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Entertainment: McKellen battling cancer; Wendy Williams slams Beyonce
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2012-12-11

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Gay icon and The Hobbit actor Sir Ian McKellen is battling prostate cancer—and has been doing so for quite some time, according to Hollywood.com . The British actor, 73, has not undergone treatment for the disease and instead has regular tests to ensure it hasn't spread. He told the Daily Mirror, "You do gulp when you hear the news. It's like when you go for an HIV test, you go, 'Argh, is this the end of the road?' ... You can have it snipped but you are not a candidate for that. You are 'waitful watching'. I've had it for six or seven years; when you have got it you monitor it, and you have to be careful it doesn't spread. But if it is contained in the prostate, it's no big deal."

Talk-show host Wendy Williams criticized Beyonce during a taping of her show, making fun of the "Single Ladies" singer's speaking voice, the New York Daily News reported. During her Hot Topics segment, Williams said, "I'm watching [Beyonce's HBO documentary] because fortunately one of the TVs in our kitchen has closed-captioning, so I'll be able to understand what she says. You know Beyoncé can't talk. Beyonce sounds like she has a fifth-grade education. She can't talk." The audience turned on Williams, but she continued ranting.

Speaking of Beyonce, she's rolling in even more money after inking a $50-million deal with Pepsi, according to the Huffington Post. The agreement includes traditional promotional appearances and a new commercial, but also the beverage company's investment in a number of the singer's creative projects. The "Crazy In Love" singer's face will also appear on a limited-edition run of Pepsi cans. Other artists the brand recently featured include One Direction and Nicki Minaj.

Out musician Frank Ocean scored six Grammy nominations. His nods include some of the biggest categories, including Album of the Year for Channel Orange, record of the year for "Thinkin' Bout You" and Best New Artist, Advocate.com noted. Ocean's five nominations tie him for the most with Kanye West, Jay-Z, Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys, Mumford & Sons and fun.

Scott Evans—an openly gay soap-opera actor, and younger brother of Captain America star Chris Evans—has been arrested after trying to purchase drugs during an undercover bust, the Huffington Post noted. TMZ reported that Evans talked about the arrest on Facebook, posting, "Most ridiculous night of my life in LA so far. At least I made it a year before getting arrested." Scott, 29, has appeared on shows such as Fringe and Guiding Light, but is best known for playing Officer Oliver Fish on the now-defunct ABC soap One Life to Live.

Gay advocate and former Star Trek actor George Takei delivered on his promise to sit down for lunch with Donald Trump and discuss marriage equality, according to the Huffington Post. They lunched together at the Trump Tower Grill in New York City. Takei posted on Facebook, "It was a lively and engaging hour-long conversation that touched upon his personal position on marriage equality. He confided that he recently attended a same-sex wedding and that he'd found it 'beautiful.'"

On the same day that The Hollywood Reporter hosted a breakfast to honor the most powerful women in entertainment and the progress of women in Hollywood, writer Bret Easton Ellis issued a tweet about director Kathryn Bigelow that many are considering sexist, the Hollywood Reporter noted. Ellis tweeted that Oscar winner Bigelow (The Hurt Locker) "would be considered a mildly interesting filmmaker if she was a man but since she's a very hot woman she's really overrated." Ellis is now working on the film The Canyon, with stars Lindsay Lohan, porn star James Deen and openly gay auteur Gus Van Sant.

Calvin Klein's ex-boyfriend Nick Gruber is speaking out for the first time about the couple's split, saying his "paternal" relationship with the fashion designer featured bouts of jealously, the Huffington Post noted. Gruber, 22—currently working on the book Obsession: My Life with Calvin Klein—that Klein, who had been living as a straight man, fell for. One of the items Gruber discussed with Page Six involved him taking Klein, who is almost 50 years his senior, to have his very first Big Mac; "[Klein] asked if they had it medium rare," Gruber said.

ASTEP/Artists Striving to End Poverty will present an intimate holiday concert featuring performers such as openly gay singer/actor Jonathan Groff (Glee) Dec. 17, according to Playbill.com . The event's venue is considered unique; access to the show, "Backstage for Christmas: A Holiday Cabaret," is through the stage-door entrance of Broadway's Foxwoods Theatre; the door leads to a performance space in the theater. Drama Desk Award-winning orchestrator Mary-Mitchell Campbell is producing and directing the event.

Domestic diva Martha Stewart was stricken with salmonella after handling too many Thanksgiving turkeys, according to the New York Post. Stewart said, "I never get sick, but I came down with salmonella. I think I caught it because I was handling so many turkeys around Thanksgiving. I was on the 'Today' show, I did a number of other [Thanksgiving] appearances. It really hit me hard and I was in bed for days. It was terrible."

