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Bob Costas Criticizes for Gun Control Statement; Settlement Between Halle Berry, Fiance and Ex; Kim Kardashian Protested in Middle East?; Seven-Year Curse for Hollywood Marriages?; Ne-Yo Helps Foster Kids; Top Five Showbiz Newsmakers of the Day

Aired December 3, 2012 - 23:00   ET


A.J. HAMMER, HOST: Tonight on the SHOWBIZ Countdown, royal baby news. Prince William and Duchess Catherine are expecting their first baby. Plus, Brad Pitt`s big bomb. Is Brad`s star power in doubt? What will be No. 1 in our SHOWBIZ Countdown of the top five newsmakers of the day?

Hello, and thank you for watching. I`m A.J. Hammer.

Our countdown of today`s top five "SHOWBIZ Newsmakers," including the news that a royal baby is on the way for Kate Middleton and Prince William, is coming up.

But we begin with our first countdown: today`s top three "SHOWBIZ Showdowns" breaking today.

And kicking it off at No. 3, Costas under fire over gun control. Yes, the social media world just exploded today, attacking NBC football commentator Bob Costas for using his segment last night on NBC`s "Sunday Night Football" to demand gun control following the shocking murder/suicide involving Kansas City Chiefs star Jovan Belcher. Jovan killed his wife Saturday, the mother of his 3-month-old daughter, and then he shot himself in front of his coach.

Last night Costas a quoted from a column by FOX Sports columnist Jason Whitlock. Watch this.


BOB COSTAS, NBC SPORTSCASTER: Our current gun culture, Whitlock wrote, ensures that more and more domestic disputes will end in the ultimate tragedy and that more convenience-store confrontations over loud music coming from a car will leave more teenaged boys bloodied and dead. If Jovan Belcher didn`t possess a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today.


HAMMER: Yes. Not really what you expect for tuning in for a football game. And tonight Costas was slammed for using his "Sunday Night Football" pulpit to preach gun control. And online today, there were even demands that NBC fire him.

But was he really out of line? I want to take it out to Hollywood and David Begnaud, who is host of the social media show "NewsBreakers with David Begnaud."

What do you think, David?

DAVID BEGNAUD, HOST, "NEWSBREAKERS WITH DAVID BEGNAUD": A.J., look, I`ve got to tell you. If he wanted attention and an audience, he got it. But if he wanted to make an impact, he picked the wrong forum.

Bob, look, I love you. You`re the -- you`re a great sports guy, but if you want to give your opinion, write a blog. I think it was distasteful, and it was ridiculous. I want to watch football, not listen to Bob Costas opine during halftime about gun control.

HAMMER: Yes. He is a legendary broadcaster, a legendary sportscaster, and a very, very smart man. And it just strikes so many people as odd that, of all places to do that preaching, it was on that particular show.

And today no big surprise, a Facebook page was created demanding that NBC fire Bob Costas. The SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Facebook page also exploded about this one. It gets a couple of comments. One from Erica, who wrote, "Totally wrong of him to say that. It was not the time or the place to do so."

Here`s one that`s kind of interesting. It came from Tish. She wrote on our wall, "He has the right to say what he wants, just like the young man had the right to carry the gun."

Lifestyle and pop culture expert Megan Meany is also with us tonight. Megan, it obviously, is unquestionably one of the biggest hot-button issues in our country. Was Costas out of line?

MEAGAN MEANY, LIFESTYLE & POP CULTURE EXPERT: You know, I think it wasn`t the time or the place. It`s a little bit like if I sat down with my cup of coffee to watch Kelly Ripa`s talk show and suddenly she said, "You know, we really should be teaching in school about birth control, and then Jamie Lynn Spears wouldn`t have gotten pregnant." You kind of go, "Huh?" You know? "I`m here to watch my show."

So it was Bob`s job to talk about sports, not to talk about the political side of the story. That said, you know, TV broadcasters, they`re human beings. Occasionally, we see a little bit of their own views leak into something. And I forgive him. You know, it wasn`t the right time or the place, but I don`t think he should lose his job.

HAMMER: Yes. For the record, I don`t see Bob Costas losing his job over this for sure.

But from the beginning of a Costas controversy to the end of a Hollywood standoff. At No. 2 on the SHOWBIZ Countdown of breaking showdowns today, big news about Halle Berry and fiance Olivier Martinez in their battle with Halle`s ex-boyfriend, Gabriel Aubry.

Now the battling trio tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT they have settled their beef after that brutal fight that happened on Thanksgiving night between Aubry and Martinez at Halle`s Hollywood home. This was a very vicious fight. It left Aubry clearly battered, as you can see right here. I mean, look at the guy. This came from a court filing asking for an order of protection from Olivier, which you can understand why he wanted. He got that black eye, a reported broken rib, and some other injuries, as well. Aubry wound up getting that restraining order against Olivier Martinez.

