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Buzz Briefs: Kelsey Grammer, The Beatles


Kelsey Grammer Checks Out Of Hospital

Kelsey Grammer is returning home after being hospitalized in New York.

The 53-year-old actor, who suffered a heart attack in June, had checked himself into an undisclosed hospital the last weekend in July as a precaution when he felt faint.

His publicist, Stan Rosenfield, said in a statement Tuesday that Grammer is now "out of the hospital, feeling great and about to resume normal activities at home."

Rosenfield said last week that it was possible Grammer's medication led to his symptoms. Grammer had been in town to promote his new film, "Swing Vote," co-starring Kevin Costner, Paula Patton and Stanley Tucci.

Newly Discovered Beatles Tape Sells For $23,000

A newly discovered tape of The Beatles laughing and chatting during an early recording session has sold for about 12,000 pounds ($23,000), an auction house reported Tuesday.

Cameo Auctioneers said the reel-to-reel tape was recorded in 1964 and had recently been discovered by a man in northern England while he was clearing out his father's attic.

The half-hour tape sold to an Internet bidder Tuesday afternoon for 11,900 pounds ($23,446) including tax and the buyer's premium, the auction house said, adding that it had yet to contact the winner.

The tape features John Lennon and Paul McCartney collapsing into fits of giggles as they try to finish the ballad "I'll Follow the Sun."

It also carries versions of songs including "I Feel Fine," "I'm a Loser" and "Don't Put Me Down Like This."

Rapper Lil Jon Signs Deal With The Orchard

Lil Jon, who was musical limbo after his longtime record label TVT Records went bankrupt earlier this year, has reached an agreement that frees him from his TVT obligations while entering into a new venture with digital entertainment company The Orchard, which is purchasing TVT's assets.

Lil Jon will work with the Orchard's Brand Entertainment Group to develop "lifestyle-oriented marketing and promotion programs," as well as serve as a consultant for some of Orchard's artists, labels, and branding opportunities, according to a joint statement from both parties.

Brooks & Dunn Get Hollywood Star

Country duo Brooks and Dunn are now immortalized on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Kix Brooks calls the honor "very surreal." He says "this sounds trite, but this really is a dream come true." Ronnie Dunn says they didn't get to be so successful alone. He says "there are hundreds of people that should be in that stone with us. All the way from friends and family to mangers and guys in the band."

Brooks and Dunn received the 2,367th star on Hollywood Boulevard during a ceremony yesterday.

Brooks and Dunn have sold more than 30 million albums in their career. They've earned two Grammys and seven American Music Awards.

Jackie Chan To Star In New Action Comedy

Jackie Chan is taking his martial-arts high jinks to the neighbors, signing on to star in "The Spy Next Door," an action comedy to be directed by Brian Levant.

Robert Simonds, a longtime comedy producer on such movies as "The Pink Panther" and the Adam Sandler films "The Wedding Singer" and "Big Daddy," will produce.

"Spy" centers on a man (Chan) who is called to baby-sit his neighbor's children and winds up having to fight off secret agents after one of the kids inadvertently downloads a secret code.

Chan is one of the biggest-grossing comedy action stars of all time, with his "Rush Hour" films earning more than $500 million in the U.S. alone.

Chan recently has turned to action drama, starring in and producing "The Shinjuku Incident," about a Chinese immigrant who moves to Japan to pursue his former girlfriend.

Joss Stone To Join "The Tudors"

In her first major acting gig, British soul and R&B singer Joss Stone is joining the cast of Showtime's drama "The Tudors" for its upcoming third season.

Stone will play Anne of Cleves, the fourth wife of Henry VIII (Jonathan Rhys Meyers).

A daughter of a German nobleman, Anne was betrothed to Henry in a marriage treaty between the Cleves Court and the king's chancellor after Henry was shown a portrait of her.

Upon Anne's arrival to England, Henry was disappointed in her looks and soon found a legal way to have the marriage annulled.

According to Showtime, the upcoming season of the racy royal drama will follow the king as he weds third queen Jane Seymour (Anita Briem) and then Anne of Cleves.

Stone, who burst onto the music scene in 2003 and has had three gold albums in the U.S., has been looking to cross over into acting. In 2006, she had a role in the fantasy feature "Eragon."

