People talk 092903

Monday, September 29, 2003

Rapper buys Tyson home for more than 50 cents

FARMINGTON, Conn. -- Rapper 50 Cent has purchased a mansion that once belonged to former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson.

The rapper, whose real name is Curtis James Jackson III, bought the 48,000-square-foot mansion for $4.1 million, according to records on file with the town clerk.

The property, which includes a 52-room home, servants' quarters and a boathouse, was bought from Tyson's ex-wife, Monica Turner Tyson. The fighter signed the house over to her for $1 in 2002 as part of a divorce settlement.

Tyson purchased the house in 1996 for $2.7 million.

50 Cent's music draws on his dangerous past, when he hustled crack growing up in a gritty neighborhood in the Queens section of New York City.

He has been shot nine times and stabbed. He's involved in a fierce rap rivalry with Ja Rule and his Murder Inc. crew, and police say he was threatened after the murder of rapper Jam Master Jay.

Costner opens up about 'Open Range' movie

SAN SEBASTIAN, Spain -- Actor Kevin Costner and his new western drama rode into town and rounded up the San Sebastian Film Festival.

"Open Range" was shown out of competition and closed out the festival.

Costner, 48, said he loves watching movies as well as being in them. He co-produced, directed and starred in 1990's "Dances with Wolves," which won seven Oscars including best picture and best director.

"When I do films, I don't just try to predict what audiences want, I want to make a movie that nobody ever forgets," he said at a packed news conference at which he wore a white cowboy hat. "When I work, it's not about how much money I'll make, but how the movie will make me feel."

Costner, who also starred in "The Untouchables" and "JFK," said that regardless of whether the western has fallen out commercially, good American actors and audiences will always be drawn to the genre.

"The western is about feelings of men, how people communicate with each other, about land," he said.

Great White drummer in crash prior to concert

ALLENTOWN, Pa. -- The drummer for Great White, the rock band associated with a deadly Rhode Island nightclub fire, was involved in a three-vehicle accident a few hours before a concert.

Derrick Pontier was treated at a hospital for minor injuries after Saturday's accident and was released.

In February, the band was performing at The Station nightclub when its pyrotechnics display ignited a fire that killed 100 and injured almost 200. The band's guitarist, Ty Longley, died in the blaze.

Great White has donated $37,000 from more than a dozen recent shows to a nonprofit organization created to benefit victims' families and survivors of the fire.

In Saturday's accident, an oncoming car crossed the center line and crashed into Pontier's vehicle, police said.

That driver was listed in critical condition. Pontier's car slammed into another vehicle, and the condition of that driver wasn't known.-- From wire reports

Honoring playwright O'Neill conflicts with law

DANVILLE, Calif. -- Playwright Eugene O'Neill spent some of his most productive writing years on a ranch in this San Francisco Bay area suburb -- but you'd never know it from a walk around town.

Though he is widely hailed as America's greatest playwright, Danville has no monument to O'Neill, who lived and worked in the town from 1937 to 1944. During that span he penned classics including "The Iceman Cometh" and the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Long Day's Journey Into Night."

The National Park Service made his ranch a historical site in 1976, but it's in the hills outside town and reservations are required for visits.

Now local boosters of O'Neill, who died in 1953, are looking for Danville to recognize the connection -- a plaque, a statue, a renamed street. They say one donor has promised $20,000 for a tribute.

Problem is, Danville has a long-standing policy against naming public buildings or parks for an individual, said town Manager Joe Calabrigo. A plaque might work, he said, without making any promises.

-- From wire reports

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