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SHOWBIZ TONIGHT

Sheen Responds to Criticism; Erica Jong Dishes on New Book, Martha Rumors; Seth Green Involved in Multiple Projects

Aired March 24, 2006 - 19:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


A.J. HAMMER, CO-HOST: Does Martha Stewart think sex writer Erica Jong ruined her marriage? I`m A.J. Hammer in New York City.
BROOKE ANDERSON, CO-HOST: And why you may not see Jodie Foster in a movie for a long time. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. TV`s only live entertainment news show starts right now.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HAMMER (voice-over): On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, they`re the controversial comments that have got everyone talking coast to coast.

CHARLIE SHEEN, ACTOR: Taking over four commercial airliners and hitting 75 percent of their targets, that feels like a conspiracy theory.

HAMMER: Actor Charlie Sheen`s startling allegations of a 9/11 government cover-up. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT brought you the story first, and tonight, Charlie Sheen is speaking out again.

SHEEN: I have to tip my hat to CNN to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

HAMMER: Plus, what do you think? Is he onto something? Are his claims outrageous? The overwhelming response flooding our inbox from you.

Plus, a film 25 years in the making. Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has your first report from the set of "Chapter 27." It`s the new movie about Mark David Chapman, the man who shot and killed John Lennon. And SHOWBIZ TONIGHT goes one-on-one with Jared Leto, the guy who`s playing the former Beatle`s killer.

GREG KINNEAR, ACTOR: I`m Greg Kinnear, and if it happened today, it`s on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HAMMER: Welcome to Friday night. I`m A.J. Hammer, live in New York City.

ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson, live in Hollywood. And look who`s talking again. Charlie Sheen, A.J.

HAMMER: That`s right, Brooke. The star of one of TV`s biggest hits, "Two and a Half Men", back on the radio today, and he was talking 9/11.

Now, ever since we first reported Sheen`s controversial comments he made on the Alex Jones radio show about a possible government cover-up of what actually happened on September 11, the story has exploded. We have been overwhelmed by the thousands of passionate e-mails that we`ve been getting. We`re going to read some of them, a lot of them throughout the next hour.

Well, today Sheen called in once again to the Jones show. He had more to say. In just a moment I`ll be speaking with Alex live. But first, let`s listen to what Sheen had to say today about 9/11, about his critics and about SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SHEEN: I had a sense that this thing was going to get hot. I didn`t realize that, as you say, it was going to go supernova.

HAMMER (voice-over): Charlie Sheen`s comments on a possible 9/11 conspiracy have definitely gone supernova. And this star`s earning both criticism and praise.

Calling into Alex Jones radio show today, Sheen was sure to heap his own praise SHOWBIZ TONIGHT for being first major news outlet to bring Sheen`s 9/11 comments to light.

SHEEN: I have to tip my hat to CNN, to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, to A.J. Hammer for having the courage, for having the guts, for having the wherewithal to give someone like myself, someone like you the actual time and the focus to examine these issues. And this is the most attention in mainstream coverage that this topic has ever received.

ANDERSON: The response we got today to the incredible story SHOWBIZ TONIGHT broke last night.

HAMMER: SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has been on top of this fire storm since it began Monday when Sheen called Alex Jones` radio program to speculate that maybe we weren`t hearing the real story behind 9/11.

SHEEN: It seems to me like, you know, 19 amateurs with box cutters taking over four commercial airliners and hitting 75 percent of their targets, that feels like a conspiracy theory.

HAMMER: But speaking on the radio today, an angry Sheen went after those who, responding to his 9/11 statements, are now attacking his wild and controversial past.

SHEEN: And a majority of them, in fact 90 percent of them, were attacking me personally, were attacking my credibility. I am an American citizen that loves my country. And as a citizen with that -- with my passion for this great country, I demand that I be challenged on the facts, not on, you know, immature behavior from 20 years ago. That if they continue to attack me personally, it only gives credence to our side of the argument.

HAMMER: Sheen is making crystal clear that this is something he`s going to continue to speak out about.

SHEEN: People want the truth. They want the truth. And what`s been offered to us resembles nothing of the sort.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HAMMER: Joining me live tonight, the guy who Charlie Sheen has been speaking with on the radio. I`m talking about Alex Jones, who`s joining me live from Austin, Texas.

Alex, welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

ALEX JONES, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Thank you for having me.

HAMMER: Appreciate you being here.

So let`s talk about the fact that people are going after Charlie. We`ve gotten a lot of e-mails where people are attempting to attack his credibility. That`s the natural thing that`s going to happen. They`re talking about things that happened a long time ago. What about this? Is his past at all a liability, as you see it, or are these attacks basically going to backfire?

JONES: Let me just say this. CNN had a poll a year ago; 90 percent on CNN on the Anderson Cooper show believed the government`s covering up 9/11 and may be involved. Your new poll five minutes ago before show time, 81 percent of over 20,000 respondents, 81 percent agree with Charlie Sheen, as I told you.

And they`ve had many other polls with other news services and we get the same type of numbers. On my own talk show and other talk shows I`ve done, we get the same type of response. You have a minority that won`t face the facts.

