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Showbiz Tonight for August 23, 2005, CNNHN
Aired August 23, 2005 - 19:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BROOKE ANDERSON, CO-HOST: I`m Brooke Anderson.
KARYN BRYANT, CO-HOST: And I`m Karyn Bryant. TV`s only live entertainment news show starts right now.
BRYANT (voice-over): On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, the televangelist tirade. The outrage after Pat Robertson calls for the murder of a major world leader. Tonight, what he said, why he said it and why some are saying he went way too far.
ANDERSON (voice-over): The mysterious disappearance of Olivia Newton- John`s boyfriend. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is live with new developments. Plus, will Olivia go ahead with plans to relaunch her career?
BRYANT: "Movie Theater Madness." Fed up with the commercials, cell phones, the jerk sitting behind you? Tonight, how some theaters are trying to lure you back. But can you be bought, for a beer? Tonight, our special series continues.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, this is Dirk Smedley (ph). If it happened today, it`s on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
ANDERSON: Hello, I`m Brooke Anderson, live in Hollywood, in for A.J. Hammer. Well, another major star, chased by the paparazzi, gets into a car accident.
BRYANT: And I`m Karyn Bryant, here live in New York. We`ll have more on that story in just a moment. But first tonight, one of television`s most influential evangelists has murder on his mind.
The "700 Club" founder Pat Robertson has shocked the world by calling for the assassination of a major world leader, apparently ignoring the sixth commandment, thou shalt not kill.
All the reaction and the outrage tonight with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s David Haffenreffer, who is here live with the very latest on this developing story -- David.
DAVID HAFFENREFFER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is still very much a developing story at this hour. Robertson, a longtime figure in the Christian conservative movement, made the shocking suggestion on his TV show. He says the populist South America leader is making problems for the U.S., and the famous religious broadcaster says the solution is simple: thou shalt kill.
REV. PAT ROBERTSON, FOUNDER, CHRISTIAN BROADCASTING NETWORK: If he thinks we`re trying to assassinate him, I think we really ought to go ahead and do it.
HAFFENREFFER: Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson has gone ahead and done it again. It`s not every day a famous minister calls for a killing, but on his show, "The 700 Club," Robertson did just that, publicly calling for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.
ROBERTSON: We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability.
HAFFENREFFER: Today Robertson`s comment touched off heavy news coverage.
WOLF BLITZER, HOST, "THE SITUATION ROOM": Venezuela`s ambassador here in Washington has come out swinging against Robertson`s remarks, calling it a call to terrorism.
HAFFENREFFER: And some serious ridicule, specifically by Air America radio commentator Al Franken, who dusted off his old Pat Robertson imitation from his days on "Saturday Night Live."
AL FRANKEN, AIR AMERICA RADIO COMMENTATOR: I`m just asking that God take out a couple liberals.
HAFFENREFFER: All told, the assassination comments provoked a storm of controversy from a man known equally well for his widespread influence and his ability to shock.
But before we talk about Robertson, first things first: who the heck is Hugo Chavez? Here`s a quick SHOWBIZ TONIGHT lesson in geopolitics.
To put it mildly, Venezuelan President Chavez is a big critic of the United States, accusing the U.S. of trying to kill him. He says if that were to happen, Venezuela would cut off oil supplies to the United States. That would mean 10 percent of the U.S. imports gone.
Robertson says under Chavez, Venezuela is becoming a breeding ground for communism and Islamic extremists, and there`s only one way to deal with him.
ROBERTSON: We don`t need another $200 billion war to get rid of one, you know, strong armed dictator. It`s a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with.
HAFFENREFFER: But was Robertson advocating a new course in U.S. policy, or was he just playing to an audience?
JEFF SHARLET, RELIGION/MEDIA EXPERT: He`s a televangelist. He`s a showman. He`s going to use hyperbolic language.
HAFFENREFFER: Robertson has talked himself into controversy before. In 1992, he said feminism, quote, "encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians," unquote.
And Robertson`s comments about so-called activist federal judges prompted the liberal organization MoveOn.org to put on an anti-Robertson ad.
ANNOUNCER: Last Sunday, Pat Robertson, a leader of the religious right, actually claimed that federal judges are a more serious threat to America than, quote, "a few bearded terrorists who fly into buildings," unquote.
HAFFENREFFER: But Robertson`s influence can`t be ignored. He`s a giant in the conservative movement. In fact, he ran for the GOP nomination in 1988, and thousands voted for him.
His "700 Club," the flagship show of Robertson`s Christian Broadcasting Network, is available in most of the country and draws as many as 18 million viewers in a given month.
Still, even with Robertson`s influence, some think that extended TV news debates and a diplomatic spat with Venezuela will be the only impact of his rant.
SHARLET: I don`t think there`s much of a chance that some grandma in Virginia is going to watch the show and hop on a plane to Venezuela and try and take Hugo Chavez, the paratrooper, out.
HAFFENREFFER: And just tonight, Chavez told CNN, "I don`t know who he is, and I could care less."
But a lot of people here in America do know who he is, a spokesperson for Robertson`s Christian Broadcasting Network says Robertson won`t be making any statements today, but don`t be surprised if he says something else on the matter on tomorrow`s "700 Club" program. If he does, you know that a lot of people, including us here at SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, will be watching.
BRYANT: Absolutely. Thank you very much, David Haffenreffer.
