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Showbiz Tonight

Jolie to Adopt Another Child; Friends of Anna Nicole Speak Out

Aired March 07, 2007 - 23:00   ET


A.J. HAMMER, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT ANCHOR: Everyone has Lottery fever, but in the movies and in life, is becoming an instant millionaire really a curse? I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.
BROOKE ANDERSON, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT ANCHOR: And Star Jones Reynolds on coming back to TV and her take on the Anna Nicole Smith saga. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. TV`s most provocative entertainment news show starts right now.

HAMMER: On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, the remarkable Anna Nicole Smith saga with more twists and turns than a Hollywood movie. So SHOWBIZ TONIGHT says, let`s make it. Tonight, who should play Anna, Howard, Larry and what about that wacky judge?


JUDGE LARRY SEIDLIN, FAMILY COURT JUDGE: Give this poor country boy a chance to ask a few questions.


Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT casts Anna Nicole, the movie.

And baby makes six. Would you believe the Jolie/Pitt family is growing again? Startling news that Angelina is planning to adopt again in Vietnam. Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT asks the tough questions, what about needy kids in the U.S.? Is it too soon? And isn`t it about time Brad and Angelina tie the knot already? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT with the Brad and Angelina family fallout.

Hello, I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: Hi there everyone, I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. And with me here in Hollywood tonight, the designers of the dress Anna Nicole Smith was buried in and their gripping stories about her funeral. That`s straight ahead.

HAMMER: But first tonight, Anna Nicole Smith, the movie. You know it`s going to happen. There`s definitely going to be a movie or ten made about the whole unbelievable saga of her life, her death, the battle over her body and her baby. So SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is getting way ahead of the curve and casting Anna Nicole, the movie.


HAMMER (voice-over): SHOWBIZ TONIGHT presents the Anna Nicole Movie, not that movie. We`re talking about another Texas tale, one with movers and shakers, the baby daddies and the wanton money-seekers, the mother, a prince -- no, the other prince. And of course, the wacky judge, a soap opera in the making.

HOWARD BRAGMAN, 15 MINUTES PUBLIC RELATIONS: Absolutely, it`s got everything. It`s got sex, it`s got drugs, it`s got death. It`s got babies, it`s got more fathers than are on Mount Rushmore. I mean, it`s got everything that TV producers love.

HAMMER: Let`s get started casting, beginning with Anna Nicole Smith. So many choices for the former "Playboy" Playmate, but let`s face it, this is likely going to be a made-for-TV movie.

BRAGMAN: I don`t think actresses are salivating for the Anna Nicole role. TV movies don`t have the same cachet that theatrical movies do. There`s always actors out there. Come on, there`s always great people for us to cast in this.

HAMMER: People like Porn Star Jenna Jameson. She has the look and isn`t it the dream of every porn star to become a legitimate actress.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: More actresses that want to stretch themself, but also would be comfortable playing someone who is a "Playboy" model.

HAMMER: So let`s pick a former playboy model, Jenny McCarthy. She has the umph, the acting skills, and the humor. There has to be some humor in this thing.

RACHEL SYME, WRITER: We interviewed some top casting directors in New York and L.A. about this very question. And the person they kept coming back to was Jenny McCarthy because she looks a little like Anna Nicole and also, she`s kind of an outrageous personality.

HAMMER: So what about Anna Nicole lover and lawyer, Howard K. Stern? The man some see as a villain should be played by a "Friend," namely David Schwimmer.

SYME: He has the hair for it and the jaw line. I think he would be good. He`s looking for work, I bet.

HAMMER: For Stern`s nemesis, Larry Birkhead, it`s hands-down, one guy, love him or hate him, he`s already got experience in another famous drama.

BRAGMAN: For Larry, it`s Cato Calin. This is another guy looking for his 15 minutes. He`s got the Cato hair already.

SYME: I think that`s actually genius.

HAMMER: And playing the role of Anna Nicole`s son Daniel, how about another Daniel, the star of Harry Potter.

BRAGMAN: I`m seeing Daniel Radcliffe playing her son don Daniel. He`s already got the name. He needs a role where he can wear clothes after his little stint on the naked theater in London.

HAMMER: And somebody`s going to have to play Daniel`s grandmother and estranged mother to Anna Nicole, Virgie Arthur. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT says it`s got to be Rosanne Barr. After all, she`s already played the matriarch of a dysfunctional family on TV.

SYME: I think she would bring something comic to the rule. And I think Virgie Arthur, unfortunately, has become kind of a comic character.

HAMMER: And what TV movie/soap opera drama would be complete without a prince in the picture? Again, not that Prince. Yes, that Prince.

BRAGMAN: Zsa Zsa Gabor`s husband, Frederick, I see him playing himself. The guy`s clearly looking for his moment in the sun. And why shouldn`t we give him a few more minutes on tape?

