No sitcom for Jessica Simpson

Missy chickens out

JAKARTA: American hip-hop star Missy Elliott has cancelled her scheduled concert in Jakarta after the United States warned of terrorist threats in Indonesia. Elliott was due to perform in Jakarta on Wednesday but her management has notified the organiser that she had cancelled due to the warning, said Roberto, director of a company which invited Elliot. “We apologise to all fans of Missy Elliott for the cancellation of Missy’s performance,” Roberto was quoted by the state Antara news agency as saying. The US embassy in Jakarta, in a notice issued Friday, said that, “a convergence of local and international factors has increased the potential threat to Americans in Indonesia.” It cited “anti-American sentiment stirred up by media portrayals of US actions in Iraq” as one of the international factors. — AFP

Snoop Dogg files for divorce

LOS ANGELES: Snoop Dogg has filed for divorce from Shante Broadus, according to papers filed with Los Angeles Superior Court. They have been married since 1997 and have three children: Corde, 9; Cordell, 7; and Cori, 4. The rapper/actor is seeking joint custody. Snoop, born Calvin Broadus, cited general “irreconcilable differences” for the break-up in the papers filed with the court. “The only thing I want to say is Broadus hopes that the divorce can be as amicable as possible,” Snoop’s attorney, Robert Nachshin, said. Snoop, 32, co-stars in the new movie ‘Soul Plane’, which opens Friday. He also has appeared in the movies ‘Baby Boy’ and ‘Starsky & Hutch’, starred in MTV’s ‘Doggy Fizzle Televizzle’ comedy show and helped popularise new slang that adds a lot of unnecessary Zs and Ls to words. — AP

Armani foreign fashion advisor

BANGKOK: Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani has agreed to help Thailand’s bid to transform itself into an international fashion hub, an official said Tuesday. Panlert Baiyok, manager of the government’s “Bangkok Fashion City” initiative, said Armani has agreed to provide consulting and technical assistance, and train Thai designers at his Milan headquarters free of charge. “Armani responded to Thailand’s invitation letter to be the first advisor for the Bangkok Fashion City project, and he agreed and said he was willing to lend support,” Panlert said.

“It is a first for both sides because he is our first foreign advisor and our city is his first advisory project,” Panlert said, adding that Thailand will select up to six designers to train within Armani’s vast fashion empire. Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatras launched 456 million dollar campaign to transform the capital into the Paris of Asia at the beginning of this year. The initiative, aimed at revamping Thailands reputation as a haven for cheap, pirated versions of designer goods, has involved shopping centre extravaganzas and a fashion street

parade. — AFP

John Butler bags APRA award

MELBOURNE: An American-born singer-songwriter who has spurned commercial record labels has become the first independent artist to win Australia’s top music award. John Butler was the surprise winner of the song of the year gong at the APRA music industry awards on Monday, beating internationally known rock group Powerderfinger and home-town favourite Delta Goodrem. Butler, 28, releases his music on Jarrah Records, a small Perth-based label he owns together with the group The Waifs. His John Butler Trio was honoured for the song “Zebra “on their album ‘Sunrise Over the Sea”. It marks the first time that an artist with no major label backing has received the honour, voted for by 13,000 music industry peers. — AFP

Tolkien’s house

LONDON: Fans of J R R Tolkien now have the chance to buy their own bit of Middle Earth: the house where he’s believed to have written ‘The Hobbit’ and started ‘The Lord of the Rings’.

The six-bedroom house, in a leafy corner of north Oxford, was Tolkein’s home for 17 years when he taught at Oxford University, and it’s going on the market for 1.5 million pounds this week. He moved out in 1947, when it was taken over by another academic who died recently. The house’s long quarry-tiled corridor is regarded by some as the inspiration for the dwarves in the opening chapter of ‘The Hobbit’ who sing of cracking plates and rolling items down the hall. — AFP