A marijuana drug bust, a series of canceled concerts, and a no-show at the Academy Awards have all fueled rumors that singing superstar Whitney Houston is battling a drug problem.
According to a new report by US Weekly magazine, the problem is so bad, Houston's family and friends attempted a drug intervention. Todd Gold, L.A. bureau chief for US, tells CBS News Early Show Anchor Bryant Gumbel that the intervention did not work.
"Whitney sat on the bed in her suite at the hotel, surrounded by her closest friends and family," he says, "and she was very polite. She listened. But, in the words of several of my sources, she was also dazed and out of it.
"And at the very end, at the end of a heartfelt plea by her mother, who she says has always tried to instruct her on right and wrong, Whitney didn't do anything. She refused to go into treatment. She didn't listen to those who care most about her."
Gold says the sources for the article, which he helped write, were at the scene, which took place last summer. "It was really something that was serious and terrible and, in the word of one of the sources, disastrous, because it didn't produce the desired results."
He adds that he does not know if Houston acknowledged that she has a problem. But his information "seems to confirm what behind-the-scenes people have been talking about for the past year."
The article notes that Houston was a no-show at the Oscars and several concerts over the last year, and Gold calls such absences "part of her routine. Just as it's part of her routine to turn in a brilliant performance, she's known for last-minute cancellations."
Another telling development was the resignation last May of her closest friend and adviser, Robyn Crawford, from Houston's New Jersey based company, Nippy, Inc.
"It's symptomatic of something serious going on," explains Gold. "People told us a split like this was previously unimagined, and that they can't see Whitney functioning without her. You know, it's really quite a time. Her husband is in jail. Her best friend left her. While she's continuing to make videos and support her greatest hits album, one has to wonder what normal life is for her."
Her husband, singer Bobby Brown, is in a Broward County jail for violating probation on a drunk driving arrest, and US reports that he is in a detox program there.
"Maybe Bobby's doing something for himself. You know, it's hard to say," says Gold. "What I think is really significant is that US Weekly has this story out, and it's not denied, and that perhaps this is the time when a life could be saved. By talking about this bringing it out in the open, maybe this is the chance that people in Whitney's camp have been looking for."