Well, Robertson`s comments calling for the assassination of the Venezuelan president have people talking all over the world. We`re going to get right to our "SHOWBIZ Showdown."
Joining us live is radio talk show host Martha Zoller of WDUM in Atlanta and Mark Williams, talk show host for KFBK radio. He is live tonight in Sacramento.
Mark, I`m going to start with you, and I`m going to be honest. I`m going to confess here. I`ve lapsed a little bit in my showing up at church. But I really do remember that the sixth commandment says thou shalt not kill. How is what Pat Robertson said not in complete conflict? How is that not over the top for him to say this?
MARK WILLIAMS, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Well, Pat Robertson`s been praying for the death of Supreme Court justices now for a couple of months, so this is nothing new for this squirrel.
He may be a squirrel, but even a blind squirrel finds an acorn once in awhile. And let`s take a look at this acorn. Wouldn`t we have saved ourselves a lot difficulty if somebody had put a bullet in Saddam Hussein`s brain or go back even further with Hitler? Hitler only begins the long list.
I don`t know about this guy in Venezuela. He`s something of a mosquito. He`s hardly worthy of a hit, but I mean, there are despotic -- look at that crazy midget in North Carolina (sic), Kim Song-Il. Somebody put a bullet in his brain, we could save an entire continent from being nuked.
The idea is a solid one. The target is the wrong target.
BRYANT: OK. Martha, I hear you chuckling. You want to pipe in on this?
MARTHA ZOLLER, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Well, I`m chuckling. First, hi, Mark.
WILLIAMS: Hi, Martha. How are you?
ZOLLER: Mark and I got back from Iraq -- Iraq together last July, and so it seems like a long time ago, but it`s good to see you.
But I`ve got to tell you, as one of those people that the left fear, meaning I`m a Christian conservative, I go to church more than once a week and I believe in the divine inspiration of the Bible, I think that Pat Robertson went a little too far in calling for the assassination. If a Muslim cleric said that in this country, we`d want to have him deported. And I don`t want to have Pat Robertson deported.
I think it`s a harmless comment on its face, but it caused a lot of problems, and he should know better. People are watching what he says all the time. To call for the assassination of a leader is a little silly.
BRYANT: Now here`s the thing, though...
WILLIAMS: You don`t -- you don`t advertise that kind of stuff. I mean, you know, you don`t -- you don`t have to tell somebody that to throw dog poop on a mafia dog`s front lawn is bad for your actuarial table. You just know it. And that ought to be the same way with these dictators around the world. They should just know that there`s a bullet with their name on it if they cross the United States.
BRYANT: Martha, here`s the thing. I have to believe that the people who are watching Pat Robertson are not necessarily going to jump on a plane and go down there and try to assassinate Chavez...
ZOLLER: Well, he`s accomplished that (ph).
BRYANT: But here`s the thing. How is this different, though, from George Bush saying, you know, "I`m going to start a war. Saddam needs to be taken out. He`s a threat. I don`t like what he`s doing to America." How is this different?
ZOLLER: Because he`s an elected official who`s charged with the national security of this country. George Bush is not speaking as a religious leader when he talks about what our foreign policy goals are. And we were attacked on 9/11.
BRYANT: So you`re mostly upset as a Christian -- you`re mostly upset as a Christian that this -- that he said this?
ZOLLER: Yes, and the forum he used to do it. Certainly no one thinks that he was inciting people to go out and do that. What he was saying is that our government needs to do more covert activities, but the purpose of covert activities is people don`t know about them. And you know, that`s just the point.
BRYANT: Now, Mark, let`s talk about this. Mark, the FCC, there are fines levied against people all the time. If I said this, I, you know, would be in a heck of a lot of trouble. Isn`t this inappropriate for a religious show content, anyway? And shouldn`t the FCC have something to say to Pat?
WILLIAMS: You or I would be fired, and if it was Howard Stern making a remark about something the vice president -- president of Venezuela did, he`d probably be fined. Religion gets special protection unfortunately, in this case.
I`ll tell you both the reasonable part of what Robertson said, if there is -- believe it or not, there is one -- versus the danger of what he said. The reasonable part is right now, the way we`ve approached this for centuries is rather than take out the leader, we go in and we decimate entire cultures, societies. We kill entire peoples, ruin entire countries and economies. That`s a bad solution when taking out one fool will accomplish the same thing.
The danger in what Robertson said is guys like him actually do cause people to be killed when they speak out like this. How many abortion doctors are in the ground today because of guys like Robertson and that crazy priest who was down in Mississippi, advocating the murder of abortion doctors? There is a danger to what he says.
BRYANT: Martha, you`ve got the last word, really quickly.
WILLIAMS: Well, I do hope that Pat Robertson -- I will watch what he has to say tomorrow night. Let`s just put it that way.
BRYANT: All right. Well, thank you very much, Mark Williams and Martha Zoller, for joining us here for a "SHOWBIZ Showdown."
And now we here at SHOWBIZ TONIGHT want to hear from you. It is our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day. Pat Robertson, were his comments about killing Venezuela`s leader out of line? You can vote at CNN.com/ShowbizTonight. And send e-mail to us at ShowbizTonight@CNN.com. We`ll read some of your thoughts later on in our program.
ANDERSON: Tonight, the tables are turned on the mother of Michael Jackson`s accuser. She is spending more time in court, this time as the accused.