SYME: He`s kind of a crazy character, so you`d really need to get someone slightly old and senile looking to play him. I don`t know, if he`s looking for as much publicity as he is, which he seems to, coming out as the father, he might be willing to do it.

HAMMER: And of course, we can`t forget Judge Larry Seidlin, the wise cracking, sometimes crying, ringmaster of the court battle over Anna Nicole`s body.

SEIDLIN: The body belongs to me now. I`m not releasing the body.

HAMMER: OK, judge, we get your point. And you look just like "Seinfeld" creator Larry David. He had a show about nothing so why not a movie about something.

SYME: It needs to be a comedian, I think, because Judge Larry Seidlin was just so funny.

HAMMER: OK, so we`ve got our cast, but who`s going to write the movie. Writer? Who needs a writer?

BRAGMAN: No, this one`s writing itself. That`s the beauty of it. There`s enough transcripts. I`m telling you, a screen writer wouldn`t dare put this in because nobody would believe it. And that`s what makes it such a great story.

SYME: You can`t make this stuff up.


HAMMER: While Anna`s life was obviously full of glamour, it was also filled with plenty of tragedy. So we`re hoping that when we do finally see this made for TV movie, it`s done with a little humor and lots of class.

And coming up at 15 past the hour, we`re going to speak with two of Anna`s close friends, who helped plan her funeral and designed her burial dress.

Angelina Jolie is at it again. The Oscar winning actress is set to adopt another child and once again she is stirring up controversy. Tonight here is what we know: Jolie has applied to adopt a boy somewhere between the ages of three and five in Vietnam. And get this, Jolie has filed adoption papers as a single parent, not with Brad Pitt.

Jolie and Pitt visited a Vietnamese orphanage over Thanksgiving, where they were giving out candy and balloons to the kids there. Joining us tonight from Hollywood, investigative journalist Pat Lalama. With me here in New York, clinical psychologist, Dr. Judy Kuriansky.

Ladies, it`s good to see you both. Now, Dr. Judy, Brad and Angelina already have three kids. This would be number four, of course, one biologically, Shiloh, and two other kids that were adopted. A lot of people are saying this is just too soon after giving birth to baby Shiloh, who`s only ten months old.

DR. JUDY KURIANSKY, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: And I`m worried about Angelina because of that, because she looks so thin. This has got to be a strain on her. We know she planned on having a lot of kids. She wants to have a big brood, but I think she`s going to have some physical strain and emotional strain, because you have to give to all those children. So it`s going to be tough on her and tough on Maddox. I`m worried about him. He`s five.

Another young boy comes in. You often think, well they`ll be buddies. They`ll be great friends. But he`s five. The new Vietnamese boy is between three and four or five. That`s going to be a little competition, even if they are going to be friends. So I`m concerned about Maddox too.

HAMMER: And Angelina Jolie, a woman who was not always on the, shall we say, straight and narrow. I don`t know if that`s the right term Pat. But, you know, just a couple of years ago, Angelina made Britney Spears look pretty tame in comparison. She talked about wearing a vial of blood around her neck. There were other things that she was involved with back then. Do you believe, as I do, that Jolie has changed her ways for good?

I actually think she has turned her life around and grown up. Or do you think we should be concerned?

PAT LALAMA, INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALIST: Let me tell you something, A.J. -- and this, of course, is with all due respect to Dr. Judy, because I like her work and I respect what she says. But in this case that anybody would express any kind of concern for two people who clearly love children, who have tons of money, so they can buy all the help in the world that they need, these people love babies. Anybody who challenges anybody who does what I think is the greatest thing you can give to humanity, which is to give a home to a needy child -- to me, if there`s a heaven, those people are going there. I have no concerns at all.

KURIANSKY: Pat, I love you, too. And love your work, too. But I disagree with you, because even so, even if they have lots of nannies, it`s still a strain on them emotionally. However, I do think what you said, A.J., about has she finally given up her wild ways with the blood, with Billy Bob and everything, I think this is a good example for you know who, your favorite Britney, because Britney has got her wild ways. Angelina has sublimated some of her sexual acting out.

She had a lot of affairs with women too. And pushed it into being a mother and I think that`s what we want and --

LALAMA: Judy, Judy, Judy! This is all wrong. A.J., can I jump in here?


LALAMA: Look, the point of the matter is that these are clearly -- Brad Pitt -- we were just talking about this the other day. They guy`s never in trouble. He seems really not ego struck by Hollywood. They`re having a good life. I mean, if a woman gives birth to quadruplets, is she supposed to give two away because the strain might be too much? These are great people.

KURIANSKY: They have careers too, and it`s going to be a strain on him with his career.

HAMMER: That`s not what happened here. She did not have quadruplets. This is quite by choice, this is not an accident. So the question is, and this is where your expertise comes into play here, Dr. Judy, you`re saying that perhaps it`s OK that they`re adopting plenty of kids, and I agree with that as well, but give it a little bit of time. And particularly Angelina Jolie lost her mother in January, could this be some kind of reaction to it?

