The Fix

"The Passion" to play Tel Aviv, Blair defends Beckham's right to privacy, and Paul Newman unhappy about Princeton beer-guzzling contest. Plus: Super Bowl streaker on defense.


Salon Staff
April 22, 2004 1:53PM (UTC)

Afternoon Briefing:
"Passion" to play in Tel Aviv? It looks like filmgoers in Israel will get a chance to see Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" at the Tel Aviv Cinematheque at a one-time only showing in a few months. Theater manager Alon Garbuz says that the Israel censorship board could prevent the showing but probably will not. Said Garbuz, "I think that those who think that the film is anti-Semitic shouldn't come see it. No one has the moral duty to decide for the public what they can see." (AP via CBS News)

Blair backs Becks: British Prime Minister Tony Blair spoke out the other day about his country's obsession about whether David Beckham cheated on his wife. He told the House of Commons, "I hope that everyone understands that occasionally when people's privacy is invaded in this way they cause great distress to people, and I don't always think it's really in the public interest." (Guardian)

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Paul vs. Princeton: Paul Newman is upset with Princeton's beer-swilling contest, held annually on April 24, wherein students try to down 24 beers in 24 hours. The event is dubbed "Newman's Day," in honor of a quote attributed to the actor ("Twenty-four beers in a case, 24 hours in a day. Coincidence? I think not.") The dean of undergraduate studies at the university says the contest is not sanctioned and, in fact, the administration has tried to stop it. (AFP)

I want My MC: AOL and Time Warner, still trying to get along, have announced their latest effort -- a digital cable TV channel called My MC that will make music videos available on demand. It is set to start in May. (Reuters)

Streaker justice: Anyone remember the guy who streaked at the Super Bowl? Mark Roberts is his name and he will go on trial -- on trespassing charges -- June 21. His lawyer says that no one told Roberts he wasn't allowed on the field. (WFTV)

-- Karen Croft

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Turn On
Expect regularly scheduled programming on the prime-time talkers ("Larry King Live," "The Charlie Rose Show," "The O'Reilly Factor," etc.) to be preempted by round-tables and yapping lawyers discussing two huge icons of yesteryear: Michael and Diana (see news below).

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Morning Briefing:
CBS's Diana pic stirs fury: CBS has pissed off a whole slew of friends of the late Princess Diana by broadcasting a photo of her as she lay dying in her car wreck on last night's "48 Hours Investigates: Diana's Secrets." Even the British tabloids and the European paparazzi had refrained from making public such post-crash photos of the princess. But CBS flack Marcy Erhard defends her network's controversial decision, saying the black-and-white photo of Diana's upper body "is on air for about 10 seconds. It is not gory in any way, shape or form. It is not graphic." (Drudge)

It's official: Michael Jackson will be tried for alleged molestation. A Santa Barbara, Calif., grand jury investigating the allegations brought by a 14-year-old boy has decided that there is enough evidence to charge Jackson with the crime. Jackson's lawyers say their client will plead not guilty. (ABC News)

Patient privilege preserved: The judge in the sexual assault case against Kobe Bryant has ruled that his alleged victim is not required to surrender her medical records to the defense. Consequently, the jury may not hear medical evidence about her two alleged suicide attempts in the five months before she met Bryant at a Colorado spa, though lawyers say the information may be presented by other means. (AFP)

Lesson of the day: If you're the wife of a U.S. senator, it's probably not a good idea to drop a bunch of mulch on another woman's car and then beat her about the face and body -- even if you are upset that she's getting prompter service at the garden center than you. That's a lesson Wanda Baucus, wife of Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., apparently learned the hard way this week. (NBC4)

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Speaking out for censorship: Pat Boone says censorship is a good thing: "I don't think censorship is a bad word, but it has become a bad word because everybody associates it with some kind of restriction on liberty," the aging crooner tells the Washington Times. "Censorship is healthy for any society, and that goes for arts, entertainment, anything." He also says that Mel Gibson is an "apostle" and that he has considered punching Howard Stern "in his big nose." (The Washington Times)

Money Quotes:
Richard Gere on President Bush: "One thing I've learned in my life is never to trust anyone who thinks that he exclusively has God on his side. Especially when he's the president of the United States." (Rush and Molloy)

Shamed USA Today reporter Jack Kelley on his missteps, which apparently even "Doonesbury" creator Garry Trudeau knew about before Kelley's bosses did: "I have made a number of serious mistakes that violate the values that are most important to me as a person and as a journalist. I recognize that I cannot make amends for the harm I have caused to my family, friends, and colleagues. Nor can I make it up to readers who depend upon good journalism to understand a chaotic and confusing world. I can only offer my sincere apology to those I have let down. Although I remain proud of much of the work I did over 21 years, I understand that what I did wrong will diminish what I did right." (USA Today)

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-- Amy Reiter

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