Today, the woman was charged with five felony counts for alleged welfare fraud. The complaint accuses her of collecting nearly $19,000 in welfare payments while claiming she was poor.
During Jackson`s molestation trial, she refused to testify about the welfare matter, pleading the Fifth Amendment. Jackson`s lawyers had evidence that she received a $150,000 settlement in a lawsuit against a department store, while claiming to be broke.
And another major movie star has gotten in a car accident that`s being blamed on the paparazzi. We`ll tell you who and what happened. That`s coming up.
BRYANT: Plus, students at a British boarding school had to kiss their expectations goodbye when Gene Simmons showed up to teach class. We`ve got Gene Simmons live, and that`s just ahead.
ANDERSON: And, between the commercials, the cell phones and the screaming kids, is there anything that movie theaters can do to win back your love? Some are trying. Stick around for our special series, "Movie Theater Madness," coming right up.
BRYANT: Now it`s time for tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly Great American Pop Culture Quiz." What romantic song does Julia Roberts` character "lend" to her newlywed pal in "My Best Friend`s Wedding?" Is it "Night and Day," "I`ve Got You Under My Skin," "The Way You Look Tonight" or "Summer Wind"? We`ll be right back with the answer.
BRYANT: Once again tonight`s "Entertainment Weekly Great American Pop Culture Quiz." What romantic song does Julia Roberts` character "lend" to her newlywed pal in "My Best Friend`s Wedding?" Is it "Night and Day," "I`ve Got You Under My Skin," "The Way You Look Tonight" or "Summer Wind"? Well, the answer is C, "The Way You Look Tonight."
ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson.
Tonight, another paparazzi-related car accident, this one involving actress Scarlett Johansson. Today, we learned that photographers who had been following the actress for four days tracked her to Disneyland on Thursday. Johansson`s publicist says she was driving in the parking lot and swerved to get away from some SUVs that followed her into the lot, when she clipped the side of a family`s car. No one was hurt.
The owner of the photo agency says his photographers had nothing to do with the accident.
BRYANT: Tonight, Barbara Streisand is joining the long list of stars speaking out about the war in Iraq. And actually, in Barbara`s case she`s singing out.
Her new song, "Stranger in a Strange Land," includes lyrics about American troops fighting overseas. And her video shows footage of soldiers shipping off to wars, past and present.
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BRYANT: You may remember that Streisand has been critical of the Bush administration in the past, but her publicist told SHOWBIZ TONIGHT that the song is meant to support the troops.
Streisand`s new album, which she recorded with Bee-Gee Barry Gibb -- you can hear him a little bit there -- is called "Guilty Pleasures," and the album comes out September 20.
ANDERSON: Tonight, in our "SHOWBIZ Sitdown," Gene Simmons. You know him as the fire-breathing, blood-spitting bassist for KISS. And who can forget that tongue, right?
Well now, he`s got a new reality show called "Gene Simmons` School of Rock." In it, he teaches classically trained boarding school kids in Great Britain how to be rock stars.
And the rock star himself, Gene Simmons, now joins us live.
Gene, welcome to you.
GENE SIMMONS, MUSICIAN: Brooke.
ANDERSON: And now before we get to your reality show, we were just speaking about Barbra Streisand`s song about war. Last night on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Joan Baez, she`s supporting Cindy Sheehan. More and more celebrities speaking out about the war.
Gene, is that their place? How do you feel about it all?
SIMMONS: Well, I think celebrities are wonderful, and I think you should always take the political point of view of somebody who lives in Malibu seriously.
ANDERSON: Seriously, so you think keep quiet then?
SIMMONS: No. Absolutely not. Everyone should always say whatever they want, but always consider the source.
All right? Listen, when I got through a bad neighborhood, I want a Rottweiler with me. They`re not good dogs. They bite our children, but it`s a good dog to have in a bad neighborhood.
If I go through a neighborhood, I don`t want a little French poodle. I think the world has become a bad neighborhood. It`s good to have a Rottweiler in office. I strongly support him.
ANDERSON: Interesting analogy. All right, Gene.
And now we`re going to tell everybody a secret about you that they may not have known. You were a schoolteacher way back when in Spanish Harlem. Now you`re going back to those teaching roots in this new reality show. What`s your goal with working with these 13-year-olds, right? They`re classically trained.
SIMMONS: Well, I`ll tell you what. I didn`t -- life is what happens to you while you`re busy making plans.
I was on tour with KISS about a year and a half ago, and this English production company came in and offered me something I couldn`t refuse, which is to go to the Sussex, two hours outside of England, and teach Edwardian kids how to rock, which was a really exciting idea, because a long time ago, I taught a short time in Spanish Harlem, and I was wondering if I was any good.
I`m actually stunningly good; not only powerful and attractive, but I`m a hell of a teacher.
ANDERSON: And it looks like they`re really catching on, from the video that we`re watching. Were they intimidated at all? Did they know anything about you?
SIMMONS: They knew, ironically enough, more about Gene Simmons than KISS, and they also didn`t know who Mick Jagger was, which is perfect -- which is a perfect place to teach people how to start from scratch. Which is to say that everything they learned about music means nothing, because, as we both know, there but for the grace of God, all of us would be asking the next one in line, "Would you like fries with that?"