And now, while they`re declining to release some specific details of their settlement, Berry and Martinez have reportedly agreed to cover all of Aubry`s legal and medical bills. And the court order banning Aubry from seeing his and Berry`s 4-year-old daughter, Nahla, has been lifted.

Megan, I want to go back to you on this. I know you, like me, are glad to see this finally moving in a positive direction. But this is a major shift. Why do you think they settled things so fast?

MEANY: I think, you know, it`s for little Nahla, right? I mean, this poor little girl has been caught in between these two sets of parents. And it`s been messy, it`s been physical, and somebody finally saw that picture and that black eye and said, "What are we doing?" You know, "Where is this going to go next?"

So I think that they`re also, you know, not good for their public images as actors and actresses. So I think they`re doing this one for the little girl. And I`m glad.


MEANY: As a mother, thank God.

HAMMER: Well, sure. And David, I think you would agree with me, we`re all happy, and we should take time to always recognize when stars do the right thing. But this really seemed to take an inordinate amount of time to start heading in the right direction.

BEGNAUD: Yes, look, and I got to be honest with you, A.J., I`m bored by this. I think the real victim here is this beautiful little girl. And so much attention between these two men. Quite frankly, I`m bored by the whole thing. I think it is moving in the right direction, but let`s get past this story. Let both men hopefully go on with their lives. Let`s start talking -- I want to talk about Halle Berry making movies.


BEGNAUD: I`m tired of talking about these two guys.

HAMMER: Wouldn`t that be novel?

Out of all of the "SHOWBIZ Showdown" stories breaking today, only one can be No. 1 on our SHOWBIZ Countdown. It is an international showdown involving the most popular reality TV star on the planet.

Coming in at No. 1, of course, you know I`m talking about Kim. It`s Kim Kardashian versus the Middle East. Well, Kim has just arrived back in these United States after a now-controversial visit to Kuwait and Bahrain over the weekend. She was there to promote milkshakes.


KIM KARDASHIAN, REALITY TV STAR: I`ve been on the phone with my sisters and my family, and everyone, just telling them that they have to come here.

I love how glamorous all the girls are here. I mean, your makeup and your hair and your clothes, you guys are beautiful. It`s so beautiful here. The people are so amazing. And everyone from the states has to come and visit.


HAMMER: Well, from what we saw there, the crowd seems to be going crazy for her. And just after her public appearance, Kim got on the Twitter, and she said that Bahrain was the prettiest place on earth.

However, look at this image. Reports quickly surfaced that protesters were so furious about Kardashian`s visit, they stood with these signs, and they chanted for her to go home, and protesters were reportedly tear-gassed by police.

Sheeraz Hasan is the founder of Millions of Milkshakes. He says he was with Kim during that entire trip and claims that the reports of tear-gassed protesters are absolutely false. Sheeraz joining me exclusively tonight by phone from Bahrain.

So Sheeraz, explain this to me. If there was no tear gas involved with this, how do you explain the reports that are out there today?

SHEERAZ HASAN, FOUNDER, MILLIONS OF MILKSHAKES (via telephone): First of all, I was with Kim throughout the whole time. And when we left -- just before we left the hotel, we sent an entire security team on our side to go and check out the venue at Millions of Milkshakes. Even down there, we already had police. We had ministry of interior. The entire area was blocked off. So before we even got there, we were told everything is clear, everything is good. You know, bring Kim down to Millions of Milkshakes.

And when we got there, everything was perfect. We got out. There were thousands of fans screaming "Kim Kardashian." She`s huge, a very, very popular star in the Middle East. And even last year, my partner and myself, Farez El-Shah (ph), went to Dubai, and over 50,000 people last year came out for Kim at Millions of Milkshakes. In Kuwait, there was 30,000 people. And in Bahrain, it was a smaller area, so open more, there was 3,000 people there.

When we got there, we didn`t see anything but screaming fans, love and music and dancing. Everything was great. And then when we left the next day, I saw images come up that there was some protesters standing outside.

And first of all, when we were there, we didn`t see nothing. I mean, it`s an open mall, and plus we had a team that went there before. There was definitely no tear gas, definitely no grenades, completely false.

And then I found out today from sources that there was like 15 or 20 people who were so-called protesters were paid to hold up signs. Now you and I know in Hollywood, if you`re going to stand out on a street with a sign and you`re paid, then you`re an extra, because these definitely weren`t angry protesters. These were young children. They weren`t Islamic, you know, where they were really chanting and all of that. All of that is absolutely false.


