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Zeta is deemed the perfect star parent

Jun 14 2006

Robin Turner, Western Mail


CATHERINE ZETA-JONES has been hailed the perfect parent by one of America's best-known celebrity "baby blog" sites.

The gossip-fuelled internet diaries are read by millions of young mothers.

Now Zeta has used one of the most popular sites to speak of the joy she shares with her two children.

The blogs are not always on good terms with celebrity parents and are known to be the most feisty of critics. Some of them recently took the smile off the faces of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt by being the first to publish pictures of the star couple's new baby Shiloh Nouvel-Pitt despite the $3.8m paid by glossy magazines for the "exclusive" rights.

And pictures of Britney Spears wobbling out of a hotel with a drink in one hand and her baby in the other led to a shower of criticism by the baby blogs.

But despite their liking a bit of controversy, Catherine Zeta-Jones has been held up as "the perfect star parent".

She told one of the best known of the sites, Celebrity Baby Blog, that her children Dylan, five, and Carys, three, "are the stars in her eyes".

Speaking earlier this week she said, "My kids and my family give me so much joy. My little boy said last night that he loves me from Bermuda to the space shuttle and back. Things like that put me in a good mood."

In turn, the site praised the Swansea-born star and her husband Michael Douglas for trying to "raise their children as normal as possible".

She said, "Michael and I are as hands-on as we can possibly be. We stay out overnight and camp out with Dylan and swim.

"It's just a normal family life. They're certainly not Hollywood brats by any stretch of the imagination. We keep them grounded. They're really good kids."

The couple made a pact which means they will not work at the same time as one another, so whenever Douglas is filming his wife becomes a full-time parent and vice versa.

Zeta-Jones, who has been playing the mother role for the past few months, said, "I've been being a mother, which is far more work than doing movies. I didn't want to be away for six months. I literally took a year out. I never was going to get this time back with my children, and it's a real pivotal time in their lives."

A spokesman for Celebrity Baby Blog said that the positive comments on Zeta-Jones were not in any way shallow praise.

"The fact they are so busy and get so many lucrative offers yet still put their children first puts them at the top of the Hollywood parent league as far as we are concerned," he said.

The celebrity baby blogs are full of tales of rumours about stars possibly being pregnant and about stars possibly becoming fathers.

The photographs of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie which appeared on the internet sites led to a broadside of law suits by angry glossy magazines.

The proud parents spent vast amounts of money to ensure no photos were taken of Shiloh Nouvel, born in Africa on May 27.

After the baby's birth, the couple held a charity auction for the rights to publish the first photos resulting in People magazine winning exclusive US rights and Hello! scooping the UK rights.

The auction broke all previous records reaching an estimated $7m (£3.8m).

Hello! magazine had been touting them as "the most eagerly awaited baby exclusive of the year", while in the US they were hailed as the "photos of the year". Hello! said it was taking legal action against a Los Angeles gossip blog and a US community site which broke the embargo, adding that it had no idea where the shots had come from.

Several websites removed the shot as soon as Hello! threatened them with a "cease and desist" letter but others left it on view.


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