ANDERSON: All right, Gene. You`re a busy man. You, along with Dave Navarro, Chad Krueger (ph), headlining a big poker event in Vegas this weekend.
SIMMONS: That`s right. It`s called...
ANDERSON: Why is everybody crazy about poker? Here in L.A., there are weekly poker nights among the celebrities. People just can`t get enough.
SIMMONS: Actually in Las Vegas, on the 25th and the 26th, celebrating my birthday at the Palms Hotel, which is going to be filmed for a new reality show in the fall, as a matter of fact, on A&E called "Gene Simmons Family Jewels."
And on the 26th I`m playing in a tournament called "Gene Simmons Presents Rock Star Poker."
The answer to your question is, where else can you have a great time, be surrounded by beautiful women and where men are allowed to act like heterosexual men? Nothing wrong with it.
ANDERSON: And so you`re a big fan of poker as well, then, in addition to the women?
SIMMONS: I`m a big fan of winning, surrounded by beautiful bouquets of flowers.
ANDERSON: All right. I understand. Well, Gene, thank you so much for being here. We appreciate it.
SIMMONS: All the best.
ANDERSON: You, too.
You can catch Gene`s reality show, "Gene Simmons` School of Rock," Friday nights on VH1 -- Karyn.
BRYANT: He`s got a great sense of humor, that guy.
Well, all this week SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is bringing you a special series called "Movie Theater Madness."
Now last night, we asked you for your thoughts on what drives you crazy about going to the movies. We got a ton of e-mails. This is just some of it. People were really happy about writing about this.
This is what Ann from Tennessee writes: "What really riles me is that some parents will bring their babies to R-rated movies. The content in these movies is certainly not appropriate for any child, let alone an infant."
And Eric from West Virginia writes, "The worst thing about movie theaters is not the quality of the movies, it`s the general inconsideration of the other people that go to the movies. Cell phones ringing, talking during the movie and cursing."
ANDERSON: Wow, Karyn, I agree with all those guys, especially Ann, bringing babies to the movie theater? I mean...
BRYANT: Not good.
ANDERSON: Not good. Inconsiderate, and it can`t be good for the babies, you know? What are these R-rated movies doing to them?
BRYANT: Yes, it`s not good. Not good.
ANDERSON: And we`ll continue this discussion. Coming up later in the show, our series "Movie Theater Madness" continues with a look at the way some theaters are coming up with ways to get you back in the seats.
BRYANT: Also ahead, how`s this for forward-thinking fashion? Get ready to dress for the 25th Century. It`s not quite "The Jetsons," but it`s pretty cool. And that`s coming up in "Tuesday InStyle."
ANDERSON: Plus, as Olivia Newton-John makes a plea for information about her missing boyfriend, what will happen with her plans to jumpstart her career? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT with new developments today in the mysterious case. That`s coming up.
BRYANT: It is time now for "Tuesday InStyle." Tonight it`s where sci-fi meets high fashion. "InStyle" fashion director, Hal Rubenstein, takes us into the future and gives us a look at how the fashion of the future plays out in the big screen. It is "25th Century Style."
HAL RUBENSTEIN, "INSTYLE" MAGAZINE: I think for "25th Century Style," we`re just having fun. We`re just having fun with a fantasy concept with how we think clothes may or may not look in the future and we`re taking it based on movies.
It`s always odd in films of the future, because they almost will always reference a certain decade very distinctively from the past. You look at a film like "Blade Runner," which is very much about, for whatever reason, the `40s, where everything is very sort of brought out this way. Women almost wear snoods, the large shoulders, the very tight-in waist.
Then you take something like Roger Vadim`s "Barbarella," which really has nothing to do with the future, and everything just showing off the fact that he`s married to this bod named Jane Fonda. There`s no real future research here. This is all a male fantasy.
The one element that does -- does sort of carry over from "Barbarella" into movies like "Mad Max" is the use of leather, because I think of the toughness of leather. And it`s tough. It`s sexy. Leather is one of the most popular sort of fabrics, especially black leather, for this idea of the future.
The thing about "Star Wars" is that I think out of all futuristic films, it probably has the least credible costumes. Because it`s about myth, the clothes are actually fairly Grecian, and that`s why I think you have, you know, all these great flowing robes, the ornate jewelry. It just mainly -- and the women`s costumes. You know, the corn muffin hairdo. All these people sort of lived in sort of this modern futuristic Olympus.
Everybody seems to be incredibly unencumbered, and for those of us in the modern urban world who are basically schlepping from one day to the next, every single thing we seem to own, either on our shoulders or in our handbag, I find it very bizarre.
BRYANT: If you would like to read more on "InStyle`s" "25th Century Style," pick up a copy of "InStyle" magazine on newsstands now.
ANDERSON: Coming up, the outrage over Pat Robertson`s call for the assassination of Venezuela`s president. Up next, what another major evangelist has to say about this. Ted Haggard on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, live.
BRYANT: Plus Scarlett Johansson`s car accident as she tries to escape the paparazzi. Can anything be done to stop them? That`s coming up.
ANDERSON: And besides lowering the prices so you don`t have to cash in your 401(k) to buy popcorn, what can the movie theaters do to make the experience more pleasant? We`ve got the answers just ahead in our special series, "Movie Theater Madness," so stick around for that.
THOMAS ROBERTS, CNN HEADLINE NEWS ANCHOR: SHOWBIZ TONIGHT continues in one minute. Hi, everybody. I`m Thomas Roberts with your "Headline Prime Newsbreak."
