News Column

SINCE YOU ASKED [Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (PA)]

May 25, 2013


"I was so busy pretending to experience everything, I forgot to experience real life."

EMMA ROBERTS, in a monologue at Glamour presents These Girls, describing how she initially forgot to have a life outside work.,Linkin Park's Chester joins STP,Almost three months after kicking singer Scott Weiland out of the group, the Stone Temple Pilots have hired Linkin Park vocalist Chester Bennington as their new frontman.

To the surprise of audience members, Chester, 37, joined the other members of the alternative rock group onstage May 18 for an unannounced set at the KROQ Weenie Roast in Irvine, Calif., Billboard reports.

Chester performed a 40-minute set with the band, including hits "Vaseline" and "Sex Type Thing." The group also unveiled "Out of Time," their first new song since 2010 and the debut of their collaboration with Chester. A source close to the band tells the Daily News that Chester will continue to helm Linkin Park while he works with the Stone Temple Pilots.

"Chester has a one-of-a-kind voice that we've admired for a long time," Pilots guitarist Dean DeLeo said in a statement. "We know Linkin Park will always be his priority but we through it would be cool to try something together. We managed to find the time to record a song and we're all really happy with the result."

Dean and drummer Eric Kretz announced in February that the group had "officially terminated" their former singer, a separation that Scott apparently regarded as a hostile takeover.

"Not sure how I can be 'terminated' from a band that I founded, fronted, and co-wrote many of its biggest hits, but that's something for the lawyers to figure out," Scott said in a statement at the time.

Chester isn't interested in starting a feud with the former frontman. In an interview with KROQ after the event, the Linkin Park singer expressed his admiration for Scott.

"We wish nothing but the best for Scott," Chester said. "Great singer, participated in making some of the best records of all time, I wish nothing but the best for him."

-- New York Daily News,Good Times: Janet's now a billionaire

Janet Jackson is officially a billionaire.

The iconic singer has joined the likes of Oprah and "Harry Potter" creator J.K. Rowling in the exclusive club of entertainment's richest women.

The youngest Jackson, a talented singer, actress and dancer, surpasses the net worth of her brother Michael Jackson, who never broke the billion mark while he was alive.

According to Variety magazine, over the course of her career Janet has had 35 No. 1 hit singles, and sold over 100 million albums worldwide.

The "Rhythm Nation" singer is said to have earned $458 million in concert touring, $304 million in acting in films like "Why Did I Get Married" and "The Nutty Professor," $260 million in album sales and more than $81 million from sponsorships.

Recently Janet married a fellow billionaire, fashion mogul Wissam Al Mana.

Jessica co-stars with Amy Poehler and Jane Lynch in the upcoming comedy "A.C.O.D.," voices a role in the upcoming animated film "Escape From Planet Earth," co-stars with Mel Gibson in the crime thriller "Machete Kills," due out in September, co-stars with Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the sequel "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For," due out in October, and is shooting the thriller "Automata," with Sofia Vergara and Winona Ryder. She also has signed to co-star with Pierce Brosnan and Kristin Scott Thomas in the comedy "How to Make Love Like an Englishman."

I think Nicole Kidman is such a good actress. Does she have any movies coming out? -- J.B.

The Oscar winner co-stars with another Oscar winner, Colin Firth, in the upcoming drama "The Railway Man"; stars as Princess Grace in the upcoming "Grace of Monaco"; and puts in an appearance in Will Ferrell's "Anchorman: The Legend Continues," due out in December. She is now filming the mystery "Before I Go to Sleep," and is set to produce and star in "Reconstructing Amelia" for HBO, playing a mother whose teenage daughter commits suicide.

-- Robin Adams Sloan, King Features Syndicate,Debbie: We all knew Lee was gay

In the new film "Behind the Candelabra," veteran entertainer Debbie Reynolds has just three major scenes to flesh out one of the most complicated figures in piano-playing showman Liberace's life: his loving but sometimes manipulative mother, Frances.

The Oscar-, Tony- and Emmy-nominated Reynolds didn't need to do any homework for the part. She knew Frances. Debbie joined Liberace's inner circle while both were doing stage shows in Las Vegas.

"I tell the story when Lee called me one night after work," Debbie remembered, using Liberace's nickname. "I was at the Desert Inn, he was at the Hilton, and he said, 'Debbie, I'll pick you up after the show, and we'll take Tom Jones. It's his birthday.'"

"I have never had a better time than being Liberace's date," the 81-year-oldDebbie continued. "We all knew he was homosexual. That was a friend: You know what they love and the people that they love, and what they are."

"Behind the Candelabra" picks up the story of Liberace, played by Michael Douglas, in the '70s and focuses on his six-year relationship with the much younger Scott Thorson, portrayed by Matt Damon.

Debbie, who also knew Scott, highly praised both of the film's stars. "They had to immerse themselves: two straight men, to make this come off as loving and real."

Liberace died from complications of AIDS in 1987 at age 67. He never publicly acknowledged he was gay.

"I don't want him to be remembered just for being homosexual," Debbie explained. "He should be remembered as a great entertainer and loved by so many. And this picture does do that."

"Behind the Candelabra" premieres Sunday on HBO in the U.S. and on HBO Canada. On the heels of its theatrical world premiere this week in Cannes, the film begins a run in overseas cinemas starting in June.

-- Associated Press

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