Listen, Charlie Sheen is the first person to go public. He`s just the first Hollywood person that has the courage to do what he`s been doing. We have former Reagan administration officials. We have former Bush Senior officials. We have the current chief economist from George Bush`s current administration who quit just a couple years ago and has gone public. And he says the government carried out the attacks. Defense ministers, members of British...

HAMMER: Alex, as a Hollywood guy, you know, with a sordid past that he owns up to, and it`s well behind him, it`s going to be an easy attack point. So what I`m asking you is...

JONES: What he says is don`t believe me, check out the facts. Go look at the evidence. Don`t believe the attack dogs. Just -- it isn`t about Charlie Sheen or Alex Jones or A.J. Hammer.

HAMMER: Right.

JONES: It`s about NORAD standing down. It`s about bombs in the buildings. It`s about Pentagon documents saying they wanted to carry out these attacks and blame it on foreign enemies.

This is all public. That`s why all these physicists and politicians and people and congresswomen, Cynthia McKinney, went public three years ago, saying there was a cover-up, very suspicious, called for a real investigation. There are hundreds of prominent people. They just never get attention.

HAMMER: It`s getting a lot of attention now. And Charlie Sheen came on your show the other day. And he was back on today. We know what`s going on here at CNN and at SHOWBIZ TONIGHT because of the thousands of e- mails that we`ve been getting.

So let me ask you this. What do you think now that there is this sort of forward momentum? What do you think is going to happen now that hasn`t happened before as a result of this new level of attention?

JONES: Well, I mean, Americans love celebrity, and the average American is obsessed with it more than anybody in the world, except maybe the Japanese.

And he selflessly sacrifice -- is sacrificing himself to be attacked just to get people talking and looking at it, because he told me he loves his children, just like I do. Listen, I get death threats over this stuff, but ideas are bullet bulletproof.

And the new world order better stop carrying out terror attacks. We`ve caught them over 200 times in the last 100 years, western governments doing this. Hitler does it; the British do it; the Russians did it. Governments do this. They -- and I`m not saying the whole government. Very small criminal black op -- black world is what they`re called -- operators, are carrying this out. That`s the facts.

Please, go investigate it, ladies and gentlemen. You will discover the truth. Look at America. It`s turning into a police state, putting cameras in school bathrooms.

HAMMER: Let`s -- let`s bring it back to what`s happening this weekend, what you and I have been talking about. And yesterday on this program, you told me Charlie Sheen not alone among Hollywood celebrities. You told me that you -- you wouldn`t name names. You`re in touch with quite a few celebrities who feel the same way that Charlie feels about what may have actually happened on 9/11.

So my question is, do you think since we`ve had this uproar this week and Charlie is taking this risk and speaking out, we`re going to be hearing from more celebrities who will go public?

JONES: Well, I mean, the majority of the American people support Mr. Sheen despite the attack dogs. He`s winning the war of polls. And literally almost everyone I talk to in Hollywood, very prominent people. I have a lot of friends in Hollywood. And they`ve all sought me out. I`m not some Hollywood person.

HAMMER: Is anyone -- is anyone indicating to you that they may actually come forward? And I`ll ask you yesterday and I`m going to ask you again, can you tell us a couple of the names of those people?

JONES: No, because I have -- they have confidence in me, and I`m not even pushing them to go public.

HAMMER: OK. Do you think they will go public?

JONES: Yes, I think you`re going to see -- yes, I think you`re going to see more people. And some of them may be people I don`t even know. Listen, everybody in Hollywood I talk to, pick a name, any name. I`ve talked to hundreds of them. OK? They seek me out; they`re aware of it. They talk about it. They`re constantly...

HAMMER: So you clearly have a lot of supporters, of course, and you`re very familiar with this end of it. We`ve gotten the thousands of e- mails this weekend. Not all of them, Alex, are glowing, obviously.

JONES: But your poll -- your poll is 81 percent.

HAMMER: I`m with you on that. I`m with you on that. I don`t know at this very moment we`re going to get into that in just a second. But of course, when this happens we do get e-mails, saying, oh, you know, we think that people like Charlie Sheen and Alex Jones are whack jobs.

Are you at all concerned that the louder you raise your voices the wackier you might seem to those people?

JONES: You know what? You know what? No, I`m not worried. Because we have put the facts out there. And I challenge them instead of using little buzz words and junior high mentality propaganda to actually go look at my claims.

Is a current Bush administration official, has he quit and said the government ran the attacks? Yes. Dr. Morgan Reynolds say that, chief economist Department of Labor.

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, the father of Reaganomics, the father of it who was at the highest levels of the treasury in the Bush administration, has he gone public saying he questions 9/11?

Sir, the American people are going to learn the truth. Nothing can stop the truth from coming out on 9/11. And we`re in danger of the new world order carrying out more terror attacks to keep this world empire.

HAMMER: Alex, I`m out of time once again. But what I appreciate is that you`re encouraging people, above all else, to seek out the facts. And that`s what I think you`re doing an excellent job at.

JONES: You need to go InfoWars.com and PrisonPlanet.com. I`m risking my life. We`re doing this for the American people and our children and our future. And thank you for having the courage to let me come on. God bless you.

HAMMER: Alex Jones, live from Austin, Texas. Thank you.

And what should we make of all this conspiracy theory stuff? Well, that`s what we`re wondering. Stay with us, because coming up at 32 past the hour, we`ve got the reporter who wrote a fascinating story this week in "New York Magazine" all about these conspiracy theories that are out there. You definitely want to be here to hear what he has to say about what Charlie Sheen has been saying.