A Peruvian airliner has gone down attempting an emergency landing near a jungle town in that country. Reports say at least 40 people were killed. And eyewitnesses are reporting many bodies in the wreckage. The plane was carrying at least 92 people.
President Bush says most military families don`t agree with antiwar protesters such as Cindy Sheehan who want the troops in Iraq brought home. The president says a pull-out of troops would weaken the U.S. In Idaho tomorrow, he`s going to spend two hours with families of fallen soldiers.
The White House is proposing new gas mileage standards for SUVs, minivans and trucks. Critics say the changes only raise gas mileage about two miles per gallon. The plan is slated to take effect for 2007 models.
And Americans are getting bigger. Obesity rates rose last year in every state but one. A health group says nearly 23 percent of all Americans are obese. But one state not becoming more obese is Oregon.
That is the news for now. Thanks for joining us. I`m Thomas Roberts. Back now to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
BRYANT: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. It is 31 minutes past the hour. I`m Karyn Bryant in New York.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. You`re watching TV`s only live entertainment news show.
BRYANT: That`s right. And still to come tonight, of course, Pat Robertson`s outrageous comments have everybody buzzing. We`re going to actually speak with the president of the National Association of Evangelicals, and we`ll get his reaction, see if he`s been doing some damage control, to talk about what Pat Robertson said about the Venezuela president.
ANDERSON: Oh, and Karyn, it`s going to be interesting, if and when Robertson does respond to the criticism, what he has to say.
And moving now to our special series, "Movie Theater Madness," Karyn, what ticks you off at the movie theaters?
BRYANT: Bad movies!
ANDERSON: Bad movies, all right.
Well, coming up, I`ll speak to several theater owners who say they`ve got all the problems solved. Their theaters make movie-going a pleasurable, enjoyable experience. So that`s coming up.
But first, let`s get tonight`s "Hot Headlines." And for that, we go to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s David Haffenreffer. He joins us live once again.
Hi there, David.
DAVID HAFFENREFFER, CNN HEADLINE NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Brooke.
Tonight, a newcomer topping the Latin Grammy nominations handed in Los Angeles today. Spanish singer-songwriter Bebe gets five nods, including album of the year and best new artist. Mark Anthony, Jennifer Lopez`s husband, got three nominations, including best male pop vocal. The sixth annual Latin Grammy awards will be handed out November 3rd in Los Angeles.
The mother of Michael Jackson`s teenage accuser has got some legal problems of her own. Tonight, the woman, whose name is being withheld to protect the identity of her son, has been charged with welfare fraud. A complaint filed today in Los Angeles alleges she fraudulently got nearly $19,000 in welfare payments from 2001 to 2003 by lying on a welfare application. An arraignment is set for September 7th.
And tonight, the Bush administration says that Pat Robertson`s fiery comments about the assassinating of the president of Venezuela do not represent the views of the United States. The televangelist, best known for his long-running "700 Club" show, said yesterday that Hugo Chavez should be assassinated for his promotion of communism and Muslim extremism.
And those are today`s "Hot Headlines" from Hollywood. Karyn, back to you in New York.
BRYANT: Thank you very much, David Haffenreffer.
And as David just mentioned, big buzz today about Pat Robertson`s stunning comments. So let`s hear from someone who has known him for 20 years. Joining us live from Colorado Springs, Colorado, is Pastor Ted Haggard. He is the president of the National Association of Evangelicals.
And welcome to you, Ted.
PASTOR TED HAGGARD, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF EVANGELICALS: Thank you.
BRYANT: First and foremost, isn`t this completely in opposition to the Sixth Commandment, which says, "Thou shalt not kill"? How do you react to this? I can`t even believe he would say something like this.
HAGGARD: Yes, it is shocking. You have to understand the nature of the show, though. The nature of his show is that he has a portion that`s about Christian issues, helping the poor, helping the needy, giving things to people, encouraging people to live a good life, things like that.
Then there`s a section where they do political analysis, where they, in essence, become pundits. And it was during the political analysis portion where they were talking about the growing problem growing in Venezuela, which everybody agrees with, and with the problem with this dictator, which even his military removed just a few years ago and now he`s gotten back into office.
And I think what was going on was a discussion saying, "Look, we`ve got some problems brewing down there. What`s the least of the evils that we deal with? Could we potentially have another big war, like we have in Iraq?" Nobody wants that.
And then I think he was saying, "You know what? If it`s an issue of dealing with this dictator, let`s get the dictator to get -- let`s take care of him rather than have another full-blown international incident, like we have now in the Middle East." I think that was the gist of it.
BRYANT: But I think it`s a little convenient right now to separate the religious man from the man who said these things. I don`t think that`s true. This is a man who ran for president, who`s said some kind of outrageous things about judges, as well, lately.
HAGGARD: Kind of.
BRYANT: You know, I`m just -- I`m trying to play it mild here.
BRYANT: And I get where you`re coming from, but I sort of feel like you`re just trying to do some damage control. Like, what are others evangelicals saying about this, because it`s got to hurt you?
HAGGARD: Well, most evangelicals have gone silent on it. And certainly, he wasn`t speaking for evangelicalism. He wasn`t even speaking for Christianity as a whole.
