Showbiz Roundup: Shhh, did you hear?

Holy Jolie!

As rumours hot up that Angelina is trying for baby No.7 with Brad, an amusing anecdote hit the Belle showbiz desk this week. The 12th-century temple in Cambodia, where Angie filmed the first Lara Croft movie in 2000, has been renamed the ‘Angelina Jolie Temple’. Originally founded as a monastery and university in Angkor, the modern name for it is Ta Prohm, but the president of the Universal Society of Hinduism Rajan Zed revealed the star is so beloved in Cambodia, where her adopted son Maddox was born, locals have decided on the new honorific for the world-famous Hindu religious site. “It’s a 12th-century site called Ta Prohm, otherwise known as Old Brahma, and was initially named Rajavihara or the royal monastery,” said Zed. “Now it’s popularly called the Angelina Jolie Temple.” Such is Angelina’s popularity in the country, local restaurants serve a Tomb Raider cocktail made of Cointreau, lime and soda, which is reportedly a favourite beverage of the lady herself. But it’s not all booze and bubs, Zed has called on Angie as ‘the patron saint of Cambodia’ to help preserve the site. “I’d urge Angelina Jolie to raise awareness about better preservation of this world heritage, as more needs to be done to safeguard the temple complex and its surroundings [and] save it from vandalism and looting.”

Lily Allen – good news at last!

It’s been a hideous year for Lily Allen, who recently lost her unborn baby six months into her pregnancy after contracting a viral infection. But it seems the singer is starting to Smile again after her builder boyfriend Sam Cooper, 32, popped the question. Insiders tell Belle the couple had always had marriage on the agenda before the tragedy, but the nothing was concrete. “Both of them have been completely devastated by the loss of their baby,” says our spy. “But Sam is so in love with Lil, he’s always said he wants to spend the rest of his life with her. Through their grief they realised how much they mean to each other and now have firmed up plans to wed at her dad’s pad in Gloucestershire in the new year.” The couple, who met in the summer of 2009, already live in a £3million six-bed farmhouse near Slough, but when Lily’s dad, actor Keith Allen, suggested his Cotswolds’ mansion, they both felt it would be the perfect venue. Congratulations Lil!

Call Time On Mime, Please

From Cheryl Cole on singing competition X Factor to Kylie Minogue at this weekend’s Thanksgiving Day parade in New York, when did it all become acceptable for our highly-paid singers to mime? It’s almost expected and now singing celebs feel they have a right to slam anyone who complains! When Kylie faced criticisms she was miming at the Macy’s Parade, she actually tweeted: “Relax peeps, EVERYONE has to mime at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.” Is she for real? Don’t tell us to relax, Kylie!! You’re getting paid a fortune to sing, so sing godammit! But so it would seem that Kanye and Jessica Simpson were also lip-synching at the parade. I don’t care if it’s ‘to avoid technical problems during the broadcast’, somewhere along the line it’s all gone a bit Pete Tong and this lip-synching generation of fakes are now doing it in their actual concerts that aren’t being broadcast – that people have paid lots of money to come and hear their idols sing LIVE. Furious fans in Australia walked out on Britney Spears’ concert last year because she was lip-synching. Perhaps we should take heed from China, who banned lip-synching in November 2008 following public outrage that one of the stars of the Olympic opening ceremony was miming. They’re taking it so seriously there that in April, two aspiring pop stars were fined £5,000 for lip-synching at a concert in western Sichuan Province. Guess Kylie, Cheryl, Britney et al had better not include China on their tour lists any time soon.

A Posh Royal Wedding

Okay, so most of us are not holding back on a bonus holiday opp should we be one of the lucky 2,000 to get an invite for the Royal Wedding next year, the guestlist of which promises a few surprises already. The Sunday Mirror reports this weekend that Posh and Becks have been given a regal nod and Victoria is already toying with that eternal question; what does one wear? The couple were the among the first to congratulate Prince William and his bonny bride-to-be via text and Wills promised David ‘an invite was on its way’. Also reported to be attending are Sir Elton John, who is hotly tipped to be singing at the event, and Sir Paul McCartney – an RSVP is still to be confirmed from President Obama. “They’re thinking carefully about which charities to invite, but they have pretty much decided on the friends they want there”’ a source told the Sunday red top paper. “Because they do mix with celebs, there will be quite a few there. It’s the hottest ticket in town. There won’t be many saying, ‘Sorry, we’re busy that day.'” The rest of us, well, like I said, holiday. Yessiree!

Oscar Magic For Rowling?

She’s richer than the Queen, having netted a whopping £800 million fortune that started with a book she wrote as a single mum on welfare in an Edinburgh coffee shop, but Joanne ‘JK’ Rowling could be adding an Oscar to her already impressive stable of achievements. The 45-year-old has taken on a producer credit in the latest film adaptation of the money-magnet franchise. Already Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part 1 is one of the biggest box-office hits of the year and should it take home the Best Picture statuette in February, the mum of three will be trotting up to accept the award. Fellow producer David Heyman said: “Jo had the option of taking a producer credit as early as the fourth film, but she chose not to until the final two. Things were coming to an end and she wanted to put her stamp on it.” Insiders say she should have taken the credit much sooner as she has always influenced the movie adaptations. ‘The biggest battle she won that had a huge influence on the film was insisting it be shot in Britain with an all-British cast,’ said an industry expert.

Meanwhile, campaigns for Oscars are coming to a close in the lead-up to the official announcement in January. Hotly tipped is Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere, which successfully defeated Darren Aronofsky’s fellow favourite Black Swan for a gong at the Venice Film Festival. Tom Hooper’s The Kings Speech and David Fincher’s The Social Network are also in line for a nod. High on the Best Actor lists of favourites is Colin Firth (The King’s Speech), Javier Bardem (Biutiful) and Jeff Bridges (True Grit). For the ladies it will be a tough year, but Natalie Portman (Black Swan) is the frontrunner. Nicole Kidman (Rabbit Hole), Annette Benning (The Kids are All Right) and Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone) are also being buzzed about.

by Justine Harkness
[picture credits: mysunshine;WENN; Tina Paul / WENN; Daniel Deme / WENN]
Justine Harkness

Justine Harkness

Now based in Los Angeles, Justine had worked for publications from Now to Look, OK! to Loaded, in the UK as well as for weekly magazines in Australia. She has written everything from in-depth celebrity interviews to covering every showbiz party, hotspot, the three ‘Fs’ (fads, fashion, fitness), awards ceremonies, travel (to Mustique, no less), you name it, for all the big magazines. A regular showbiz and lifestyle expert commentator for radio and TV, including BBC, Sky and all the terrestrial channels. There’s more, but there always is. She lives in Santa Monica with her ridiculously fluffy kitten Cookie (‘We should have called her Queen Latifah,’ she shrugs), chasing the latest celebrity stories. Justine’s mantra in life is: ‘In vodka we trust.’ She successfully out drinks many, yet is a bit of a hippy at heart. Just don’t ask her about grammar.

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