LALAMA: Who has the right to say this?

KURIANSKY: You`re going to argue with me, but I`m saying from my psychologist point of view that you lose a mom and you want to replace the lovingness, you want to replace being loved, being mothered. That was a powerful relationship for her. And I think the timing of this had a lot to do with the fact that this is a way to really recapture that sense of family and structure and a real foundation for her.

LALAMA: Dr. Judy, why aren`t we more worried about people like Anna Nicole who gave birth -- and I`m going to just come out and say it, you`ll probably call me a fascist -- she had no right to give birth. And now there are concerns about this baby`s condition.

HAMMER: And we`ll have to take that up another time, Pat Lalama. Gosh, we have a lot more to talk about as far as this is concerned. I totally appreciate that they`re adopting more kids. I think that`s great. But you have to look at the big picture, I think, too. Dr. Judy and Pat Lalama, I thank you both.

KURIANSKY: Bye, guys.

HAMMER: Coming up next on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, two close friends of Anna Nicole Smith, so close in fact, they helped make her funeral arrangements.

ANDERSON: That`s right A.J. Also, is Headline Prime`s own Nancy Grace starting up an acting career? The SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Truth Squad is on the case, coming up.

Also this --


HAMMER: The Anna Nicole saga, you have to be sitting and watching this go on, and I`m sure you have got a lot to say.


HAMMER: She sure does. Star Jones Reynolds is back and that`s ahead in the interview you`ll see only on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York. It`s now been less than a week since Anna Nicole Smith`s body was laid to rest in the Bahamas finally. And today we learned that the medical examiner knows why she died, but may not be revealing the cause of death until the police investigation is over, and that could be a couple of more weeks. Emotions are still raw among Anna Nicole`s friends and family. Now we are going to take a look back at the scene from last Friday when Anna was finally laid to rest.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All over the world, families are laying their loved ones to rest in many different ways, in many different lands and in many different languages, but with one specific goal in mind, to provide respect, solemnity and a final resting place for their loved ones.


ANDERSON: With us tonight are two of Anna Nicole`s close personal friends who were at the funeral. Joining me here in Hollywood Patrick Simpson and Pol Atteu. They have been in the Bahamas. They helped with the arrangements for Anna Nicole`s funeral. Pol even designed the dress that Anna wore when she was laid to rest and that pink cover for the coffin that you just saw. Pol, Patrick, thanks for being here.

I know this is really, really difficult for you. And as we just reported, it may be weeks still before we know what really caused Anna Nicole`s death. Is that distressing for you?

POL ATTEU, FRIEND OF ANNA NICOLE SMITH: We know what happened to Anna. We know that she died of a broken heart. We tried all we could for us to be able to motivate her, keep her going --

PATRICK SIMPSON, FRIEND OF ANNA NICOLE: But she was never the same. After Daniel passed away, she was never the same, no matter what anybody could do.

ANDERSON: In addition to her being sad, maybe depressed, broken, there has been speculation that foul play could have been involved. What do you think about that? Is that a possibility?

ATTEU: No, not at all. There`s no reason for foul play by anybody, because the only people that were close to her are the ones who cared, protected and loved her. So there`s no possibility of that at all.

SIMPSON: She was very sick.

ANDERSON: Poll, as we said, you designed the dress that she was buried in. That had to be extraordinarily difficult, designing a dress for a dead friend.

ATTEU: You know, it`s bad enough that she had passed away, that I hadn`t yet understood or realized or even wanted to accept, then having to design the dress, which was very personal, and the fact that she was a very, very good friend. That made it even harder. To be commissioned to be able to do something is one thing. But to do it for your friend, which was a labor of love, it was hours of painstaking hardship for me to put it together.

ANDERSON: Was it the hardest thing you`ve ever done?

ATTEU: It was the hardest thing I`ve ever had to do. I still don`t understand that it`s done. They came up to us at the burial, because we were at the church and the burial. And they told us that she looked amazing.

ANDERSON: Yes, it was a closed casket funeral. And I want to say, at the funeral, Howard K. Stern, who asked you to design this dress, and you readily volunteered to do it, he took a few moments to speak and he criticized some members of her family, particularly her mother, for dragging on this battle over the body for so long. Some people say it was inappropriate for him to do so. What do you think, Patrick?

SIMPSON: I disagree. I think at that point we had done everything and Howard has done everything to make sure that Anna`s wishes were respected. And even on the day of her funeral, her mother still tried to disrespect what Anna wanted and Howard had every right to tell her that.

ATTEU: This wasn`t Virgie`s funeral. This was Anna`s funeral. And she needed to have enough respect and compassion. If she did claim that to be her daughter, to at least not do what she did that day, to have Anna pulled over on the side of the road while a Bohemian judge would be able to render a decision whether or not the burial could take place.