ANDERSON: And over the past few days we have been getting a tremendous response to Charlie Sheen`s startling comments. Our e-mail inbox has been flooded. And we want to read a few of your e-mails tonight in response to our question of the day. Charlie Sheen speaks out. Do you agree with his assertion there is a government cover -- cover-up of 9/11?

A.J. from Pennsylvania, no relation to A.J. Hammer, writes, "God bless Charlie Sheen for having the courage to stand up and be counted in stating that the evidence shows 9/11 was an inside job."

Dan from Massachusetts agrees: "The bottom line is that the government lied to us. They continue to lie to us, and no one is holding them accountable."

But Nick from Virginia doesn`t buy the conspiracy theories: "The government is made up of Americans. I don`t know anyone who would want a terrorist attack on American soil."

You can keep voting at CNN.com/ShowbizTonight. Send us e-mail, ShowbizTonight@CNN.com. We are going to read more of your e-mails later on in the show.

HAMMER: Well, actually, this has a lot of people wondering if any of this 9/11 conspiracy stuff is really legit? Coming up, an in-depth, objective view from someone who`s researched both sides of the story. He`ll join me live.

Plus we also have this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JARED LETO, ACTOR: Some people were upset and will be upset by the film being made.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Jared Leto plays Mark David Chapman, the man who murdered John Lennon. And we have your very first reports from the set of the new movie. It`s in the interview you will see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, coming up.

HAMMER: Also, does Martha Stewart think one of the most famous sex writers of our time broke up her marriage? Find out, when SHOWBIZ TONIGHT goes one-on-one with author Erica Jong. That`s next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAMMER: Back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York. This is TV`s only live entertainment news show.

Tonight we have a "SHOWBIZ Sitdown" with Erica Jong. She is best known for her explosive, ground breaking 1973 novel "Fear of Flying". Her graphic, no-holds-barred account of a woman`s sexual fantasies turned her into a feminist icon. Jong has a new book out. It`s called "Seducing the Demon: Writing for My Life". There it is right there. Erica Jong joining me live in New York.

Thanks for being here.

ERICA JONG, AUTHOR, "SEDUCING THE DEMON": Great to be here.

HAMMER: A fired up show tonight.

JONG: It really is exciting.

HAMMER: We were speaking a few moments ago about Charlie Sheen coming forward this week with his notion that the government may actually have been behind September 11 and the September 11 attacks and the conspiracy theories in general surrounding 9/11.

What do you make of an actor of his stature coming out publicly like that?

JONG: I think he`s a brave man to even question this aloud in an environment where anyone has been saying that anyone questions the government is a traitor.

So Charlie Sheen has done his homework, and he`s asking questions. He`s speaking truth to power, which is a brave thing to do.

Look, the young people in my family, my nephews, for example, have been saying for the past three, four years that we are not learning everything about 9/11 that we`re meant to learn. And specifically, they`ve been saying that if you read all the different web sites, if you`re really careful, what you discover is that a lot of facts don`t add up.

HAMMER: And even if a modicum of what is being put out there, all these conspiracy theories, even if a piece of that is true, we have a responsibility, don`t you think...

JONG: To investigate it.

HAMMER: ... to be asking the questions and to be doing the investigation?

JONG: I think it`s very patriotic to investigate it. Throughout all of history the basic premise of tyrants has been -- dictators, shall we say. And I think it`s fair to say that George W. Bush is a dictator. Has been if you tell the people they have an external enemy, they`ll follow you anywhere. That was what Goebbels told Hitler to do. Back in ancient history, that`s what Roman emperors did.

HAMMER: That`s a pretty strong statement for you to say, though. Are you at all afraid of a backlash? I mean, seriously, a lot of people are afraid to come out on television. You just called Mr. Bush a dictator.

JONG: I think that he is a dictator. Most of the people do not believe that this country should be a theocracy. Most of the people in this country do not want to be in Iraq. Most of the people in this country are pro choice. And yet, he blithely goes on ignoring the will of the people. I call that a dictator.

But as far as 9/11 is concerned, it`s a great gambit to tell the people, you have an external enemy. The external enemy is terrorism. We have a war that will go on for centuries. It will go on till the end of time. Well, that`s a great way to scare people.

HAMMER: Sure.

JONG: And to make them believe whatever you say. And Bush is not the first to do it.

HAMMER: No.

JONG: Throughout history, people have been doing that in order to fool all of the people all of the time. So I think that Charlie Sheen is really patriotic and brave to ask these questions. I don`t know what the answer to these questions is.

I read the article in "New York" magazine. And I think just asking questions is brave and patriotic.

HAMMER: And as I mentioned, we`ll be speaking with that author from "New York Magazine" coming up later in the show.

JONG: Well, I think it`s great that you`re investigating. I don`t know what the answer is. I don`t know if we`ll ever know. I don`t know the answer to the Kennedy assassination. But I think that it`s a job of writers and of talented people to investigate this stuff.

HAMMER: Well, you are a talented writer. And that is why you are here with us tonight, among other reasons. Your new book, "Seducing the Demon", is out.

One of the things that you raise in this book, which is something that I guess has followed you around for a little while, Martha Stewart accused you of stealing her husband.