HASAN: The only video out there that was showing all of this was what you just saw just now.

HAMMER: Let me ask you this, Sheeraz, then. Why would anybody fabricate these stories? I`m having a hard time understanding what`s to be gained by fabricating these stories that protesters were there when Kim was there and that tear gas was involved?

HASAN: Well, first of all, if it was tear gas, where we were it was an open mall where Millions of Milkshakes is -- it`s a completely open mall -- you would hear the sounds. You couldn`t even be in that area.

So whoever was jealous or trying to create some, you know, if there was negativity about anything about Kim coming to the region, which I find, you know, silly to me. Because when we arrived in Bahrain, just to give you an idea, I`m not joking, when we got off the plane, it was like President Obama arriving in Bahrain.

We had the ministry of interior. We had the army from Bahrain. We had the entire police force. They were so welcoming to Kim Kardashian. It was unbelievable.

So there might have been a few local people that were upset. And literally just in the area that the streets were blocked for a mile, A.J., couldn`t even get into the area.

HAMMER: You know, maybe -- maybe you can imagine here in the United States if the Army got involved to protect a reality show star, it would be a little crazy. But let me ask you. Is it exactly that popularity over there which is why you chose Kim to go to the Middle East of all places, which seems outlandish to us, of course?

HASAN: Yes. First of all, Kim is a really good friend of mine. And she`s so popular out here. And after Dubai, imagine 50,000 people come out to the Dubai mall.

And literally when we announced that we`re opening Millions of Milkshakes in Dubai and Bahrain, all we were hearing is please bring Kim Kardashian. And we actually created history because in Kuwait, this is the first time that we brought a Hollywood star into a mall in Kuwait. And the fans were crazy. I`m not joking. It was like Justin Bieber, One Direction, and Beatle mania combined.


HASAN: It was crazy.

HAMMER: It is wild. It is wild seeing that level of popularity for our reality star over there. Well, Sheeraz, I appreciate your insight into all this. Thanks for joining us from Bahrain tonight.

Still ahead, we are counting down the top five newsmakers of the day. It`s the biggest news to come out of the royal family since Prince William and Duchess Catherine got married. They are expecting a baby. So will this royal news send celebrity baby watchers into a frenzy? We`re going straight to London for the big reaction tonight.

Plus, "Playboy" king Hugh Hefner may be ready to settle down, but does he really plan to marry his ex-fiancee, who ditched him just days before their last scheduled wedding?

Who will be No. 1 on our "SHOWBIZ Newsmaker" countdown tonight?



HAMMER: Tonight, Brandi Glanville re-ignites the feud with LeAnn Rimes. Now, their feud began after Brandi`s ex, Eddie Cibrian, cheated on Brandi with LeAnn back in 2009. The two women seemed to have calmed their warring ways until LeAnn tweeted this.

"Flying out with my boys in a few hours. Love that it`s a family tour weekend. It`s always more fun when they are with me."

Now, let`s just say that Brandi was not happy to read that tweet about her sons. So she fired back with this. "Somebody is trying to get under my skin by calling my children her boys. So transparent. They are my boys, Eddie`s boys, and your step-sons, for now."

Looks like this feud is back on. Well, Brandi Glanville and Eddie Cibrian split up after eight years of marriage. That`s actually a year longer than many superstar splits we`ve been seeing this past year: Demi and Ashton, Heidi and Seal, even J. Lo and Marc Anthony all split up after seven years.

So SHOWBIZ TONIGHT decided to take a closer look at some of the biggest bombshell splits this year, and why so many were victims of that seven-year curse.


HAMMER (voice-over): It`s a virus that`s wiped out countless Hollywood marriages. It`s the seven-year curse.

Some of its famous victims: Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony, announcing their divorce after seven years of marriage. Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher announcing their split a few months shy of their seven-year anniversary.

Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries splitting after 72 days. OK, not quite seven years, but there`s a seven in the number.

Well, the unlucky seven virus claimed another huge victim in 2012, Heidi Klum and Seal, who announced their split in January, yes, in their seventh year of marriage. Things got extra nasty when it came out that Heidi Klum had started dating the family`s bodyguard, Martin Kristen. An angry Seal accusing Heidi of deciding to, quote, "fornicate with the help."

HEIDI KLUM, MODEL: He has a very unique choice of words.

HAMMER: On Katie Couric`s talk show, "Katie," Klum took issue with Seal`s comments, and she raved about her new boyfriend.

KLUM: I trust him with my children`s life. He`s a great man, you know.

HAMMER: Heidi Klum and Seal, another Hollywood super couple to go from gushing...

SEAL, SINGER: She is the most important thing in my life.

