A Canadian couple who rescued a 7-year-old girl from a garage rooftop as fire raged in the house behind her on Christmas morning were surprised the next day to find movie icon Clint Eastwood knocking on their door.
That's when the couple learned that Francesca, the girl whose life they had saved, was in fact Eastwood's daughter by his former girlfriend, actress Frances Fisher.
Eastwood told GlobalTV he heard about the fire on Christmas morning and flew to Vancouver aboard a private jet the same day. He was extremely grateful to the couple who had saved her life by coazing her to jump from the roof into their arms.
"I was just thanking the neighbors," he said after leaving the house. "The two people here were the ones who went to (Francesca's) aid." Ken and Catherine Charters "were the first ones on the scene," and he wanted to thank them personally.
The girl and her mother were treated at a local hospital -- Francesca for smoke inhalation and her mother for second-degree burns. Fire authorities are investigating how the blaze started.
Fisher was in Vancouver to film a television series. She and Eastwood starred together in the Oscar-winning western "Unforgiven." The actress also played the role of Rose's mother in the movie "Titanic."
Jim Carrey -- the zany, 39-year-old star of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," "The Mask" and "Dumb & Dumber" -- waxed philosophically recently while talking to reporters about his Capra-esque new movie "The Majestic."
An old film buff himself, Carrey insisted that 21st-century moviegoers are not too cynical to enjoy a sweet story like "The Majestic."
"More than ever people are refreshed by it," Carrey said. "You can't deny love. You see it ... you can't deny it. It's there. It gets to you. It gets inside ... this character is everybody's son, everything people have lost. I went down after Sept. 11th and saw (Ground Zero in Manhattan) and read some of the things people had written and that's what kills you. These are magnificent, incredible people that were lost."
Set during the era of the 1950s Hollywood black list, "The Majestic" stars Carrey as an ambitious young screenwriter who loses his job and identity, but is then embraced by a small town who mistakes him for a war hero. "('The Majestic') is not about the black list," he explained. "It's about choices and respect for sacrifice and the effect that people can have on each other."
Carrey noted that the reason his character is transformed into a much more likable man by the end of the movie was because he had "loving people telling him he was worth something."
"What makes a hero," he said, "is a mother and father or people you grow up with making you believe you're a hero. Making you believe you have that in you and that's a good thing to put out there."
"The Majestic" is now in theaters.
(Thanks to UPI's Karen Butler in New York)
The woman who's been called America's most influential Catholic women by Time magazine is in intensive care after suffering a stroke, her spokesman told UPI Thursday.
Twenty years after Mother Mary Angelica founded the Eternal Word Television Network, this "zinging nun" -- as Time magazine called her -- is recovering in a Birmingham, Ala., hospital, said Scott Hults, EWTN's communications director.
Mother Angelica, 78 -- chairman emeritus of the global non-profit network that reaches 70 million households in 38 countries and territories -- underwent surgery on Christmas Eve to have a blood clot removed from her brain. According to Hults, a previous stroke she had suffered in September had affected her left eye and the left side of her face.
Mother Angelica is the abbess of Our Lady of the Angels Monastery in Hanceville, Ala., a shrine built to her specifications in the style of the 13th century. There are 32 nuns in this cloistered community, belonging to the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, a strict contemplative branch of the Franciscans.
The Rev. Gerald E. Murray, pastor of St. Vincent de Paul church in Manhattan, told UPI she was a female Billy Graham. "As an evangelist, she is the contemporary equivalent to Bishop Fulton Sheen."
(Thanks to UPI Religion Correspondent Uwe Siemon-Netto)