JONG: Well, hardly.

HAMMER: But it`s...

JONG: It`s what kids today call a hookup.

HAMMER: But she did make that accusation. You didn`t steal her husband, did you?

JONG: Yes, she`s been making it for years and years. No, I did something really stupid at the Frankfurt book fair. And what happens on the road should stay on the road, as the musicians say. I did something really stupid, but hey, it was a quarter century ago. And it was really dumb, and I apologize.

HAMMER: And I understand you wrote this book as much for your fans as you did for yourself.

JONG: I wrote the book because it`s really the story of how I survived as a writer. And for all my writing students out there and all the people who want to know, who come up to me after readings or signings and who say, "How did you do it? How do you survive as a writer?"

HAMMER: It`s all right here.

JONG: It`s "Seducing the Demon."

HAMMER: All right. Well, Erica, thank you for sharing your thoughts on some touchy subjects with us. And your book is good (ph).

JONG: Thank you.

HAMMER: Appreciate it.

JONG: Thank you, A.J.

HAMMER: And you can find Erica`s new book, "Seducing the Demon: Writing for My Life". It`s in stores now.

ANDERSON: More on the story SHOWBIZ TONIGHT first told you about, actor Charlie Sheen accusing the government of a 9/11 cover-up. Coming up, we investigate how legit Sheen`s conspiracy theory really is.

HAMMER: Also, a new movie about the man who murdered John Lennon, Mark David Chapman. Actor Jared Leto costars with Lindsay Lohan in the film. We`re going to get the first reports from the set from Jared Leto in an interview you`ll only see on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

ANDERSON: And Seth Green live. He does "Family Guy", "Robot Chicken" and, of course, Dr. Evil`s son in "Austin Powers". We`ll ask Seth if there`s another "Austin Powers" flick in the works. That`s live, coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAMMER: You know Seth Green from 20 films, including "The Italian Job", "Without a Paddle" and of course, as Dr. Evil`s son in "Austin Powers". He`s also the voice of the awkward son Chris in FOX`s often raunchy animated show, "Family Guy", which by the way, is the only show ever to be resurrected from cancellation after huge DVD sales brought it back to life. Seth also voices dozens of characters in his own animated Cartoon Network creation, called "Robot Chicken".

Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, live in New York, Seth Green.

SETH GREEN, ACTOR: Thanks.

HAMMER: We were talking about Charlie Sheen and all the comments, and I just have to get your take. You seemed a little blown away that he has come forward.

GREEN: Well, it`s impressive. I mean, it`s impressive for somebody in any kind of high profile position to challenge the government when you`re getting average people, you know, slandered for any kind of opposition.

HAMMER: Would you do ever something like that?

GREEN: I usually wouldn`t. I keep my politics to private conversations. But I appreciate the fact that he`s prepared and coming out and saying this is something -- and I like that he says if you want to investigate anything, investigate the facts. Don`t try to turn it around. I mean, which is what`s been happening so much with this administration. Anybody who challenges anything with a reasonable challenge gets slandered and criticized for being -- for opposing, you know?

HAMMER: We like talking to you about how we know you best. Of course, people really best know you as Dr. Evil`s son in "Austin Powers".

GREEN: Yes.

HAMMER: Among other things, but you are the voice of the animated characters on "Robot Chicken" as well as "Family Guy".

GREEN: Yes.

HAMMER: So are you kind of hiding from the camera? I mean...

GREEN: No, it just so happened. I mean, "Family Guy" is a job I got almost eight years ago. And we were three years of the air. And then "Robot Chicken" is just a show that I developed with a friend of mine and because we don`t have a lot of money and because I know a lot of the jokes because I`m involved in the writing process. I just -- I`ll perform them as a shorthand, you know?

HAMMER: Now, one of the things that "Robot Chicken" does is you sort of spoof or go after, in a comedic way, certain celebrities who are out there. Anything that`s going on out there in celebritydom right now that you can`t wait to sort of attack and how you will go about that?

GREEN: Our second season, which starts April 2, by the way, we`re all over everything that happens in pop culture.

HAMMER: Give me an example.

GREEN: We take on Lindsay Lohan. We take on Burger King. We take on George Bush.

HAMMER: (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

GREEN: NO, Brooke and Myers (ph), actually. It`s really funny.

HAMMER: What do you take her on for?

GREEN: She -- well, there`s just this whole thing with the teen starlets and silly competitions and writing songs about each other`s boyfriends. And our nation obsession with these 16- and 17-year-old girls that I just find completely ridiculous.

But it speaks to kind of the nation`s distaste for politics, that everyone`s so fascinated by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie having a baby instead of that we`ve been at war for four years and killing hundreds and hundreds of soldiers. For what? So Halliburton can have a bigger oil contract?

HAMMER: And you guys are able to have some fun with that?

GREEN: Yes. We`re just silly. Our show is silly, and we`re not political at all. Our George Bush stuff is like George Bush light saber fighting Abe Lincoln. You know? That`s the kind of political commentary.

HAMMER: And hilarity ensues. So the "Austin Powers" movies, you did the three that were out there.

GREEN: Yes.

HAMMER: What`s the story? Are we going to see another one?

GREEN: I`m the last to know.

HAMMER: Has Mike Myers talked to you at all?