HAMMER: ... to nothing in just seven years.

From the moment these two stars got together, it seemed like every other celebrity mag featured an article about how these two love birds made their marriage work. And in their interviews, the two gushed about their marriage quite often.

PIERS MORGAN, CNN ANCHOR: Do you feel lucky to have met Seal?

KLUM: Of course.

HAMMER: We mean really often.

SEAL: As far as we are concerned, we are best friends first, lovers and husband and wife.

HAMMER: I mean a lot.

MORGAN: And how have you managed to sustain such a happy relationship?

KLUM: I just think because we love each other.

ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Sometimes there are couples that like to present a certain image. But what goes on behind closed doors is something that`s really very different.

HAMMER: Psychotherapist Robi Ludwig tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Heidi and Seal`s lovey-dovey public image may have been hiding problems we didn`t see.

LUDWIG: You have to always question whether somebody who is always talking about how in love they are and gushing about their romance and even all over each other publicly, whether that really reflects what`s going on between two people privately. It isn`t always the case.

KLUM: People always saw us, like, laughing and smiling. And, you know, but it`s not always like that.

HAMMER: On "Katie" in September, Klum tried to explain what went wrong with Seal.

KLUM: It just didn`t work. Like I tried my hardest. You know, he tried his hardest.

HAMMER: Heidi Klum and Seal, another sad reminder that no Hollywood couple, no matter how happy they may seem, may ever be fully immune to the seven-year curse.


HAMMER: So many people were just stunned by Heidi and Seal`s big split. But was it the biggest bombshell breakup of the year? Well, tomorrow right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, we count down the year`s top five bombshell breakups. Which breakups shocked us the most? Find out tomorrow at 11 p.m. Eastern and Pacific here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

Still ahead, a battle of the biggest newsmakers of the day. Brad Pitt`s big bomb. His latest movie tanks, despite his massive media blitz. Is Brad`s star power now in doubt?

And Rihanna and Chris Brown stoking the flames of controversy, posting provocative photos of each other on their Twitter accounts. Is it the proof that they`re really back together?

Who`s the No. 1 "SHOWBIZ Newsmaker" of the day?




ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: The 2012 CNN Hero of the Year, from Kathmandu, is Pushpa Basnet.


HAMMER: A well-deserved recognition for the 29-year-old who started a home for children of incarcerated mothers in Nepal. Pushpa and all of the other honorees were celebrated at "CNN HEROES, AN ALL-STAR TRIBUTE" last night for giving back to those in need.

And someone who helped celebrate that spirit is superstar Ne-Yo. He performed at the event. I can tell you he is a hero in his own right. I spoke with Ne-Yo just before his big performance in front of all the CNN Heroes for a brand-new "SHOWBIZ Newsmaker" interview, and he opened up to me about a side of him that not many people know. Outside the chart- topping records and the flashy pop-star image is a man with a big heart who has a passion for kids in foster care.


HAMMER: You had such an incredible ride making a name for yourself. But at some point along the way, you made the decision "I want to give back." When was that?

NE-YO, POP STAR: That was shortly after my first album. I was getting a lot of praise, and, you know, the money was rolling in. And I`ve always been told that you are given a blessing to be a blessing, you know. So I knew I wanted a way to give back. I just didn`t know exactly what it was going to be.

HAMMER: And why foster care?

NE-YO: Well, it was brought to my attention by my -- my business partner. Because a lot of the people that were working for our production company came up through, you know, group home circuit and foster care and all of that. I don`t feel like circumstance should ever dictate where it is you go in life. You know, a lot of these kids get counted out before they even get a chance to get into the game.

HAMMER: Often they`re coming from these terrible circumstances, and the cycle continues.

NE-YO: I feel like the reason that the cycle continues is because there is nobody there to let it be known that this isn`t how it has to be. It`s a feeling of, well, what other option do I have?

There are scholarships out there that you can get just because you`re a foster kid. And like, I can guarantee you that nine out of ten foster kids don`t even know that.

And that`s where the Compound Foundation steps in. Our main goal and focus is children in foster care, getting them these life skills and information that they probably wouldn`t be privy to otherwise. And just making sure that their circumstance doesn`t become a wall. You know, maybe a speed bump, but not a wall.


HAMMER: Ne-Yo, along with his business partner, founded the Compound Foundation in 2007. Great work that he`s doing.

Well, from heroes to easily the most anticipated celebrity baby on the planet. Prince William and Duchess Catherine share their royal baby news. Catherine is pregnant. May the royal baby watch begin.

And at the same time, Hugh Hefner may be ready to share stunning wedding news. Will he marry his former ex, the runaway bride?

Which story will be No. 1 on our "SHOWBIZ Newsmaker" countdown?