He`s a political pundit in that particular role. And so, when we see that, we`ve got to take it for what it is. He`s an older man that`s got a television ministry that many people appreciate. He is not a representative voice. He`s not been elected to a position.
And so he was musing about, "We`ve got some problems here. What are some of the solutions to the problems?" And he was saying, "Well, maybe this is the simplest way to take care of it."
He wasn`t saying that it`s a good way to take care of it. He was saying it might be the least of the variety of problems that we`re going to have.
BRYANT: All right, well, I have to tell you, Ted, maybe Pat wants to keep the free-styling under control a little bit more next time.
HAGGARD: Yes, and I agree with that 100 percent. There`s no doubt about it. He needs to get it under control.
BRYANT: Keep it under control.
HAGGARD: He`s said several things over the years that have been a major, major problem.
BRYANT: Yes, well...
HAGGARD: And none of us question that. It`s kind of like -- being with Pat is kind of like being with grandpa. A lot of it`s wonderful, a lot of it`s sweet, and then a couple of things are said and you have to kind of go, "Wow!"
BRYANT: That`s a great analogy, Ted. Thanks for joining us, Ted Haggard, president of the National Association of Evangelicals. Grandpa Robertson.
Well, what do you think? We have been asking you to vote in our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Pat Robertson: Were his comments about killing Venezuela`s leader out of line?"
You can keep voting at CNN.com/showbiztonight. Please write to us at showbiztonight@CNN.com. Your e-mails are coming up at 54 past the hour.
ANDERSON: Tonight, the latest developments on the mystery surrounding Olivia Newton-John`s boyfriend. Her long-time boyfriend disappeared almost two months ago, leaving few clues and many unanswered questions. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Sibila Vargas is in Hollywood with the very latest -- Sibila?
SIBILA VARGAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Brooke.
Well, the strange boating disappearance of actress-singer Olivia Newton-John`s boyfriend gets stranger the more we learn. Many here in Hollywood are asking, "Why are we just learning about this disappearance now?"
VARGAS (voice-over): It`s been almost two months since 48-year-old cameraman Patrick McDermott went missing from this California marina. McDermott told friends he was leaving on an overnight fishing trip. He was never seen again.
There are lots of unanswered questions. Why did the Coast Guard hold a press conference just yesterday?
SCOTT EPPERSON, COAST GUARD SPOKESMAN: This is still being treated and investigated as a missing person`s case.
VARGAS: He left his wallet and passport on the boat. But did he ever get off? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT spoke with Frank Liversedge, the manager of the marina.
FRANK LIVERSEDGE, 22ND ST. MARINA LANDING MANAGER: As far as we know, he was on the boat. Some of the passengers -- not the crew, but the passengers -- have given the Coast Guard depositions that said they saw him get off the boat.
VARGAS: But just moments ago, a new development. The Coast Guard told me no witnesses say they saw McDermott leave the boat.
Still more questions. Why did it take the family five days to notice McDermott`s absence and another five days to find the car? And the Coast Guard didn`t issue a press release on the disappearance until almost a month later. And still, why no mention of Olivia Newton-John? The marina manager just recently heard her name.
LIVERSEDGE: I assumed this was all over with, that they had just written it off as the guy disappeared. But Olivia Newton-John got -- her name got involved in this somehow about two weeks ago, and the whole thing came alive with the media.
VARGAS: Olivia Newton-John has a new album hitting stores September 1st, one that she`s doing with Patti LaBelle and Diahann Carroll to support breast cancer research. But even as she was booking interviews to promote the album, including one with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, there was never a mention of her missing boyfriend.
Many experts say it`s best to come forward in a missing person`s case immediately, so why not use the media to help? Newton-John told SHOWBIZ TONIGHT in a statement, "Out of respect for his family, I have chosen not to make any public statements until now. It has been a truly heartbreaking experience, and we have chosen to deal with it privately."
The two have been dating for nine years, but why didn`t Newton-John contact the authorities?
SCOTT EPPERSON, COAST GUARD SPOKESMAN: Like I said, the report came from family members who reported him missing after he failed too show up for an event. I`m not sure if it was first the Coast Guard, but the Coast Guard -- they contacted authorities.
QUESTION: Do you know who?
EPPERSON: I believe it was his ex-wife. I`m not sure.
VARGAS: SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has contacted McDermott`s ex-wife. She has no comment at this time.
VARGAS: Just today, Olivia Newton-John cancelled a September interview she had planned with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, and we`ve learned that she cancelled all interviews with the media at this time.
A lot of unanswered questions. And you can be sure that we`ll be following this story closely.
Back to you, Karyn.
ANDERSON: I`ll take it right here, Sibila. Thank you.
All right. More on the legal troubles of Michael Jackson`s accuser`s mother.
And another big-time celeb in a car accident while being chased by the paparazzi. We`ll tell you what happened, in the "Legal Lowdown," live next.
BRYANT: Plus, we know you`re miffed at your movie-going experience, but tonight, what over-the-top things some theaters are doing to make you happy. We`re talking about five-star theaters. It`s our "Movie Theater Madness" series continued.
ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson, live in Hollywood.
Time now for part two in our series on "Movie Theater Madness." The ringing cellphones, the sticky floors, the screaming babies. Believe if or not, you probably won`t find them at these theaters.
SHOWBIZ TONIGHT searched far and wide and found these five-star cinemas complete with daycare, waiters, concierge service. Can this be the way to go to fill the seats?
