‘Mini-me’ to annul marriage

LOS ANGELES: The diminutive actor who played tiny Mini-me in Hollywood’s ‘Austin Powers’ spoof movies is seeking to annul his marriage to a lanky super-model, court papers showed Friday. The 32” actor Verne Troyer wants his union with 6’2” model Genevieve Gowman declared invalid, papers filed in the Los Angeles area of Santa Monica showed. “We do not believe there was a valid marriage,” Troyer’s attorney Fred Silberberg said. “That’s why we’ve filed a request for an annulment. The court will make the determination.” Troyer played the compact sidekick to an evil genius in comedian Mike Myers’ hit series of films about a bumbling British super spy stuck in 1960s pop culture. The actor filed for annulment on February 23. Troyer and Gowman dated for around three years but announced in August last year that they had called off their engagement. The annulment petition reveals that the two did in fact tie the knot. A hearing in the case is scheduled for June 17. Representatives for Gowman, who works under the name Genevieve Gallen, could not be immediately be reached for comment. — AFP

Rappers for civic responsibility

COLUMBUS: Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons and Kanye West and other rap stars held a free concert at Ohio State University to encourage students to vote in November. The Rev Run of Run-DMC, Loon, Petey Pablo and Layzie Bone of the Cleveland group Bone Thugs-n-Harmony were at the Schottenstein Centre on Thursday, along with Roc-A-Fella Records co-founder Damon Dash. Dash said the hip-hop community needed to stress voting and civic responsibility to gain respect and bring about change. “We are at the forefront of our culture and considered the coolest,” he said. “It is cool to be socially conscious to do what’s right and find a candidate to vote for.” Some 2,000 people registered to vote at the event, organized by Simmons’ group, the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network. The network and community partners registered another 10,000 in the past two weeks. A national hip-hop political convention will be held June 16-19 in Newark, New Jersey. Simmons’ group hopes to register 2 million young voters before the presidential election November 2. — AFP

Halle Berry’s divorce will be costly

LOS ANGELES: Oscar-winning movie star Halle Berry’s estranged husband Eric Benet may angle for a bigger share of her wealth when the couple divorce, court documents showed Friday. Berry, 35, became the first black actress to win a best-actress Academy Award in 2002. She filed for divorce from her second husband, Benet, in April — six months after the couple announced their separation. Court documents published by website hesmokinggun.com showed, however, that Benet wants a Los Angeles court to rule on the validity of the couple’s prenuptial agreement, which generally protects the wealthier spouse by regulating the division of their wealth in a divorce.

In the court papers, filed on June 1, Benet asked the court to “determine the validity and/or enforceability of the parties’ prenuptial agreement and subsequent amendments thereto.” He also asked that ‘Monster’s Ball’ star and James Bond girl Berry be ordered to pay him spousal support and that she foot the bill for their divorce. When she and Benet separated in October, Berry said: “Eric and I have had marital problems for some time.” Berry and Benet married in January 2001 and have no children. The actress was previously married to former US Major League Baseball player David Justice. — AFP