Celebrity news

February 14, 2005

Harrelson, Theron begin new movie

VIRGINIA, Minn. (AP) - Woody Harrelson is taking ice skating lessons and Charlize Theron is doing her best to stay warm as they begin a new film here.

"It's really beautiful but I am from Africa, which is a very hot continent," Theron said of Minnesota. She said she enjoyed watching a recent snowfall "from the inside of a house."

In the film, Theron plays a female miner who pursues a precedent-setting sexual harassment case. Harrelson is her hockey-playing lawyer, and he's taking skating lessons from a local high school coach.

Harrelson said he's not very good yet.

The film, which is still untitled, is directed by Niki Caro, who also directed the critically acclaimed "Whale Rider."

Cheech, Chong say they played straight

ASPEN, Colo. (AP) - Cheech and Chong may have joked about marijuana in their movies, but the comedians say they didn't touch the stuff when the cameras were rolling.


"We tried one time and we wasted so much film," said Tommy Chong, recalling a scene in "Up in Smoke." "We were in the car waiting for the cue, you know. And the camera's rolling and we're sitting there, you know, and neither one of us heard the cue."

Chong and former partner Cheech Marin appeared together for the first time in 20 years at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival.

Chong said he isn't ashamed of introducing millions of Vietnam-era kids to marijuana. "When you think of how many kids died drinking alcohol, I feel I've saved millions of lives," he said.

Marin said their humor was appreciated by an unexpected group: "Cops were our biggest fans. Because they dealt in what we were dealing with everyday, but in reality... they saw the essential humor and they laughed."

Marin and Chong, who recently completed a nine-month sentence for trying to sell marijuana pipes on the Internet, said they are writing two new films, "Grumpy Old Stoners" and "Lord of the Smoke."

Deneuve, Depardieu co-star in new film

BERLIN (AP) - French movie icon Catherine Deneuve was glad to see co-star Gerard Depardieu playing a man on an obsessive quest to regain his first love.

"It's true that obsessive love like that is generally something for women," she told reporters at the Berlin International Film Festival Saturday.

"It really touched me that Gerard Depardieu is a very sensitive and delicate person in that big shell of his."

The two star in "Les temps qui changent" (Changing Times), directed by Andre Techine. In the film, Depardieu's Antoine hopes to find Cecile, played by Deneuve, in Tangiers, Morocco, and win her back from her Moroccan husband.

Festival's discussion ends in scream fest

ASPEN, Colo. (AP) - A panel discussion on whether cable debate shows like CNN's recently canceled "Crossfire" have screamed themselves out of business ended in - what else - a shouting match.

Panelists including comedian Janeane Garofalo, conservative talk show host Laura Ingraham and former White House press secretary Joe Lockhart were alternately cheered and jeered at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival Saturday.

Garofalo rankled some audience members with her comment that not only does "the Republican message dominate the public conversation, but that in my opinion, 90 percent of it is false."

Ingraham retorted, "The American left is so unwilling to look inward to see what's wrong with their party."

The format may be part of the problem, said panel moderator Joe Scarborough, host of MSNBC's "Scarborough Country."

"If we had 11/2 hours to debate Iraq, we'd have had a more nuanced discussion. How do you debate Iraq in three-and-one-half minutes?" he said.

Aguilera engaged to music executive

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Christina Aguilera may be getting what a girl wants.

The Grammy-winning singer is engaged to her boyfriend of two years, music executive Jordan Bratman, Aguilera's representative, Meghan Prophet, told The Associated Press on Saturday.

Bratman, 26, proposed to the 23-year-old pop diva on Friday night while the two were vacationing at an undisclosed location, Prophet said.

"No wedding plans have been set yet," she said.

Bratman presented Aguilera with a diamond ring designed by jeweler Stephen Webster, according to Prophet.

The engagement initially was confirmed to the magazines People and US Weekly.

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