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Among the thousands of fans at the Jan. 8 kickoff in San Diego of Justin Timberlake‘s 36-date FutureSex/LoveShow tour, one was noticeably absent—Cameron Diaz. At the midpoint of the concert, a soulful Timberlake told the crowd, “Sometimes love isn’t so easy.” Was it a confession of a split with his girlfriend of more than three years? While the couple have often dodged breakup rumors in their relationship, sources say this time it’s for real. The two were last seen together Dec. 16 in New York City celebrating Timberlake’s appearance on Saturday Night Live. The singer, 25, flew home solo to Tennessee for the holidays while Diaz, 34, stayed in L.A. then skied in Vail, Colo. She didn’t show up at the Jan. 3 premiere of his movie Alpha Dog (but Timberlake did engage in cozy conversation with Scarlett Johansson at a party afterwards). While reps for both had no comment, a pal of Timberlake’s tells Scoop, “He called me around Christmas to say they had broken up. They’re not talking to each other because things are a little awkward.” A source close to the couple says, “I don’t think she’s so much into the scene like he is. He’s really young and he likes to go out. [He] hasn’t been into her for awhile.” During his Manhattan visit with Diaz in December, Timberlake was spotted partying with two blonde models. At Christmas, he spent time in Memphis with ex-girlfriend Veronica Finn. (Finn, a Florida-based real estate agent, says he’s just “an old friend.”) But don’t expect fireworks, says Timberlake’s pal. “They were laid-back together, so it’s not going to be an ugly breakup. This is just them realizing it was time to move on.”
Rosie O’Donnell and Donald Trump trade body blows—and even Barbara Walters takes some punches. Here’s the ringside analysis:
ROSIE VS. DONALD
The fight erupts Dec. 20, after Donald decides to give Miss USA a second chance. An outraged Rosie calls him a bankrupt “snake-oil salesman,” scoffs at his value as a “moral compass for 20-year-olds” and tells him to “sit and spin.”
DONALD VS. ROSIE
The same day, Donald threatens to sue “my fat little Rosie” for making “false statements” about his finances. He calls her a liar and tells PEOPLE she’s “a loser.” He claims Walters “cannot stand” her and regrets hiring her.
ROSIE VS. BARBARA
Barbara tells viewers on Jan. 3 that she’s not sorry for hiring Rosie. But according to the New York Post, the comic brawls with her boss pre-show Jan. 8 for not defending her. The View rep says it was a “squabble” and “everyone has moved on.” Except …
DONALD VS. BARBARA VS. ROSIE
That day, Barbara says Donald’s statements about her are untrue. He fires back in a Jan. 9 letter to Rosie implying Barbara is the liar: “To be exact, [she] said, ‘Working with [you] is like living in hell.'” Scoop says: To your corners, people!
PEACE IN OUR TIME?
“Rosie went nuclear first,” says political strategist Paul Begala, a former aide to Bill Clinton. “She should [dial] it back.” L.A. celeb attorney and mediator Ronald Litz thinks intervention may be necessary. “They need a third party. Try mutual friend Regis Philbin. Not Kelly! Regis.”
IS THERE A LOST CURSE?
Okay, so the actors on Lost haven’t encountered any psychotic polar bears—yet. But living in Hawaii, where the spooky drama films, hasn’t been all leis and mai-tais for the cast:
UP IN SMOKE
The home shared by EVANGELINE LILLY (Kate) and two crew members was completely destroyed by a fire, caused by a faulty electrical outlet, on Dec. 20.
MICHELLE RODRIGUEZ (Ana-Lucia) and CYNTHIA WATROS (Libby) were busted for drunk driving in December 2005. (Rodriguez spent three days in jail, Watros’s license was suspended, and both were later written out of the show.)
EMILIE DE RAVIN (Claire) just announced that she’s splitting from actor Josh Janowicz after only six months of marriage.
JOSH HOLLOWAY (Sawyer) and his wife were rousted from bed at gunpoint and robbed of cash and credit cards in October 2005.
