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New&Noteworthy

February 17, 2011

By Staff Reporter

The pair were renting Jen’s $2 million home in Hollywood — until the former “Friends” star asked them to scram. Ali G. and Isla are said to house-hunting in Los Angeles, where his trademark yellow tracksuit will demand lots of “Respec.”

Live Aid founder Bob Geldof is tired of being known as Mr. Africa. The Irish rock star says that he’d prefer to be known for his music but is conscious of the responsibility he bears to help eradicate hunger and poverty on the continent.
“I’d dearly love not to have to go there,” he told IrelandOnline. “More often than not, it bores me profoundly.”
Chief among Geldof’s objections is the rate of change, which feels is “far too slow.” He’s also pretty cynical when it comes to elected officials.
“Africans excuse their complicity in exactly the same way as our politicians,” he said.
The singer is constantly amazed at the public’s response to pop stars.
“Bizarrely, in our society there’s confusion between politicians and celebrities,” he said. “We have an ability to articulate the great wound of the 21st century, and have access to politicians. But would Bono prefer to do this or be in U2? Hello?”

Aussie actress Cate Blanchett, whose screen roles have included Queen Elizabeth I and martyred Irish journalist Veronica Guerin, is having trouble choosing a dress to wear to this year’s Oscar ceremony. The new mom and Best Supporting Actress nominee is petrified at the thought of trying on fancy designer gowns because she’s afraid the baby will puke on them.
Now, in defense of the little nipper, babies don’t have very many options when it comes to making their feelings known. And lord knows, it’s always good to have another opinion when it comes to clothes shopping, so Cate could show a little more gratitude. But right now, all she’s thinking about is those Badgley Mischka guys will feel if she returns a dress with a big blob of Smiliac down the front.
“I’m scared to out on a dress in case the baby vomits on it,” she told Ananova.com. Let’s just hope she chooses wisely — better the baby vomiting on it than Joan Rivers, right?

British pop hunk Robbie Williams is cute, but, honestly, the boy gets weirder by the day. This week’s revelation from the Ego Has Landed singer is that he was terrified of animated cartoons as a child. Now, we’re not talking dark ‘toons like Batman — Robbie used to hid behind the couch whenever Scooby Doo growled “Arr Right, Rrraggy!”
Happily, Robbie has gotten over all that, and will be providing the voice of Dougal the Dog in the animated remake of “The Magic Roundabout.” Though he insists that he has no acting ambitions, he’s psyched to be involved with the movie.
“To be asked for your voice to be used as a character in a film such as this is very exciting,” he told BBC Radio 1. “It’ll be there forever.”

Kenneth Baranagh wants Brad Pitt’s body. James Nesbitt just wants his hair. Well, I hate to disappoint them, but I called dibs on the whole package after Brad’s breakout role in “Thelma and Louise,” so get in line, fellas.
Ireland Online reports that the actors have more in common than their Northern Ireland roots: they’re each contemplating a little DIY in the looks department. Ken, who turns 45 this year, has hit the gym — hard — to get in shape for his upcoming movie, “Mission Impossible: III” because, really, you need to look your best when sharing scenes with Tom Cruise.
Ken’s last major shape-up was for the 1994 monster movie “Frankenstein,” in which he revealed more than just his flair for the dramatic. Whenever it was time to tinker with his creation, he’d whip off his shirt and get to work. (Monster brains are, like, so tough to get out of linen, yo.)
Nesbitt, who is a constant presence on BBC-America, thanks to their repeated showings of “Cold Feet” and “Murphy’s Law” (hmmm . . . still no room in the schedule for “EastEnders”?) says that his one wish in the world is to have “more hair.” The actor (who’s pretty cute, whatever his hair length) said he finds his receding hairline most depressing.
For his part, Brad probably covets Ken’s easy-going way with Shakespeare, and Jimmy’s authentic Northern accent. I mean, who knows when he’ll be asked to reprise his role in “The Devil’s Own”?

A large number of U2’s most devoted fans are up in arms this week, after being shut out of their “exclusive” opportunity to buy tickets for the band’s upcoming Vertigo Tour.
Fans who registered at the official Web site, www.u2.com, were invited to fork over $40, which would give them access to exclusive content, special offers, blah, blah, blah. The biggest carrot to be dangled in front of their (OK, my) eyes was a special “members only” ticket presale, a week before the seats went on sale to the general public. Every paid member was issued a personal code, and each was instructed to log in to the site on Tuesday to buy the alotted two tickets.
The problem was, not enough tickets were set aside for the presale. Lots of members were left high and dry — well, except for a $40 credit card bill — and scrambling to score seats in the general free-for-all that ensued.
The whole thing seems pretty unfair, and not just because I was shut out like everyone else. I mean, I was no math major, but it just seems logical that if you have x number of paid members, then you put 2x number of tickets aside.
There are rumors that the uproar might result in a member presale for any added shows, but it seems too little, too late. I mean, come on, lads, why promise what you won’t deliver?
In more U2 news (and I confess, I’m typing this with very tense fingers), Irish fans will be happy to hear that the band has already added another Dublin show to the tour schedule. They’ll play Croke Park on June 24 and 25, so get online this Friday if you’re planning to be in the vicinity.

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OK, everybody, let’s not hate Andrea Corr just because she’s beautiful. And talented. And rich. And . . . well, you get the idea. Let’s hate her because she’s got a really cute boyfriend (Shaun Evans), because she was voted Hot Press magazine’s Best Female Singer of 2004, and because she was named Hello! magazine’s Most Attractive Woman of the year.
Now, doesn’t that feel better?

Speaking of sexy, it’s not all about looks — at least, according to Irish’s Social & Personal magazine. The publication named rugby star Brian O’Driscoll the country’s sexiest man last year, but that was then, and this is now.
Apparently, the studly scrummer was a top candidate for this year’s title as well, until he went offside on two fronts: Brian recently broke up with high-profile supermodel Glenda Gilson, which effectively halved his glamour quotient. He then scored an own goal by telling Life magazine that he regretted ever accepting the title.
Needless to say, that kind of ungrateful prattling annoyed the tastemakers at S&P no end. According to the Sunday Independent, Brian went from being a possible repeater to an also-ran.
“No sooner had singleton Brian uttered the words than he was swiftly relegated to the bottom of the list,” a source told The Edge (the Indo’s gossip column, not U2’s axeman.) Which means even if you’re cuter than bejaysus, you gotta watch what you say.

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