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Entertainment Today: Showbiz News

By KAREN BUTLER, United Press International   |   Jan. 15, 2003 at 3:00 AM   |   Comments

HEARTBREAK FOR NEW DAD PAVAROTTI

The joy of becoming a dad again at age 67 was marred for famed tenor Luciano Pavarotti as one of his baby twins was stillborn.

Italian news reports say Pavarotti's 33-year-old companion, Nicoletta Mantovani, underwent an emergency Caesarean section Monday to deliver her twins prematurely.

A spokeswoman at Bologna's St. Orsola Hospital in central Italy said Mantovani's complicated pregnancy ended in the birth of a healthy, but tiny baby girl. Her brother, however, died before he was delivered.

The baby girl is Pavarotti's first child by Mantovani. He has three daughters with his ex-wife.


TOWNSHEND RELEASED AFTER ARREST

Legendary rock musician Pete Townshend has been released on bail after British police arrested him Monday on suspicion of possessing indecent images of children.

Townshend, who admits he viewed child pornography on the Internet while researching a book, has not been charged with any crime, his lawyer told reporters Monday.

The 57-year-old Who guitarist was grilled by investigators for an hour Monday night and ordered to reappear at a police station later this month to answer more questions.

"Mr. Townshend has been at the station this evening answering questions from police. He has not been charged," said Townshend's lawyer John Cohen. "He's been bailed to come back perhaps at a future occasion if they want him to answer more questions."


WINNERS MISSING FROM AMA AWARDS

Lengthy acceptance speeches were not a problem at the 30th annual American Music Awards ceremony Monday night; in fact, most of the winners did not even bother to show up for the event.

Most noticeably missing were rapper Eminem, who won four AMAs, the Dixie Chicks and Creed, who each would have taken home two statuettes, and Mary J. Blige, who earned one. Then there was country music sensation Tim McGraw, who performed a duet of "Tiny Dancer" with pop legend Elton John at the gala, but left for Nashville before he could pick up the prize for favorite male country artist.

Hosted by the now-infamous Osbourne family, the ABC broadcast featured performances by Christina Aguilera, Mariah Carey, Kelly Osbourne, and Toby Keith and Willie Nelson, who sang a duet.

And the winners were...

Alabama: Award of Merit.

Ashanti: Favorite New Hip-Hop/R&B Artist and Favorite New Pop Artist.

Mary J. Blige: Favorite Female Hip-Hop Artist.

Creed: Favorite Rock Group and Alternative Performance.

Sheryl Crow: Favorite Female Pop-Rock Artist.

Dixie Chicks: Favorite Country Band and Favorite Country Album for "Home."

Eminem: Favorite Hip-Hop and Pop-Rock Male Artist and Favorite Hip-Hop and Pop-Rock Album, "The Eminem Show."


BRODY SACRIFICES HOME, HEALTH FOR 'PIANIST' ROLE

In addition to briefly starving himself, Adrien Brody also compromised a romantic relationship and surrendered his home in New York to better understand the impoverished character he played in Roman Polanski's gripping World War II drama, "The Pianist."

"I was exhausted day one," the 29-year-old Golden Globe nominee told reporters in New York. "Day one, I had to climb over that wall and witness the destruction of Warsaw and I had been confined to my room and was just working... I had no energy. I hadn't eaten much. I hadn't eaten that day. I hadn't eaten much for the last six weeks, and I had no energy and I told Roman, 'I have no energy,' and he said, 'What do you need energy for, you just do it.'"

The "Summer of Sam" and "The Thin Red Line" actor dropped 30 pounds and dined on nothing but eggs, fish, chicken and steamed veggies during production to give his character, Polish radio pianist Wladyslaw Szpilman, the emaciated frame appropriate for someone living in the extreme poverty of the Warsaw ghetto. Brody explained even though the real Szpilman died in 2000 at the age of 89, his character was based on an actual person and he felt a keen responsibility to portray him as honestly as possible.

"(Those sacrifices helped me)connect immediately, psychologically to this state of isolation and deprivation that my character had," Brody emphasized. "Before I left home, I gave up my apartment in New York and I sold my car and I got rid of my phones because I thought: 'Hey, this character loses everything. Why don't I be very dedicated and do this,' and when I got there, I was like: 'That was really stupid. I didn't need to do that,' because I'm already going to go through hell here, and it would be nice to have a place to think about like that. I thought that I shouldn't have a place to call home. At that point, I ... had changed already, from day one, and I could barely climb over that wall. They were doing a complicated crane shot and I had to do it a few times. It was freezing and I could barely make it over this wall. My muscles were gone. That's what Roman wanted, and in retrospect, I'm OK. I made it through it. It could've been harmful, but I'm fine today."

"The Pianist," which is based on Szpilman's autobiography of the same name, is in theaters now.


HBO TO AIR SLAVE DOCUMENTARY

Whoopi Goldberg, Oprah Winfrey, Samuel L. Jackson and Robert Guillaume are just some of the celebrities lending their talents to a new HBO documentary called "Unchained Memories: Readings from the Slave Narratives."

Scheduled to air on the pay cable TV network during Black History Month, the documentary draws on more than 2,000 interviews with former slaves and will feature readings by Winfrey, Jackson, Guillaume, as well as Angela Bassett, Don Cheadle, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Courtney B. Vance, Vanessa L. Williams, Alfre Woodard and CCH Pounder.

Produced in association with the Library of Congress and narrated by Goldberg, the film will debut on Feb. 10 at 8 p.m. EST.

© 2003 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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