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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Phoenix’s rap still rising strong

Joaquin Phoenix is telling anyone who will listen: He’s done with movies and just wants to concentrate on his career as a rapper. People are certainly willing to listen, if not actually believe. Phoenix’s proclamation has, in fact, overshadowed the launch of his new – and presumably last – film, “Two Lovers” (costarring Gwyneth Paltrow), which premieres today.

King of cool? Clive Owen would rather be McQueen

Clive Owen was born with the whole “tall, dark and handsome” thing. But “the strong, silent type” that got him tagged “the new Steve McQueen” as his film career took off? That, he cultivated.

It isn’t lying; it’s just good PR

Journalists have love/hate relationships with publicists, whom they typically refer to as “flacks.” The New York Post, for example, has little regard for Amanda Silverman, a publicist at the Manhattan-based public-relations firm 42 West.

Leo’s desires are simply human

It’s nice to know that celebrities tend to exhibit the same kinds of small-minded attitudes that we mere mortals do. By the time this column goes to print, Sports Illustrated will have announced who will grace the cover of its 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.

Singer Shakira returns to school

Shakira wasn’t always the rich, talented singing sensation she appears today. Though it’s now hard to imagine, the native of Colombia once taught reading at a parochial school in the humble La Playa district of her hometown of Barranquilla on Colombia’s Caribbean coast.

Rourke makes peace with Penn

You know how it is. You say something to a friend who passes the remark on to someone else who then ends up Twittering it. Things happen. Just ask Michael Phelps.

Roberts survives ‘trailer-park’ life

The world of celebrity is every bit as manufactured as you might imagine, claims author Cooper Lawrence in his new book “The Cult of Celebrity.” And in the midst of star-making, mistakes are sometimes made.

People: Dennis Quaid tells his ex Meg Ryan to get over it

A new round of hostilities has broken out between Dennis Quaid and Meg Ryan, who, until their 2001 divorce, served for a decade as Hollywood’s epitome of the perfect couple. Ryan, who plays a scorned wife in her new picture, “The Women,” went after Quaid by claiming that he cheated on her well before her highly publicized – and damning – fling with Russell Crowe.

‘Apprentice,’ you’re retired

NBC left "The Apprentice" off its announced fall schedule last week, and now it appears Donald Trump is abandoning it as well. In a statement to the Reuters news service, Trump says he's "moving on from 'The Apprentice' to a major new TV venture" – which would seem to indicate the show's sixth season, which ended in April, was its last.

For Bob, the time is right

Bob Barker's road to retirement is passing through prime time. The legendary daytime game-show host won't tape his last "Price Is Right" episode until June 6. But CBS will honor him this week with a pair of prime-time specials celebrating his five decades on television (Wednesday and Thursday, 8 p.m.).

A case of blond injustice?

Paris Hilton says her real crime is simply being too hot. At least that's what she told Harper's Bazaar magazine in an interview well before she was sentenced to 45 days in jail last week for violating probation.

Save the world, save your gossip

These days, not everyone is out to "save the cheerleader." Playing pom-pom princess Claire Bennet on NBC's "Heroes" (Mondays, 9 p.m.), actress Hayden Panettiere must stay in fighting form to save the world.

Smells like … old jammies

Courtney Love, widow of Nirvana singer Kurt Cobain, says she plans to sell most of his belongings. "I'm going to have a Christie's auction," Love, 42, tells AOL music Web site "(My house) is like a mausoleum."

Letting Cat back out of the bag

Yusuf Islam, the former Cat Stevens, is making a quiet comeback. Thirty years after the folk singer converted to Islam, changed his name and dropped out of music, calling it un-Islamic, he has picked up the guitar once more.

Flowers, not showers for Avril

Avril Lavigne has gone through a few changes since she released her last CD three years ago. Lavigne is now married (to fellow Canadian rocker Deryck Whibley of Sum 41). She's also a certified actress, having made her film debut in last year's "Fast Food Nation" and the animated "Over the Hedge." And she's gone glam, ditching her tomboy duds for gowns and heels in high-profile modeling gigs.

Pee-Wee is back in the big time

The line at the autograph table snaked out of the Burbank Marriott ballroom, the longest by far at the recent Hollywood Collectors & Celebrities Show. They could have had Batman. They could have had the cast of "Married ... With Children."

He knew he’d get to stay in the picture

For months, Larry Birkhead was the mysterious other man – the little-known Los Angeles photographer who emerged to tell anyone who would listen that he was really the father of Anna Nicole Smith's baby. By last week, when he finally proved his claim through a DNA paternity test, it was clear that little was known about the 34-year-old Kentucky native with the surfer-dude good looks.

Some successful Cross breeding

Marcia Cross, who recently gave birth to twins, is a proud member of the Mom Club. "I wanted to be a member of that club so badly, and now I'm in and it's so much better than I even imagined," says Cross, 45, who plays Bree on ABC's "Desperate Housewives."

Maybe he can still get a

Singer Marc Anthony has agreed to pay about $2.5 million in back taxes, interest and penalties because of his failure to file returns for five years. Prosecutors said Anthony failed to file returns for 2000 through 2004 on $15.5 million in income, but did file for 2005.