Cruzin' for a bruisin'

Penelope's pop tilts at the rumor mill; McConnaughey denies getting nasty with Janet; Billy Baldwin defends Alec: "He is not a wife-beater." Plus: Winona set for day in court.

By Amy Reiter
Published April 12, 2002 4:37PM (EDT)

Look out, Penelope Cruz's father's on rumor patrol.

Eduardo Cruz is decidedly less than amused by reports that his daughter is pregnant with Tom Cruise's baby. And he's even less so by reports that Cruise has dumped his little girl as if she were, like, Nicole Kidman or something.

"I've heard these type of reports about seven times now. I'm getting fed up," papa Cruz told the World Entertainment News Network. "These things are just made up to sell magazines and newspapers."

What about Web zines?

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Ferry confusing

"The older I get the less I know about women. They are completely infallible and totally impossible."

-- Roxy Music's Bryan Ferry on the fairer sex, to the German magazine TV Spielfilm.

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Another rumor debunked

Don't expect to find Matthew McConnaughey and Janet Jackson engaged in a naked bongo session anytime soon.

McConnaughey insists that, contrary to recent reports of a budding romance between him and Michael's sis, the two of them are "just friends."

"I met her at the Grammys and found her to be a very, very sweet lady," McConnaughey recently told the press. "We swapped some good music, and she's a dear lady. She's a sweetheart, but we're not dating. We're just friends. That's about all there is right now."

At least he got to call her "lady" a lot.

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And while we're at it ...

We may as well let Billy Baldwin join the rumor posse.

Baldwin's told the National Enquirer that his brother Alec is no spouse abuser.

"Is my brother a saint? No. Is he volatile? Yes," Billy apparently told the tabloid. "But he is not a wife-beater."

So how to explain the National Enquirer's report of violence between Alec and his ex-wife, Kim Basinger?

"I think what may have happened is that Kim may have taken a run at Alec during a fight, and he may have put his arm up to protect himself or push her off," Billy hypothesizes. "But that's not beating your wife."

Oh, brother.

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Juicy bits

Aaliyah may be irreplaceable in her fans' hearts, but the directors of the upcoming "Matrix" sequels have apparently managed to find someone to take over the part the singer/actress was to play in their films: Nona Gaye. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Gaye (Marvin's daughter) is already working on the films in Australia.

Looks like Winona Ryder will finally get her day in court later this month. The actress is set to defend herself in Beverly Hills on April 23 against charges of theft, burglary, vandalism and possession of a drug without a prescription stemming from her arrest last December at Saks Fifth Avenue on Wilshire Boulevard. Nail down that gavel!

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Miss something? Read yesterday's Nothing Personal.

Amy Reiter

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Celebrity Tom Cruise