Johnny Depp buys 8.5 million home in Venice

Johnny Depp has reportedly bought an £8.5 million home in Venice because he loved the city so much when he filmed there with Angelina Jolie last year.

Johnny Depp has splashed out on an £8.5 million home in Venice after falling in love with the city during filming last year.

The 47-year-old actor spent several months in the Italian city with his family while shooting 'The Tourist' with Angelina Jolie and he was reportedly so besotted with the stunning location, he has bought the 17th century Palazzo Dona Sangiantoffetti.

According to local newspaper La Nuova Venezia, the Hollywood star outbid an Arab prince for the empty building which is one of the only available homes overlooking the famous Grand Canal.
Johnny - who has two children Lily-Rose, 11, and eight-year-old Jack with his French partner Vanessa Paradis - has previously spoken of his love for the city and revealed he loved to explore late at night when the streets were quiet.

He said: 'My experience of Venice really happened between 10pm and 2am when the streets closed and I was able to walk around and experience the poetry of Venice, the ghosts of Venice, all those wonderful dark alleys.

'For an actor being able to film within the confines of that magical city certainly helps... The city's magic shone through completely.'

While the actor and his family spent most of their time at their estate in France, he also owns a home in Hollywood and a 45 acre island in the Bahamas.

Singer Bruno Mars to plead guilty

LOS ANGELES - Pop singer Bruno Mars will plead guilty to a charge of possessing cocaine in Las Vegas last September and receive probation, among other sentencing requirements, according to a media report on Friday.
Clark County District Attorney David Roger told the Las Vegas Review Journal that Mars will be sentenced to a year of probation, pay a $2,000 fine, perform 200 hours of community service and attend drug counseling.
Mars, 25, rose to the top of the pop charts in 2010 with "Nothin' on You," his collaboration with rapper B.o.B. He co-wrote Travie McCoy's "Billionaire" and collaborated with Cee-Lo Green on Grammy-nominated song "F*ck You" before scoring a solo hit with the ballad "Just the Way You Are." More recently his "Grenade" has been topping music charts.
But 2010 was marred by his September arrest in which a bathroom attendant at Las Vegas' Hard Rock Hotel saw Mars, whose real name is Peter Hernandez, with "a baggy of white powder," according to a police report at the time.
The powder was later tested and found to be cocaine.
Roger told the Las Vegas Review Journal that if Mars is able to complete his sentencing without getting into further trouble, he can withdraw his plea and the case will be dismissed. The newspaper said that type of sentencing was common in minor, first-time drug possession cases.
Mars had been due in court in Clark County, where Las Vegas is located, for a February 4 preliminary hearing, but he will waive that appearance and a new court date will be scheduled where he will be expected to enter the guilty plea.


Jay Chou likes low Hollywood profile

BEIJING : Hollywood is usually the place to see and be seen, but for Taiwanese pop singer Jay Chou, star of the smash hit "The Green Hornet," Tinseltown offers a welcome break from the paparazzi in Asia.

"As an artist, I need a lot of space which I cannot really get in many places in Asia," Chou told reporters Monday ahead of the Chinese premiere of the superhero flick, which co-stars Seth Rogen.

"It felt like I was having a vacation in the United States - I took my mother to the production, and it felt really good to have some time for myself. I didn't have that feeling of people surreptitiously taking my picture."

"The Green Hornet" - the tale of a young playboy businessman who becomes a crime fighter - topped the box office in its opening weekend in North America, taking in US$34 million, according to industry data.

Chou, largely unknown in the United States but hugely popular in Asia, plays the role of Kato, sidekick to the Green Hornet played by Rogen.

French director Michel Gondry confessed to not knowing how famous Chou was when he started considering him for the part of Kato, adding he and Rogen - who wrote the screenplay - later hesitated about casting a pop star.

"We had a conference on Skype where Seth was reading with Jay and we felt there was already chemistry, even though it was with a 10-second delay, and we liked him for his acting," Gondry said.

Rogen has since declared himself a fan of Chou's music, and he and Gondry joked that the Taiwanese singer would "force" them to listen to some of his tracks.

"Jay many times took us in his car with his bodyguard and forced us to listen to his music very loud, and if we didn't like it, he would beat us up," Gondry joked.

Chou had to learn English for the part, and acknowledged the language barrier would be a challenge for any future work in Hollywood. But Rogen praised his co-star for his quick mastery of the language.

"He knew very little (English) when we started filming and a few weeks in, he could improvise his own dialogue and come up with his own jokes, which was very frustrating because that took me years to learn how to do," he said.

Channel News Asia