ANDERSON: You told me something during the commercial break about this ribbon that you wore at the funeral, you designed for everyone to wear but not everyone wore them.

ATTEU: No, I had made a basket and I made the ribbons because it`s what we used for Daniel. Daniel`s ribbons were reversed. It was black ribbons for mourning and the pink that Anna wanted to introduce. And so I just reversed it and did the pink and the black over for her. I still have Daniel`s, actually, and we wear both.

ANDERSON: But Virgie didn`t wear it?

ATTEU: And when we passed it out to everybody, they refused. They actually did not want to have anything to do with the ribbon.

ANDERSON: A lot of people are concerned about the welfare of baby Dannielynn now.

ATTEU: She`s doing great.

ANDERSON: Yes, you guys have seen here, a well-respected doctor here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT last night talked about how her weight, her sleeping habits could indicate there might be something wrong with her. But you`ve seen her. How is the baby?

SIMPSON: She`s a normal kid. She`s healthy. She`s happy. She doesn`t know what`s going on because she`s on a schedule. She`s a great child. She`s beautiful, too.

ANDERSON: This paternity battle remains unresolved. You knew Anna Nicole well. You were very close to her. Did she ever indicate who the father was?

ATTEU: She did, yes.

ANDERSON: And who did she say?

ATTEU: She told us, as I`ve told everybody, that when she`s ready to tell the world, she`ll tell the world, and then we could at that point in time. We have to still respect that.

SIMPSON: We have to respect that.

ANDERSON: Unfortunately she never got a chance to do that.

SIMPSON: I don`t know. There may still be an opportunity where Anna would be able to speak.

ANDERSON: Tragic end to all of that. Poll Atteu, Patrick Simpson, thank you both for sharing your experiences.

ATTEU: Thanks for having us.

HAMMER: So do you remember when Ashley Simpson had her little lip synching flub on SNL? What she blamed it on was bizarre. And coming up Brooke, we`re going to be looking at the worst celebrity excuses ever.

ANDERSON: Plus, A.J., lottery fever. The 370 million dollar jackpot that had everybody fantasizing about instant riches. Straight ahead, from movies and TV, to real life, why do we find the Lottery so irresistible? And we`ll have this.


HAMMER: The Anna Nicole saga, you have to be sitting and watching this going on. And I`m sure you have got a lot to say.


HAMMER: Star Jones Reynolds is back and wait till you hear what she had to say about the whole Anna Nicole Smith saga and that is just ahead.


HAMMER: It`s time now to call in the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Truth Squad. This is where our crack team of celebrity investigators sets the record straight on Hollywood`s biggest mysteries. Tonight, we`re opening up a case file on a little rumor all about Headline Prime`s own Nancy Grace. There were reports that Nancy was going to try her hand at acting. Tonight we can tell you it is true. She`s going to be appearing on the season finale of "Law & Order, SVU." It shouldn`t really be too much of a stretch for her. The character is a legal commentator. You`ll see that episode on NBC May 22nd.

ANDERSON: I`ve got some good news. There`s a new documentary about John Lennon, complete with never before seen footage of the former Beetle composing music, talking about drugs and blow drying Yoko Ono`s hair. The bad news, it doesn`t look like we`ll get to see it any time soon. "Three Days in the Life" was filmed in 1970 by Ono`s ex-husband. There was supposed to be a screening at a school in Maine, but that`s been postponed.

Yoko Ono reportedly isn`t granting permission for it to be shown. Someone at the "Boston Globe" got to see it and published some of the highlights. Among them, Lennon talking about getting off drugs, Lennon says, quote, "We have resurrected hope in ourselves and we`re hoping to spread it around a bit, to tell people you can get off speed. You can get off heroin. You can get off pot. You know, because whatever they say, you do get hooked on it."

HAMMER: Brooke, we all had Lottery fever on the SHOWBIZ staff. It seems like it took over the whole country. But are instant riches really all they`re cracked up to be?

ANDERSON: Could be some dangers there, A.J. Also, for the first time, Star Jones Reynolds talks about returning to television and what she really thinks about the Anna Nicole Smith saga. Also this --


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think we cannot continually be using menstrual cramps as an excuse. And when you use it for that, it makes it harder to be able to use it for smaller things, like murder.


HAMMER: From Nicole Richie`s cramps to Ashley Simpson`s acid reflux, they are the worst celebrity excuses ever and they`re coming up when SHOWBIZ TONIGHT returns in just a minute.



HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. It is 30 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: And I am Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. You are watching TV`s most provocative entertainment news show.

HAMMER: Brooke, do you remember a not-so-quiet moment in television history last June when Star Jones Reynolds bolted from "The View" after she found her contract wasn`t being renewed? Everybody`s been wondering, where is she? When`s she coming back to TV?

