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Thursday, March 11, 1999 Published at 13:15 GMT


Murdoch makes Simpsons debut

Rupert Murdoch: Superbowl trouble with Homer Simpson

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch chastises Homer for stealing later this month when he makes a guest appearance on The Simpsons.

The Sky boss spent half an hour in a recording studio taping his lines for a sequence in which he catches Homer taking food and drink from his corporate box at the superbowl.

Mr Murdoch, chairman and chief executive of News Corporation, which owns both the US programme-maker Fox and UK broadcaster Sky, said: "Well, they asked me to play myself.

"I was amazed - I couldn't imagine how I could be a character in The Simpsons. I hope I totally exaggerated it. It was just a nice joke."

Murdoch joins a long list of celebrities who have made cameos on the show, including Sir Paul McCartney, U2 and Sir Elton John and even former US President George Bush.

Country music superstar Dolly Parton also features in the episode Sunday, Cruddy Sunday, to be shown on Sky One on 28 March.

Rapper ODB jailed in body armour case

[ image: Rapper ODB was unable pay his bail]
Rapper ODB was unable pay his bail
Wu-tang Clan rapper ODB has been jailed pending a trial on a charge of illegally wearing body armour.

The 30-year-old ODB, real name Russell Jones, denied the allegation, but was unable pay the £72,000 bail.

It is illegal for convicted felons to wear bullet-proof vests in Los Angeles, but ODB argues that he needs one for protection because of his fame.

"Due to how famous he is, he's at risk for his life," said Deputy Public Defender Mearl Lottman.

"He has been in gun battles and that's why he was wearing body armour. He was wearing it for his own protection."

He also faces a charge of threatening to kill the mother of his baby and of making death threats to guards at a nightclub.

Mission sequel may yet prove impossible

[ image: Mission Impossible 2: Crew members were laid off]
Mission Impossible 2: Crew members were laid off
The future of Tom Cruise's Mission Impossible 2 movie has been thrown into confusion by reported budget and script problems.

Members of the crew have been sent home from location in Australia, where Cruise and his wife Nicole Kidman own a house.

Filming was due to begin on 20 March but sources say the film's script has been taken back for a rewrite.

Spokeswoman Fiona Searson said: "The film has gone back a few weeks but it is still absolutely going ahead."

Cameras are due to start rolling again in April.

Madonna faces beauty product role

[ image: Madonna: The European face of Max factor]
Madonna: The European face of Max factor
Cosmetic giant Procter & Gamble has signed up Madonna to become the new face of Max Factor in Europe.

According to the New York Daily News, Madonna will do in-store and TV ads for a new range of beauty products being developed specially for her campaign.

It's not known how much the singer is being paid, but it is rumoured to be around $6m (£3.8m).

The new commercials will only run in Asia and Europe.

Madonna, currently checking out the latest looks at the Paris Fashion Show, has previously modelled for Versace and for an Ebel watch ad.

'Demoralised' Horrocks takes stage exit

[ image: Jane Horrocks: Macbeth was a curse]
Jane Horrocks: Macbeth was a curse
Little Voice star Jane Horrocks has given up the theatre after being left demoralised by a 1995 production of the "cursed" Shakespeare play Macbeth.

"It emotionally highlights the bad things that you're going through in life because it's just so hard to play," she said.

The 35-year-old, whose second child is due in a fortnight, said she was also having difficulty balancing motherhood and the stage.

"I think the theatre can be very tricky and hard - certainly, if you've decided to have a family it's difficult to juggle the two."

The actress can next be seen in a new ITV comedy film Hunting Venus on 31 March, written by her partner Nick Vivian.

Cher sued by ex-manager

[ image: Cher made no comment on the lawsuit]
Cher made no comment on the lawsuit
Cher's ex-manager is suing her in a bid to win a share of her profits, it has been reported.

Bill Sammeth has filed a lawsuit against the singer, alleging that he had a deal to receive 15% of profits from her hit album Believe.

"Cher, like many talented creative people, can be stormy," said Sammeth's lawyer, Henry Gradstein.

"The only problem is that he is still entitled to be paid."

Sammeth says he was a close friend of the star for 22 years before he was fired as her personal manager according to the New York Daily Post.

Cher had no comment on the lawsuit.

Full Monty to become a stage musical

[ image: Full Monty star Robert Carlyle was given an OBE last month]
Full Monty star Robert Carlyle was given an OBE last month
British film The Full Monty is being turned into a stage musical in the US.

The adaptation of the hit film about male strippers in Sheffield is gearing up for its debut at the Old Globe in San Diego next January.

Established playwright Terence McNally is writing the adaptation, and newcomer David Yazbeck the music.

The film made around £125m at the box office world-wide.

Video nasties can permanently damage your health

Horror movies can have disturbing and lasting effects on viewers, according to a study of US college students released on Wednesday.

A quarter of 150 students questioned in Michigan and Wisconsin said they suffered long-term emotional or behavioural problems from watching horror films.

"These effects were more serious than jumpiness at a slammed door or the need to use a nightlight," said study co-author, Kristen Harrison of the University of Michigan.

"They ranged from an inability to sleep through the night for months after exposure, to steadfast and continuing avoidance of the situations portrayed in the programmes and movies," she said.

The most frightening scenes involved blood, physical injury and pain, according to the study, to be released in the journal Media Psychology.

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