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Winthrop, Iowa, native and ‘Eagle Eye’ star Michelle Monaghan has baby November 10, 2008

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From Associated Press via Yahoo! News:

NEW YORK – “Eagle Eye” star Michelle Monaghan and her husband Peter White have welcomed a baby girl named Willow Katherine in Los Angeles. … Willow, who was born Wednesday, is the couple’s first child. …

Las Vegas Sun: Bette Midler helps Cedar Rapids fan get photo October 29, 2008

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From Las Vegas Sun:

Sherri Henderson, far right, takes a photo of Bette Midler during the VIP red carpet event for “The Showgirl Must Go On” outside Pure Nightclub at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas earlier this year. Henderson was carrying a purse with Midler’s photo on it that she had made specially for the event. …

“So now I’ve got her pictures hanging downstairs next to my bar. She made it to my wall of fame.” (Other members of the wall include Kenny Loggins, TV reporter Bob Woodruff, the staff of “Good Morning America,” Kelly Ripa, Roseanne Barr and Tom Arnold.)

“I’m gonna have Bette on a mouse pad here shortly.”

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Dude, our U.S. Senator just quoted you; Grassley uses Ashton Kutcher’s words and visual aid in floor speech (see pic/video) September 24, 2008

Posted by John in Energy, Entertainers, Political.
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The Raw Story:

[P]erhaps unwittingly, Grassley was on a roll with the stoner allusions, including a glance at the 2000 movie “Dude, Where’s My Car?” starring Iowa native Ashton Kutcher, which follows the travails of two potheads who can’t remember where, um, they left their car. After finishing with the [Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon] prism analogy, Grassley went on to talk about energy conservation, noting that many public officials have air-conditioned cars idling while waiting for them at curbs, wasting gas. Grassley proudly noted that he drives his own car, thank you very much, including a Ford Taurus he keeps in Iowa.

“If you do see anyone else driving my car, please call the police, because someone has stolen my car,” he said. “I’d like to refer to Ashton Kutcher here, from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, saying ‘dude, where’s my car?’” …

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Photo of Cedar Rapids native Michael Emerson (“LOST”) at 60th Primetime Emmy Awards September 21, 2008

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From Yahoo! News – Photos:

Michael Emerson, right, and Carrie Preston arrive at the 60th Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles, Sunday, Sept. 21, 2008.

For more about “LOST” star Michael Emerson, including the Gazette article “He’s not creepy to Mom,” go to earlier LIAI post: Cedar Rapids native nominated for Emmy.

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Today’s images of Iowa native Tom Arnold at photocall for the (disturbing) movie ‘Gardens of the Night’ September 9, 2008

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US actor To...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

Tom Arnold appearing at the 34th American Film Festival in Deauville, Normandy. Three photos today from Associated Press via Yahoo! News:

U.S. film director Damian Harris, left, U.S. actor Tom Arnold, center, and U.S. cinematographer Paula Huidobro, right, pose during a photocall for the movie ‘Gardens of the Night’ at the 34th American Film Festival in Deauville, Normandy, France, Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2008

Someone on the IMDB page for ‘Gardens of the Night’ wrote “you haven’t seen Tom Arnold like this before.”

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Man from Iowa City is standby for Daniel Radcliffe (“Harry Potter”) for Broadway play Equus September 6, 2008

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Daniel at the premiere of December Boys that t...Image via Wikipedia

From News & Observer:

[University of North Carolina School of the Arts] alumnus Paul David Story is [Daniel] Radcliffe’s standby. He’s from Iowa City, Iowa, and graduated from the school in 2005. …

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Police: DNA links man to slaying of Ashton Kutcher’s ex-girlfriend September 1, 2008

Posted by John in Crime/Courts, Entertainers.
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From Associated Press via Yahoo! News:

DNA evidence has linked an air conditioning repairman to the stabbing deaths of three women, including [the February 2001 death of 22-year-old Ashley Ellerin] a former girlfriend of actor Ashton Kutcher, police said Friday. …

[Ashton] Kutcher…told police he went to pick up the fashion student-model for a post-Grammy Awards party, but she did not answer the door. He checked a back window and spotted what he thought were red wine stains on the carpet and then left. Her body was discovered the next day by a friend. …

(Actor Ashton Kutcher is an Eastern Iowa native, with ties to Homestead and Cedar Rapids.)

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Cedar Rapids native nominated for Emmy July 17, 2008

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Michael Emerson, January 2007Image via Wikipedia

Nominees for the 60th annual Primetime Emmy Awards were announced today. “Lost” actor Michael Emerson, who was born in Cedar Rapids, was nominated for Supporting Actor, Drama Series. He’s up against William Shatner, “Boston Legal”; Ted Danson, “Damages”; Zeljko Ivanek, “Damages”; and John Slattery, “Mad Men.”