Well, she has announced what her new home is going to be. She`s going to join us in just a couple of minutes so we can fill you in. Wait till you see how good she looks, and wait till you hear what she has to say about the whole Anna Nicole saga. Because, you know, Star Jones not known for holding back her opinions.

ANDERSON: No, she`s always got something to say, A.J.

Also, you remember - we all do, we couldn`t forget - Ashlee Simpson`s lip-synching disaster on "Saturday Night Live." Well, remember she made that really bizarre excuse?

So coming up, we pick the "Worst Celebrity Excuses Ever." And that was a good imitation of what she did.

HAMMER: Pretty good, huh?

ANDERSON: Yes, pretty good.

But first, the nation spent Wednesday in the grips of Mega Million mania, as everybody was checking to see who won a record-breaking lottery jackpot that comes close to $400 million.

SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is asking, what is it about these lotteries that makes them so addictive?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We`re just waiting here to see who the lucky winner will be. At least two winning tickets were sold.

ANDERSON (voice-over): The entire nation spent the day in the grips of Mega Millions mania, a 12-state, $370 million jackpot that had everybody singing.


ANDERSON: Sounding like Taviya (ph) from "Fiddler on the Roof," the Mega Millions jackpot had everyone fantasizing about become millionaires. Even the millionaires who host daytime TV shows.

KELLY RIPA, TALK SHOW HOST: I could be walking out here, and - and (INAUDIBLE)

ANDERSON: Fans of Kelly Ripa don`t have to worry; she didn`t win, so she`ll presumably keep her talk-show gig.

But the husband of "Today" show host Meredith Vieira might have reason to worry.

MEREDITH VIEIRA, "TODAY" SHOW HOST: If a man has won, I will leave Richard. I really will.

ANDERSON: She was kidding - we think.

Fortunately, lottery excitement isn`t limited to real life.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want half that lotto money, Earl.

ANDERSON: The main character on NBC`s hit show "My Name Is Earl" is on a perpetual good-deed quest that was initially financed by his lottery winnings.

All the excitement about this real-life lottery has SHOWBIZ TONIGHT asking: why do we find lotteries so irresistible?

ALI VELSHI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Because it`s instant.

ANDERSON: CNN`s resident money expert, senior business correspondent Ali Velshi, tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT there`s something about the get-rich- quick nature of lotteries that just appeals to all of us.

VELSHI: It`s the easiest fantasy to see realized. I`m not going to become a famous actor overnight. I`m not going to lose 50 overnight. I`m not going to be beautiful all of a sudden. But I can be a multimillionaire by morning if I buy the ticket.

ANDERSON: But that doesn`t always mean happily ever after.


ANDERSON: Hurley, from the ABC show "Lost," had a run of bad luck that began with him winning the lottery. And he`s not alone.

SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has a word of warning: look for those who literally win the lotteries, or those who do so figuratively. Yes, Howard Stern and Heather Mills McCartney, we`re talking to you.

Real-life lottery winners often end up falling on hard times. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you the same is sometimes true of stars who hit the proverbial lottery of instant fame and fortune.

MC HAMMER, RAPPER: Hammer time!

ANDERSON: Like the rapper MC Hammer, who earned tens of millions of dollars in the early 90s, only to end up bankrupt and a permanent cautionary tale on VH1`s "Behind the Music."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): When it came to managing his multi- million-dollar earnings, MC Hammer got hammered.

COOPER LAWRENCE, DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGIST: The reason why we love celebrities so much, because we assume that with the money comes this fabulous life. And then people that are thrown into this, whether it`s because they`ve become rich on their own or because of the lottery, they realize that the life isn`t as fabulous as they thought it was going to be.

ANDERSON: OK, we`ll stop with the lottery buzzkill. Even with those cautionary tale and those stats that all but say you have a better chance of being abducted by aliens than striking it rich in the Mega Millions, the lottery still makes for great TV.

RUSTY DORNIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It`s a fun story. That`s for sure.

ANDERSON: .and undeniable fun, even for people who should know better.

Remember Velshi, the CNN business correspondent we talked to? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT asked him if he bought a lottery ticket.

VELSHI: Warren Buffett calls the lottery "a tax on the stupid."

ANDERSON: Yes, Ali, but did you play the Mega Millions?

VELSHI: And empirically, he`s probably right.

ANDERSON: Noted. Now please, answer the question.

VELSHI: But I got to tell you, I bought a ticket.

ANDERSON: That`s OK. We`re not judging. It seems that no one, real or fictional, is immune from the grips of lottery fever.


ANDERSON: Now if you didn`t hit the Mega Millions jackpot, don`t despair. Listen to the odds: they were 1 in 176 million.

HAMMER: All right. I won`t despair over not winning all that money. Fine.