Feminist writer Camille Paglia has accused singers Taylor Swift and Katy Perry of killing feminism and throwing society back to the "demure girly-girl days of the white-bread 1950s," the Daily Mail reported. In an article for The Hollywood Reporter, Paglia wrote that, as a result, many of today's young women fail to realize the role their sexuality plays in society and "partying till you drop has gotten as harmless as a Rotary Club meeting." Writing about Swift, Paglia added that the singer "has a monotonous vocal style, pitched in a characterless keening soprano and tarted up with snarky spin that is evidently taken for hip by vast multitudes of impressionable young women worldwide."

John Travolta and his attorney Marty Singer have both scored legal victories, The Hollywood Reporter noted. Robert Randolph—who wrote You'll Never Spa in This Town Again and provided the basis for a 2010 Gawker article called "The Secret Sex Life of John Travolta"—sued both in June, claiming they damaged Randolph's reputation. The case was dismissed in September; however, on Dec. 7, L.A. Superior Court Judge Malcom Mackey awarded Travolta $139,645.17 in legal fees and costs.

Ke$ha has settled a $14-million lawsuit from her former managers at DAS Communications, who signed the pop star in 2006 before she hit it big, according to The Hollywood Reporter. She allegedly ditched the firm after songwriter Dr. Luke was said to have convinced her to sign with RCA/Jive instead. DAS said it was entitled to 20 percent of her earnings, leading Ke$ha to hit back with counterclaims. The case was dismissed by mutual consent Nov. 28.

Anderson Cooper has revealed that he wears the same pair of jeans every day—washing them only about four times a year, on average, according to the Daily Mail. Talking on his own show with Stacy London, co-host of the TLC show What Not to Wear, Cooper said, "In my real life I wear a T-shirt, gray or white, same pair of jeans—literally, the same pair of jeans every day." Cooper added that when it comes to actually washing his jeans, he just wears them in the shower.

Liz Carmouche, 28, is the first openly gay competitor signed to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), according to the Huffington Post. The UFC has had a history tainted with anti-gay sentiment, and some see her joining as a sign of progress. Carmouche recently revealed to Sports Illustrated that while serving in Iraq during the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" era as a closeted lesbian, she was surrounded by anti-gay sentiment.

Bravo Media will premiere an all-new season of Kathy—the weekly prime-time talk show that Emmy award winner Kathy Griffin hosts—on Thursday, Jan. 10, a press release stated. Also, after a recent nomination and loss in the Outstanding Variety Special category, Kathy has appropriately named her next stand-up special "Kathy Griffin: Kennedie Center On-Hers" premiering Thursday, Jan. 3. In this new comedy special, Griffin will discuss her very uniquely inappropriate encounters with everyone from Miley Cyrus to Celine Dion.

Gay couple Josh Kilmer-Purcell, 43, and Brent Ridge, 38—formerly known as The Fabulous Beekman Boys because they starred in their own reality series for two seasons on Discovery's Planet Green—won the latest edition of CBS' The Amazing Race, according to USA Today. They defeated Texas dating couple Lexi and Trey as well as Las Vegas Chippendale dancers James and Jaymes in the final challenge, which had them matching up the words for "hello" and "goodbye" from each of the nine countries they visited on their adventure.

Pamela Anderson reportedly has two huge tax liens filed against her, totaling more than $370,000, according to the New York Post. It's not the first time the Baywatch actress faced tax troubles; in 2009 she was allegedly hit with a lien for $1.7 million. TMZ has even reported that Anderson's name has even appeared on California's list of "Top 500 Delinquent Tax Payers" in the past.

In the second of two back-to-back Jan. 8 episodes of her show Betty White's Off Their Rockers, White works with Kim Kardashian in a comedy bit in which the two prepare to hit the town, according to People.com . At one point, White offers Kardashian make-up tips. "Gangnam Style" performer Psy will guest-star in the first episode.

Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Brandi Glanville, 40, is undergoing surgery to remove a tumor in her breast, USA Today reported. Glanville tweeted, "Its not the big C—please dont worry, its just some n'lame thats been making me ill." Aside from her health struggles, Glanville has been engaged in an ongoing battle with her ex-husband, Eddie Cibrian, and his wife, LeAnn Rimes.

