People in the news

By United Press International   |   Aug. 22, 2012 at 4:00 AM

The latest news on today's hottest celebrities ...

ROSIE O'DONNELL: U.S. comedian-actress TV personality Rosie O'Donnell says she is "lucky to be here" after suffering a heart attack, and she warns women to "know the symptoms."

The 50-year-old former daytime host credited her survival to quick Internet research on her painful symptoms and an aspirin she had seen recommended in TV commercials.

"Thank god, saved by a tv commercial, literally," she wrote in her usual verse form on her rosie.com blog, which uses a heart on the Web page instead of a dot to separate "rosie" from "com."

She ended up having a mesh tube called a stent inserted into one of her heart's arteries after doctors discovered it was 99 percent blocked.

"I am lucky to be here," O'Donnell wrote.

"Know the symptoms ladies, listen to the voice inside. The one we all so easily ignore. CALL 911. save urself xxx," she concluded after citing statistics that 50 percent of U.S. women suffering heart attacks don't call the emergency telephone number.


PRINCE HARRY: Prince Harry, third in Britain's line of succession, came in second, or last, in an impromptu swimming race against 11-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte.

The younger son of Prince Charles and Diana, princess of Wales, was at a huge after-hours pool party at the Wynn Las Vegas resort and casino when he and Lochte -- who holds the world record in the 200-meter and 400-meter individual medleys -- decided to race at the hotel's extravagant XS nightclub pool, the New York Daily News reported, citing video it received.

They agreed to do the breaststroke.

Young women in bikinis watched as Lochte counted to three on his left hand, then blasted to a quick lead over the 27-year-old prince, the News said.

The Olympic icon and Swimming World Magazine 2011 World Swimmer of the Year easily won the race, raising both arms in victory and hugging Harry amid 5,000 fellow partiers.

Prince Harry was in Las Vegas after hosting a charity event in San Diego, Buckingham Palace said.


MEL B: Singer-songwriter Melanie Brown has been offered a job judging the British version of "The X Factor" realty TV talent show if she leaves the Australian version.

The brutal honesty and withering put-downs the former Spice Girl, known as "Scary Spice," gave to auditioners impressed executives at show-creator Simon Cowell's Syco Television so much that she became their first choice for this year's talent contest, the British tabloid The Sun reported.

But Brown, 37, was committed to completing the Australian "X Factor" season with judges Australian singer-songwriter Guy Sebastian, Irish recording artist Ronan Keating and Australian actress Natalie Bassingthwaighte.

The British version signed Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger to join British singer-songwriter Tulisa Contostavlos for this season, the newspaper said.

But Syco TV still wants "Mel B" for 2013, a source told the newspaper.

"Mel was our first choice," the source said. "She was so quick and honest. You can't let everyone down gently or the praise is meaningless.

"There's a lot of money on the table for her next year."


DICK VAN DYKE: Actor-comedian Dick Van Dyke is to receive a Hollywood life achievement award for his career and humanitarian accomplishments, the actors guild said.

The 86-year-old "beloved actor, singer, dancer, writer and comedian" will receive the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award at the 19th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards Jan. 27, the SAG-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists performers union said.

SAG and AFTRA merged March 30.

The event will air live on TNT and TBS.

"Dick is the consummate entertainer -- an enormously talented performer whose work has crossed nearly every major category of entertainment," actor and SAG-AFTRA Co-President Ken Howard said in a statement. "From his career-changing Broadway turn in 'Bye Bye Birdie' and his deadpan humor in the Emmy winning 'Dick Van Dyke Show,' to his unforgettable performance as Bert in 'Mary Poppins,' he sets a high bar for actors.

SAG-AFTRA said Van Dyke has volunteered for nearly 20 years at the Midnight Mission human services organization in downtown Los Angeles' Central City East, a neighborhood with one of the largest populations of homeless people in the country.

"He helped raise millions for their new building program and is there without fail every Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter and times in between offering comfort and cheer," SAG-AFTRA said.

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