Well, joining us live are the heads of these theaters. In Miami, Muvico president Hamid Hashemi; from Detroit, Paul Glantz of Emagine Entertainment; and from Austin, Texas, John Martin, president of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas.
Welcome to you all.
Hamid, I`ll begin with you. Many of our viewers are furious. A lot of them have written in and said rude customers really make them not want to go to the movies. How have you solved that problem?
HAMID HASHEMI, PRESIDENT, MUVICO: Brooke, good evening, and thank you for inviting me.
In terms of services that we offer, I mean, we`re building our theaters so we can address all those issues for patrons. To that end, we have theater with balcony, that basically we don`t allow children or anybody under the age of 21. And, you know, typically the noise that you hear in the theaters are from teenagers and younger kids.
We also have a child care center in the theaters, that, if you`re there with any kids between 3 and 8 years of age, you can drop them off, go watch a movie, come back and pick them up. That`s one way we`re addressing all the noise.
In addition to pre-show introduction by our host at the prime times, encouraging people to turn cell phones off, and be courteous of other guests that are watching the movie with them.
ANDERSON: Great ideas, Hamid.
And, Paul, moving to you, another pet peeve for the audience, the endless commercials tacking on all that time before the movie. How have you solved this problem?
PAUL GLANTZ, PRESIDENT, EMAGINE ENTERTAINMENT: We solved it very simply. We don`t show commercials at our theaters.
ANDERSON: Well, how do you do that? We`re reporting many theater owners are saying that to break even, to make a profit, they have to have the ads. What are you doing differently?
GLANTZ: Well, we`ve determined that our guests simply don`t value those ads, and so, in turn, we don`t show them.
ANDERSON: Interesting. Making up the money elsewhere?
GLANTZ: Yes. We`ll making up the money on volume, because we`re providing folks with a better movie-going experience. And in turn, we have more guests as a result.
OK, John, concessions, big prices. What have you guys done at the Alamo Drafthouse so that, to buy a soda and candy, you don`t have to break the bank every time?
JOHN MARTIN, PRESIDENT, THE ALAMO DRAFTHOUSE: We don`t gouge on prices. The cost of a large popcorn and a Coke at a traditional multiplex is a hamburger or fresh to order salad and beer and wine at ours. We don`t gouge. Our ticket prices are the same.
And if you`re getting the same value for dinner versus just nibbling on popcorn, you know, that`s where we make our money, and I think the audience and patrons love us for that.
ANDERSON: And who can bring BYOB? That`s available at some of the theaters, right?
MARTIN: Not necessarily. We are able to serve beer for takeout with our Growler, we call it. It`s a 30-ounce container to go out of the theater. But at our locations, there`s no BYOB. It`s just strictly beer or wine.
ANDERSON: All right. Well, for people who, like me, are so frustrated with the experience at times, tell me, if you guys are supposedly making money, why aren`t more theater owners picking up on this?
Hamid, do you want to take it?
HASHEMI: I think it really goes back to the culture of the company. This is like saying, you know, everybody wants to be a Nordstrom, why couldn`t K-Mart duplicate the same shopping experience that Nordstrom has?
I think our company being that, you know, as small as we are -- you know, we only have 12 locations around the country in the Southeast -- and, you know, we can focus on services that, you know, it takes a lot of work and energy to, you know, live up to the expectation of our guests with the services that we offer. So it`s a lot easier for us to do it.
ANDERSON: And, John, quickly, ten seconds, do you want to follow up on that?
MARTIN: I have to agree with that. I think, you know, we`re following up by following what the patrons want. And if that`s getting away from the mall theaters with the sticky floors and getting, you know, enjoying your time in the seat, you`ve got people going to dinner before and after a movie, and we`re combining both. And it`s working.
ANDERSON: And, Paul, how about you?
GLANTZ: Well, it`s certainly working for us. We enjoy a very fine patronage, and it`s all based on the fact that we`re very in tuned to our guests needs, wants, expectations. And we`re providing them an element of service that they value.
ANDERSON: All right. Well, Hamid, Paul, John, thanks to you all. Maybe other theater owners will follow in your footsteps. We can all hope for the best, right?
And we want to hear from you. What do you hate about going to the movies? Send us your pet peeves at showbiztonight@CNN.com. We`ll read some of your e-mails live tomorrow.
When we continue our "Movie Theater Madness" series and bring the theater to your living room, we`ll show you sound systems, flat-screen TVs, and other cool gadgets for any budget. That`s tomorrow on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
BRYANT: It`s time now for the "Legal Lowdown." Tonight, another star gets in a fender-bender trying to evade the paparazzi. This time, it`s actress Scarlett Johansson. And the mother of Michael Jackson`s molestation accuser gets charged with fraud.
These are our two stories tonight. And joining us live from Glendale, California, to take us through them is "Celebrity Justice`s" Harvey Levin, who is also an attorney.
So here`s the thing, Harvey: Lindsay Lohan was chased by paparazzi, got into an accident. Reese Witherspoon, chased by paparazzi, got in an accident. Now Scarlett Johansson -- we just saw her in the movie "The Island" -- she was stalked for four days by these people. They followed her to Disneyland, followed her into the parking lot, and she got into an accident.
Are they on the hook legally for this?