LAUREN CONRAD: A DAY IN THE LIFE
How do you survive overnight success? If Lauren Conrad is any indication, with lots of sugar-free Red Bull. The breakout reality star—back Jan. 15 for another season of MTV’s The Hills—let Scoop tag along for a caffeine-fueled day of primping, pampering and Jimmy Kimmel Live. Between her Teen Vogue internship, school at L.A.’s Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising and going out “most nights,” the 20-year-old admits, “I’m, like, the busiest person!” The only thing not on her agenda? Romance. After her breakup with Jason Wahler and a fling with Brody Jenner, the self-proclaimed “smoldering temptress” says, “I’m not trying to date anyone.” A peek at her single life:
MARILYN: BAD BREAKUP
Cupid, foiled again: Only a year after their lavish Ireland wedding, goth rocker Marilyn Manson, 38, and burlesque dancer Dita Von Teese, 34, are calling it quits. Sources close to the couple say Manson is romantically involved with 19-year-old actress Evan Rachel Wood (inset)—and had been seeing the Thirteen star before his wife filed for divorce on Dec. 29. “Dita is heartbroken,” says a source close to the MAC model. “She didn’t see this coming.” Wood’s rep could not confirm the relationship; Manson’s rep said the musician was unavailable for comment.
HOLLYWOOD’S MAD SCIENTISTS
Forget Scream Queen. Turns out Jamie Lee Curtis has another impressive title: patent holder. According to the new Internet search engine Google Patents, the mom of two invented a diaper with an outside pocket for baby wipes in 1987. Other celeb moments of brilliance? Eddie Van Halen’s device allowing musicians to prop their string instruments horizontally, Prince’s portable keyboard, Julie Newmar’s derriere-reducing pantyhose and Michael Jackson’s gravity-defying shoes. Watch out, Mr. Wizard.
With good looks and quick moves, these NFL quarterbacks have starlets cheering them on
The Patriots star called time out last fall on his three-year romance with Bridget Moynahan, but he’s still running plays in celeb circles. He recently hung out at Lindsay Lohan‘s New Year’s Eve bash.
This Arizona Cardinal really plays the field: Previously linked to Kristin Cavallari, he huddled up with Britney Spears Dec. 29 and was spotted “all over” Paris Hilton Jan. 5, says a source.
The Cowboys rookie threw off rumors of a romance with Jessica Simpson, but admitted he nonetheless does take a shine to the singing kind. His No. 1 fan in the stands? Country’s Carrie Underwood.
NFL DATING TIPS
Holly Robinson Peete, wife of veteran QB Rodney Peete, weighs in:
1. “NFL girlfriends are low on the totem pole. Be humble.”
2. “No autographs at the stadium!”
3. “Don’t sneak into the hotel before games. They have security looking for women.”
4. “Quarterbacks don’t get ‘tackled.’ It’s ‘sacked.’
5. “[Enjoy the] perks: Good butts … big salaries.”
Q + A
British singer Seal balances pop ballads with baby bottles—and never misses a beat
For Seal, writing award-winning songs might be easier than wrangling his kids. The singer, 43, took time out from an Aspen vacation with wife Heidi Klum and their young brood to talk about his Golden Globe-nominated song, “A Father’s Way” from The Pursuit of Happyness, and life with—yes—three kids under the age of 3.
Psyched about the Golden Globes?
It’s a great film and I hope Will Smith [wins for best actor]. I feel it’s his best role ever…. We’ll all put on our glad rags and go.
What inspired you to write this song?
I wanted to write something for our children, so that they understand what it is like for a parent. My wife has a good relationship with her parents—that’s one of the gifts I inherited by marrying her. But I didn’t have that kind of communication [with my mom and dad]. I wish I understood then what I know [now]: that parents, no matter how functional or dysfunctional, are trying the best they can.
How do you and Heidi make marriage work?
I don’t profess to hold any secrets. I am of best service to my wife when I am respectful of who she is…. And my wife is still romantic. When I’m traveling, she hides pictures of her and the kids [in my suitcase] so I can discover them later on.
With Leni, 2½, Henry, 16 months, and Johan, who is 2 months old, do you ever sleep?
We have great help. My in-laws are an integral part of our family life. Grandma and Grandpa are the best kind of help two parents can have.
What do the kids do that drives you a little crazy?
Try getting Leni and Henry to brush their teeth. I have a better chance of becoming the next President of the United States than achieving that on a regular basis!