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PASSAGES: Ailing Cash VMA No-Go

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AILING: There will be one fewer man in black at Thursday’s MTV Video Music Awards. Johnny Cash, 71, one of the event’s top nominees (he received six nominations for the video for his Nine Inch Nails remake, “Hurt”), has been hospitalized for a stomach ailment at Nashville’s Baptist Hospital and won’t be making the trip up north, the Associated Press reports. “We expect to release him within a few days,” hospital spokeswoman Jennifer Jackson said about the singer, who was admitted on Monday, AP noted. Cash also suffers from autonomic neuropathy, a nervous system condition that makes him vulnerable to pneumonia, the news service reported.

LOADED: Cameron Diaz is seeing dollar signs: The two-time “Charlie’s Angels” star claimed the top spot in the Guinness Book of World Records as the highest-paid actress in Hollywood, with a whopping $41 million for 2001 – a year that included payouts for “Vanilla Sky,” “Shrek,” “Gangs of New York” and the first “Angels” flick, reports the New York Post. Her 2004 income is expected to rocket even higher, The Post notes, including $10 million to $15 million for “Shrek 2,” and $25 million to $30 million for the 2005 film “Fun With Dick and Jane.”

QUOTED: “I am tripping out. In 1977, when I was 9 years old, I had a date with my dad to go the Chinese Theatre to see ‘Star Wars.’ This is where I learned to appreciate cinema.” — John Singleton, director of “Boyz N the Hood,” “Shaft” and “2 Fast 2 Furious,” on receiving a star on Hollywood Boulevard’s Walk of Fame this week, according to the Associated Press.

MOVED: Actress Nicole Kidman may be more of an uptown girl than she thought. The actress is looking to leave the jumbo loft in New York’s SoHo neighborhood that she’s been borrowing from rocker pal – Lenny Kravitz, for a full-service place in Midtown or on the Upper East Side, reports the New York Post. Kidman, whose own riverfront condo is still a year away from completion, has been couch-surfing in Kravitz’s unoccupied five-bedroom, eight-bath space. The move may be designed to quell rumors linking the pair, whose publicists insist they are simply platonic friends.

RECRUITED: The CIA has asked “Alias” star Jennifer Garner to star in one of the agency’s recruiting videos. The agency has consulted with the ABC show on facts and details, and Garner looks likely to return the favor. Chase Brandon, film industry liaison for the CIA, confirmed to the Hollywood Reporter that the project – in which Garner introduces the video that the CIA shows to prospective agents – was in the works.

CROONED: Don’t look for a demo any time soon, but actor Tom Cruise said he and Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi had spent part of a visit Thursday singing Elvis Presley songs together, Reuters reports. “He’s really an extraordinary man – and a pretty good singer,” Cruise told reporters after meeting Koizumi at his official residence. Cruise was in Japan to promote his new movie, “The Last Samurai,” part of which was filmed on the island nation.

HITCHED: Folk singer Janis Ian, who won a Grammy for her 1975 hit “At Seventeen,” has married her companion of 14 years, Nashville attorney Patricia Snyder, during a brief civil ceremony Wednesday at Toronto’s city hall, Reuters reports. Canada is in the process of legalizing gay marriage; an Ontario court in June rejected the definition of marriage as a union between a man and woman, and the Canadian government has decided not to appeal the ruling.