GREEN: Not at all. I haven`t talked to Mike in, like, two years, actually. He, from my understanding, is doing the Keith Moon story. So I don`t know.

HAMMER: He is doing that.

GREEN: I don`t know. I mean, "Austin Powers" is the kind of thing that we all have a great time doing it.

HAMMER: Right.

GREEN: And if there`s a script to do, I`m sure we`ll do it.

HAMMER: And if one`s done, you will for certain be a part of it?

GREEN: It`s a blast to do. I wouldn`t turn it down if it was worth doing. But you know, whether or not -- we did three good ones, and I`m amazed that that happened.

HAMMER: You`ve got to be happy with those. Seth Green, thank you for stopping by, as always. Come by any time.

GREEN: I will.

HAMMER: You can catch Seth Green in the new "Robot Chicken" DVD, which hits stores...

GREEN: March 28.

HAMMER: ... on Tuesday. You can catch the new season beginning April 2 on the Cartoon Network.

ANDERSON: Seth is excited.

OK. The inside story on "Inside Man" star Jodie Foster. Why you may not see her in another movie in awhile. That`s coming up.

ANDERSON: Also, Jared Leto plays Mark David Chapman, the man who murdered John Lennon. And we have your very first reports from the set of the controversial new movie in an interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. That is coming up.

ANDERSON: And it`s the story that SHOWBIZ TONIGHT brought to you first, Charlie Sheen`s shocking comments about a 9/11 government cover-up. Coming up, we investigate whether they are legit.

SHOWBIZ TONIGHT will be right back. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, for a Friday night. It is 31 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. And you`re watching TV`s only live entertainment news show.

HAMMER: Brooke, a controversial new movie is going to be released all about Mark David Chapman. He`s the man who, of course, shot John Lennon to death 25 years ago. Jared Leto, the actor who plays Mark David Chapman, is going to speak with us in a moment. There`s a bit of a backlash against the movie. Did it affect the filming? We`ll find out from Jared himself, coming up in just a few.

ANDERSON: Very interesting. Also, A.J., a chat with another talented actor, Jodie Foster. She stars in the new thriller "Inside Man." We will talk with her about that film and also about her family, if she thinks her two sons will follow in her acting footsteps. That`s coming up in just a few minutes.

HAMMER: Looking forward to that.

And now we have more on Charlie Sheen and his 9/11 conspiracy theories. We`ve been all over this story, Sheen`s suggestion that the government may be covering up what really happened on September 11th.

Sheen was on the Alex Jones Radio Show again today talking about it. And just this week, "New York" magazine is out with a story on all of the 9/11 conspiracy theories that are floating out there. It`s called "The Ground Zero Grassy Knoll."

Contributing editor Marc Jacobson wrote the piece. Marc`s joining us live on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Marc, thanks for stopping in.

MARC JACOBSON, "NEW YORK" MAGAZINE: No problem.

HAMMER: It`s quite an explosion that has happened here this week as a result of Charlie Sheen`s comments on this radio show on Monday. You started working on this story a few months back. People weren`t really talking about this.

JACOBSON: Well, no, the people that are interested in it were talking about it, but everybody else thought I was out of my mind.

HAMMER: So do you think, now that you have a big Hollywood star who is taking an undeniable risk by coming forward, do you think this is going to give it legs and suddenly people are really going to start paying it more attention?

JACOBSON: Well, I think it would be better if it was Martin Sheen rather than Charlie Sheen, because he`s the president, right?

HAMMER: Sometimes we wish.

JACOBSON: Well, you know, but, I mean, it`s just one of those kind of things where do you this work and nobody really cares, but then Charlie Sheen is interested, so then everybody is interested, and that`s fine.

You know, obviously, this material needs to be looked at again, because there`s been a lot of problems with the 9/11 Commission report. People feel it`s not adequate. Most of the people who had lost people during that time feel it`s not adequate.

And it`s just I think we`re living in a truth vacuum, in a sense, that any time there`s a truth vacuum, these ideas -- because people are smart. They put two and two together. Sometimes they get five; sometimes they get 12, but sometimes they get 11, like 9/11, but sometimes they get four.

And the thing is that, if you have a situation where the so-called facts are covered up and aggressively covered up, then you`re going to get these conspiracy theories.

HAMMER: And it has happened throughout history. And credibility is an important fact here. Charlie Sheen really did apparently do his homework. He does know a lot about it. But, of course, people are now going after him because of his sordid past. I want you to listen to what he had to say about that on the radio today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHARLIE SHEEN, ACTOR: I am an American citizen that loves my country. And as a citizen with my passion for this great country, I demand that I be challenged on the facts, not on, you know, immature behavior from 20 years ago. That if they continue to attack me personally, it only gives credence to our side of the argument.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAMMER: So what do you think about that? Do you think that, you know, his credibility really is at stake here, or is that going to backfire on people who are -- it`s kind of like apples and oranges to me.

JACOBSON: It doesn`t have anything to do with each other. You know, it`s like -- so he was an ardent customer of Heidi Fleiss. I mean, I can`t see how that affects his ability to analyze this material.

HAMMER: No, and people who are smart enough, I think, to think about, you know, "OK, if he`s coming forward with legitimate points, then why should we worry about what his past was"?