HAMMER: Right now on the SHOWBIZ Countdown, it`s the top five newsmakers of the day. Royal baby news. Prince William and Duchess Catherine confirm a royal baby is on the way. Is this the most anticipated celebrity baby ever?

Hef`s runaway repeat? Is Hugh Hefner really going to tie the knot with his ex, the runaway bride?

But who will be the No. 1 "SHOWBIZ Newsmaker" of the day? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT continues right now.

Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT and thanks for watching. I`m A.J. Hammer, and tonight, we`re here to count down the top five "SHOWBIZ Newsmakers".

Coming in at number five, great expectations. The royal news we have all been waiting for finally here. Prince William and Duchess Catherine are expecting their first baby. Let me read you now the official word that we got today from the royal household.

It is this: "Their royal highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, are very pleased to announce that the Duchess of Cambridge is expecting a baby. The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, and Prince Harry and members of both families are delighted with the news. The Duchess was admitted this afternoon to King Edward VII hospital in central London. As the pregnancy is in its very early stages, her royal highness is expected to stay in the hospital for several days and will require a period of rest thereafter."

Well, let`s take this to London tonight joining me right now, from the King Edward VII hospital, CNN royal correspondent Max Foster.

So Max, obviously, we don`t know exactly how far along in the pregnancy the duchess is, but we do know she went in to the hospital suffering from what is being called acute morning sickness. Can you tell us how she is doing now?

MAX FORSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, she is receiving treatment so she is getting rehydrated treatments as well. The most important thing, A.J. is she gets rest. She came up to the hospital with her husband Prince William today from Bucklebury where the Middletons live. There was obviously a sense of concern as they left Bucklebury came up here and actually made the announcement early.

They weren`t expecting to make this announcement at this time. You would normally wait until after 12 weeks. But it was before 12 weeks. We don`t know exactly how long. And the Queen and Prince Charles, William`s father of course, were only informed today, as was the British prime minister. So, this was a bit of a shock, they did come out. But they`re not unduly concerned, the royal sources tell me. And Prince William has been here today, but he has left again. So he is not unduly concerned either.

The duchess currently in the hospital behind me, A.J.

HAMMER: All right Max, that`s good news all around then, I guess. And I just can only imagine how insane the reaction has been over there across the pond.

Max Foster, thank you so much.

So much royal excitement. I want to bring in Megan Meany, who is a lifestyle and pop culture expert. And from Hollywood, David Begnaud, host of the social media show "newsmaker with David Begnaud."

Megan, up to you first. Prince William and the Duchess have been married less than two years. And today, you know, the book makers were at it, taking bets on what the baby`s name might be. How crazy is this all going to get?

MEANY: Oh, I can`t wait, yay. She is having a baby. I hope she has a little girl and names it Diana. I can`t wait to see the baby story unfold. You know, I feel bad for her as a mother of two, she has morning sickness. Although, I love that royalty gets admitted to the hospital when they have morning sickness where as the rest of us are just grabbing the porcelain bowl.

But I can`t wait to see the queen maybe crack a smile when the baby passes gas, you know, loosen things up in the royal household, and I can`t wait to see Kate shove away the glam squad that does her hair and a makeup when she says I need a coffee, I was up all night breast-feeding. And she goes out in her sweats with her stroller. We`re going to see a new side of Kate Middleton, and I`m very excited about it.

HAMMER: Well, I`ve always liked her anyway.

But David, You know, the hype was so huge over the royal wedding. Can you imagine what it is going to be as the baby watch is now officially under way. I can`t even fathom how big this is going to get.

BEGNAUD: Look. Somewhere right now Prince Harry is kicking the bucket and running around in his birthday suit again because he just got bumped down in the line of succession. I think it`s fantastic. You know, here in America, I think we`re a little more cynical. I just came across tweets: "I don`t care about the royals. I didn`t care about the wedding. I didn`t care about the baby." But the reality is people do care.

As for the support of the palace who was trying to keep it hush-hush that she was pregnant, have you seen the tabloid coverage? Congratulations and let`s hope she gets out of the hospital, and what is the name going to be? That`s what I want to know, boy or girl.

HAMMER: But David, let me just ask you, is this divided on gender line here? Were the cynical tweets coming more from men? Because it does seem from my advantage point that women are far more excited about this by and large.

BEGNAUD: Absolutely. Talk to a woman about it, and she is all about it. Talk to a guy and he is like who cares? But of course we wish them the best.

HAMMER: Not universally, of course.

But we move from William and Catherine`s great expectations to a bit of a surprise. Brad Pitt`s bomb of an expectation. Comes in at number four on our countdown of the top five "SHOWBIZ Newsmakers" today.