Emerson was also nominated for an Emmy in the same category last year but “Lost” co-star Terry O’Quinn received that award.

O’Quinn has an Eastern Iowa connection as well, having attended the University of Iowa.

Emerson won an Emmy in 2001 for his work as Guest Actor for “The Practice.”

According to Gazette archives, Emerson graduated from South Tama County High School and Drake University. His parents live in Grinnell.

From October 2006 Gazette archives:

He’s not creepy to Mom
Iowa-born actor lands full-time `Lost’ role as leader of Others

By Rob Merritt
The Gazette

As the mysterious Henry Gale, Michael Emerson of Toledo has managed to creep out many viewers of the hit TV show “Lost.”

Fortunately, his mother isn’t one of them.

“People say, `He scares me,’ ” Carol Emerson, 72, of Grinnell, said Monday.

“But he plays such an opposite personality from what he really is.”

A Cedar Rapids-born actor who graduated from Drake University in 1976, Emerson, 52, was originally brought on board “Lost” for three episodes last season. His role was expanded dramatically, however, after he made a huge impression with producers and viewers alike.

His character, who originally claimed to be a crash survivor, turned out to be the leader of The Others – a group that’s been abducting characters on the show since its beginning.

As a result, Emerson was made a series regular on “Lost,” which kicks off its third season tonight.

Emerson has found success playing the bad guy in the past. He’s appeared on “Law & Order” and in the horror movie “Saw,” and earned an Emmy for his portrayal of serial killer William Hinks on “The Practice.”

“I never dreamed I would play so many dark roles,” Emerson said by phone last week from Hawaii, where “Lost” is filmed. “I was always the funny guy onstage. Doing these roles that are so serious, I’m not sure how I got here.”

Nor is he sure how long he’ll be staying. Last year, Emerson saw his scripts only 48 hours in advance, so he had no idea about Henry Gale’s plot twist until it happened. This year it’s more of the same.

“The third season is highly dramatic,” he said. “So it’s not hard to imagine anyone getting killed at any moment.”

There are still a few teasers Emerson can throw out. He says much of the third season focuses on The Others, who up until now have existed as villains in the shadows.

Also, Henry Gale is seeing a lot more action. The character spent most of last season imprisoned by the castaways; this year, Emerson already has filmed a fight sequence in the forest and a windy sequence atop a high cliff.

“I discovered I’m not as good with heights as I thought,” he said.

Henry Gale isn’t even Henry Gale. It was revealed last season that Gale actually was using the name of another man, whose body was later found buried on the island.

So what’s Gale going by now? Emerson won’t say.

“It’s a plot point,” he said.

Emerson hasn’t yet had a chance to talk about Iowa with Evangeline Lilly, whose character, Kate, supposedly hails from the state (and has returned there in flashbacks).

“I spend less time with the other actors than you might think,” Emerson said.

Instead, Emerson keeps in touch by phone with his wife, actress Carrie Preston, and his parents, Carol and Ron Emerson, back in Grinnell.

“He wanted to know what the weather was like here, and I said, `It really looks like fall,’ ” Carol Emerson said. “He said, `I wish I was there.’ I said, `You’re in Hawaii!’ He said, `Yeah, but paradise gets boring after a while.’

He’s a Midwesterner at heart.”

Michael Emerson said he misses the Midwest, as well as his home in Manhattan, but he also knows he’s landed what may turn out to be the role of his career.

“Sometimes I don’t appreciate the place I’ve gotten to until I’ve been there for a while,” he said, “but sometimes I sit back and I say, `Wow. This is an extraordinary job.’ “

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Actress and Winthrop, Iowa, native Michelle Monaghan announces… June 3, 2008

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From People magazine:

Made of Honor star Michelle Monaghan and her husband Peter White, a graphic designer, are expecting their first child, PEOPLE has learned exclusively.

Monaghan’s rep Jennifer Allen, who confirms the news, says, “They are very excited.” Monaghan, 32, is due in late fall. …

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TechCrunch: ‘Ashton Kutcher’s Katalyst Media To Release Interactive Web Content’ May 31, 2008

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As you all surely know, Ashton Kutcher is an Eastern Iowa native.

From TechCrunch:

Katalyst Media founders Ashton Kutcher [PHOTO] and Jason Goldberg were in Silicon Valley today. They stopped by TechCrunch HQ (aka my house) before heading off to more important meetings with Dan Rosensweig at Quadrangle Group (and the former COO of Yahoo) and YouTube cofounder Chad Hurley. …

Kutcher won’t be trying to lock people into interacting with content under their rules. “If people steal our stuff, it’s fantastic” he said.

Suddenly Katalyst Media is doing more than producing video, they’re now building software. …

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