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Entertainment Today: Showbiz News

By KAREN BUTLER, United Press International   |   Jan. 30, 2003 at 3:00 AM   |   Comments

SADIE FROST HOSPITALIZED FOR DEPRESSION

Sadie Frost's publicist confirms the actress is being treated for postpartum depression at a British clinic.

Best-known for her portrayal of the flame-haired Lucy in the film "Bram Stoker's Dracula," Frost also is the wife of actor Jude Law, mother of three children and a nascent fashion designer.

Publicist Simon Halls says the actress is undergoing treatment for postpartum depression stemming from the birth of her son, Rudy, several months ago. She is not, however, recovering from a suicide attempt, Halls emphasizes.

Britain's Sun tabloid sparked speculation that Frost tried to kill herself by reporting she was admitted to an Los Angeles hospital with injuries to her wrists. Halls insists this report was erroneous.

Frost and Law were seen earlier this month at the Golden Globe Awards ceremony in Los Angeles. E! Online says the actress-turned-fashion-designer sought treatment from a doctor before returning home to England this week.


BRINKLEY FEARS FOR ALEXA'S SAFETY

Christie Brinkley says ex-husband Billy Joel's recent car crash has her worried for their teenage daughter's safety.

The pop icon totaled his car on Long Island, N.Y., over the weekend when he inexplicably drove off the road and crashed into a tree. Brinkley was spotted taking photos of the crumpled Mercedes Benz, fueling talk she feared for the safety of Alexa Ray, her 17-year-old daughter by Joel.

"The seat Alexa was sitting in only hours before this latest crash was completely destroyed," the former supermodel said in a statement. "I'm worried about Billy, but like any mother would be, I am alarmed and concerned about my child's safety by this frightening pattern of accidents."

Joel was airlifted to the hospital, treated for unspecified injuries and released. Although no summonses were issued, this was the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer's second car wreck in less than a year. He sustained minor injuries when he crashed another Mercedes last June. Both accidents happened in Sag Harbor in the Hamptons.


O'TOOLE TO ACADEMY: NO THANKS

Screen legend Peter O'Toole has just become the first actor to turn down an honorary Oscar.

In the history of the Academy Awards, only Marlon Brando and George C Scott have refused the honor and no honorary winner has ever turned one down.

A seven-time Oscar nominee, O'Toole has never taken home a statuette.

Although the "Lion in Winter" and "My Favorite Year" star says he was "enchanted" by the Academy's offer to give him an honorary Oscar, he asked for it to be deferred for a decade, stating in a letter to organizers, "Since I'm still in the game and might win the lovely bugger outright, would the Academy please defer the honor until I am 80?"

Surprisingly, Academy president Frank Pierson, told Variety he would not.

"We will have the Oscar for him and if he cares to pick it up, that would be great," Pierson stated, adding the Academy was "bemused and sorry" by O'Toole's attitude.

The British entertainment Web site Ananova.com quotes Academy executive director Bruce Davis as saying there will be a statuette at the March 23 ceremony for O'Toole just in case he has a change of heart. If O'Toole decides not to attend, it will go into the Academy's vault waiting for when he is ready to pick it up.


'MEMENTO' DIRECTOR SIGNS ON FOR NEW 'BATMAN'

A new filmmaker is entering the Bat Cave.

Christopher Nolan, who helmed "Memento" and "Insomnia," reportedly has agreed to take over the "Batman" franchise.

Word from the World Entertainment News Network is that Nolan has signed a deal with studio giant Warner Bros., which currently has three new Batman projects in development.

WENN quotes Nolan as saying: "I grew up with Batman. I've been fascinated by him and I'm excited to contribute to the lore surrounding the character. Batman is the most credible and realistic of the superheroes, and has the most complex human psychology. His superhero qualities come from within. He's not a magical character. I had a fantastic experience with the studio on 'Insomnia' and I'm keen to repeat that experience."

The Batman franchise started strongly in the late 1980s, with Michael Keaton playing the caped crusader in the first film and its sequel "Batman Returns."

The next installments -- "Batman Forever," with Val Kilmer and "Batman And Robin," with George Clooney -- however, performed poorly by comparison at the box office.

In addition to a "Batman 5," WB also is developing a dark tale called "Batman: Year One," to be directed by "Requiem For A Dream" director Darren Aranofsky and "Catwoman," which will continue the story of Michelle Pfeiffer's "Batman Returns" character -- reportedly with Ashley Judd taking over the role.

© 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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