The Fix

Britney files for divorce. The "real" Borat wants credit, money. Plus: Faith Hill says it was all a joke.

Scott Lamb
November 8, 2006 7:30PM (UTC)

Morning Briefing:
Long day's journey into divorce: Rarely has the filing of divorce papers been met with such universal relief -- Britney Spears, citing the classic "irreconcilable differences," submitted papers in Los Angeles on Monday seeking the dissolution of her two-year marriage to Kevin Federline (who Salon talked to just this past Friday). In honor of the end of one of America's greatest dumb romances, a quick timeline of l'affaire Federline:

Jan. 5, 2004: Even before Federline came her way, Spears showed her poor wedding judgment with a "joke" quickie marriage to childhood pal Jason Allen Alexander.


Sept. 18, 2004: The Spears/Federline wedding in Studio City, Calif. Things get off to a bad start, though, with questions over whether the union was actually legal (it wasn't finalized until Oct. 8).

Spring 2005: Unwittingly dooming their marriage (cf. Nich Lachey/Jessica Simpson, Whitney Houston/Bobby Brown et al), Spears and Federline start their own reality show, "Britney and Kevin: Chaotic," which Federline says is meant to be "a documentation of love."

Sept. 14, 2005: Spears gives birth to her first son, Sean Preston.

Dec. 6, 2005: A turning point -- Spears reportedly takes away her hubby's Ferrari after a blow-out fight.

Sept. 12, 2006: Second son Jayden James is born.

Oct. 31, 2006: Federline's album "Playing With Fire" is released to dismal reviews.

Nov. 5, 2006: Britney ends it.


(TMZ, CNN, People, E! Online, I Don't Like You in That Way, the Superficial)

Will the real Borat please stand up? Mahir Cagri, the Turkish freelance journalist and one-time Internet celebrity who got famous in 1999 for his personal Web site -- featuring broken English and unintentionally funny shots of himself playing ping pong and sunbathing in a skimpy outfit -- is asking Borat creator Sacha Baron Cohen for an apology and a cut of the spoils. "The world knows he is copying Mahir," Cagri told the Associated Press in a telephone interview in which he also said he would travel to London to meet with Cohen. Wired also has an an interview with Cagri wherein he wags a finger Cohen's way: "He is stealing my character and giving bad message to USA people." (Associated Press, Wired)

Faith Hill is trying to peddle the story that her on-camera tantrum after losing the female vocalist of the year award to Carrie Underwood at Monday's Country Music Association Awards was a joke. "The idea that I would act disrespectful towards a fellow musician is unimaginable to me," said Hill in a statement. "For this to become a focus of attention given the talent gathered [at the awards] is utterly ridiculous." (Associated Press) ... Beleaguered Los Angeles Times editor Dean Baquet has been forced to resign on Tuesday after refusing to agree to staff cuts requested by the paper's owner, the Tribune company. (Los Angeles Times) ... The FCC is dropping its indecency charges against a TV station in Kansas City, Mo., for several "NYPD Blue" episodes that it aired because "no complaints were received from actual viewers in the station's market" -- the complaints all originated from the Virginia-based Parents Television Council watchdog group. (Wall Street Journal) ... Lindsay Lohan was rear-ended by a paparazzo chasing her through Los Angeles early Tuesday morning, but was apparently unhurt. "She was apparently able to drive a short distance from the crash," a source tells Rush & Molloy. "But she later pulled over and called a friend to pick her up." (Rush & Molloy) ... Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes stepped out to celebrate their impending nuptials and Tom's new gig at United Artists recently, dropping $10,000 on a steak dinner at Mastro's Steakhouse in Beverly Hills. (The Scoop)

Money Quote:
Cate Blanchett on women who date younger men: "I just don't understand women who go out with men who are younger than them -- even if they're just five years younger. It's not something I can relate to. I would understand sleeping with a 60-year-old man more." (


Turn On:
On Wednesday night, "Lost" (ABC, 9 p.m. EST) has its mid-season finale -- the show will go on hiatus until Feb. 7 -- and USA airs "Underfunded" (10 p.m. EST), a TV movie about a Canadian secret service agent and the poorly funded agency he works for.

On the Talk Shows:
Larry King (CNN, 9 p.m. EDT): Bill Maher's post election wrap-up
David Letterman (CBS, 11:30 p.m. EDT): Dustin Hoffman, Jamie Oliver
Jay Leno (NBC, 11:35 p.m. EDT): Ellen DeGeneres, Fred Willard, Tony Bennett
Conan O'Brien (NBC, 12:35 a.m. EDT): Will Ferrell, Death Cab for Cutie
Craig Ferguson (CBS, 12:35 a.m. EDT): Merv Griffin, Carrot Top, Joseph Arthur
Jimmy Kimmel (ABC, 12:05 a.m. EDT): Diddy, Tony Hawk
Jon Stewart (Comedy Central, 11 p.m. EDT): Howard Dean
Stephen Colbert (Comedy Central, 11:30 p.m. EDT): Jeff Greenfield

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Scott Lamb

Scott Lamb is a senior editor at

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