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UPI NewsTrack Entertainment News

Sept. 3, 2012 at 2:00 PM   |   Comments

Coast Guard rescues kayaking Crowe

NEW YORK, Sept. 3 (UPI) -- Members of the U.S. Coast Guard rescued film star Russell Crowe after he lost his way kayaking in New York's Huntington Bay this weekend, officials said.

"He just needed a little bit of a lift. He got a little bit lost," Coast Guard Petty Officer Robert Swieciki, who helped with the rescue, told Newsday Sunday. "When the sun went down, he didn't know where he was."

Swieciki said Crowe and an unidentified friend went out in kayaks Saturday afternoon, but asked the Coast Guard for help getting home when they spotted a boat around 10 p.m.

"He shouted at us from the beach, and he paddled up to us," Swieciki told the newspaper. "We took him to Huntington."

The 48-year-old New Zealand-born actor was shooting the biblical epic "Noah" in the area when the incident happened, Newsday said.

Crowe took to Twitter Sunday and thanked the Coast Guard "for guiding the way."

Best known for his roles in "L.A. Confidential," "Gladiator," "A Beautiful Mind," "Cinderella Man" and "American Gangster," he will soon be seen in the big-screen musical "Les Miserables."


Jackson 'drunk' before show announcement

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 3 (UPI) -- Michael Jackson was "drunk and despondent" shortly before announcing his plans to headline a series of London concerts, a show promoter said.

Jackson was 50 when he died shortly before the shows were to start. His personal physician has been convicted of involuntary manslaughter for administering lethal levels of sedatives and anesthesia to the pop star in an effort to help him sleep.

The Los Angeles Times said it has obtained emails suggesting the company producing the 50-show run doubted Jackson was physically or mentally fit to perform the concerts.

"MJ is locked in his room drunk and despondent... I [am] trying to sober him up," veteran music promoter Randy Phillips wrote in one email to his supervisor at Anschutz Entertainment Group President Tim Leiweke the day Jackson announced the concerts.

"I screamed at him so loud the walls are shaking," Phillips wrote. "He is an emotionally paralyzed mess riddled with self loathing and doubt now that it is show time."

Jackson ultimately made it on stage for the press conference announcing the shows, but was 90 minutes late and said little.

The Times said Phillips' email is among numerous messages from people connected to the shows, which could play a central role in a wrongful-death lawsuit Jackson's family filed against AEG. The company is also being sued by its insurer Lloyd's of London, which claims AEG was not honest about the singer's health and ability to fulfill his contract.

AEG has denied any wrongdoing, the newspaper said.


Matt Smith not leaving 'Who' in 2013

LONDON, Sept. 3 (UPI) -- The BBC says current "Doctor Who" star Matt Smith isn't leaving the British science-fiction series next year, despite a tabloid report claiming he is.

Sam Hodges, head of communications at BBC TV, denied a weekend Mirror story saying the 29-year-old actor wants out of the show because the workload is too intense.

"Matt Smith hasn't quit -- just an over excitable headline," Hodges said via Twitter. "It's taken from comments saying he won't be doing it forever. He'll be around for a good while yet."

Smith became the youngest actor to play the iconic role when he started playing the Doctor in 2009.

A recent article in Empire Magazine quoted Smith as saying: "I couldn't do this for seven years. I'd be run into the ground. I don't think you can sustain it..."

"There are no days off unless your leg has fallen off," he said. "You see yourself looking slowly more bedraggled. I have aged savagely. But all for a good cause. I wouldn't change it for the world. There are burdens, but these are small crosses to bear for getting on set."


Twitter rumor upsets One Direction fans

TAMPA, Fla., Sept. 3 (UPI) -- More than 200 fans of the band One Direction were disappointed when a rumor the band would have a two hour layover at a Florida airport turned out to be false.

The rumor spread via Twitter that the British boy band would be stopping at the Tampa International Airport Saturday while making its way to Los Angeles for the MTV Video Music Awards, Tampa Bay (Fla.) Times reported.

Janet Zink, an airport spokeswoman, said the band touched down in Tampa at 5:45 p.m., but quickly went through customs, then took a van to Landmark General Aviation near International Plaza mall to board a private jet.

It took airport officials more than two hours to convince fans that the band wouldn't be making an appearance in the main terminal, Zink said, adding that airport employees made announcements about the situation over the intercom every five minutes.

"This was a much larger crowd challenge than the Republican National Convention," Zink said.

The band touched down in Los Angeles around 7 p.m., and a short while later, disappointed fans finally cleared out of the airport in Tampa.

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