Originally created 08/25/04

People in the News

LONDON -- Jimmy Page hasn't yet made it up the stairway to heaven, but he's the first to reach the new British Walk of Fame.

The former Led Zeppelin guitarist cast his hand prints in cement Monday as the first music legend to be featured on London's answer to the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

"It's a real privilege and a great honor to be the first. I'm really chuffed," said Page, 60. "A Walk of Fame is a fantastic idea, and it's high time we had one in London."

The site of the British version, which will feature popular music giants, is taking shape outside the new Virgin Music superstore on Piccadilly Circus, London's landmark crossroads.

Page predicted it would soon become crowded with hand prints. "If you started putting in all the people I think are deserving, you could cover the whole of London," he said.

Led Zeppelin - which included singer Robert Plant, bassist John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham, who died in 1980 - was one of the top rock bands in history and produced nine chart-topping albums from 1969 to 1979.

Their most famous song was "Stairway to Heaven," which was never released as a single but became one of the most requested radio songs of all time.

Led Zeppelin was back on top of the U.S. rock chart last year with a greatest hits album, "How the West Was Won."

Page frequently is rated as one of the greatest rock guitarists in history. In 2002, a poll conducted by Total Guitar magazine rated him No. 2 to the late Jimi Hendrix.

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NEW YORK -- Fifteen years and over 100 strangers since its debut, MTV's "The Real World" has moved to Philadelphia with a fresh crop of 21- to 24-year-olds.

Karamo, Landon, Melanie, MJ, Sarah, Shavonda and Willie (MTV won't reveal their last names) are the latest strangers plucked from obscurity and picked to live in a house together, or in this case, a former bank.

The 10,000-square-foot house, in the heart of Philadelphia's Old City neighborhood, has the standard "Real World" amenities, including a hot tub, fitness equipment and pool table. But unlike the Seattle season's pier or the Las Vegas season's Palms Hotel and Casino penthouse, the Philly digs have history: the house was built at the turn of the century and was originally the Union National Bank of Philadelphia. More recently, it served as the headquarters for the Merchant Seamen's Institute and Church.

The new season of "Real World" will premiere Sept. 7. MTV will preview the series with "Out of My Way, I'm Moving In: Tips for Getting into The Real World," a one-hour casting special set to air Tuesday.

The diverse cast includes Landon, 24, who is sensitive about being labeled a "dumb jock" and is afraid to "let go," fearing that others won't accept him; Karamo, 23, who struggles with his feelings about interracial dating; Melanie, 22, who has a spontaneous wild streak; MJ, 23, who had dreamed of playing pro football; Sarah, 22, who isn't afraid to use her sex appeal to get what she wants; Shavonda, 22, who is the life of the party; and Willie, 23, who is "stubborn" and insists that it's his "way or the highway."

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NEW YORK -- World Wrestling Entertainment chairman Vince McMahon is looking for a few good men.

For three seasons, McMahon's WWE granted wrestling contracts via the "Tough Enough" MTV reality competition. McMahon is doing it again, but this time, there's $1 million on the line and a new format.

Unlike the previous gender-friendly "Tough Enough" seasons, which had men and women competing against each other to become the next Triple H or Trish Stratus, the fourth venture will see eight men battling for the four-year contract, WWE spokesman Michael Smith told The Associated Press Monday.

And "Tough Enough" won't be returning to MTV. For eight weeks, the new incarnation will be integrated into "Smackdown!" on UPN, beginning in October and ending in December. Each week, viewers will vote "American Idol" style for the contestant they want to see win the $1 million contract. The man with the lowest votes will be sent packing.

Casting for "athletic, physically fit, talented and charismatic men" has begun. Prospective body slammers are encouraged to download an application and submit a 60-second video.

Smith said the WWE is looking for amateur wrestlers from "all walks of life."

Meanwhile, a similar contest for women - searching for WWE divas, not wrestlers - is happening during "RAW," WWE's Spike TV prime-time show. But the "RAW Diva Search" winner's prize is much less substantial: a yearlong contract and $250,000.

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SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- A third paternity test has confirmed that Marc Anthony didn't father a child with a Cuban dancer as she has claimed, the singer's lawyer said.

Elizabeth Leyva, who lives in Miami, brought a paternity lawsuit in a Florida court, alleging that Anthony is the father of her son, who was born late last year.

Orchid GeneScreen, which has labs in Dallas and Dayton, Ohio, conducted the most recent DNA test on Aug. 13, concluding that Anthony wasn't the father, lawyer Orin Snyder said Monday.

"The three leading paternity labs in the world have confirmed scientifically that he is not the father," Snyder said. "There is no reality to this claim whatsoever."

Snyder said he has contacted Leyva's lawyers, asking her to drop the lawsuit.

Leyva's lawyers couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

In June, a judge in the Dominican Republic approved a divorce for Anthony and Dayanara Torres, a Puerto Rican who was crowned Miss Universe in 1993. They have two children.

Anthony reportedly married singer-actress Jennifer Lopez days after the divorce, at Lopez's home in Beverly Hills, Calif. Anthony, who was born in New York but whose parents are Puerto Rican, has declined to confirm it.

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LEADVILLE, Colo. -- Just over a year after cutting off his right arm to save his life during a solo hike in Utah, Aspen adventurer Aron Ralston has completed a grueling 100-mile race at an elevation of over 10,000 feet.

More than 400 runners began the Leadville Trail race before dawn Saturday, racing through hail and lightning at times, but fewer than half officially completed the race. Some dropped out because of nausea and cramps and others weren't able to cross the finish line within the 30-hour time limit.

Ralston, an official finisher with a time of 29:43, said he got sick after eating an onion sandwich but continued running despite feeling nauseated.

Paul DeWitt won the men's race for the second straight year with a time of 17:16:19. Anthea Schmid was the first woman to finish, with a time of 23:30:43.

Volunteers at aid stations peeled bananas for Ralston, who previously had only run in 5K races.

"I felt in good balance," he said. "I helped one gentleman who took a spill."

His mother, Donna Ralston, was waiting at the finish line to give him a hug.

Last April, Ralston was hiking alone, negotiating a canyon in southeastern Utah when his right arm became pinned beneath an 800-pound boulder. After other failed attempts, he freed himself on the fifth day by snapping his bones and using a knife to cut through his arm.

Since then he has learned to play the piano one-handed, climbed 14,000-foot-tall Colorado mountains alone and returned to skiing and mountain biking.


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