Tonight, Star Jones Reynolds is back. And true to form, Star is not holding back. Some nine months after leaving "The View" in a blaze of controversy over whether she was fired or whether she had quit, Court TV has announced today that Star`s going to be the host of a new daytime talk show, as well as executive editor of daytime at the network.

Soon after the announcement, Star came right here to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, and she gave us a piece of her mind about the ridiculous Anna Nicole Smith, and exactly what we can expect from her new show.


HAMMER: Let me say this, and - and I mean this in the nicest possible way, Star. If I were walking down the street and I walked right by you, I don`t know if I`d instantly recognize you.

STAR JONES REYNOLDS, TV PERSONALITY: And we`ve been friends a long time.

HAMMER: We`ve known each other for quite a while. And - and I have to say, and you heard the reaction of the crew when you walked in - and this has happened when you walked in here - you look terrific.

REYNOLDS: I feel terrific.

HAMMER: I imagine it`s - it`s in and out.

REYNOLDS: I feel very, very healthy inside and outside. You know, when you are making changes in your life and you are starting new chapters, it`s a wonderful opportunity to change from the inside out, but also from the outside in.

HAMMER: Everybody`s been wondering for some time now, where is Star going to wind up? You wound up at a place where you kind of started out in television, Court TV.

Why - why did you choose to go there this time?

REYNOLDS: Absolutely.

I started in television - I was an assistant district attorney in Brooklyn. And got a call to go and be volunteer commentator at Court TV in 1991 on the weekend that it launched.

HAMMER: Right.

REYNOLDS: So 15, 16 years later, I am back, this time as executive editor of daytime for Court TV, and the host of my own legal issues, with a little pop-culture spin, talk show.

HAMMER: I imagine you have been just chomping (sic) at the bit with what`s been going on lately. So let`s just talk about a couple of things right now.


HAMMER: The Anna Nicole saga - you have to be sitting and watching this go on, and I am sure you have got a lot to say.

Are - are you, like most people, just blown away by the spectacle that this has become?

REYNOLDS: You know, it`s very interesting from a - I - I really approached it from a lawyer`s perspective.

First thing I was struck by was, everybody needs to have a will. Let`s talk about that.

HAMMER: Yes, I think that`s a - a real lesson learned.

REYNOLDS: Let`s write it down. If there`s a lesson to be learned in this, even if you`re 39 years old and beautiful and you think your whole life is ahead of you, you need a will.

Not only do you need a will to tell everyone that you want your Great Aunt Lucy to get your good gold hoop earrings, you need to put in there, if something happens to you, where do you want your most precious asset to go - your child.


REYNOLDS: That is your precious asset. And if you had done that and done it legally without having any of the interested parties involved, we would never have had this discussion.

HAMMER: So do you feel the outrage that I know I`m feeling, and I think it`s shared by so many people, over the fact that this paternity test has not yet taken place? I know they`re working on it.


REYNOLDS: Are you the baby`s father?

HAMMER: No, I - you know what? I tell you what.


HAMMER: I am not coming forward to say that I`m the baby`s father.

REYNOLDS: Then it doesn`t matter.

HAMMER: But it just - it seems to me, from everything that we have been learning over the course of this saga, that the baby needs to be in a stable environment with somebody with whom she is going to make a bond.

REYNOLDS: Do you really - OK, now I`m about to - I`m about to give you a hard time.

HAMMER: Please.


Do you know how many children right now are in foster care.

HAMMER: Absolutely.

REYNOLDS: .that have nobody who care about them at all?


HAMMER: Huge numbers. I get that.

REYNOLDS: Huge numbers of every age, racial group and economic background. And this baby has a whole lot of people to care about her.

She`s not going to miss a meal. She`s not going to be mistreated. She - her diaper is always going to be changed.

So let`s keep it in perspective for a minute on what we are talking about. Right now, what everybody`s really talking about is, the potential of this child to be heir to an estate that is hundreds of millions of dollars. If we cared about children, we`d be talking about something else.

HAMMER: I - I don`t disagree with you. But I want to get your take as a lawyer on this particular part of the case.

Howard K. Stern, who a lot of people are looking at as the villain in this whole thing - a lot of people are saying, `Well, you know what? Hey, huge conflict of interest here.` Not only was he her lawyer, but also her lover, and now the executor of her will.

REYNOLDS: Well, it happens. You`re executor; it`s the person closest to you.

It`s rare that it is your lawyer also, but it can happen. This is not unheard of that the executor of your - of your estate is your boyfriend, your husband, your mother, your brother, and that`s the person who ends up controlling everything. It happens everyday.

And I should also tell you, in real life, the biggest controversy that ever happens in families is around death and wedding.


HAMMER: Star also opened up about - about her days on "The View" and everything that she`s been going through ever since she left that particular show. We`re going to have all of that coming up tomorrow on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Plus her take on Britney and Kevin. Again, see Star back on TV tomorrow.

So Brooke, there`s some shocking news to divulge tonight. One of the biggest superheroes out there was killed off today.