Stone, who is working on a new album, is repped by Fortitude and attorney Bob Myman.

Melissa Lawson Wins "Nashville Star"

A Texas mother of five is the new "Nashville Star."

Melissa Lawson beat fellow finalist Gabe Garcia on Monday night for the title on the country music reality series. Shawn Mayer came in third.

The 32-year-old Lawson was overjoyed at winning, shouting "Oh my God!" She then performed her new single "What If It All Goes Right." The song is scheduled to be played on country radio Tuesday morning.

Lawson wins a record contract after performing in Nashville for 11 weeks.

The series has launched the careers of Miranda Lambert, Buddy Jewel and Chris Young. It switched to NBC this year after five seasons on cable's USA Network.

Stooges Gear Stolen After Montreal Show

Rock pioneer Iggy Pop and his band the Stooges have lost their gear after their rental truck was stolen after a concert in Montreal.

Stooges road manager Eric Fischer says the 15-foot truck that was stolen Monday contained the group's instruments and stage gear. He tells the Detroit Free Press that the lost items are worth tens of thousands of dollars.

The Stooges are in the middle of a tour with stops in Belgium, Britain, Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Russia, Serbia, Spain and the U.S.

Pop is considered widely influential in the development of punk and heavy metal rock.

The 61-year-old was born in Muskegon, Michigan, and began his music career in the Detroit area.

Colin Firth On Board For "Dorian Gray"

Colin Firth has signed on to star opposite Ben Barnes in "Dorian Gray," the retelling of the Oscar Wilde classic being directed by Oliver Parker.

Based on "The Picture of Dorian Gray," the story centers on Gray (Barnes), a young man who becomes the subject of a painting. As the man descends into a hedonistic lifestyle, the portrait begins to age and morph, but he doesn't.

Firth will play Lord Henry Wotton, the aristocrat who corrupts Gray with his worldview. (He is sometimes called Harry in the novel.)

Parker plans to make a visceral, dark horror story and said the themes of stardom are as relevant as ever.

The movie began shooting this week.

Firth also has wrapped Robert Zemeckis' motion-capture "A Christmas Carol" opposite Jim Carrey and Gary Oldman.

Hilton's Mom Takes Offense At McCain's Humor

Paris Hilton's mother doesn't share John McCain's sense of humor.

A recent ad by the Republican presidential candidate attempts to mock Democratic rival Barack Obama by dismissing him as a mere celebrity. To make the point, the ad uses images of Paris Hilton and Britney Spears.

The McCain campaign says it's an attempt to inject humor into the presidential race.

Hilton's mother was not amused. On the Huffington Post Web site, she calls the ad a "complete waste" of time and campaign money.

And she should know: Kathy Hilton and her husband are McCain campaign donors.

Union Says Back-Channel Talks Held With Studios

The Screen Actors Guild says back-channel talks are under way with Hollywood studios on a contract to replace the one that expired on June 30.

The guild's executive director, Doug Allen, sent an e-mail message to members on Sunday saying union leaders were involved in informal meetings and exchanges with producers.

However, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers countered that no meetings on the contract have taken place in three weeks and none were planned.

A meeting was scheduled to deal with outstanding grievance claims, the alliance said.

The studios reiterated their call for the guild to accept their final offer made on June 30.

Actors have kept working during the dispute that includes new-media production and residual issues.

BMI To Honor Jacksons At Annual Urban Awards

There's a possibility for a Jacksons reunion of sorts. The brothers are set to be honored as BMI Icons at its annual Urban Awards next month.

So far, all the brothers, with the exception of Michael, have confirmed their attendance at the event, to be held Sept. 4 at the Wilshire Theatre in Beverly Hills. An all-star tribute is planned, according to a release issued Monday.

The Jackson Five, which included Michael along with Marlon, Jackie, Tito and Jermaine, were a groundbreaking, best-selling act with classics that include "ABC" and "I Want You Back."

They have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The group, with brother Randy replacing Jermaine, became the Jacksons after leaving Motown in 1976. They continued their multiplatinum success with hits including "Heartbreak Hotel" and "Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground)."

Both versions of the group will be honored.

There have been rumblings of a possible Jacksons reunion for years. The last album that featured all of them in some form was in 1989 and they haven't performed together in years.

The BMI Urban Awards honor R&B and hip-hop's top hitmakers.

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