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Web posted on:
Monday, November 30, 1998 3:59:01 PM EST

Today's buzz stories:


Michael Jackson sending son to Stowe?

LONDON (CNN) -- Judging by the actions of two pop superstars, American schools apparently don't make the grade. Michael Jackson is reportedly considering sending his son to an elite British private school. Jackson, whose son Prince is 21 months old, has sent an aide to check out Stowe boarding school in Buckinghamshire, north of London, which charges $25,000 a year per pupil, British newspapers reported.

Jackson would be following in the footsteps of American singer Madonna, who has put her 2-year-old daughter Lourdes down for the Cheltenham Ladies College in southern England. "Michael has always been a fan of the British private school system and knows what a good education it offers," an aide of Jackson's was quoted as telling the Sun newspaper.

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Former Mouseketeer on trial for stock fraud

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- Darlene Gillespie, who first came into the public eye as one of the nine original Mouseketeers who appeared in the first season of the 1950s "Mickey Mouse Club," is now on trial on stock fraud charges. Jury selection began Monday in the case.

Gillespie and her fiance, Jerry Fraschilla, were charged in a complex stock fraud scheme that involved "free riding," or the purchase of stock without paying for it, and obstruction of justice. Fraschilla, 61, pleaded guilty to 21 federal charges and last month was sentenced to 18 months in prison, plus probation. Gillespie, 56, faces 14 counts, including conspiracy, securities fraud and obstruction of justice.

"The defense is simple. She was one of the victims rather than one of the perpetrators. We're playing it straight," her lawyer, Charles Rondeau, said last week. During her Mouseketeer career, Gillespie was known as having "more bounce to the ounce than a bottle of a soda pop."

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Horrocks' 'Little Voice' to be heard

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Jane Horrocks, best known for her role as Bubble, the airhead assistant in the British TV comedy series "Absolutely Fabulous," plays a big part in "Little Voice," opening this Friday. Horrocks' character is an introverted girl who most think is mute -- until they hear her dead-on impersonations of famous singers like Judy Garland and Marlene Dietrich.

Originally written for the stage, the role is based on Horrocks' long-running personal penchant for imitating legendary singers, and was written especially for her by playwright Jim Cartwright. The theater version was a hot ticket during its 1994 London run.

"Quiet, quiet people become intriguing when they're dramatized," Horrocks says in the December issue of Harper's Bazaar. The film co-stars Michael Caine and Brenda Blethyn.

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Jagger and Hall

Jagger, Hall splitting up?

LONDON (CNN) -- According to the London newspaper "The Mirror," Mick Jagger is readying for fatherhood again. Luciana Gimenez Morad, a 29-year-old Brazilian model, is three months pregnant with Jagger's baby, the paper says. Jerry Hall, Jagger's wife, reportedly plans to have her lawyers start divorce proceedings next week.

The report of the pregnancy comes about a week after London newspapers were full of stories about a big tiff between Jagger and Hall. The Mirror says Jagger and Morad had a fling when the Stones played Rio earlier this year. Jagger has four children with Hall, one with first wife Bianca Jagger and one with former model Marsha Hunt.

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Dylan McDermott says TV gave him chance to act

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Dylan McDermott says he turned to a career in television because he was sick of being typecast as "handsome guy." The actor felt he had more to give audiences, so he jumped at his role in "The Practice."

"I was happy it wasn't about the guy's looks, but about what his struggle is," McDermott says in the December issue of US magazine.

McDermott debuted in the 1987 film "Hamburger Hill," appeared in "Steel Magnolias" in 1989, and had a role opposite Clint Eastwood in the 1993 film "In the Line of Fire." Then came a string of forgettable parts in box-office flops like "Destiny," "`Til There Was You," "Turns on the Radio" and "Where Sleeping Dogs Lie."

"The Practice," in which McDermott plays a fiery attorney leading a firm of right-minded lawyers fighting for justice, won an Emmy for best drama in September, beating better-known shows like "ER" and "NYPD Blue."

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Reuters contributed to this report.

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