HARVEY LEVIN, "CELEBRITY JUSTICE": Well, I think they can be in some trouble here, I mean, especially for the people that Scarlett Johansson hit. They could argue that the paparazzi put all of this in motion and created fear.
And if you create an unreasonable fear on someone where they feel like, "Gee, I`ve got to get away from them," even if they`re not five feet from you during the accident, I think, theoretically, they absolutely could be on the hook and they`re certainly not going to get a whole lot of sympathy from a jury.
BRYANT: And speaking of that hook, are the people that were hit by Scarlett also able to maybe press charges here?
LEVIN: Well, in terms of pressing charges, I think it`s a little more difficult. It`s not so much them pressing charges. I mean, it would be Scarlett Johansson basically saying, "Look, I`m being stalked." And it`s a hard argument to make.
I don`t know if you remember the Reese Witherspoon incident, which was at a gym in Brentwood, California. They chased her to her gated community and actually blocked her from getting in, and there was kind of almost like a kidnapping allegation made against them.
It didn`t stick, because basically the D.A. was saying, "Look, we don`t think it rises to the level of criminality," because she could get away.
BRYANT: But what would the D.A. say in this case, though?
LEVIN: I don`t think it`s a criminal case. I mean, the paparazzi say that, at the time of the accident, they were a block away, and it`s not like they were breathing down her neck.
But I do think civilly that a jury could say, "You know what? You may not be guilty of a crime, but we believe that you`re responsible for this, because you created the fear that caused the accident."
So I think civilly I think that there could be some exposure, although, really, there wasn`t a whole lot of damage here. But, you know, I think, Karyn, at a point, that stars are really going to start nailing these people with lawsuits, because it`s the only way to keep them under control.
BRYANT: Right. Now, speaking really quickly about Michael Jackson, there`s a -- the mother of his accuser, something happened with her today? What`s that all about?
LEVIN: She was charged with five counts of welfare fraud for allegedly lying. She got $150,000 settlement from J.C. Penney`s in 2001, didn`t declare it, applied for welfare, and got it. And they`re saying that she`s committed five felonies. She could go to prison for five years.
And, Karyn, this could really torpedo any civil case that the kid may file against Michael Jackson, because her credibility, especially if this charge sticks, her credibility is shot...
BRYANT: ... is shot.
LEVIN: ... and her credibility is real important in a civil case.
BRYANT: That`s right. Well, thank you very much, "Celebrity Justice`s Harvey Levin, for joins us for the "Legal Lowdown."
LEVIN: See you, Karyn.
ANDERSON: All right. It`s time to check out the late-night laughs you might have missed in "Laughter Dark." On the "Tonight Show" with Jay Leno, Jay asks his Jay-walkers all the tough questions, but do they have the right answers?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAY LENO, HOST, "THE TONIGHT SHOW": Who is the Prince of Wales?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Prince Charles?
LENO: Very good.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Isn`t he the one that married Camilla?
LENO: Yes, exactly.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, she`s ugly.
LENO: She`s ugly?
LENO: Who is the chief justice of the Supreme Court? Remember, you`re studying criminology.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Chief justice?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Friggin` -- Ashcroft?
LENO: Freakin` Ashcroft?
LENO: What is the name of the street where the president lives?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: White House Lane?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: White House Street?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: White House Road.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: White House Boulevard.
LENO: No. What`s the name of the street where the "Desperate Housewives" live?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Wisteria Lane.
LENO: Wisteria Lane.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Oh, they got the "Desperate Housewives" questions. OK.
SHOWBIZ TONIGHT will be right back. Stick around.
BRYANT: We`ve been asking you to vote online in our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Pat Robertson: Were his comments about killing Venezuela`s leader out of line?
The vote so far: 88 percent of you saying yes, they were; 12 percent of you saying no, they`re actually OK with what Pat said.
These are some of your e-mails. Brendan from North Carolina writes, "What Pat Robertson said was absolutely wrong, but giving him so much attention will just boost his ratings for a while."
Cathy from Illinois disagrees, though. She says, "Thank God somebody can stand up and say what so many of us feel. Thanks, Pat. The world needs you."
Well, you can keep voting at CNN.com/showbiztonight.
ANDERSON: And we do appreciate your e-mail.
Well, now it`s time to see what`s playing on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT tomorrow. Let`s take a look at the "Showbiz Marquee." Marquee Guy, we missed you yesterday, so take it away.
MARQUEE GUY: Tomorrow, who needs the movies when you can turn your living room into a high-tech home theater? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT shows you the hottest TVs, the coolest sound equipment, no matter what your budget. Everything but the popcorn, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s "Movie Theater Madness," tomorrow.
Also tomorrow, Ashlee Simpson`s got a movie coming out. And get this: The plot revolves around a missing glove. Hmm, hey, Ashlee, can you lend us a hand and tell us about your new movie? It`s called "Undiscovered." SHOWBIZ TONIGHT discovers Ashlee Simpson tomorrow.
This is the Marquee Guy. And, Ashlee, if you`re watching, I hope you didn`t notice, but tonight I`m lip-synching.
BRYANT: So, Brooke, I have to tell you, I`m going to be paying close to the sound system. I`ve got the flat screen. Tomorrow, I`m dialing in on the sound system.
ANDERSON: Absolutely. Me, too, Karyn.
BRYANT: All right. Well, that does it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Karyn Bryant in New York.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Stay tuned for the later from CNN Headline News.