The Fix

Who is Hollywood's most bankable actor? (Not Johnny Depp.) Fox News disses Star Jones. Plus: Rent Kevin Federline!


Salon Staff
July 13, 2006 5:30PM (UTC)

Morning Briefing:
Rent-a-Federline: Eager to inject some financial equality into his marriage to Britney Spears, Kevin Federline has reportedly been charging for his appearance at parties, renting his fame out Paris Hilton-style. According to the speculation of In Touch Weekly, his going rate is $20,000 per appearance. With money he has made endorsing clothing lines and shilling for Virgin Mobile -- the recent save-the-penny promotion he did reportedly earned him $25,000 a day -- In Touch reports Federline has brought in $700,000 in the past couple of months. (In Touch via the Scoop)

Hollywood's most bankable actor? With all the hubbub surrounding the huge box-office receipts from "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest," there's been much talk of Johnny Depp being Hollywood's biggest star, but Business Week has crunched the numbers and come up with a different answer: Tyler Perry. Perry may only have two films under his belt, 2005's "Diary of a Mad Black Woman" and this year's "Madea's Family Reunion," but both were medium-sized hits produced on tiny budgets. The result gives Perry the highest return on investment of any Hollywood star, a 120 percent ROI -- for every dollar spent producing and marketing his comedies, Perry earned back $2.20, or a net gain of $1.20. The next closest stars were Tom Cruise and Will Smith, both with a 53 percent ROI. (Business Week)

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The latest Jackson suit: The staggering frequency with which Michael Jackson gets sued makes it hard to keep track of all the pending litigation, but his ex Debbie Rowe has added herself to the list: Rowe is suing Jackson for failing to cough up the payments he promised her when they divorced in 1999 -- she claims he stopped paying in October 2003 -- and is seeking an immediate $195,000 plus $50,000 in living expenses while she pursues her case against him. She filed the suit in Los Angeles, where it's expected to go to court on July 26. (BBC News)

The FCC goes after sports: The widening scope of the Federal Communications Commission's crackdown on broadcasting obscenities has reportedly expanded to include live sports -- according to Reuters, the agency is asking for tapes of live broadcasts of events like football games and NASCAR races where the fans might inadvertently be heard swearing. One TV executive says his company has been asked for more than 30 tapes of live footage, from both sports and news. "It looks like they want to end live broadcast TV," a different anonymous exec told Reuters. "I don't know how they are going to rule, but they asked us for tapes with a specific emphasis on crowd noise," said another. "If some bozo in the crowd calls the ref an asshole, the commission is asking for a copy of the tape." (Reuters)

Also:
Fox News says that it is not planning to hire the jobless Star Jones, whatever you may read in In Touch. "This is what happens when a low-rent publication like In Touch tries to break news," a snarky Fox lackey griped to Page Six. "It's no wonder their magazine is an industry joke." (Page Six) ... The latest posthumously released Johnny Cash album, "American V: A Hundred Highways," made it to the top of this week's Billboard charts, the first time in 37 years a Cash album has reached that vaunted spot. At the same time, the album made it there with the fewest records sold for any No. 1 Billboard hit ever, selling just 88,000 copies in its first week. (Associated Press) ... Citing "insufficient evidence," police in Los Angeles say they won't be charging paparazzo Clint Brewer with trespassing after arresting him last month outside Maddox Jolie-Pitt's daycare center. (E! Online) ... Christie Brinkley and husband No. 4, architect Peter Cook, have announced they're separating. (People) ... Proving that getting in fights while waiting for the bathroom isn't just for the boys -- last month saw Jeremy Piven vs. Stephen Dorff and Tommy Lee vs. Josh Duhamel -- British artist Tracey Emin reportedly went on a rampage at a party in London recently, dragging another guest from a toilet stall by her hair while shouting "Why the fuck were you taking so long you fucking ugly bitch?" and ramming her head against a wall before security broke up the fight. (3 a.m. Girls) ... For no particular reason, Us Weekly brings you a photo spread/timeline of the five fianceés of Johnny Depp, from Lori Allison to Kate Moss. (Us Online)

Money Quote:
Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright on women in power: "I'm not a person who thinks the world would be entirely different if it was run by women. If you think that, you've forgotten what high school was like." (Gatecrasher)

-- Scott Lamb

Turn On:
Tonight, Food debuts "Throwdown With Bobby Flay" (10 p.m. EDT), while A&E premieres "Commander Castle" (10 p.m. EDT), a reality show that follows Brit cop Paul Castle as he toughens up his stateside counterparts in unusual ways. Also, Discovery kicks off "Most Evil" (10 p.m. EDT), its six-episode countdown of the most coldblooded serial killers in history.

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On the Talk Shows:
Larry King (CNN, 9 p.m. EDT): A visit to Heartland Academy, a Christian reform school near St. Louis
Charlie Rose (PBS, check local listings): Ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad, Peter Beinart, Marion Nestle
David Letterman (CBS, 11:30 p.m. EDT): Luke Wilson, Band of Horses
Jay Leno (NBC, 11:35 p.m. EDT): Rosario Dawson, Cedric the Entertainer, Dashboard Confessional
Conan O'Brien (NBC, 12:35 a.m. EDT): Paul Reubens, Carlos Mencia, David Lee Roth
Craig Ferguson (CBS, 12:35 a.m. EDT): Joe Mantegna, Brooks & Dunn
Jimmy Kimmel (ABC, 12:05 a.m. EDT): Magic Johnson, Fiona Apple (repeat)
Jon Stewart (Comedy Central, 11 p.m. EDT): Owen Wilson
Stephen Colbert (Comedy Central, 11:30 p.m. EDT): Ron Suskind

-- Lamar Clarkson

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