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December 5th, 2013
05:42 AM ET

Celebrity Chef Nigella Lawson Admits Using Cocaine in Court

Celebrity chef Nigella Lawson used cocaine during two periods of her life, she admitted Wednesday as she testified in the fraud trial of two former personal assistants in a London court, reports CNN's Erin MgLaughlin.

She told the court she had used the drug about six times with her late husband, John Diamond, when he learned that his cancer was terminal, in order to give him "some escape from his treatment."

She also used cocaine once in July 2010 when she felt subject to "terrorism" by her then-husband Charles Saatchi, she said.

At that point she felt trapped, isolated and unhappy, she said, and a friend offered her the drug.

But, Lawson said, "I've never been a drug addict, I've never been an habitual user. ... I did not have a drug problem, I had a life problem."

Saatchi had claimed in an e-mail that Lawson had used drugs regularly, but in testimony Friday he backed off that claim.

Lawson's admission of cocaine use came after she earlier testified that Saatchi had threatened to "destroy" her if she did not "clear his name."

She had been asked about her reluctance to attend court as a witness in the assistants' trial - a case that has gripped the media as claims emerge about the couple's troubled personal life.

"I have been put on trial here where I am called to answer, and glad to answer the allegations, and the world's press, and it comes after a long summer of bullying and abuse," Lawson said. "I find it's another chapter in that."

Referring to Saatchi's request for her to attend the trial, made in a letter sent by his lawyers, Lawson said: "He had said to me if I didn't get back to him and clear his name he would destroy me."

Lawson said she felt she had to do her civic duty. "It's difficult for me, it's very difficult for my children, but I want to do the right thing," she added.

The former aides, Italian sisters Francesca and Elisabetta Grillo, deny embezzling hundreds of thousands of pounds on company credit cards while employed by Lawson and Saatchi.

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Filed under: Celebrity • Entertainment • Legal
July 15th, 2013
06:03 AM ET

Remembering Cory Monteith – Nick Valencia reports

Hollywood this morning is remembering Cory Monteith, a TV star whose bright career was suddenly cut short when he was found dead in a downtown Vancouver hotel room.

CNN's Nick Valencia has more on that tragic news.

“News of the death of 31-year-old ‘Glee’ actor Corey Monteith stunned his closest friends,” Valencia says. “His cause of death was not immediately clear, but at a press conference late Saturday, police ruled out foul play.”

Skyrocketing to fame in 2009 as the lovable, heartthrob quarterback on the hit FOX TV series, Monteith was just beginning to find success, but his troubles have long followed him.

“Since he was 13-year-old, Monteith openly said he battled with his sobriety,” Valencia reports.

“It was just four months ago when the Canadian actor voluntarily checked himself into a rehab facility. His friends and girlfriend were encouraged by his steps to stay clean.”

His friend Adam Shankman spoke on the phone to Monteith just hours before his death.

Shankman shares that Monteith even said, "I'm feeling fantastic again." Shankman explains, "He was obviously referring to that moment he had this year with going to rehab. So I'm like everybody else really devastated and confused by what happened."

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Filed under: Celebrity • Hollywood • Obit • Tragedy
July 5th, 2013
07:18 AM ET

More celebs branding their own wines – Nischelle Turner reports

Celebrities have long branded scents, clothing lines, even BBQ sauces. But here's a trend that might leave you thirsty for more.

There's big money to be made in the wine business these days, and Nischelle Turner says some big names are getting in on the action.

“From Brad and Angelina to Sting and Drew Barrymore, more and more celebs are pouring their star power into wines,” Turner says.

"Let's face it, some of them are in it for the money,” says Wine Spectator Magazine Executive Editor Tom Matthews. “But I think the serious ones really love the product."

Wine Spectator Magazine's expert taster James Molesworth shared his critique, starting with Brangelina's Rose.

“We thought the quality was there, the flavors are beautiful, it's fresh, it's delicious,” Molesworth says. “It's an excellent wine.”

But another taster was not so fond.

"It didn't have much of a nose for me and just was not real flavorful," one says about Rose.

For most, celebrities star power isn't necessarily a recipe for good wine.

