Plus: Madonna tickets easy to get, Orlando in full bloom, and more

By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated June 16, 2004 08:00 AM
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TALKED: Jennifer Lopez is in talks with her former label boss, Tommy Mottola, to become her new manager, says the Hollywood Reporter. Mottola, ex-CEO of Sony Music Entertainment (and ex-husband of Mariah Carey), already handles Marc Anthony, whom Lopez married earlier this month. Mottola also runs Casablanca Records, the label he started in July 2003 with Universal Music Group. No word from either camp on the possible management move.

OVERSUPPLIED: Thousands of tickets for Madonna’s six “Re-Invention” concerts at New York’s Madison Square Garden, which begin Wednesday night, are still available – and at discount prices, reports the New York Post, blaming the surplus on the fact that the star, 45, is simply doing too many shows. “Tickets are selling well, but not as well as anticipated,” Michael Isaac, president of PreferredTicket.com, tells the paper.

PICKED: Troy boy Orlando Bloom, 27, placed well ahead of his rivals in an Internet poll to find Britain’s sexiest actor. With 35 percent of the vote, the actor, who shot to fame as Legolas in the Lord of the Rings movies, beat out Sean Bean, Hugh Grant, Ewan McGregor and Jude Law, according to the Sky Movies Web site.

WON: Ben Wallace notched 18 points and 22 rebounds to help the Detroit Pistons crush the Los Angeles Lakers 100-87 Tuesday to claim the NBA championship and end one of the great dynasties in league history. The Detroit victory earned their Hall of Fame coach Larry Brown the first NBA title in his 21-year career while denying his L.A. counterpart Phil Jackson a record 10th championship ring.

REUNITED: Duran Duran, who regrouped last year for a successful tour, are reuniting again – this time, for a new album to be released this fall on a new record label, reports the Associated Press. The Epic label release will mark the first time that the original band members – Simon LeBon, John Taylor, Nick Rhodes, Roger Taylor and Andy Taylor – have recorded an album together since 1983’s Seven & the Ragged Tiger.

CAST: A long-discussed animated version of the late live-action series Buffy the Vampire Slayer is in the making, reports TV Guide. Sarah Michelle Gellar will not voice the leading role, but Giselle Loren (who speaks for Buffy on the video game) will talk in the pilot, as will former cast members Alyson Hannigan, Nicholas Brendon and Anthony Stewart Head.

NAMED: Saturday Night Live creator Lorne Michaels, 59, will receive the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor at an Oct. 25 Kennedy Center event in Washington, D.C. Previous Twain winners include Richard Pryor, Jonathan Winters, Whoopi Goldberg and Lily Tomlin.

REVEALED: Johnny Ramone (real name: John Cummings), 55, guitarist with pioneering punk rock band the Ramones, is fighting a losing battle with prostate cancer in a Los Angeles hospital, reports Rolling Stone magazine’s Web site. “Johnny’s been a champ in confronting this, but at this point I think the chances are slim,” says bandmate Marky Ramone. “John never smoked cigarettes, he wasn’t a heavy drinker and he was always into his health. It just proves when cancer seeks a body to penetrate, it doesn’t matter how healthy you are or how unhealthy you are. It just seeps in and there’s nothing you can do.” The band’s singer, Joey Ramone (born Jeff Hyman), died in 2001 of lymphatic cancer, while bassist Dee Dee Ramone (Douglas Colvin) died from a drug overdose the following year.