ANDERSON: I am devastated, A.J.

HAMMER: A lot of people share that sentiment. And SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has the details of exactly who was knocked off. You won`t want to step away from your TV, because you`ll want to find out why.

ANDERSON: Also, A.J., from Nicole Richie`s cramps to Ashlee Simpson`s acid reflux, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT picks the "Worst Celebrity Excuses Ever."

Also this:


SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): "Will have to control myself when I see you. First urge will be to rip your clothes off, through you on the ground and love the hell out of you."


HAMMER: Talk about the perfect TV soap opera. Shocking new twists in the out-of-this-world astronaut love triangle story. That is next.


ANDERSON: And welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s most provocative entertainment news show. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood.

Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is dissecting the lamest, most pathetic excuses stars have used when getting into trouble. And we`ve heard them all on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, the so-called "official statements" from celebrity publicists.

So here`s our list of the "Worst Celebrity Excuses Ever."


ANDERSON (voice-over): It was the lip-synching Milli Vanilli moment Ashlee Simpson will never forget on "Saturday Night Live." And she is just one of many celebrities who excuses we are dissecting, cutting, slicing, dicing and picking apart.

A recording of Simpson`s vocals came on while her band broke into a completely different song. She did a crazy jig and left the stage.

Ashlee was all full of excuses for what happened, and SHOWBIZ TONIGHT goes to comedy duo Frangela for the worst excuse, play by play.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When Ashlee Simpson got caught lip-synching on "Saturday Night Live" - what I didn`t understand, she went through a series of excuses. Do you remember?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: At first it was the band`s fault.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right. Right. Right. Right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Then it was acid reflux.


ANDERSON: But why the excuses? Why didn`t Ashlee just fess up that she messed up?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When the rest of us mess up, we`re just like, I messed up.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. I`m like, Oh you know what? My bad.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But celebrities are like, No, no, no. I have an excuse.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, no. No. This is not my fault.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. No, no, no. I didn`t - no, that wasn`t me. It was the boom (ph).

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Condition (ph) around me.


JESSICA SIMPSON, SINGER: Dolly, that made me so nervous.

ANDERSON: And conditions for Ashlee`s older sister Jessica proved to be just too nerve-wracking when she blundered her way through a prestigious tribute to country music legend Dolly Parton, mumbling that her nerves got the best of her as she exited the stage.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is what I don`t understand: Jessica Simpson can actually sing.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Now we expect Ashlee to mess up.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE), Jessica? She had a meltdown. I mean, she lost it. She sang the song, and then she was like, Ahh. I`m sorry. I`m so - I was nervous.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) better on, you know, like, children.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Or "American Idol."

ANDERSON: So what`s with America`s idols giving the media these lame, ridiculous excuses when they screw up?

SHOWBIZ TONIGHT went right to PR expert Howard Bragman.

HOWARD BRAGMAN, FIFTEEN MINUTES PUBLIC RELATIONS: I think we have to be really clear that we live in the age of spin, and -- and we`re in an era of personal responsibilities. And celebrities have jumped on this bandwagon. And instead of saying here`s what happened, and -- and I apologize, they come up with these outrageous explanations that really don`t have any credence and make them look even more ridiculous.

ANDERSON: And SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you that even more ridiculous is when Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe offered one of the worst excuses ever when he hurled a phone at a hotel employee in New York City.

The star from Down Under claimed he lost his cool when he couldn`t phone home to his wife from his cell phone.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I mean, how much pressure is Russell Crowe`s wife putting on him when he throws a phone at somebody because he can`t get a ride home? And also, that`s Naomi Campbell`s weapon of choice.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Really. Get yourself a whole `nother thing, Russell.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You need, like, a PDA. Use something different.



ANDERSON: And known for her creativity on and off the screen, Oscar- nominated actress Winona Ryder told police she was doing research for a role when they arrested her for shoplifting. Yeah right. She was later convicted.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m doing a role called "The Craziest Stealer." Yes, I`m -- I`m the lead.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s about character work.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right. Right. Right. We`re going to try to use that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Really. See how far we get.

ANDERSON: So do these excuses go very far? Is it better sometimes to just shut up?

BRAGMAN: If it`s something really egregious, maybe you should just shut up and not offer an explanation. Because maybe the explanation is the most obvious one, and you don`t want to go there.

ANDERSON: But still, there are celebs who did go there when they were arrested for driving while under the influence.

We are, of course, talking about Paris Hilton, whose excuse was she was exhausted. And besides, she only had one drink.

And then there was her "Simple Life" co-star, Nicole Richie, who told police she was taking Vicodin for stomach cramps when she was pulled over for driving erratically.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think we cannot continually be using menstrual cramps as an excuse. And when you use it for that, it makes it hard to use it for smaller things.





