Vegas is betting on Sheen


Published: Thursday, August 1, 2002 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, August 1, 2002 at 12:00 a.m.
Sheen LAS VEGAS - Martin Sheen is the favorite to win a best-actor Emmy - at least at some Las Vegas casinos.
Oddsmakers at Bally's and the Stardust both like Sheen, who's nominated for his third consecutive year as President Bartlet on NBC's "The West Wing."
Johnny Avello, race and sports book director at Bally's, has Sheen at 6-5 to win, followed by first-time nominee Kiefer Sutherland of Fox's "24" at 2-1. Joe Lupo, race and sports book manager at the Stardust, has him favored at 2-1, followed by Peter Krause of HBO's "Six Feet Under" at 3-1.
"Martin Sheen is just a top quality actor," Avello said Tuesday. "I think he's real likable and that he can win again."
Sheen received an Emmy in 1994 as a guest actor on "Murphy Brown."
Both agree that "The West Wing" also will win outstanding drama series at the Sept. 22 ceremony.
For outstanding comedy series, Avello likes NBC's "Friends" at 8-5, while Lupo has NBC's "Will & Grace" topping the category at 2-1.
Nevada law prohibits wagering on events in which the outcome is already known, but Las Vegas oddsmakers handicap such contests as the Academy Awards or "Survivor" for entertainment purposes.
--- On the Net: Emmys Web site: http://www.emmys.com/primetime/2002/index.html
--- ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Minnesotans can finally see what juicy film role lured Gov. Jesse Ventura away from the state the day after the Minnesota Twins were targeted for elimination last fall.
Ventura plays a thief who steals the Liberty Bell in the comedy "The Master of Disguise."
In a cameo role, he joins a plot to steal the world's precious symbols. As star-struck security guards toting their own Jesse Ventura action figures look on, Ventura hefts the historic bell.
"Thanks for the Liberty Bell, guys," he says. "I'll bring it right back."
Then he reminds the guards that those aren't dolls their carrying, they're action figures.
After the heist, he pauses for a moment of contemplation with an evil companion: "My skills were meant for the betterment of mankind, not for greed and evil," Ventura says.
That line drew laughs at a preview in Edina on Tuesday night. The movie, starring comedian Dana Carvey, opens Friday.
Top aides couldn't say where Ventura was last fall when he took vacation days the day after Major League Baseball put the Twins in its sights for contraction. The Minnesota State Patrol, which provides his security, and studio officials later revealed that he was shooting a movie.
--- Hank ready for Monday night NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Hank Williams Jr. is ready for some football.
The country singer recorded his 16th season of "Monday Night Football" themes on Monday.
Each game this season gets its own lyrics, set to Williams' 1984 hit "All My Rowdy Friends are Coming Over Tonight."
"The 'Skins' new coach looks to make an impression/Philly wants to teach him an NFL lesson," Williams sang for the Sept. 16 game between Washington and Philadelphia.
Williams thinks the Eagles will do well this season. "Philly is going to be there this year when it's all over," he said. "That quarterback, man . . . Donovan McNabb can give you fits."
--- PISCATAWAY, N.J. (AP) - Tony Soprano didn't get to be the boss by giving up.
James Gandolfini, who plays the New Jersey mob boss on the HBO series "The Sopranos," has made another commercial for Rutgers football, even though his first effort last year failed to change the team's fortunes. The 30-second ad will begin airing Monday on cable stations in New Jersey.
The Scarlet Knights finished 2-9 (0-7 in the Big East) in their first year under coach Greg Schiano. They've won just one Big East game in three seasons.
Schiano also appears in the ad, which features Gandolfini, a 1983 Rutgers graduate, and three of his college friends.
In the ad, Gandolfini assures his pals they'll have great seats for a game at Rutgers Stadium in Piscataway.
"Close, real close," Gandolfini says. The three friends are thrilled when they step onto the field, but then are seen holding the costumes of the Scarlet Knight and horse.
The actor's former roommate, Mark Ohlstein of Moorestown, says sarcastically, "Close, real close." Also appearing are Vito Bellino of Middletown and Tom Richardson of Florham Park.
Michael Imperioli, who plays Christopher Moltisanti on "The Sopranos," will direct the spot again.
Gandolfini also lent his image to a billboard near Miami International Airport last year in an effort to help Rutgers' recruiting of high school players.
--- On the Net: HBO Web site: http://www.hbo.com/sopranos/
--- ROME (AP) - Sophia Loren will return to the Venice Film Festival after years away to support her 29-year-old son, director Edoardo Ponti.
The actress stars in Ponti's "Between Strangers," one of the films to be shown at the festival, which will run Aug. 29-Sept 8. The film, which tells the story of three women recalling their pasts, also stars Mira Sorvino. It's not in contention for an award.
At a news conference Tuesday, festival director Moritz de Hadeln reeled off a list of stars expected to attend, paying special attention to Loren.
"She's back after about 20 years," he said.
Ponti is the son of the 67-year-old Loren and her husband-producer, Carlo Ponti. Her films include 1958's "Houseboat," also starring Cary Grant; Vittorio De Sica's "Two Women" (1961), for which she won an Oscar; and De Sica's "Marriage, Italian Style" (1964).
--- On the Net: Venice Film Festival Web site: http://194.185.28.38/gb/cinema/59mostra/index.cfm
--- NEW DELHI, India (AP) - German tennis star Boris Becker will take over as the brand ambassador for an Indian company that designs fabric for men's suits.
