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xtra scene oct 20

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In hindsight... just go away

MULTIPLE-choice trivia question: Who is Rielle Hunter?

a) A woman who had a 2006 affair (and a baby) with John Edwards -- the 2004 Democratic vice-presidential candidate but now a broken, forgotten bozo -- while his wife was fighting cancer?

b) A woman who cashed in on all that by writing a 2012 book?

c) A woman who now says loudly that she's sorry for everything, including the book, and is apologizing to everyone she can think of, including the late Elizabeth Edwards, John and Liz's kids, and his campaign donors? Or

d) A woman trying hard to sell an updated edition of her book?

Yup. The new volume she's flogging is called In Hindsight, What Really Happened: The Revised Edition: John Edwards, Our Daughter and Me.

Not enough green for Grey

THE Hollywood Reporter offers some reasons why Charlie Hunnam abandoned the Fifty Shades of Grey movie: he was getting just $125,000 for the gig, they wouldn't give him script approval, and he couldn't handle the "public frenzy on social media sites, where fans of the book congregated to... complain" that he was wrong for the role.

The Reporter says Universal Pictures and Focus Features now must "scramble desperately" to replace him "so the project can meet a looming Nov. 1 start date."

The suits were planning, THR said, to approach two British TV stars, Jamie Dornan and Christian Cooke, and are also thinking about Alexander Skarsgard and one other actor, not named.

Birth of a spokes-babe

STARLET Leighton Meester is "the face of a generation," says Patrick Kullenberg, some guy in a suit Biotherm International, a skincare-products company.

So he's hired her as their new worldwide spokes-babe. Watch for her ads, starting in the new year. She's 27.

There goes the neighbourhood

REAL-ESTATE news: Uma Thurman just paid $10 million for a 13-room apartment on the east side of Manhattan. The sellers are novelist Barbara Taylor Bradford and her husband.

The building, River House, has one of those condo boards, and until now residents have been pretty sniffy about allowing mere performers in. The N.Y. Post, reporting this, says Joan Crawford, Diane Keaton, and society queen Gloria Vanderbilt are among those refused permission to buy in, over the years.

Takes two to tango

YES, Jamie Foxx and Katie Holmes danced together at some charity party in the Hamptons this summer. No, he says, they're not having a secret romance.

Foxx told Entertainment Tonight the rumour, floated breathlessly by In Touch mag citing "multiple sources," is "100 per cent not true... it's quite hilarious because we simply danced at a charity event along with a lot of other people."

He's 45. She's 34.

Changing Direction

LIFE & Style mag says last year Taylor Swift took a lively personal interest in Zayn Malik, of the band One Direction.

No fool he: "When Zayn found out she was interested, he turned her down," the mag's Nameless Insider says.

That's when Swiftie "swooped in on" Zayn's bandmate Harry Styles; they dated for a couple months around last Christmas before they fizzled out.

Forget twerking... what about grammar?

I don't know much about Sufjan Stevens. It says here he's an "indie rocker" -- and who can say what that means? But suddenly I'm a big fan, because of his cranky letter to Miley Cyrus.

Refreshingly, Stevens doesn't care about nudity or twerking or her trailer-trash vibe. He's upset about grammar, especially a line in her song Get It Right: "I been laying in this bed all night long."

On his website, Stevens says "Miley, technically speaking, you've been LYING, not LAYING, an irregular verb form that should only be used when there's an object, i.e. 'I been laying my tired booty on this bed' ...

"Did you know the tense here is also totally wrong? Surely you've heard of Present Perfect Continuous Tense (I HAVE BEEN LYING in this bed all night long)", etc.

This guy's my new hero. He's 38.

Sandra Oh pleads for her life

CANADIAN actress Sandra Oh says she's ready to let go of her Grey's Anatomy character Dr. Christina Yang, but hopes the writers won't kill her.

She announced a while ago that this season, the show's 10th, will be her last. Now she tells Katie Couric that after 200 episodes, there are no more character avenues to explore.

But she wouldn't like Yang to be hit by a bus, as happened T.R. Knight's character George O'Malley.

"I would very much like her to live," Oh said, if only so she can return in a Grey's finale.

She's been in Winnipeg, shooting a big-screen comedy about phone sex, 33 Liberty Lane, with Nia Vardalos.

Madonna non grata

IF only they could keep her off the screen, too: A U.S. cinema chain has barred Madonna from all its theatres, after a strange incident last week at a N.Y. Film Festival screening of this Steve McQueen movie 12 Years a Slave.

She was texting busily all through the movie, and when somebody near her complained, Madge hissed "it's for business, enslaver!"

She picked the wrong theatre to do business in. The Texas-based Alamo Drafthouse chain, now expanding across the U.S., is famous for demanding that customers kill their phones, keep quiet, and generally be nice. Now, knowing a chance for publicity when they see one, they have declared Madonna to be persona non grata, "until she apologizes to movie fans," in the words of CEO Tim League.

Only game in town

TODAY'S conversation-starter: Gloria Steinem, who's entitled to an opinion about women's rights matters, blames society, not Miley Cyrus, for Miley Cyrus:

"I wish we didn't have to be nude to be noticed... but given the game as it exists, women make decisions," Steinem told Vanity Fair mag, at a Women's Media Awards event in New York.

"For instance," she went on, "the Miss America contest is... the single greatest source of scholarship money for women in the United States... you know? It's ridiculous. But that's the way the culture is. I think that we need to change the culture, not blame the people that are playing the only game that exists."

Poor, downtrodden male models

ONCE again, the jackboot of sexist oppression grinds the faces of men: Forbes magazine reports that top female models make far more money than top male models. Talk about your glass ceiling.

The business mag notes that the best-paid model on the planet, Gisele Bundchen, made $42 million last year; the best-paid male model, the not-quite-so-famous Sean O'Pry, made merely $1.5 mil.

Right down to rookies in the Kansas City market, the story is the same: females out-earn males across the modelling industry, by about a 5:2 ratio.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 20, 2013 ??65526

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