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June 12, 2004
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Grabbing The Headlines

PHOTO
Catherine Zeta-Jones, A bit squeamish

Compiled from Tribune news services by Rick Rosetta


    Catherine Zeta-Jones was terrified during an appearance on Jay Leno's talk show recently because she feared she would have to face snakes and rats, reports IMDB.com. The "Chicago" star learned that wild animal-loving "Crocodile Hunter" star Steve Irwin was also a guest. "I just said to your researcher, 'Please don't say there's snakes or rats or dinosaurs coming on the set tonight!' " Although Irwin made his way onto the stage without any of his usual creature companions, he still managed to horrify the Welsh actress by talking about his broken finger. As Zeta-Jones buried her head in her hands in disgust, Irwin quickly apologized, adding, "I didn't bring dinosaurs though!"
   
   * * *
   
   Bet you didn't know this: Joan Cusack backed out of "The Stepford Wives" remake to spend time with her ailing father. Her role was recast with Bette Midler, who happily rose to the occasion. However, the 58-year-old legend had never seen the original 1975 cult classic about a suburban hamlet where disobedient wives are swapped for robots. "When I got cast, I rented it," Midler tells TV Guide Online. "I was surprised at how sad it was. It was so tragic. All the heroine wanted to do was be a photographer. The poor girl. That was what was considered threatening in 1975? Imagine."
   
   * * *
   

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   David Letterman will finally have his dearest wish fulfilled: Celebutante and reality-show and X-rated home-video star Paris Hilton has agreed to grace CBS' "Late Show" with her ambrosial self Monday.
   
   
   Noted
   
    Today's Birthdays:
   Former President George Bush is 80.
   Actor-singer Jim Nabors is 74.
   Jazz musician Chick Corea is 63.
   Sportscaster Marv Albert is 63.
   Rock drummer Bun E. Carlos (Cheap Trick) is 53.
   
   
   

Copyright 2004, The Salt Lake Tribune.
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