Michael Jackson Back on Chart Hits

15 July 2009 |

Michael Jackson is still King, but Maxwell and Hannah Montana make for a nice royal court.

Despite big bows from the Brooklyn crooner and the Disney queen, the late King of Pop had the top-selling album in the country for the third straight week, as Number Ones moved another 349,000 copies, per Nielsen SoundScan, making for a 1.1 million-copy tally for all his titles. This is Jackson's best week so far, both for an individual title and collectively, thanks largely to last week's memorial service coverage and retailers finally getting completely stocked up.

The music legend, who also had the week's third best-seller in Thriller (264,000 copies), dominated the catalog charts so thoroughly that he set yet another record. This time, Jackson-related titles took up the top 12 spots, a feat never before accomplished. (In previous weeks, he set records by taking 9 of the Top 10 and then the entire Top 10.)

Because they are catalog titles, Jackson's albums are not eligible for the Billboard 200 charts, which gave Maxwell the opportunity to score his second career chart-topper with BLACKsummers'night. The R&B crooner, who previously hit No. 1 eight years ago with Now, sold 316,000 copies of his new disc.

The Hannah Montana 3 soundtrack followed at No. 2, selling 137,00 copies. While prior Hannah Montana discs seemed to top the charts like Groundhog Day, both of her 2009 soundtracks placed in the runner-up spot. Hannah Montana: The Movie did so earlier this year with a similar tally of 139,000 discs.

In other chart action, rockers All Time Low scored an all-time career high at No. 4, shifting 63,000 copies of Nothing Personal.

Thanks to Jackson's sales spike and big releases from Maxwell and Hannah Montana, overall album sales were up 5 percent over last week and nearly equal to the same week last year.

The government thought it was mainly hospital employees it had to worry about when it came to propofol abuse.

Then authorities unearthed Michael Jackson's pharmaceutical treasure trove, which included the potent anesthetic.

The Drug Enforcement Administration is considering including propofol (brand name Diprivan) on the federal list of controlled substances, an idea that has been rolling around for at least two years, but not fast-tracked because civilian abuse of the stuff is so uncommon.

But Diprivan is becoming a household name now that it's been linked to Jackson.

Several bottles of Diprivan, which has to be administered via an IV and pretty much leaves the user in a comatose state, were confiscated from Jackson's Holmby Hills residence.

Source have confirmed to E! News that needle marks were discovered on Jackson's body during his autopsy. Authorities, including the LAPD, DEA and state attorney general's office, are currently investigating how, why, and when the King of Pop obtained the various drugs found in his residence.

The federal controlled substances list comprises five categories, which encompass everything from the hard stuff, like heroin, to the painkiller OxyContin, to codeine, which is used in some cough medicines. Hospitals are supposed to keep track of every bit (of the legal drugs, presumably) that they purchase, prescribe and dispense.

Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration had Diprivan maker Teva Pharmaceutical recall roughly 60,000 units of the drug following an increase in complaints about nasty side-effects.

"There have been adverse events in three states: Florida, Arizona and Missouri," FDA spokeswoman Karen Riley told E! News. "These include fevers and chills." There were no reports of fatalities, or life-threatening conditions.

The bum batches showed signs of a bacteria-produced endotoxin, she said.

We've been told that there's no connection between the recalled lots and the Diprivan found in Jackson's home, and Riley said that the FDA has no broader concerns about its safety, "if used as indicated in the proper facilities."

Denise Bradley, senior director of corporate communications for Teva Pharmaceutical confirmed to E! News that the DEA contacted the company with regard to the origins of the Diprivan found in Jackson's possession.

"The batch that the DEA contacted us about relating to their investigation is not associated with the lot numbers that are being recalled," Bradley said.

Source: eonline

Gay Dilema Rage on for Brüno

13 July 2009 |

Sacha Baron Cohen's Brüno may have been No. 1 at the box office this weekend, but it's not at the top of some gay activists' must-see movie lists.

In fact, GLAAD issued a statement from its incoming president, Jarrett Barrios, on Friday, the day of the movie's release, expressing disappointment in Cohen's use of too many gay stereotypes...

"This is about the gay kid in Nebraska who gets pushed around in school and when he goes back to school this September, he's going to be called 'Brüno,' " Barrios explained to me this morning.

GLAAD had hoped its many discussions with the film's studio, Universal Pictures, would convince Cohen & Co. to tone down some of the more offensive scenes in the movie. However, Universal has continually maintained that Bruno's intent is to challenge homophobia.

"We are concerned," Barrios said, "that too often in its attempt to expose homophobia, it ends up opening up gay folks to new discrimination and violence."

Meanwhile, Brüno appears on the August cover of gay magazine Out.

An accompanying Q&A with the flamboyant Austrian fashion journalist (Cohen always does press in character) addresses such topics as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Michelle Obama and Sex and the City.

"Yes, he is puerile, offensive, and utterly inappropriate, but so what?" the magazine's editor in chief, Aaron Hicklin, writes in his Editor's Letter. "The same has been said of Lenny Bruce, Richard Pryor, Joan Rivers, and Sarah Silverman, comic geniuses all, whose humor rests on having the balls to say 'boo' to the ghost in the room. The ghost in this case is homophobia, although whether it's being lampooned or perpetuated is part of the tension that makes the movie work."

Source: eonline

We may not have the results of the toxicology report yet, but one thing from Michael Jackson's autopsy is certain.

Not only were needle marks found on the star, but they were located on his neck and arms, a source tells E! News. Investigators are hard at work trying to determine whether the marks were from IV needles used to administer the powerful sedative Diprivan.

Sister La Toya Jackson takes this news a step further, allegedly telling a British tab, "He had many needle marks on his neck and on his arms, and more about those will emerge in the next few weeks. But nothing has changed my mind that this was murder."

Given the media circus around M.J.'s death, it's surprising La Toya took three weeks to chime in. According to comments attributed to her in the News of the World article, she's taken one of the theories we've all heard—that people around the star didn't have his best interests at heart—and bumped it up to the conspiracy level. In the article, she continues to suggest her brother's death was an organized group murder and robbery.

Meanwhile, Dr. Conrad Murray, the cardiologist with Jackson at the time of his death, continues to maintain his innocence and his camp has taken issue with La Toya saying Murray didn't identify himself to the family at the hospital the day Jackson died.

"That's kind of odd," attorney spokeswoman Miranda Sevcik, told E! News Monday. "He didn't disappear. He talked to La Toya and Jermaine, helped them break the news to the children.

"She may have thought he disappeared at that point, but he was talking to investigators. He spoke with investigators directly after Michael was pronounced dead, so maybe that's why she couldn't find him."

When E! News spoke with Sevcik, on Friday, she said that stories of police requesting additional documents from Murray were false.

"That's absolutely not true," she told E! News. "We gave everything that the investigators asked for on June 27th when we had that last long interview."

Although Murray issued a statement a week ago saying he never provided Jackson with any life-threatening drugs, Sevcik could not comment on Murray's knowledge of anyone else providing Jackson with medication, nor was she willing to comment on any specific medications.

"Our agreement was to not share any more details of the investigation, so we can't speak to the Diprivan," she said. "This was not our decision. This is what was requested of us by Los Angeles investigators. They thought if we talked about it, it would slow them down."

Sorce: eonline

Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens celebrated their Fourth of July together with a bite to eat at Panera in LA. Zac showed off a new shorter 'do, which is a change from his signature side-swept bangs. Vanessa and her Zac kept their holiday a little more low-key than some other celebrities after he had plenty of solo fun in the sun last week.