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Web posted on: Tuesday, August 04, 1998 4:06:00 PM

Today's buzz stories:


Imus' good deed costly

SANTA FE, New Mexico (CNN) -- Radio talk show host Don Imus will pay $6,696 to the state of New Mexico as reimbursement for 19th-century buildings that were razed to clear the way for his proposed ranch for sick children, his lawyer said Monday. Under New Mexico law, people who lease state land are supposed to get permission to make changes on the land, and must pay for it.

Imus and his brother Fred did not, and in fact had not been approved as lessees of the land when the demolition of an old house, barns and corrals occurred July 1. The Imuses want to develop the ranch for children with cancer and blood disorders. They intend to use their property and the adjacent state land -- some 3,000 acres in all.

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Leno (top) is keeping his chin up as he prepares for his match against Hogan

Jay Leno swaps punchlines for punches

SIOUX FALLS, South Dakota (CNN) -- Perhaps Jay Leno will unveil a bionic chin drop, or a devastating punch line. The host of "The Tonight Show" will definitely need to pull out all stops this weekend when he steps into the wrestling ring to take on "Hollywood" Hulk Hogan in a pay-per-view World Championship Wrestling match Saturday. Leno, a Harley-Davidson owner, will team up with Diamond Dallas Page for the main match.

The idea for Leno to be a guest wrestler developed after professional basketball players Karl Malone and Dennis Rodman challenged each other to a wrestling match during a "Tonight Show" in July. "He's not taking this lying down. He's taking the challenge and taking it seriously and getting ready," said "Tonight Show" spokeswoman Jennifer Barnett. The match will take place at the Sturgis motorcycle rally in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

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Luke Perry returning to familiar zip

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Luke Perry is coming back to his TV home. The "Beverly Hills, 90210" star is returning next season to the Fox drama for a minimum of 12 episodes. As part of the deal, Perry has also inked a development deal with 20th Century Fox Television in which he will develop and star in a new series, for which Fox is committed to doing 13 episodes.

Perry left "90210" in 1995 to pursue a movie career. He just finished filming "The Florentine," executive-produced by Francis Ford Coppola, and is currently shooting "Storm," co-starring with Martin Sheen. Perry's feature credits include "8 Seconds," "Normal Life" with Ashley Judd, and Luc Besson's "The Fifth Element."

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Woman files suit against Coleman in alleged beating

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- The woman who claims Gary Coleman beat her after she sought an autograph has filed a $1 million lawsuit against the former child star. Tracy Fields says she encountered "Diff'rent Strokes"'s Coleman, now a security guard, at the shop last week and asked for his autograph.

He became angry when she asked him to personalize it for her son, the lawsuit claims, and she told him his attitude was what kept him from getting acting jobs as an adult. Coleman then allegedly hit Fields several times, and Fields says she has since suffered headaches and muscle spasms. Coleman is to be arraigned August 25 on charges of assault and battery. His lawyer has not commented.

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Debbie Reynolds selling Las Vegas dream

LAS VEGAS (CNN) -- Debbie Reynolds is giving up one of her dreams after a half-decade struggle. The Debbie Reynolds Hotel and Casino, the Las Vegas oasis she labored to keep alive the past five years, goes on the auction block Wednesday. Reynolds bought the hotel in 1993, then spent millions remodeling the 180-room structure.

It reopened under her name with much fanfare later that year, but was saddled with costly management and the lack of revenues from a casino -- the cash cow for most Nevada resorts -- and was forced to file for bankruptcy. Reynolds, 66, is hopeful the new owner may be interested in her services. "I feel like I'm in a barrel at the top of Niagara Falls," she said Sunday. "I know I'm going over. I just don't know what will happen. We'll just have to see where the barrel goes."

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Mattel's giving Barbie a costume fit for the stars

Barbie going Hollywood

SANTA MONICA, California (CNN) -- It was only a matter of time before Barbie went Hollywood. Mattel Inc., the maker of the Barbie doll, unveiled a global licensing deal on Monday with movie studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. that grants Mattel the right to make a limited edition Barbie, called the MGM Golden Hollywood Barbie, using MGM movies and characters as two central themes. The first MGM Golden Hollywood Barbie will be introduced in the spring, which also marks MGM's 75th anniversary. Mattel officials says the partnership embraces "fashion and glamour -- the hallmarks of our Barbie Collectibles division."

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Reuters contributed to this report.

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