British actress Ann Todd, 84, called the “pocket Garbo” for her diminutive, blond beauty, died in London on May 6 following a stroke. The star of 30 movies, Todd’s best-known work is The Seventh Veil (1945). She also appeared in several films directed by her third husband, David Lean, including One Woman’s Story (1949)….
Renowned elephant trainer Axel Gautier, 51, a member of the Ringling Bros, and Barnum & Bailey Circus for 35 years, died May 5 in Gainesville, Fla., from internal injuries hours after he was stepped on by an elephant. Gautier had been visiting a breeding farm when a 24-year-old female Asian pachyderm knocked the trainer down with her trunk and stepped on him….
All-purpose intellectual Irving Howe, 72, whose best-selling history of the Jewish immigrant experience. World of Our Fathers, won the National Book Award in 1976. died of heart disease on May 5 in New York City. Howe, who also founded and edited Dissent, an influential leftist journal, wrote and edited more than 50 books….
Painter Robert De Niro, 71, the father of actor Robert De Niro, died May 3 in New York City of cancer. The elder De Niro’s work contained elements of both realism and abstract expressionism….
British writer Penelope Gillialt, 61, a film critic for The New Yorker from 1967 to ’79 and author of the prizewinning screenplay for Sunday, Bloody Sunday (1971), died at her home in London on May 9 after a long illness. Gilliatt was the author of five novels and seven short-story collections and was, in the mid-’60s, married to British playwright John Osborne.
Johnny Carson milked 30 years worth of jokes out of Ed Mc-Mahon’s alleged love of liquor, but McMahon wasn’t laughing when the Star newspaper reported in its April 13 issue that he had “polished off” a bottle of whiskey on a flight to London. On May 5, McMahon filed a $5 million libel suit in Los Angeles Superior Court against both the tabloid and columnist Janet Charlton. In the May 18 issue of the Star, Charlton retracted the item (“Must be a case of mistaken identity,” she wrote) and apologized to McMahon, 70. Nonetheless, the Star Search host says he will continue with his libel suit.
Athleticism, grace land glitz met at the May 8 wedding of Randall Cunningham, 30, the quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles, and Felicity de jager, 26, a ballerina with the Dance Theatre of Harlem. The $800,000 gala for 800 guests at Donald Trump’s Taj Mahal in Atlantic City included an $18,000, 14-tier cake.
Metal-head singer Vince Veil, 32, who was kicked out of the band Motley Crüe last year over, uh, musical differences, is doing some of his own internal housekeeping. According to his publicist, Neil recently separated from his wife of five years, ex-mudwrestler Sharise, 28. The couple have a daughter, Skyler, 2.
Married movie stars Ed Harris, 42, and Amy Madigan, 42, celebrated the birth of their first child, daughter Lily Dolores (6 lbs. 2 oz.), in Manhattan on May 3.
Let the goo-goo times roll: Supermodel Paulina Porizkova, 28, and her superskinny rocker husband. Rie Ocasek, 44, have announced they are expecting their first child in the fall.