JACOBSON: I think it`s just stupid.

HAMMER: You paid attention to some of what Charlie has had to say this week about what he thinks happened on September 11th. You did the research for your article. Do you think he has some legitimate points? And what are they?

JACOBSON: Well, I think he`s doing a reasonable rendition of what other people that believe in this stuff say. And when he says he has his facts straight, I mean, I think the facts are in question.

I mean, I think, just because you know what it says on all of these different Web sites doesn`t mean that that`s necessarily the fact. That`s the reason why the United States government, with their endless amounts of resources, let us down by not doing the proper work on the 9/11 Commission. That`s a real problem.

HAMMER: Well, one thing that is interesting -- you know, not just your article also bringing some of these theories to light, but the Internet now has changed everything. It`s all over the Internet. It`s all over the blogs. It seems like this is now an unstoppable movement that`s getting some new juice this week from Charlie Sheen. Do you think this is at all a good thing?

JACOBSON: Well, I think that people might want to -- well, people might want to consider the Kennedy assassination thing, if they had the Internet at the time. You can imagine how that would have exploded.

But the thing is, like, if you remember the Oliver Stone movie, which was the "JFK" movie, it didn`t get made until more than 20 years after the Kennedy assassination. Obviously, things are moving quite faster now. And, yes, the Internet spreads these things. The down side of it is, it spreads a lot of rumors.

HAMMER: That`s true. And it can certainly perpetuate some things that are not true. And, Marc, I appreciate -- it`s really a good read in the magazine. I appreciate you dropping by to talk about it.

OK. Marc Jacobson, joining us from "New York" magazine.

And we`ve been asking you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day, asking: Charlie Sheen speaks out: Do you agree there is a government cover-up of 9/11?

Well, here are some of the e-mails that we`ve received. We heard from Fernando from Florida. He writes, "Sheen is correct to pursue and expose the matter to all because the rabbit hole is deeper than we all think."

We also heard from Barbara in Missouri. She writes, "I don`t believe the government was involved in the 9/11 terror attacks, and I think that anyone that does is stupid."

We heard from Menelik in Texas who writes, "Of course, the government covered up 9/11, just as the past history of what they have concealed."

Keep voting at CNN.com/showbiztonight. If you have some thoughts you want to share with us, join in the thousands. Showbiztonight@CNN.com is our e-mail address. We`ll read some more a bit later in the show.

ANDERSON: Changing the subject here. Jodie Foster has been making movies for 40 years, four decades. Can you believe it? Well, we couldn`t, either. The Oscar-winning actress still packs a punch on the big screen. She stars in the new Spike Lee film "Inside Man." It`s opening today.

She plays a powerbroker with a hidden agenda in a tense hostage drama. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT producer Jenny D`Attoma sat down with Jodie to talk about the new role and her secret to success.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JODIE FOSTER, ACTRESS: Your honor, you know about this hostage situation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What`s it to do with you?

FOSTER: Well, I need to be assured that certain interests are protected.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pay attention to what I say. Recently I planned and set in motion the plans to execute the perfect bank robbery.

FOSTER: Look, Detective, there are matters at stake here that are a little bit above your pay grade.

JENNY D`ATTOMA, CNN SHOWBIZ TONIGHT PRODUCER: This is a great role. I mean, when you read the script, you wanted to work with Spike Lee?

FOSTER: I wanted to work with Spike Lee, and I wanted to work with Denzel Washington, and, of course, Clive Owen, this new, wonderful actor on the scene. It was just a dream for me. It was a no-brainer. It was like a two-second decision.

So it stays locked or disappears?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Precisely. Can you make that happen?

FOSTER: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I hope so. I have to say, I can`t help but be skeptical.

FOSTER: Whoever gave you my number got the same deal. Clearly, they must have been satisfied.

She`s a sort of an interesting, powerful character, because the other guys are powerful with guns, and macho, and, you know, beard growth and all that.

And she`s powerful in a different way. She doesn`t need to raise her voice, and she`s quite breezy and witty, and she`s amused by it all, and smiles through everything, and says please and thank you, and gets to wear, you know, fabulous outfits, and have a fake tan, and white teeth, and then, during the week, you know, kills people.

D`ATTOMA: What is the secret for you, as an actress, having longevity in this career, making good choices? Is it difficult?

FOSTER: You know, it just has to be about knowing yourself. And, you know, what`s right for me isn`t right for other people. And I have a very different way of wanting to live my life.

Like now, I mean, after being 40 years in the business, I make maybe one movie every three years. And it`s got to be something that really gets me out of the house. It`s got to be something that`s worth it.

And I`ve also learned that, you know, I need to work with a director that I respect and that I really admire and like. And if not, I get unhappy. When I`m unhappy, I`m not good.

D`ATTOMA: And I would imagine being a mom, I mean, that just has to add to the mix, too.

FOSTER: Yes, it does. And it makes the choice of making a movie a really big choice, because you know you`re going to have some sacrifices from them, so it has to be worth it.

D`ATTOMA: Do you see any sort of acting inclinations in either of your boys?