Despite the relentless hype, Brad Pitt`s brand-new movie "Killing Them Softly" really seems to be dying a pretty quick hard death here. Brad was everywhere including right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT talking about the movie, but the movie made a measly $7 million. That`s the second worst box office opening to date, Megan. How do you explain this?

MEANLY: I do miss cute little Brad, "Thelma & Louise" days. Maybe he has gotten a little off track with the acting. Very busy with the kids and with the big movie star wife. You know, you got to be careful. He stepped back a little bit to do other projects. He is really into architecture. They travel constantly. You know, Ben Affleck disappeared a little bit too, and we were worried maybe he was done, and boom, he is back and splashing across the headlines.

So, you know, Brad had a bad movie. He had a good one last year. "Moneyball" did well. I don`t think this is the end of Brad, but I personally have lost a little bit of interest. I`m more interested is his hair long or short? Is he shaving, not shaving?

HAMMER: But that is exactly his problem. And you look at the attention the Chanel ad got -- more than the movie. In fact, this movie made at the box office over the weekend about, a little more, but about what he got paid to do that short commercial.

I actually asked Brad about the commercial, which was lampooned endlessly. And here is what he had to tell me.


HAMMER: You cannot turn on the TV without seeing the Chanel ad, Brad. Obviously you me that got such a huge reaction. Did you get a kick out of the reaction?

BRAD PITT, ACTOR: I say fair play.

HAMMER: Absolutely, absolutely. I say they got their money`s worth with you. I mean, the number of times that it got played just people talking about it.

PITT: You know, I`m not a part of that side of the marketing. But fair play.


HAMMER: OK, fair play. Fair play for the Chanel ad.

But David, do you suspect that maybe Brad is brooding at least just a bit today about what a flop his movie was?

BEGNAUD: Yes, look, I think in the interview with you, A.J., he wanted to talk more about the movie than the Chanel ad. But as you said, more people were talking about the ad.

Look, quite honestly, I care more about Brad`s philanthropy and his family than I do of his movies. Brad Pitt as a movie guy, yes, maybe years ago, but I don`t even associate a lot of great things that Brad Pitt does with moviemaking anymore. And I think that`s sad, because he is a terrific actor.

HAMMER: Terrific.

BEGNAUD: But I think this is the reality of where his stardom is.

HAMMER: And this is often what happens when the stars become bigger as stars outside of the movies, and Brad Pitt is a prime example of that.

But from Brad`s bad buzz to "Playboy" founder Hugh Hefner`s repeating buzz. This comes in at number three on our SHOWBIZ Countdown, the top five "SHOWBIZ Newsmakers" of the day.

Hefner reportedly re-engaged to his much younger girlfriend Crystal Harris. So, 26-year-old Harris and 86-year-old Hef were of course, supposed to get married back in June of 2011. But just days before she called off the wedding and she went on Howard Stern`s radio show, not only poking fun at Hef`s age but she also claiming that she didn`t even like the whole lifestyle, even though she was living at the Playboy Mansion with him. Then, she reportedly tried to sell her engagement ring.

Just this past June, Crystal tweeted that she and Hef were back together and she had moved back into the Playboy Mansion.

Megan, they reportedly get married on New Year`s Eve. Do you actually see this taking place?

MEANLY: I think this might happen, you know. She took off the running shoes. She put back on the stilettos. She said herself, "I stood on my own two feet and I had a year to myself. I didn`t need a man." Now she is thinking, the guy is loaded. Why not?

But there are some things I can see working about the 60-year age difference you know. I mean, they`re not going to have a lot of problems that typical, you know, couples that are the same age have. For instance, you know, she can complain about him on the phone to her girlfriends, and he probably won`t hear.

HAMMER: Yes. Nice.

MEANLY: You know, she could redecorate the living room and he won`t see it.

HAMMER: Hey, hey, hey. Come on, Hef is a pretty hip guy for his age. We will leave him alone and wish them all the best.

That leaves us at number two on tonight`s countdown of the top five "SHOWBIZ Newsmakers" of today. Will it be Rihanna and Chris Brown? Look at this. It`s an in your face Instagram pic. They took a few of these this weekend. Or maybe it`s Ivanka Trump for setting the record straight to me, that all those reports that she and her brothers plan to stage an intervention with her father, Donald Trump over his remarks about President Obama during the election.

Megan, David, thank you both so much.

Well, did you see this? A magician going up in flames right there on television. A man throws flammable cologne on the magician`s head. And look at that, is this some kind of an elaborate magic act or it is one dangerous prank? I`m going to tell you the real story behind it coming up.



HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer.

We`re counting down the top five newsmakers of the day. Here`s where we stand so far.