The company, Siyaram, has for decades used models dressed as Indian maharajas and princes to make its image statement, setting television advertisements amid palaces and fortresses.
"It's a challenging assignment and I'm hoping to make a positive impact," said Becker, the former world No. 1 singles player. "I've done my homework, so I know what's coming. I've never tied up with a firm I don't know about."
Becker begins his new modeling assignment Wednesday in the northwestern Indian desert state of Rajasthan.
FLORIDA GIRL GETS EMINEM'S RIDE Girl, 12, gets Eminem's ride Eminem Imagine tooling around town in Eminem's famed Purple Pill, a 1999 Ford Mustang convertible the rapper bought with his first royalty check. Well, 12-year-old Courtney Wittenberns of Fort Lauderdale will have to settle for her imagination for a few more years, but at least she has the car, thanks to her dad.
The car, made famous in Eminem's hit song "Purple Pills" off group D-12's "Devil's Night" album, was purchased on eBay for $27,900 by Roger Wittenberns, CEO of Fort Lauderdale's Lady of America Franchise Corp., for Courtney, a loyal Eminem fan.
Courtney and her sister Brittany, the heiresses to the multimillion-dollar Lady of America Franchise empire started by their father, have decided that they will sit in the car and listen to Eminem CDs in the family garage for a few years until Courtney is legally able to drive the car. In the meantime, they hope to one day meet the superstar.
"Courtney and I both enjoy the personality that Eminem has become," said Roger Wittenberns in a news release. "As a parent, I see how Eminem has worked hard to get where he is at and I see the efforts he is making to clean up his image."
"These true stories need to be shared and I know that 'Final Justice' will be an inspiration for all women to make a difference in their communities."
ERIN BROCKOVICH The working-class hero has agreed to host a new series about inspiring women who have engaged in difficult quests or recovered from tragedy.
Brockovich --- LOS ANGELES (AP) - Working-class hero ERIN BROCKOVICH has agreed to host a new series about inspiring women, the Lifetime cable channel said.
"Final Justice" is set to air in early 2003. It will tell the stories of inspiring women who have engaged in difficult quests or recovered from tragedy.
"These true stories need to be shared and I know that 'Final Justice' will be an inspiration for all women to make a difference in their communities," Brockovich said Monday.
Among other stories, "Final Justice" will document the case of a Louisiana woman who sought to make video voyeurism illegal after discovering her neighbor was taping her, and the efforts of a black woman from Kansas City who sought to punish three white men who killed her husband after they were acquitted by an all-white jury.
Julia Roberts won a best-actress Oscar for her role in 2000's "Erin Brockovich," which was based on Brockovich's experience as a single mother who bullied her way into a menial job in a small law firm.
Brockovich and her boss, Ed Masry, won $333 million in compensation from Pacific Gas and Electric Co. for 650 residents of the town of Hinkley, where ground water was found to be contaminated with chromium 6.
ASHEBORO, N.C. (AP) - THOMAS CALVIN "TOMMY" FLOYD, whose twangy voice sold Luck's beans in the 1950s, died Sunday in Asheboro, N.C. He was 89 and suffered from Alzheimer's disease.
Floyd was one of Asheboro's best known voices, between his music career and his jobs announcing at radio stations.
Floyd organized the Blue Grass Buddy's in 1942. The group played for radio shows and performed around the Southeast.
, appearing in concert with bluegrass legends Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs.
Aug. 1 Actor Arthur Hill is 80. Actor-director Geoffrey Holder is 72. Singer Ramblin' Jack Elliott is 71. Cartoonist Tom Wilson ("Ziggy") is 71. Actor-comedian Dom DeLuise is 69. Fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent is 66. Former Sen. Alfonse D'Amato, a New York Republican, is 65. Actor Giancarlo Giannini is 60. Blues singer-musician Robert Cray is 49. Singer Michael Penn is 44. Rock singer Joe Elliott (Def Leppard) is 43. Rock singer-musician Suzi Gardner (L7) is 42. Rapper Chuck D (Public Enemy) is 42. Actor Jesse Borrego is 40. Rapper Coolio is 39. Movie director Sam Mendes is 37. Country singer George Ducas is 36. Country musician Charlie Kelley (Buffalo Club) is 34. Actress Tempestt Bledsoe is 29. Actress Taylor Fry is 21.
  • Actor-comedian Dom DeLuise is 69.
  • Blues singer-musician Robert Cray is 49.
  • Rapper Chuck D (Public Enemy) is 42.
  • Rapper Coolio is 39.
  • Actress Tempestt Bledsoe is 29 Fantasy 5 payouts Eds: SUBS lead to CORRECT top prize payout
    hota TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Two winners of the "Fantasy 5" game will collect $102,807.31 each, the Florida Lottery said Wednesday.
    The winning tickets were bought in the cities of Boca Raton and West Palm Beach, lottery officials reported.
    The 268 tickets matching 4-of-5 numbers will collect $123.50 each.
    Another 8,219 tickets matching 3-of-5 won $11, and 86,150 tickets won a Quick Pick ticket for picking 2-of-5.
    The numbers drawn Tuesday night were 01-07-15-30-31.
    Fantasy 5 - Tuesday 1-7-15-30-31 Payoff $102,807.31 $123.50 $11 No.
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