FOSTER: No, my older one`s a bit of a comedian, so I don`t know. I think that`s going to be a part of his life. I don`t necessarily think he`s necessarily going to be an actor, but I think that he`s going to have -- he has sort of that natural ability that I think he`s going to be able to get what he wants from pretty much anyone in the business world or whatever it is that he chooses.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Proud mom there. Jodie Foster also told SHOWBIZ TONIGHT she`s looking forward to reuniting with Robert De Niro, this time directing him in "Sugarland." The two first worked together in the 1976 film "Taxi Driver." That film that brought Foster her first Oscar nod.

HAMMER: Do not go anywhere, because in just a few moments we`re going to get a review of Jodie Foster`s new movie, "Inside Man." That`s coming up in "Picks and Pans."

ANDERSON: Plus, a big day for Drew Lachey. It`s a safe bet it`s even more thrilling than when he won "Dancing with the Stars." We will tell you what he has to celebrate tonight.

Also, coming up...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JARED LETO, ACTOR: Some people were upset and will be upset by the film being made.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAMMER: Jared Leto sits down with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT to talk about his role as Mark David Chapman, of course, the man who killed the late John Lennon, and the protests that have surrounded the filming of the movie.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, with the star of the upcoming movie, "Chapter 27." This is about the man who shot and killed John Lennon.

Jared Leto plays Mark David Chapman in the film. It`s a role that he gained 62 pounds for. He`s working on losing that weight now by fasting. Leto was nine years old when John Lennon died. And I asked him if he remembered where he was on that day, when he stopped by our studios earlier this afternoon for a "Showbiz Sitdown."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HAMMER: Do you have a memory of that day?

LETO: You know, I do. My brother, we`re very close in age. He was delivering papers in the morning. And he brought home a stack of papers, and I remember he showed it to my mother, and, you know, she was in tears. I think it`s a moment that, like you say, everyone -- it kind of affected the entire world, in a way.

HAMMER: Yes, and it`s a real reference point for anybody who was alive at the time, was old enough, as I said. And now you`re in a movie playing a guy who killed John Lennon. And it`s your job as an actor to get into that guy`s head. So, at any point in the course of filming this role, did you have any sense of why he actually did this?

LETO: Well, it`s a very interesting question. And we get into a lot of that in the film.

But, you know, you can put people in similar circumstances, whether they have an abusive or unhappy childhood, whether they grow up and experience things that a lot of us wouldn`t like to have experienced, and they turn out perfectly fine and don`t end up murdering someone.

But Chapman was a very, very complex individual. He was very lucid, intelligent. He could sit here, and have an interview, and be charming.

But he was, I believe -- he was schizophrenic. He was a sociopath. He was a narcissistic psychopath. The list is long of the things that describe who he was. But, you know, "Why?" is a very hard question to answer.

HAMMER: You were joined in the film by Lindsay Lohan. She certainly probably garnered a lot of attention just for being there, because the paparazzi follows her everywhere. You, yourself, I`m sure, have had experience with that throughout your career.

LETO: Sure.

HAMMER: Was that at all a distraction, with the cameras constantly hanging around?

LETO: You know, it was -- I would call it not a distraction, but pain in the ass.

(LAUGHTER)

HAMMER: To be perfectly honest.

LETO: You know, because here I am -- I mean, I gained 62 pounds for the part. I`m very focused and in character. And I`m looking up trying to communicate with another character in the film, and right behind them there are probably 100 or more guys with cameras and long lenses, you know, 20 or 30 feet away from us, clicking away.

And the thing is, you know, everybody`s got to do a job. They`re there to do their job and make some money and whatever. But we were trying to focus and concentrate, so it was challenging, but, like we said when we were making the movie, it should be challenging.

HAMMER: Right, it`s part of the gig.

LETO: It`s part of the gig, yes.

HAMMER: Well, I know music is your first love, as many films as you have done and as long as you`ve been acting, I read that music is your first passion.

LETO: Well, I don`t know about my first -- I just feel very proud of the things that I`ve done, the movies that I`ve made. And I`m very proud of the music that I make, as well.

HAMMER: With the band, 30 Seconds to Mars.

LETO: Yes, with 30 Seconds to Mars.

HAMMER: So people who are not familiar with your music, they may have seen you in your films -- what is that music?

LETO: 30 Seconds to Mars is something -- a lot of people don`t know that other side of my life. It`s rock. It`s something that`s atmospheric and dynamic, and it`s a lot of energy.

And we`re very proud that people have been able to finally, after all of these years, start looking past the stereotype of this example that`s been set before us of this horribly, embarrassingly bad cliche of actors who seem to be good at only making bad music, for some reason.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HAMMER: Jared mentioned 30 Seconds to Mars, that`s the name of his band. He and the guys are on tour now. And that`s their new CD.

ANDERSON: Why don`t we get tonight`s "Hot Headlines" now? And for that, we go to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Sibila Vargas. She is joining us live here in Hollywood.

Hey, Sibila.

SIBILA VARGAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Brooke.

Well, Randy Quaid wants more money for his small role in "Brokeback Mountain." Quaid has sued the producers, saying they told him it was a low-budget movie with no prospect of making any money and paid him a low salary. He isn`t saying how much he got, but he wants $10 million in damages.

Well, the WB has censored the first episode of its new show, "The Bedford Diaries," but the network is showing the uncensored version on its Web site. The WB cut scenes of two girls kissing and another risque scene that we can`t show you from the premiere episode, which airs Wednesday. The executive producer says the network couldn`t take the chance with the FCC.