In at number five, big royal baby news. Prince William and Duchess Catherine revealed today they are expecting a baby, perhaps, the most anticipated baby in the world.

Number four, Brad Pitt`s big bomb. Not even Brad`s star power could save his latest film, "Killing Them Softly", from tanking at the box office over the weekend.

Number three, Hef`s runaway bride repeat? Hugh Hefner is reportedly planning to marry his ex-fiancee Crystal Harris who ditched him just days before their previously planned wedding.

Which brings us to number two on our SHOWBIZ Countdown of our top five newsmakers of the day. Look at this. Rihanna and Chris Brown take the number two spot for their in your face Instagram pics of each other. First, is that picture of Rihanna who just posted a new shot of her hugging Chris Brown, tweeting the line, "My baby killed it tonight." And yes, Chris just sending out this smoky picture of him with Rihanna, Rihanna wrapped in a comfy blanket.

These two seem to enjoy stoking the flames. They know a lot of people aren`t exactly thrilled at the thought of them being back together. But for the record, they both say they are just friends.

And that leads us to the number one in our SHOWBIZ Countdown of the top five "SHOWBIZ Newsmakers" today. It is only fitting that the fabulously successful daughter of Donald Trump be named our top "SHOWBIZ Newsmaker" today.

In addition to her being her father`s right-hand woman, of course, the Trump organization, Ivanka Trump is one of the boardroom judges on "Celebrity Apprentice." She has, of course, her very successful fashion line with shoes and bags and jewelry, all in high demand. But even better as far as I`m concerned -- Ivanka, once again, teamed up with the Glad Products company to support Cookies for Kids with Cancer. It is a terrific nonprofit committed to raising funds to fight pediatric cancer.

So great you`re doing that, Ivanka, and always great to have you on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

IVANKA TRUMP, DAUGHTER OF DONALD TRUMP: Thank you so much. I always love joining you.

HAMMER: Well, Ivanka, I must say, with us declaring you today`s SHOWBIZ number one newsmaker, we have to get right to some news.

You have been setting the record straight about these reports floating around that you and your brothers tried to get your father to tone down his attacks on President Obama. People calling it an intervention. You said that never happened. But I got to tell you something. Your dad and I, we were in a good place. And then, the moment Obama won, he kind of bummed me out, because he kind of went nuts on Twitter and among the things he said this election is a total sham and a travesty. We are not a democracy. Big sigh.

When you hear him say something like that, do you agree with him or thinking he did go too far with those remarks literally at the moment that it was called?

TRUMP: One of the things remarkable about my father is he is outspoken. And he is outspoken even when there is no benefit to being so. So you know, so many people are afraid to touch politics there so, focused on being politically correct that they don`t express their opinions. So, there are so many people who actively seek his opinion in addition to very much respect it. So, just, I just don`t think it would be appropriate or my place to tell him otherwise.

HAMMER: OK. But where -- did you agree with what he said, that it was this big travesty and a sham?

TRUMP: Well, you know, I don`t think he exactly characterized it like that. But you know, he has very passionate about politics. And he was very, very passionate about this election. And one of the things that was so amazing, is what an important voice he was throughout the whole campaign.

So, you know, it was really interesting to sort of observe him and to hear his perspective on things. Being his daughter, I don`t agree with everything he says on each and every subject, but I certainly would never correct him.

HAMMER: OK. And those were his words, to be clear on that. But in addition to politics, your dad has always been a very sympathetic voice towards Lindsay Lohan, shifting gears. Lindsay Lohan, of course, back in the news, Ivanka, with her arrest in New York and allegedly punching a woman a nightclub.

Today with more news about Lindsay with the IRS reportedly having seized her assets for not paying taxes. Now, your dad once told me he would consider having Lindsay on "Celebrity Apprentice." He thought she would be great. Do you think now, with everything going on, she should become a contestant on the show?

TRUMP: I think it would be very redemptive to her to do the show if she could add value, you know, if she could be on the straight and narrow during the show. And I think it offers so many people a vehicle to highlight a different side of themselves, outside not just the show business side, but also the business personalities that enable those people to get to where they are.

In terms of Lindsay Lohan, at this point I really feel sorry for her. I hope that somebody is able to rein her in and pull her aside, help her get her act together. You know, I think she is the victim in some cases of forces aligning against her. There was a terrible incident recently where somebody claimed that she ran them over and it was all nonsense.

HAMMER: Right.

TRUMP: So, you know, I think there is a combination of her putting herself in these situations and also, you know, people gravitating around her downfall.

HAMMER: Well, the show would certainly give her focus if she were to do that. Your fashion line, by the way making big news on its own. I know you just opened a store in China. Women on the staff her in SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, raving today about your shoe collection.