A taster puts it this way: “Maybe the celebrities should taste the wine before they put their name on the label."


Filed under: Celebrity • Entertainment • Fun • Style
June 20th, 2013
06:26 AM ET

Remembering James Gandolfini – Nischelle Turner reports

CNN is remembering James Gandolfini this morning. The 51-year-old actor died in Italy of an apparent heart attack yesterday, though the official cause is yet unknown. He was on holiday with his teenage son.

The shock struck many from his HBO family of the creators and co-stars of “The Sopranos” to his fans and the residents of New Jersey. Nischelle Turner has been watching the reaction to the death of the man best known as Tony Soprano, and the tributes continue to flow in.

“He may have enjoyed global fame but he never strayed far from home, New Jersey," Turner says.

"He was a great actor and he definitely put New Jersey in the map, all positive,” one fan said. “He just made Jersey better than it already is."

One of his best-known fans, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie released a statement saying, "It's an awful shock. James Gandolfini was a fine actor, a Rutgers alum and a true Jersey guy. I was a huge fan of his and the character he played so authentically, Tony Soprano."

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Filed under: Celebrity • Hollywood • Obit
June 13th, 2013
06:50 AM ET

Man of Steel ready to soar? – Margaret Conley has the details

Superman fans have been waiting a long time for this. "Man of Steel"—the reboot and rebirth of the super-hero franchise, hits theaters at midnight.

Reviews have been mixed, but the darker and more grounded new Superman looks ready to soar at the box office. CNN's Margaret Conley has the details.

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Filed under: Box Office • Celebrity • Film • Movie • Superheroes
June 10th, 2013
09:04 AM ET

Performer eggs Simon Cowell on "Britain's Got Talent" finale

Some stars on stage may be used to hecklers in the audience expressing their displeasure. But on live TV this weekend, the heckler, was actually on the stage. And she directed her thoughts at none other than Simon Cowell. John Berman has the story.

A woman hurls eggs at judge Cowell in a shocking moment during "Britain's Got Talent" finale. “Even with egg on his face, Cowell managed to get the last word," Berman says. Cowell tweeted: "I don't think eggs should be allowed on talent shows. Discuss?”


Filed under: Celebrity • Entertainment
May 29th, 2013
08:22 AM ET

Hot mess: What happened to Amanda Bynes? – A.J. Hammer reports

Actress Amanda Bynes has recently been making headlines for all the wrong reasons. A.J. Hammer tracks her fall from grace.

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Filed under: Celebrities • Celebrity • Trending
March 28th, 2013
06:59 AM ET

CNNTrends: "Breaking Bad" star Bryan Cranston's 911 call released & new Miami Dolphins logo confirmed

Trending on the web this morning is an update on displeasing news for fans of one of television’s hottest shows, and the new Miami Dolphins logo splashing in South Florida.

"Breaking Bad" returns this summer for the series' final eight episodes, but it was recently reported that star Bryan Cranston had a top-secret script from one of the upcoming final episodes stolen when a thief broke into his car near where the series is shot in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Although a suspect has been arrested,  it appears the script is still missing. Now—we're hearing Cranston's 9-1-1 call to police.

And the new Miami Dolphins team logo is getting lots of buzz. The team officially confirmed the new logo  after it was leaked and appeared on NFL.com. It features a helmet-free dolphin and the team will official unveil it at the start of the NFL draft.


Filed under: Celebrities • Celebrity • Entertainment • NFL • Trending • TV
March 13th, 2013
06:31 AM ET

CNN Trends: Lady Gaga's golden ride

Trending on the web this morning is Lady Gaga's hip new ride. The singer is wheeling around in a designer 24-karat gold wheelchair as she recovers from hip surgery. Designer Ken Borochov specifically made it for her, and it comes complete with a leather seat and a removable leather canopy.

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Filed under: Celebrities • Celebrity • Trending
January 17th, 2013
06:23 AM ET

CNN Trends: GQ names Beyoncé 'Miss Millennium'

Trending on the web this morning: Beyoncé is named "Miss Millennium" by "GQ" Magazine.

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Filed under: Celebrities • Celebrity • Trending
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