ANDERSON: One of our favorite Britney Spears excuses? When her publicist told SHOWBIZ TONIGHT she didn`t pass out on New Year`s Eve because she was drunk. She was just tired.

HAMMER: You remember that shocking story of the astronaut love triangle? Lisa Nowak allegedly tried to kidnap the woman dating the guy that she really liked.

Well, today, she was fired by NASA. Sounds like it`s something right out of a TV soap opera.

Here`s CNN`s Susan Candiotti for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


CANDIOTTI (voice-over): It may be freezing outside those shuttle hatches, but inside zero gravity, steamy e-mails can keep astronauts warm: "Will have to control myself when I see you. First urge will be to rip your clothes off, throw you on the ground and love the hell out of you," writes Air Force Captain Colleen Shipman, to her lover, astronaut Bill Oefelein.

At the time last December, he was circling Earth, piloting the shuttle discovery. Oefelein tells Shipman he`s - quote - "a moron" when she`s not near. He writes, "you must really have me around your finger that I can`t even function without you here. And with you here, I am slightly smarter than a slug."

E-mails between Shipman and Oefelein apparently sent romantic rival Lisa Nowak over the edge. Prosecutors say after fellow astronaut Nowak found the love letters on Oefelein`s computer, she plotted revenge - a mind-boggling, 900-mile cross-country drive from NASA headquarters in Houston to Orlando, in adult diapers, to meet Shipman`s plane.

Nowak is charged with trying to kidnap Shipman from an airport parking lot. Even though a Nowak, a mother of three who is seeking divorce from her husband, downplayed their affair, Oefelein told police he was involved with both women, but told Nowak he wanted to date Shipman exclusively.

In this newly released letter from Nowak to Oefelein`s mother, Nowak pours out her soul: "Bill is absolutely the best person I`ve ever known, and I love him more than I knew possible."

(on camera): Lisa Nowak has pleaded not guilty. No comment from the two other players in this case, who just might be regretting those oh-so- personal e-mails, sent from outer space, and back.


HAMMER: That soap opera brought to you by CNN`s Susan Candiotti for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

Lisa Nowak has pleaded not guilty.

ANDERSON: You remember those two teenage girls who allegedly robbed a Georgia bank? The Barbie bandits? They were wearing sunglasses, smiling. The absolutely stunning video of these two before they were caught getting their hair.


HAMMER: Time now for the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Video of the Day."

You inevitably have heard about the so-called Barbie bandits, those two teenage girls who allegedly robbed a Georgia bank. But get this: they were so carefree about it, just one day after, and still not caught, that they actually stopped by to buy some makeup and get their hair done - blonde, like Barbie, of course, and it was all caught on this just-released tape.

Salon workers said they were even talking about the robbery. Amazing. It is the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Video of the Day."

ANDERSON: We`ve been asking you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day." Angelina Jolie about to adopt another kid, this time a Vietnamese boy. She`s already got three other kids; two of them are adopted.

So here`s the question: "Angelina Jolie Adopting Again: Is it time for her to marry Brad Pitt?"

Keep voting, Write to us, We`re going to read some of your thoughts tomorrow.

And remember, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is the only entertainment news show that lets you express your opinion on video. So to send us a video e-mail - it`s really easy. Just go to our Web site,

HAMMER: Oh, say it ain`t so. Is this right? Yes, unfortunately, tonight we`re really upset about something. We have to report it though: the shocking death of one our favorite superheroes, Captain America. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you that the popular comic book character was killed off in the issue that came out today.

He was shot by a sniper on the steps of a federal courthouse in New York City on his way to face charges for his role in the recent superhero civil war. Now, Captain America was created by 1941. But if you know comic books, you know sometimes they tend to bring these characters back.

Superman was, of course, knocked off back in 1993. But of course, they brought him back.

ANDERSON: So what do you think? Will Kevin Federline become our new favorite superhero? Yesterday we asked you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT "Question of the Day" - could K-Fed save the day? "Kevin Federline: Is everyone too hard on him?"

Forty-seven percent of you say "yes"; 53 percent of you say "no."

Here are some of the e-mails we received:

Paul from Florida writes, "Please give K-Fed a break. He is the one who has stepped forward and been the responsible parent."

Logan from Missouri says, "The media painting Kevin as a good father is a bit disturbing, considering he had a similar nightlife."

HAMMER: Here`s what`s coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT tomorrow:

Dangerous messages older stars are sending to their younger sisters: Britney, Lindsay, Paris, Mischa - partying all the time, shocking headlines. Can lil sis learn from the big mistakes of big sis? That`s tomorrow.

And the comeback kings. It`s not long these guys were punchlines. Now everybody is lining up to work with them. From Alec Baldwin to Eddie Murphy to Patrick Dempsey, back in the spotlight tomorrow on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

And that is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Thanks for watching. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood.

"GLENN BECK" is next, right after the latest headlines from CNN Headline News.