With St. Albans native LL Cool J co-hosting this years awards along with Britney Spears, Queens was duly represented at the 28th Annual American Music Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles.
Although no Queens artists were nominated in this years awards, the borough in which James Todd Smith became LL Cool J was center stage all night. The rapper, sitcom star and Andrew Jackson High School grad showed his hometown pride by wearing a football jersey emblazoned with "Queens 85" across it for a good part of the night.
Although LL Cool J stuck with his hometown jersey for most of the evening, co-host Britney Spears added more color to the event by constantly changing her wardrobe, seemingly wearing a different outfit after each commercial break. By the end of the night, Spears had switched outfits during the three-hour program eight separate times!Stern On The Blvd.
Even the news about the slaughter of pedestrians on Queens Blvd. got to shock jock Howard Stern. Last week on his morning talk show, Stern chatted about old ladies trying to get across Queens Blvd. despite speeding cars. His co-host Robin Quivers even recited the statistic that one person dies every six weeks on Queens Blvd. On a lighter note, Stern, from Long Island, recalled hanging out on Queens Blvd. when he was a senior in high school, because that was the cool thing to do back then.
The News And The Cops
The newshounds of CBS TV almost blew it. Reporters at the Channel 2 News Network raised a few eyebrows and the ire of NYPD officials and plainclothes cops on Dec. 8 when they announced their plan to air a trial evidence tape on their 11 oclock news.
Insiders told QConfidential that the tape, which CBS officials said they obtained through "alternate sources at Queens District Attorney Robert (sic) Browns office," showed Queens plainclothes cops in an undercover sting that led to the arrest of one Henry Vega on drug charges.
When Vega was arrested, he confessed to the July 1987 murder of Queens cop George Scheu in Flushing. That trial was slated to begin in Kew Gardens Criminal Court on Jan. 15, but CBS aired the tape as part of its coverage of Vegas sentencing on the drug charges. He got 92 years to life.
The tape showed Vega and the undercover cops hanging out at a phony social club where Vega thought he was impressing mobsters with his bravado and tales of criminal activities. While at the club, Vega bragged about murdering Scheu. The tape clearly showed the detectives who are currently involved in other undercover operations. Showing the tape in the manner CBS reporters planned to would jeopardize the cops and "blow their cover," sources said.
When NYPD officials asked CBS to cut out segments showing the cops, network officials balked.
"They werent happy about it," sources told QConfidential. "It took phone negotiations throughout the day to get them to agree not to reveal the identities of the cops."
NYPD officials are also questioning the actions of the Queens prosecutor who released the tape to CBS under a promise of anonymity.
"What the hell is wrong with that person?" police officials said. "How could he or she jeopardize the welfare of the cops involved, and any cases these cops are currently investigating?," one police source said.Bored On Board
Natalie Portman, Long Island cutie and star of George Lucas blockbuster Star Wars prequel "The Phantom Menace," was recently spotted passing through LaGuardia Airport.
According to a reliable QConfidential source, the petite 19-year-old Syosset resident boarded a Delta shuttle coach to Logan Airport, en route to Harvard University, where Portman is currently in her second semester.
Though nobody recognized the young starlet on board, that didnt stop Portman from being pestered.
Apparently a rather talkative fellow classmate chewed the visibly uninterested Portmans ear off for a good 20 minutes before the flight, until she buried her nose deep into an issue of US Magazine and promptly fell asleep.
Portman resumed her role as the love interest of the soon-to-turn-evil Anakin Skywalker, played by Hayden Christensen, during the filming of "Star Wars Episode II" this past summer.
Lucas is currently piecing the film together at his Skywalker Ranch. A release date has yet to be announced.
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