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December 31, 2008

Dead wrong hoaxes

55315262 Earlier this year it was Tom Cruise, then Miley Cyrus. And now this week, it's Larry Gelbart, two-time Oscar nominee and co-creator of the Emmy-winning TV series "M*A*S*H" and sitcom vet Paul Reiser. Not Reiser! Nooooooooo!

Who are these morbid Internet vandals with nothing better to do than hack into Wikipedia and kill off our Hollywood celebs? One such death wisher wrote the following:

"On December 27th, 2008, Reiser was discovered dead in the Squallahassee River where he reportedly enjoyed fly fishing. No foul play was suspected."

Former Emmy-nominated "Mad About You" star Reiser is not, in fact, dead (we don't know if he's a fly fisher).

And a couple days ago, a blog called alt.obituaries said Gelbart was "gravely ill" and had suffered "a massive stroke," freaking out his old friends Woody Allen and Alan Alda when they heard the "news."

It's not the first time two-time Tony-winner Gelbart has been prematurely bumped off, he told the L.A. Times, citing a radio report from a few years back. Turns out, Gelbart is very much alive and nearing his 81st birthday. And he had the best line of the day in response to his demise:

"Does that mean I can stop exercising?"


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Oscar Contenders

  • So "The Dark Knight" didn't make it into the final five after all, never mind that critical and popular support. Let's just call the comic-inspired mega-hit "The Biggest Snubee."

    Here are the best picture contenders in a race that, two weeks away from the Oscars, seems to be a foregone conclusion ("Slumdog") unless there's a come-from-behind possibility ("The Reader" anyone?)

    "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," with Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett; the politically timely "Milk;" rags-to-riches fairy tale, "Slumdog Millionaire," Holocaust best-seller-based drama "The Reader," and Watergate-era biopic "Frost/Nixon."

    Could "Button" and "Slumdog" split the vote, allowing another film to take the prize? Doesn't seem likely. After having clung to "Button" for months as what we thought would be the Academy voters' top vhoice, our money's now on "Slumdog." Momentum can't be ignored.

    Watch this blog for updates, ephemera and all manner of postulating.

Picture this

  • Mmmmm, chocolate Oscar. Not every star will walk away from the 81st annual Academy Awards with a trophy, but if they hit the high-profile Governor's Ball they can have pastry chef Sherry Yard's gold-dusted candy version. Also on the menu from celeb chef Wolfgang Puck is tuna tartare in sesame miso cones, chopped Chino Farms vegetable salad with ginger soy vinaigrette, Maine lobster and caviar. Serve it up! (Getty Images)

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