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Archive for February, 2010

Con man who fooled Jane Fonda nabbed in California

Jane Fonda with a man who was billing himself as a wealthy philanthropist at an October 2007 G-CAPP fundraiser in Atlanta.

Jane Fonda with a man who was billing himself as a wealthy philanthropist at an October 2007 G-CAPP fundraiser in Atlanta.

More than two years ago one Christian Michael de Medici announced a generous gift to the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention.

Billed as an “entrepreneur and philanthropist,” he was introduced at a fundraiser by organization founder Jane Fonda as he handed over the keys to a house. It was to be used for G-CAPP’s Doula Project, pairing birth attendants with pregnant girls.  About a year later the house went into foreclosure and the man calling himself de Medici had left town.

“We all regret the experience,” G-CAPP CEO Michele Ozumba told Buzz Monday.

The Dallas Morning News reports that the man, whose real name is Michael Manos, was arrested last week “on a parole violation warrant out of New York.” He has “an extensive rap sheet stretching back to 1979 for convictions ranging from kidnapping to robbery,” and was released from prison in …

Continue reading Con man who fooled Jane Fonda nabbed in California »

Dick Morris stops by the Buckhead Club

Leslie McLeod brought Dick Morris a patriotic tie during his visit to the Buckhead Club

Leslie McLeod brought Dick Morris a patriotic tie during his visit to the Buckhead Club

His fans were waiting, and we had somewhere to be.

So we fired a few questions, Gatling-gun style, at Fox News pundit Dick Morris during the VIP reception before his appearance at the Buckhead Club last week.

His talk benefited the American Seniors Association, which bills itself as the “conservative alternative to the AARP.”

First, his take on President Barack Obama’s proposed budget: “It’s like the medieval doctor who thought bleeding a patient would cure him. When you spend money to create jobs, you’re costing jobs.”

Was the election of Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown a referendum on the Obama administration? “It was a referendum on health care,” Morris said.

Did Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood speak too soon telling Toyota drivers to park it until their brakes could be checked? (LaHood quickly issued another statement, insisting he “misspoke.”)

Morris didn’t …

Continue reading Dick Morris stops by the Buckhead Club »

Homegrown talent in Mamma Mia!

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“Mamma Mia,” running at the Fox Tuesday through Sunday, features some homegrown talent.

Michael Roberts McKee, who plays Eddie, is a product of Cobb County’s Pebblebrook High School. He recently graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a theater degree.

This will be his first time appearing professionally in Atlanta.

For tickets see the theater’s Web site.

Speak up for heart health

Macy’s and the American Heart Association’s “Go Red For Women” campaign invite you to share stories about how heart disease has affected you or a loved one at Saturday’s “Speak Up” event, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Perimeter Mall store.

It’s part of a national casting call, launched in New York by actress Jennie Garth, to seek a spokesperson to appear in marketing materials, at events and on television and on GoRedForWomen.org.

- Jennifer Brett, jbrett@ajc.com

Continue reading Homegrown talent in Mamma Mia! »

Celebrity birthdays Feb. 6: Axl Rose, Natalie Cole, Tom Brokaw, Rip Torn, Robert Townsend, Zsa Zsa Gabor

Actress Zsa Zsa Gabor is 93. Actor Patrick MacNee (”The Avengers”) is 88. Actor Rip Torn is 79. Actress Mamie Van Doren is 79. Actor Mike Farrell is 71. Former NBC news anchorman Tom Brokaw is 70. Actress Gayle Hunnicutt is 67. Singer Fabian is 67. Actor Michael Tucker is 66. Singer Natalie Cole is 60. Actor Jon Walmsley (”The Waltons”) is 54. Actor-director Robert Townsend (”The Parent ‘Hood”) is 53. Actress Kathy Najimy is 53. Drummer Simon Phillips of Toto is 53. Actor Barry Miller (”Saturday Night Fever,” “Fame”) is 52. Actress Megan Gallagher (”Millennium”) is 50. Country singer Richie McDonald (Lonestar) is 48. Vocalist Axl Rose of Guns N’ Roses is 48. Singer Rick Astley is 44. Bassist Tim Brown of the Boo Radleys is 41.

−AP

Continue reading Celebrity birthdays Feb. 6: Axl Rose, Natalie Cole, Tom Brokaw, Rip Torn, Robert Townsend, Zsa Zsa Gabor »

Black Eyed Peas, Ludacris at Philips Arena

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Photos by ROBB D. COHEN, WWW.ROBBSPHOTOS.COM

Thursday’s Black Eyed Peas concert, with Ludacris opening, was a celebration of energetic music, theatrical costumes, creative technology – and Atlanta itself.

“When they told us the tour was going to start in Atlanta some of my friends were like huh? Why don’t you start in L.A. or New York?” the group’s will.i.am said at one point. “I said because the Black Eyed Peas are hot right now. It’s got to be Hotlanta!”

