired” — but not excused — for her resolve in reportedly confronting a romantic rival, Associated Press reports.

Lisa Nowak was arrested in February after police said the married mother of three had driven nearly 1,000 miles to Orlando, Fla.

“Astronauts are not superhuman. They lead ordinary lives and have varied personalities,” Mr. Aldrin, a former astronaut, said in comments published on Time magazine’s Web site. “I think Nowak should be admired for traveling across the country at night and not getting out of her car to put in gas or go to the restroom. It is not excusable, but it is understandable for an achiever to fall into a trap.”

Police said Miss Nowak used diapers during the trip to avoid making stops. Her lawyer disputes that she wore diapers, calling that “the biggest lie in this preposterous tale.” The defense also says Miss Nowak didn’t drive nonstop.

The Rockville native, 44, pleaded not guilty to attempted kidnapping, battery and burglary with assault. She is pursuing a temporary insanity defense, according to court documents.

Dallying Diddy

Kim Porter, who for more than a decade was in an on-again, off-again relationship with Sean “Diddy” Combs, is coming clean about the dissolution of their romance, saying his philandering was just one of the reasons for their breakup in July.

The former supermodel’s “rudest awakening” in all her years with Mr. Combs, 37, took place late last year, when she was pregnant with the couple’s twin daughters, D’Lila Star and Jessie James, who were born Dec. 21,” People.com reports, citing excerpts from an interview with Miss Porter in the October issue of Essence magazine.

“[Dec. 21] was when a girlfriend informed her that Combs had recently fathered a baby with another woman,” the magazine says.

“I wasn’t even coming from the place of who, what, why,” Miss Porter tells the magazine. “I laid low and did what women do: I did my background work, collected information [about the other woman]. But … I was pregnant, and what was bubbling inside me was a blessing from God. I couldn’t let my energy be on that.”

As Miss Porter was to learn, the other baby was born five months before the twins arrived. The child’s mother is Sarah Chapman, 33, who lived in Atlanta, worked in fashion and knew Mr. Combs for several years, her attorney tells Essence.

“It’s not an original script,” Miss Porter says of her ex’s behavior. “He’s not the first man who’s cheated. He’s not the first man who’s had a baby outside of his relationship. He’s not the originator of this. But at this point in my life — I have girls now — it’s a different program.”

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

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