Entertainment wRap: Celebrity lawsuits
MANILA, Philippines - Here are some entertainment news from August 12 to 18.
Jackson doctors 'competed' to treat pop star, says ex-wife
Various doctors were "competing" to treat Michael Jackson, each offering ever-stronger painkillers long before his 2009 death, the former wife of the King of Pop testified Wednesday, August 14.
Debbie Rowe, the 54-year-old mother of Jackson's two older children, told jurors that the singer had a "very low tolerance for pain" and that over the years doctors had prescribed potent drugs like Demerol, Dilaudid, Oxycodone, and Vicodin.
Rowe, who was married to Jackson from 1996-1999, testified in behalf of AEG Live, which argues he was secretly addicted to drugs and responsible for his own death.
"His fear of pain was incredible," Rowe said during the 16th week of the trial, in which Jackson's 83-year-old mother Katherine is suing tour promoter AEG.
Rowe said doctors took advantage of Jackson, prescribing narcotics to treat everything from acne to a burn on his scalp suffered during the filming of a Pepsi commercial in 1983.
She said Jackson's history of chronic pain, and of doctors happily prescribing increasingly powerful drugs, long predated his time with Conrad Murray.
Referring to the doctors as "these idiots," Rowe stated: "You don't call someone and say, let's take Dilaudid instead of Aspirin."
But Jackson listened to the doctors, Rowe said. "He foolishly, foolishly trusted people."
Rowe also told the court that her efforts to stop Jackson's addiction were halted by David Forecast who she claims "was yet another doctor that didn't put him first, as a patient, as a human being."
British broadcaster charged with indecent assault
British radio presenter Dave Lee Travis was charged on Thursday, August 15, with 11 counts of indecent assault of women and girls as young as 15 and one count of sexual assault, prosecutors said.
"We have concluded that there is sufficient evidence and it is in the public interest for Mr. Griffin to be charged with 11 counts of indecent assault and one of sexual assault," said Alison Saunders of the Crown Prosecution Service.
"These date from 1977 to 2007 and relate to 9 complainants aged between 15 and 29 at the time of the alleged offending."
The 68-year-old radio personality, who was arrested in November, will appear in court in London on August 23 under his real name of David Patrick Griffin.
The allegations came to light after the scandal over Jimmy Savile, the late BBC presenter now believed to have been one of Britain's most prolific pedophiles.
Travis worked with Savile at BBC Radio 1 during the 1970s and 1980s and was one of the most recognizable faces in British broadcasting, as he also appeared regularly on television.
He also had a music-request show on the BBC World Service, which Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi said in 2011 had helped her get through more than two decades under house arrest.
Chris Brown's hit-and-run case dismissed
US singer Chris Brown, who made headlines in 2009 for his assault on then girlfriend Rihanna, was cleared Thursday, August 15, in a hit-and-run case.
The case was closed after the the 24-year-old and the other driver struck a deal.
Brown admitted to rear-ending a Mercedes with his Range Rover on May 21 near Toluca Lake north of Los Angeles.
But he said he exchanged all necessary details with the driver of the Mercedes and denied leaving the scene.
The prosecutor's office protested the judge's decision, saying Brown showed aggression after the incident.
Brown's lawyer, Mark Geragos, said the deal did not involve any money and that the woman driving the Mercedes only received $800 from her insurance.
Brown, however, is still under probation for assaulting his then girlfriend Rihanna in 2009.
He is tasked to complete 1,000 hours of community labor, in addition to the 180 days he had already been ordered to perform.
Robin Thicke answers plagiarism claims
On Friday, August 16, R&B singer Robin Thicke challenged claims that a riff from his smash hit "Blurred Lines" had been swiped from Marvin Gaye's 1970s classic, "Got to Give It Up."
Thicke and collaborators Pharrell Williams and T.I have petitioned a federal judge in Los Angeles to declare the song wholly original and their own work.
"Blurred Lines" is also being challenged by Bridgeport Music, which alleges the song ripped off elements from Funkadelic's 1974 track, "Sexy Ways."
Thicke’s laywers insist there are no similarities between the compositions.
"There are no similarities between plaintiffs' composition and those the claimants allege they own, other than commonplace musical elements," Thicke's attorneys said.
"[The] plaintiffs created a hit and did it without copying anyone else's composition.
"Being reminiscent of a `sound' is not copyright infringement. The intent in producing 'Blurred Lines' was to evoke an era."
Meanwhile, Funkadelic's legendary frontman George Clinton tweeted his support for Thicke.
Listen to Marvin Gaye's 'Got to Give It Up':
Listen to Funkadelic's 'Sexy Ways' :
- With reports from Agence France-Presse/Rappler.com