The night started, fittingly, with “Let’s Get It Started,” and ended with dance hits “Boom Boom Pow” and “I Gotta Feeling,” which wrapped up with confetti shot into the air, political-convention style.

The show, which featured the group’s members performing together and separately (Taboo flew through the air on a motorcycle suspended from the ceiling during his bit), made innovative use of technology and at times felt like a social media conference.

“The last time we were in Atlanta was 2006? No, 2005,” will.i.am noted …

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Celebrity birthdays Feb. 5: Bobby Brown, Laura Linney, Sara Evans, Jennifer Jason Leigh

Country singer Claude King is 87. Actor Stuart Damon is 73. Writer-producer Stephen J. Cannell is 69. Singer-songwriter Barrett Strong is 69. Actor David Selby (”Dark Shadows,” “Falcon Crest”) is 69. Singer Cory Wells of Three Dog Night is 68. Singer Al Kooper is 66. Actress Charlotte Rampling is 64. Actress Barbara Hershey is 62. Actor-director-comedian Christopher Guest is 62. Actor-comedian Tim Meadows (”Saturday Night Live”) is 49. Actress Jennifer Jason Leigh is 48. Actress Laura Linney is 46. Bassist Duff McKagan of Velvet Revolver (and Guns N’ Roses) is 46. Singer Chris Barron of the Spin Doctors is 42. Singer and former Atlanta resident Bobby Brown is 41. Country singer Sara Evans is 39. Actor Jeremy Sumpter (”Peter Pan”) is 21.

−AP

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Black Eyed Peas and Ludacris at Philips Arena tonight!

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Boom boom POW!

Buzz is headed over to Philips Arena shortly for tonight’s Black Eyed Peas concert. Atlana’s Ludacris opens.

I’ll be tweeting live during the show, and you can follow me at @ajcBuzz. The home page will be posting concert photos.

So, are you going?

- Jennifer Brett, jbrett@ajc.com

Continue reading Black Eyed Peas and Ludacris at Philips Arena tonight! »

Diana DeGarmo’s new adventure a mystery for now

gamusic0909-02Something’s up with Snellville’s Diana DeGarmo.

The American Idol runner-up, who’s since appeared on the CMT reality show “Gone Country,” and hit Broadway as Penny Pingleton in “Hairspray,” and off-Broadway as a blind librarian in “Toxic Avenger,” is close to sealing some new deal.

(Hey, there’s a reason she made RoHo’s list of Most Successful Idol Alums last fall.)

Exactly what the Shiloh High School grad’s next step is remains unclear but her tantalizing tweets suggest either another reality show or another musical, given the time committment involved. On Tuesday afternoon an apparently nervous DeGarmo tweeted that she was about to “find out about the next seven months of my life,” and followed up a few hours later with “I booked it! I will unveil the show once the deal is sealed.”

Whatever it is, the venture seems likely to be a taxing one.

Wednesday she was back with “Feeling sore as all get out today, but can’t wait to know when the deal is sealed for my new job!”  and …

Continue reading Diana DeGarmo’s new adventure a mystery for now »

PETA to Zac Brown Band: Try tofu!

If PETA gets its way this will be "Tofu Fried" instead

If PETA gets its way this will be "Tofu Fried" instead

Here’s the latest from the folks who wanted a robot bulldog to replace Uga on the UGA sidelines and a robot groundhog to replace Punxsutawney Phil on Groundhog Day.

PETA wants the Grammy-winning Zac Brown Band to make a little tweak to “Chicken Fried” and make it “Tofu Fried” instead.

“We’re writing today in the hope that you’ll extend your love of freedom to animals,” the animal rights group wrote in a letter to the Georgia rockers. “In your song ‘Chicken Fried,’ you praise the simple pleasures of life—a cool drink, a home filled with love, enjoying the sunshine—all pastimes denied to the millions of cows, pigs, chickens, and other animals raised for food on factory farms every year.”

To help seal the deal PETA said it’s “sending the band a basket of delicious, protein-rich faux meats.”

No word on whether tofu products are set to appear on the band’s next album.

- Jennifer Brett, …

Continue reading PETA to Zac Brown Band: Try tofu! »

Celebrity birthdays Feb. 4: Clint Black, Gavin DeGraw, Natalie Imbruglia, Alice Cooper

Actor Conrad Bain is 87. Actor Gary Conway (”Burke’s Law”) is 74. Drummer John Steel of The Animals is 69. Singer Florence LaRue of the Fifth Dimension is 66. Singer Alice Cooper is 62. Actor Michael Beck is 61. Actress Lisa Eichhorn is 58. Singer Tim Booth of James is 50. Country singer Clint Black is 48. Guitarist Noodles of The Offspring is 47. Country bassist Dave Buchanan of Yankee Grey is 44. “Daily Show” correspondent Rob Corddry is 39. Bassist Rick Burch of Jimmy Eat World is 35. Singer Natalie Imbruglia is 35. Rapper Cam’ron is 34. Singer Gavin DeGraw is 33.

−AP

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