Actress Shannen Doherty made a 911 call on behalf of a suicidal fan, according to the New York Daily News. "This is going to sound incredibly strange cause it does to me as well," the 90210 star can be heard telling the operator. "My name is Shannon Doherty and I'm an actress and there is a girl who is threatening to shoot herself." Doherty made the call after the unnamed fan tweeted several messages at the actress saying that she would kill herself if she didn't get a phone call from the actress.

Madonna has reportedly outsold Lady Gaga in South America, where Gaga offered ticket deals in order to fill a stadium, the Huffington Post noted. The Asociacion Peruana de Autores y Compositores first reported on Gaga's flagging sales in Lima, Peru (where she sold 17,000 tickets for a 55,000-capacity venue). Madonna and Gaga have had a running feud; in November, Madonna said Gaga rejected a proposal to duet.

Barbra Streisand has admitted that she never saw the finished version of the movie Little Fockers, in which she co-starred, according to the Huffington Post. She told the New York Times, "I was in Europe spa-ing, going from spa to spa. ... It's the first time in my life I never saw the whole movie." Commenting on her newest movie (The Guilt Trip, with Seth Rogen) Streisand said, "I actually did enjoy this—as opposed to some of the Focker movies. I had fun in the first one. The second one?"

Mexican singer Jenni Rivera, 43, died when the small plane she was traveling in crashed in the mountains of northern Mexico, according to CNN. Since the release of her groundbreaking debut album "La Chacalosa" in 1995, the banda singer and mother of five released more than 12 hit albums, all reaching platinum and gold status in the United States and Mexico.

A fourth individual has alleged that Kevin Clash—the gay puppeteer who voiced Elmo on Sesame Street before he resigned amid earlier sex-abuse claims this year—had improper relations with him when the reputed victim was a teen as well, according to SouthFloridaGayNews.com . Clash met the alleged victim in Miami Beach in the mid-1990s. Jeff Herman, the attorney representing the anonymous victim, said the puppeteer even invited the boy to visit him in New York City. The alleged victim still lives in Florida's Miami-Dade County and has a history of drug addiction, thefts and "anti-social behavior," the lawyer said.

Appearing on The Wendy Williams Show, out singer Adam Lambert said that while he is not ready to get married just yet, the prospect of marriage is something that he is considering, according to Examiner.com . He said, "The way I look at it is everybody should have the right to get married, if they so choose. Right now, I'm not really thinking about marriage." He also commented on the upcoming season of American Idol, saying that the focus should be on the contestants, not the judges.

Meredith Vieira was a guest star in the ABC soap opera General Hospital nearly 10 years ago, and now the former Today co-anchor is set to make her return Dec. 14, according to Inquisitr.com . Vieira will once again be playing the role of Bree Flanders who, last we saw, was the owner of an upscale escort service; however, Vieira told TV Guide that Flanders is now a marketing exec at a cosmetics company.

White Party Palm Springs Producer Jeffrey Sanker announced he will be crowning Miami Real Housewife Adriana De Moura as Queen of White Party 2013; anointing Amazing Race runner-up & Chippendales star Jaymes Vaughan as Official 2013 Ambassador; and bestowing the title of Dame of White Party 2013 to the diva Madame, according to a press release. Together they will host and provide color commentary for the White Carpet VIP arrivals at White Party 2013 on Saturday night, March 30, 2013, at the Palm Springs (Calif.) Convention Center. (The White Party will be March 29-31.)

ESPN980 has suspended sports talk show hosts Steve Czaban and Andy Pollin after they mocked transgender college basketball player Gabrielle Ludwig, Advocate.com reported. Czaban and Pollin mocked Ludwig's appearance and called her "he/she" and "it." Outsports.com reported that the duo also said transgender people should not play sports. The duo issued a 10-second apology for calling Ludwig an "it." ESP980 said in a statement that "such intolerance and insensitivity will never be tolerated by this company."

Songs written or performed by such acts as Katy Perry, Adele, Jon Bon Jovi and Florence Welch are among the 75 songs the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has deemed eligible for 2013 Oscar consideration, Billboard.com reported. Adele and Paul Epworth, the team behind "Rolling in the Deep," wrote "Skyfall"; no Bond song has ever won as Oscar. There will be five final nominees—an increase of three from the 2012 Academy Awards.

A Storage Wars lawsuit has been revealed that claims that the A&E series is actually rigged, according to Zap2It.com . David Hester, a former star of the show, has filed a suit alleging that he was fired from the series after he complained to producers about the fact that items are planted inside the storage units that are bid on. For instance, Hester claims in his lawsuit that producers hid a BMW mini under "a pile of trash" and planted old newspapers announcing the death of Elvis.


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