TRUMP: I love that.

HAMMER: Some people are saying you`re giving Jessica Simpson a run for her money. You know how her fashion line has reigned supreme for a long time. Ivanka, can you topple her?

TRUMP: I think so. But then again, I`m a Trump. So if I don`t think big, then, I`m really nothing. But generally speaking, it`s been a lot of fun for me. I started off with the jewelry line, then I launched a year and a half ago, footwear, which has been just incredibly successful, and really exciting for me. Then I launched handbags and then apparel, coats, and I`m actually launching fragrance this month, and then sunglasses. So it`s been really, really fun to build this fashion empire.

HAMMER: It`s amazing work. Thanks again, Ivanka.

TRUMP: Thank you.

HAMMER: And don`t forget that Ivanka has, once again, teamed up with Glad Products company to support Cookies for Kids with Cancer. It`s a nonprofit committed to raising funds to fight pediatric cancer, definitely a very worthy cause.

All right. Did you see this? It`s the unbelievable video of a magician on fire. A TV host actually throws cologne on the head of this magician on his show. You can see his head goes up in flames. Is it an elaborate magic trick or a dangerous prank? I will show you the whole video coming up.




HAMMER: You know, you still know all the moves. And it is still the album and the video that every artist wishes they could duplicate. 30 years later, "Thriller" is still the best there ever was. I said 30 years. Can you believe it? "Thriller" has been around for that long. I listen to it over and over and over, and I know it means so much to so many people. It of course also catapulted Michael Jackson from household name to the ultimate music icon.

And as we mark the 30th anniversary of "Thriller", there are still actually some secrets about the album that have never been revealed. Here is one. The rock star who wanted his guitar solo to be secret, and how MJ`s record company actually helped change MTV forever.

Here is SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Kareen Wynter.


KAREEN WYNTER, HLN ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Seven of the nine tracks would become top ten hits, and 30 years later "Thriller" is still the best-selling album in the world.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It doesn`t matter if you are Asian, black, Hispanic, white, it was just like we all knew "thriller".

PHIL GALLO, BILLBOARD SENIOR CORRESPONDENT: It didn`t matter if you had a huge punk collection or a huge R&B collection, or Frank Sinatra was your favorite singer. For some reason, you owned "thriller"

WYNTER: Although videos like Billy Jean, Beat it, and Thriller quickly became the gold standard for MTV, Billboard`s Phil Gallo says the network was reluctant to place Jackson`s music into rotation.

GALLO: They present a video to MTV of " Beat It" and the president of Epic Records said you don`t get any other videos unless you play Michael Jackson. So it was sort of a smart thread at the time. They went and played it. And of course the response was staggering.

WYNTER: Michael Jackson became the first African-American added to what was then an all rock lineup on MTV. "Thriller" broke new ground with a hybrid of pop, R&B and rock with a guitar solo on "Beat It" by surprise guest Eddie van Halen. Van Halen says it started with a phone call from producer Quincy Jones.

EDDIE VAN HALEN, GUITARIST: He says how would you like to come down and play on Michael Jackson`s new record? And I`m thinking to myself, OK, ABC, one, two, three, and me. How is that going to -- how is that going to work? And lo and behold, when I got there, there is Quincy and there is Michael Jackson, engineers, and they`re making records.

WYNTER: "Thriller" went on to win seven Grammys, but more importantly it was a cultural touchstone that transcended age, ethnicity and music genre.

GALLO: This is the masterpiece. This is the pop classic, in many ways sort of defined the music of his later years.


HAMMER: And there is still no one like the late great Michael Jackson.

That was SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Kareen Wynter.

Well, tonight, an incredible new video of a magician catching on fire. His head up in flames after a TV host threw cologne on the magician. The dramatic video is coming up.



HAMMER: Did you see this? A dramatic video of magician catching fire on TV. But it`s not part of his act. During an appearance on a Dominican Republic TV show, a TV host throws some cologne on magician Wayne Houchin, causing the magician`s head to catch on fire. No one knows why this happened, but on his Facebook page, Houchin says that he suffered burns to his head, face, and neck and hand. And he said it was not part of his act. He called it a criminal attack.

This particular cologne is sometimes used in healing rituals, but as you can see, it did anything but that other magicians like David Copperfield are wishing Houchin well on Twitter. We got to wonder why this happened. No word on why the TV host did throw the cologne on the magician. We certainly wish him a speedy recovery.

Tonight an addiction counselor accused of killing a man after driving drunk hitting a guy and driving away with his body stock to the wind shield.

"DR. DREW" with an HLN exclusive interview with the victim`s family right now.