Shaffer to host benefits
NEW YORK -- Paul Shaffer, musical director for "The Late Show With David Letterman," will host two benefit-tribute concerts for Mike Smith, lead singer and keyboard player for the Dave Clark Five, who suffers from spinal cord injuries after an accident at his home in Spain in 2003. The concert will feature performances by The Zombies, Peter and Gordon, Billy J. Kramer, original Moody Blues lead singer Denny Laine and Beatles cover band The Fab Faux. "A Tribute to Mike Smith" will be held Aug. 2 at B.B. King Blues Club and Grill in New York. The first show will be broadcast live on XM Satellite Radio. All proceeds will benefit Smith, who is paralyzed below the rib cage and has very limited use of his upper body, it was announced Sunday. A 10-day eBay auction to benefit Smith begins July 31 and will include items such as an autographed drumhead signed by Ringo Starr, Monty Python memorabilia and VIP tickets to a Brian Wilson concert.
Farrell sex tape ruling
LOS ANGELES -- A temporary restraining order was issued Tuesday against a woman who is allegedly trying to distribute a sex tape involving her and actor Colin Farrell. Superior Court Judge David Yaffe blocked Nicole Narain from selling, distributing or displaying the 15-minute tape that shows her and Farrell having sex. The next court hearing was scheduled for Aug. 10. Farrell, 29, sued Narain on Monday, accusing her of trying to distribute the tape through an intermediary. The lawsuit also accused the 31-year-old woman of working with the owner of an Internet pornography business and contacting the news media about the tape. Farrell claims the videotape was supposed to be jointly owned by him and Narain, and that they had a verbal agreement it would remain private. The lawsuit also said the release of the tape would irreparably harm Farrell's reputation and career. Narain could not be reached for comment. A phone message left for her attorney was not immediately returned.
Farrow testifies at trial
Testifying Tuesday in London's High Court in Polish-born director Roman Polanski's libel trial, actress Mia Farrow, who came dressed in a black pantsuit and pale yellow shirt, denied a Vanity Fair magazine claim that Polanski tried to bed a woman just days after the 1969 murder of his wife, Sharon Tate, at the hands of followers of Charles Manson. Polanski ("Repulsion"), who called the claim "an abominable lie," is suing Vanity publisher Conde Nast for a 2002 article that claimed the director seduced the woman at a Manhattan restaurant, allegedly telling her, "I will make another Sharon Tate out of you." The article said the seduction was all the more shocking as it occurred while Polanski was on his way to his wife's funeral. Farrow, 60, who starred in the filmmaker's satanic thriller "Rosemary's Baby," said Polanski was consumed by his pregnant wife's death. Tate's sister, Debra Tate, also said her brother-in-law was "an absolute wreck." Conde Nast attorneys counter that Polanski, now 71, was a philandering bon vivant who has always delighted in bending the truth when it suits him.
Jet Li inspired by full life
HONG KONG -- Jet Li says the high number of suicides in China prompted him to make his new movie about kung-fu master Huo Yuanjia, saying he wants to inspire youngsters to live life to the fullest -- like Huo did. "I decided to make this movie in 2003 because I was influenced by the news that 280,000 people commit suicide in China every year," Li was quoted as saying by the Apple Daily newspaper on Monday. "I don't understand why young people can give up their lives so easily ... I hope everyone can learn from Huo Yuanjia and stick with their beliefs." "Huo Yuanjia" wrapped up filming in Shanghai on Sunday, according to the report. Li, 42, made his name in Hong Kong before moving on to Hollywood, where he has appeared in movies such as "Cradle 2 the Grave," "Romeo Must Die" and "Lethal Weapon 4."
Jazz musician-critic Billy Taylor is 84. Singer Kay Starr is 83. Actor-comedian Don Knotts is 81. Movie director Norman Jewison is 79. Actor Paul Burke is 79. Former Attorney General Janet Reno is 67. Actress Patricia Elliott is 63. Actor David Downing is 62. Actor Edward Herrmann is 62. Actor Leigh Lawson is 60. Actor Wendell Burton is 58. Actor Art Hindle is 57. Singer Yusuf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens) is 57. Comedian-actor Robin Williams is 54. Comedian Jon Lovitz is 48. Actor Lance Guest is 45. Actor Matt Mulhern is 45. Rock musician Koen Lieckens (K's Choice) is 39. Rock singer Emerson Hart (Tonic) is 36. Country singer Paul Brandt is 33. Actor Josh Hartnett is 27. Country singer Brad Mates (Emerson Drive) is 27. Actress Vanessa Lengies ("American Dreams") is 20. Actor Jamie Waylett ("Harry Potter" films) is 16.