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UPI NewsTrack Entertainment News-'Extreme Makeover' sued for suicide



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LOS ANGELES, Sep 18, 2005 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- A Los Angeles lawsuit claims producers of ABC's "Extreme Makeover" dumped a makeover candidate at the last minute and shattered her Texas family.

The 31-page lawsuit filed in Los Angeles claims "Extreme Makeover" promised a "Cinderella-like fix" for Deleese Williams' deformed jaw, crooked teeth, droopy eyes and small chest that would "transform her life and destiny," the New York Daily News reported Sunday.

Williams' pending makeover was announced on air Jan. 7, 2004. Producers then coaxed family members to say mean things about her looks on videotape, while she sat in earshot of it all, the suit alleges.

"Extreme Makeover" flew her from Texas to Los Angeles and as she sat in her hotel room reading pre-op instructions for the next morning, a producer showed up and told her she was being dropped because her recovery time would take too long, Williams' attorney, Wesley Cordova, told the Daily News.

Her sister, Kellie McGee, "fell to pieces" over the mean things she said about her sister and killed herself four months later, Cordova said.

Williams, 30, and her husband, Mike, are now raising McGee's two children, along with their own two children. The suit seeks unspecified damages.

ABC has declined to comment on the allegations, the Daily News said.

'Tsotsi' wins Toronto Film Fest award

TORONTO, Sept. 18 (UPI) -- The British/South African film about a gang leader called "Tsotsi" won the Toronto Film Festival's People's Choice Award.

Director Gavin Hood's film won both the audience award and best new British feature film award last week at the Edinburgh International Film Festival as well, the Hollywood Reporter said.

In accepting his award in Toronto Saturday, Hood paid tribute to one of his stars, first-time actor Presley Chweneyagae, the Reporter said.

The film is based on the novel by South African writer Athol Fugard and is in the Tstotsi-taal language.

The People's Choice runner-up was "Mother of Mine," a drama about a mother and son in war-torn Finland.

Neil says show goes on despite injury

ATLANTA, Sept. 18 (UPI) -- Motley Crue frontman Vince Neil injured his leg on stage, forcing the rock band to end its concert in Atlanta and rush the singer to a hospital.

Neil partially tore the medial portion of his calf muscle five songs into Crue's concert Saturday night at Phillips Arena, the band said in a news release.

"I just felt something snap in my leg, like a cramp," Neil said in the release. "I just couldn't go on."

Although doctors urged Neil to take time off, he announced: "I am a trooper," and vowed to take the stage as scheduled Sunday night in Memphis.

The band said it would return to Atlanta and honor all tickets from Saturday night's aborted show.

Lenny Bruce's former wife dead at 78

HONOLULU, Sept. 18 (UPI) -- The former wife of legendary comedian Lenny Bruce, Honey Bruce Friedman, has died in Honolulu at age 78.

The former nightclub singer and stripper died Monday after a long illness, the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday.

Friedman was stripping as "Hot Honey Harlowe" when she and Bruce met in Baltimore, the Times said. They married in 1951.

She later wrote he was "the most handsome man I'd seen in my life."

Bruce tried to turn his wife into a respectable singer and the pair performed movie parodies together, Gerald Nachman wrote in his book, "Seriously Funny: The Rebel Comedians of the 1950s and 1960s."

They had a daughter, Kitty, but the marriage -- marked by their heroin abuse -- ended in 1957.

Friedman's 1977 book "Honey: The Life and Loves of Lenny's Shady Lady," said she had been clean for more than seven years after a 16-year drug addiction.

Friedman is survived by her husband, Jeffrey Friedman, and her daughter.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International.

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