The Fix

Chappelle mentally ill? Abdul's "distinguishing characteristic"? Culkin unmolested?

Published May 12, 2005 6:36PM (EDT)

Turn On:
George Lucas makes a guest appearance on "The O.C." (Fox, 8 p.m. EDT) on Thursday night. And "Joey" fans get back-to-back episodes starting at 8 p.m. EDT on NBC.

Morning Briefing:
An unfunny explanation? Can Dave Chappelle fans blame mental illness for the indefinite postponement of their beloved "Chappelle's Show"? It would seem so. According to Entertainment Weekly, a "source close to the situation" maintains that Chappelle checked himself into a mental health facility in South Africa in late April. The source insists that the demons Chappelle is fighting have nothing to do with drug abuse. Comedy Central says it remains "optimistic" that production on the comedian's hit show will resume at some point. (Entertainment Weekly)

Ugh  The Paula Abdul ordeal has taken a turn for the utterly distasteful. Yesterday, the Fix relayed former "American Idol" contestant/current Abdul accuser Corey Clark's allegation that he had "incriminating" and "explicit" proof that he and da judge had had an intimate relationship. Today's news is that said proof is Clark's professed ability to identify a "distinguishing characteristic" on Abdul's body that "only those who have been intimate with her" would know about. A source close to Abdul calls this recent wrinkle an "outrageous violation of privacy." (Drudge)

Jackson trial update: It was the moment you've been waiting for, but it wasn't really all that exciting. Macaulay Culkin testified on behalf of his old buddy Michael Jackson yesterday, and by all accounts was steady and confident on the stand as he told attorneys for both the defense and the prosecution that Jackson had never touched him inappropriately, though they had shared a bed many times during Culkin's youth. Culkin called recent testimony by former Jackson employees contending that they'd seen Jackson fondle him "absolutely ridiculous" -- and was irritated that the prosecution hadn't contacted him to allow him to refute said claims. (He later admitted to being aware of some attempt on the prosecution's part to get a statement from him.) "As far as I know, he's never molested me," Culkin said, stressing that he'd find it "unlikely" for something untoward to have gone on even as he slept without his being aware of it. "I think I'd realize if something like that was happening." After Culkin's brief time on the stand concluded, the jury was treated to two hours of video outtakes from Martin Bashir's now-infamous TV documentary about Jackson. In the taped interview, Jackson discussed his "pure" love for children and compared himself to Peter Pan and, at one point, even to Jesus. He also said of his charitable work, "Mother Teresa's not here, Lady Di is not here, Audrey Hepburn is not here ... there is no voice for the voiceless." (N.Y. Times, Agence France-Presse)

Also: Robin Williams is suing a man who's been conning people by impersonating him in an attempt to prevent the man from continuing to do so. (Celebrity Justice)  Jennifer Aniston reportedly alarmed a plane full of British Airways passengers by insisting that she and her entourage be allowed to leave the plane, which had been stalled on the runway at Heathrow Airport for two hours due to a fueling snafu. (London Mirror via Page Six)  Mena Suvari has filed for divorce from her cinematographer husband, Robert Brinkmann. (Page Six)  Britney Spears is being sued by a songwriter who claims that he wrote the song "Sometimes," which Spears has included on two of her albums, but was never credited or paid for his work. (BBC News)  Eva Longoria is No. 1 on Maxim magazine's Hot 100 list. (Associated Pres via the Miami Herald)  CNBC has canceled "Dennis Miller" and will replace it with a second airing of "Mad Money With Jim Cramer." (Variety via CNN/Money)  CNN is canceling "Crossfire" and "Inside Politics" and replacing them with a new show hosted by Wolf Blitzer. (Reuters)

Money Quotes:
Michael C. Hall, a straight man who plays a gay man in "Six Feet Under," on the difference between kissing a man and a woman: "The stubble, and in the case of Mathew St. Patrick, the full-on mustache, which feels like the fuzzy part of a Trapper Keeper  And men's mouths are so much bigger." (Elle magazine via Lloyd Grove's Lowdown)

Ewan McGregor on his penchant for taking his private parts public: "I like my penis, there's no question about that. I've been in films where my penis has been on screen and there weren't any t--- on screen, which is opposite of the way its normally done." (Esquire via Rush and Molloy)

-- Amy Reiter

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