People in the news

By United Press International  |  Feb. 7, 2012 at 4:00 AM
share with facebook
share with twitter
1 of 2
| License Photo

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

LESLIE CARTER: About 70 people attended a private funeral for Leslie Carter in upstate New York, a source close to the 25-year-old singer's family told E! News Monday.

A former cast member of the reality show "House of Carters," Carter was the married mother of an infant daughter when she died last Tuesday. She was also the sister of recording stars Nick and Aaron Carter.

An autopsy performed last week on Leslie Carter's remains proved inconclusive with officials waiting for the results of toxicology tests to determine the cause of death.

However, TMZ has reported Carter long battled an addiction to prescription medication and her family suspects she died of a drug overdose.

While her brother Aaron was among the mourners at the service Sunday afternoon, her other singing sibling Nick Carter was working and didn't make it to the funeral home or cemetery.

"I wanted to be at my sister's funeral, but my family has always had a complicated dynamic," Nick said in a statement to E! News without elaborating.

"I love my family. I want to thank everyone for all of their compassion and support that I have received during this most difficult time," he added. "There are so many emotions for me surrounding the loss of my sister. I am trying to stay healthy, positive and focused."

The service took place at Freay Funeral Home in Mayville, not far from the home of Leslie's father.

"It was a very wonderful and touching ceremony," a source told E! News.

Aaron Carter saluted his sister via Twitter Sunday before the service.

"The truth will reveal itself," he tweeted. "I Love you Leslie soo very very very very very much!! virtually no words. You will always be my best friend."

GEORGE LUCAS: Writer-director-producer George Lucas is to receive the Vanguard Award at the 43rd NAACP Image Awards in Los Angeles, organizers said Monday.

The event is to take place at the Shrine Auditorium Feb. 17 and will air on NBC.

Confirmed presenters for the ceremony include Samuel L. Jackson, LL Cool J, Vanessa Williams, Cicely Tyson, Diahann Carroll, Archie Panjabi and Hill Harper.

Lenny Kravitz and Jill Scott are to perform during the 2-hour live special.

The Vanguard Award is presented to a person whose groundbreaking work increases understanding and awareness of racial and social issues, the organization said.

Lucas, the creator of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones film franchises, most recently produced "Red Tails," a movie inspired by the heroic exploits of America's first all-black aerial combat unit.

OSCAR NOMINEES: Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, George Clooney and Steven Spielberg were among those who attended Monday's Oscar nominees luncheon in Los Angeles.

Also attending the event at the Beverly Hilton where they posed for a "class picture" together were nominees Glenn Close, Viola Davis, Rooney Mara, Michelle Williams, Demian Bichir, Jean Dujardin, Gary Oldman, Kenneth Branagh, Jonah Hill, Nick Nolte, Max von Sydow, Berenice Bejo, Melissa McCarthy, Janet McTeer and Octavia Spencer.

Nominated directors Michel Hazanavicius, Alexander Payne and Martin Scorsese also attended the affair.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented Feb. 26 at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center.

BRITNEY SPEARS: U.S. pop star Britney Spears has teamed up with Hasbro to create a new music-themed game called "Twister Dance," the toy and game giant said.

"Dancing has been such an important part of my life since I was a little girl," Spears, a Grammy Award-winning recording artist and mother of two young sons, said in a statement. "As soon as I saw the new Twister Dance game, I knew I wanted to be involved. I think kids will love rocking the spots and dancing to the music as much as my boys and I do. It's a lot of fun."

The game will feature a custom remix of Spears' hit song "Till the World Ends," as well as music by artists such as Ke$ha and Willow Smith. Players can connect any mp3 player to the console to dance to their own tunes, as well.

Spears also will be featured on game packaging, in a television ad and in dance-instruction videos to be released along with the game this fall.

"The game invites kids to rock the spots by placing moveable Twister spots on the floor and then following the direction of the Twister Dance console," Hasbro said in a release. "The Twister Dance console offers superior sound quality and bright, multi-color LED lights that light up to show dancers on which spots they should place their feet. Arm and hand movements are up to the dancers, allowing them to show off their individual style."

Related UPI Stories
Trending Stories