- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 4, 2009

Scent-sational

Mary J. Blige is following in the footsteps of Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez and Mariah Carey by releasing a perfume.

The Grammy-winning R&B star broke news of the project last week at the FiFi Awards, HipHollywood.com reports.

Miss Blige describes the scent as “beautiful,” adding, “It was soft, it was musky, it was floral, it was everything. I loved it.”

The new scent, appropriately named “My Life,” will be released through the popular Carol’s Daughter franchise, a line with which Miss Blige is already involved.

Rimes irks actor’s Mrs.

LeAnn Rimes is responding to a report in which 36-year-old model Brandi Glanville claims that the country star is “stalking” her husband, actor Eddie Cibrian. Miss Rimes and Mr. Cibrian starred in the Lifetime movie “Northern Lights,” seen earlier this year.

“These comments are incredibly defamatory,” a spokesperson for Miss Rimes told People.com. “While there are always two sides to every story, LeAnn continues to remain above the fray and chooses not to play this out in the press.”

Miss Rimes, 26, has been working in Los Angeles, while her husband of seven years, Dean Sheremet, 28, has been in Nashville, Tenn., writing and producing. Last month, the country-music songbird was spotted chatting with Mr. Cibrian, 35, at a Los Angeles Lakers basketball game. The conversation reportedly took place about two months after reports of an affair between Miss Rimes and the actor.

New trouble for Cohen

Eminem may have been assaulted by Sacha Baron Cohen’s bare rear end during Sunday’s MTV Movie Awards, but it looks as if Mr. Baron Cohen’s portrayal of a gay Austrian fashion reporter may have done some permanent damage.

Richelle Olson, executive director of Desert Valley Charities, has sued Mr. Baron Cohen, NBC Universal and others for unspecified damages, claiming that the actor (as Bruno in the upcoming film of the same name) “offensively touched, pushed and battered” her at a bingo hall in 2007, says the New York Daily News, citing a report from TMZ.com.

The two reportedly were entangled after Miss Olson tried to wrestle the microphone away from “Bruno,” who was calling the numbers at a charity bingo game she ran in Palmdale, Calif. The altercation consequently caused Miss Olson to fall to the ground.

Miss Olson described Mr. Baron Cohen, 37, as an “extreme, outrageous, offensive caricature of a gay man dressed in sexually revealing clothing with an Austrian accent.” She claims that after her “humiliation and embarrassment” was recorded, she began sobbing uncontrollably, lost consciousness, and then fell forward onto a “thinly covered concrete slab.”

Miss Olson was diagnosed with “two brain bleeds” after passing out and hitting her head and has been confined to a wheelchair and walker ever since, according to the complaint.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages of more than $25,000, Associated Press reports.

Yank wins Brit prize

American writer Marilynne Robinson has won Britain’s Orange Prize for Fiction by women.

On Wednesday, the judges awarded the prize to Miss Robinson for her third novel, “Home,” about a man trying to make peace with his troubled past, Associated Press reports.

Miss Robinson won the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award for her first novel, “Housekeeping,” published in 1981. Her second novel, “Gilead,” published in 2004, won the Pulitzer Prize.

Miss Robinson, who will receive $48,000 and a bronze figurine, beat out five finalists, including Ellen Feldman, a nominee for “Scottsboro,” and Samantha Hunt, who was nominated for “The Invention of Everything Else.”

Powerful celebs

Superstar actress and humanitarian advocate Angelina Jolie has unseated talk-show diva Oprah Winfrey as the world’s most powerful celebrity in a new survey published Wednesday by Forbes magazine.

The top ranking is based on income over the past 12 months as well as Web references, press clippings, broadcast mentions and major magazine covers devoted to the celebrity, Forbes said.

Oscar winner Miss Jolie, 33, who with Brad Pitt forms the Hollywood golden couple dubbed “Brangelina,” earned $27 million between June 2008 and June 2009, Agence France-Presse reports.

Her earnings and “famous face,” Forbes said, were enough to dethrone media maven Miss Winfrey, who earned $275 million.

Miss Jolie, who came in third last year, is known for balancing her movie career and work as a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations’ refugee agency with her and Mr. Pitt’s six-child family.

In third place was pop legend Madonna - absent from last year’s top 10 - whose tabloid antics and hit world tour, Hard Candy, boosted her profile and earned her $110 million, the magazine said.

In fourth place was singer and actress Beyonce Knowles, who was lauded by Forbes for her “multi-platform empire,” with earnings of $87 million.

The top male power player, Tiger Woods, came in fifth with $110 million in earnings. Despite a year beset by injury, the star golfer remained the world’s highest-paid athlete, AFP notes.

Scent-sational

Mary J. Blige is following in the footsteps of Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez and Mariah Carey by releasing a perfume.

The Grammy-winning R&B star broke news of the project last week at the FiFi Awards, HipHollywood.com reports.

Miss Blige describes the scent as “beautiful,” adding, “It was soft, it was musky, it was floral, it was everything. I loved it.”

The new scent, appropriately named “My Life,” will be released through the popular Carol’s Daughter franchise, a line with which Miss Blige is already involved.

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

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