Well, some celebrity baby news tonight. Drew Lachey of "Dancing with the Stars" is a father. His wife, Lea, gave birth to a baby girl yesterday in Los Angeles. She`s the couple`s first child. A rep says Mom, Dad and baby are healthy and happy.

Congratulations, you two.

And those are tonight`s "Hot Headlines." Brooke, back to you.

ANDERSON: An exciting time for them. Sibila, thanks so much. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Sibila Vargas.

HAMMER: The weekend has finally arrived. And tonight, in "People`s" "Picks and Pans," what`s new at the movies, taking a look at the new Denzel Washington film, "Inside Man." Amanda Bynes back in "She`s the Man." And finally, we`re going to talk about a little independent flick called "L`Enfant."

Here to talk us through each one, "People" magazine movie critic Leah Rozen.

Welcome to Friday, Leah.

LEAH ROZEN, MOVIE CRITIC, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: Thank you, A.J. Same to you.

HAMMER: Let`s talk about this Spike Lee-Denzel Washington movie "Inside Man," which I understand is not traditional Spike Lee fare.

ROZEN: Well, this is essentially a genre film. It is a heist movie. This is the fourth time that Spike Lee and Denzel Washington have teamed up, and this is a really fun movie.

You know, years ago some disgruntled reader wrote to me and said, "Why can`t you just sit back at a movie with a Coke and a smile?" And I`ve got to say: This is one of those movies you just sit back and enjoy it.

Bank robbery film, Denzel Washington plays the cop who has to figure out what the bank robber is up to, how to get the hostages out. Jodie Foster shows up as sort of a fixer for the rich and powerful. You know, there are all kinds of involved things going on.

But it`s fun, very much a New York movie. Everybody is a wiseacre, a kvetcher, or working an angle, sometimes all three. This one really works.

HAMMER: A good Coke-and-a-smile movie. Excellent.

Well, let`s move on to Amanda Bynes in "She`s the Man." This is probably not a movie for everybody, but it opened up with some good success last week, and I understand it`s cute.

ROZEN: It`s a cute film, exactly. It`s good for teenage girls, teenage boys, tweeners. I don`t know if adults have to go. This is yet another of those teenage Shakespeare films, you know, a teenage movie, but based on a Shakespeare play, though many of the teenagers probably won`t know. It`s based on "Twelfth Night."

Amanda Bynes plays a girl who so wants to play soccer she disguised herself as a boy and pretends she`s her twin brother and joins his school team. Again, it`s cute. It has some point. The physical slapstick stuff is very funny.

HAMMER: Appropriate for the age group, it sounds like.

All right, normally we might not talk about a film that`s not yet in wide release, but "L`Enfant" you say is a terrific film, did well at Cannes. This is a Belgian flick.

ROZEN: This is a Belgian film, directed by the Dardenne brothers. It won the big prize at Cannes last spring. This is a film about a young man, a young couple have a baby. They`re homeless. The young man sells the child into the black market. And then, when his girlfriend, you know, is devastated, he has to go and try and get the kid back.

And it`s just -- it`s a film that really sort of captures the struggling underclass of Europe. It`s made with heart, and it`s full of meaning, and it`s worth seeing. The English title would be "The Child," if you can`t remember "L`Enfant."

HAMMER: And that leads me to my next question. It`s a foreign film. Subtitles, I`m presuming?

ROZEN: Yes, it`s in French, with English subtitles.

HAMMER: OK. That`s important information we have to know, because some people don`t love the subtitles.

ROZEN: You have to read while you`re watching this one.

HAMMER: All right. Leah Rozen, thanks, as always, for your input on the films opening this weekend or already out. And for more "Picks and Pans," as always, grab your copy of "People" magazine. It is on newsstands now.

ANDERSON: We have been getting an overwhelming response to our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Charlie Sheen speaks out: Do you agree with his assertion that there is a government cover-up of 9/11?

Let`s take a look at how the vote is going so far: 82 percent of you say yes; only 18 percent of you say no.

Here are some of the e-mails we`ve received. Annette from Texas writes, "What our government has hidden about 9/11 is just the tip of the iceberg."

Daniel from Florida says, "I am shocked at the accusations that Charlie Sheen made towards our government."

And Robert from Virginia: "The evidence is like lipstick on the collar of a wayward husband. Democracy requires facing the truth."

You can keep voting, CNN.com/showbiztonight. Don`t go anywhere. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT will be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. As we wind things down for a Friday night, let us now take a look at what is coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on Monday. For that, we open up our "Showbiz Marquee."

So my question to you: Are your co-workers driving you crazy?

CAMERA CREW: Yes!

HAMMER: Well, whether it`s your boss or the guy in the next cubicle or the guy who is working the camera next to you who`s driving you up a wall, a new book has some advice on how to deal. The authors, right here, Monday on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

Also on Monday, digging for the truth about "The Da Vinci Code." We are separating the fact from the fiction with the History Channel and archaeologist Josh Bernstein. That will happen live on Monday.

A lot of controversy has surrounded over that fact-from-fiction debate. We`ll get into that.

ANDERSON: Absolutely.

HAMMER: And that is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Have a great weekend. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: Thanks for watching, everyone. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Please stay tuned for the very latest from CNN Headline News.

END

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