King hospitalized with pneumonia

Bangor, Maine -- Stephen King was expected to remain in a Maine hospital on Thanksgiving as he recovers from pneumonia, a spokesman said.

King is conscious and in good spirits, and is expected to recover fully, his spokesman, Warren Silver, said Wednesday, and he's likely to remain in Eastern Maine Medical Center for several days.

The best-selling author had been diagnosed with pneumonia in his right lung before a recent trip to New York to receive an honorary National Book Award for lifetime achievement. His condition worsened when he returned to Maine and the pneumonia spread to the other lung, Silver said.

King checked into the hospital Sunday. He underwent a procedure on Tuesday to remove fluid and scar tissue from the right lung, Silver said.

Photographer barred from selling Diaz photos

Santa Monica, Calif. -- A judge Tuesday barred a photographer from selling topless photographs of actress Cameron Diaz taken in 1992.

Superior Court Judge Alan Haber granted a permanent injunction against sale of the photos and also banned photographer John Rutter, of Venice, Calif., from either possessing or publicizing them.

Rutter, 41, faces a criminal trial on charges that he tried to extort $3.3 million from the "Charlie's Angels" actress by threatening to sell the pictures to a group in Europe.

Rutter, who is free on $250,000 bail, faces a Dec. 8 arraignment on felony charges of attempted extortion, attempted grand theft, forgery and perjury.

Spears tops with 'Zone'

New York -- Britney Spears is in a zone, all right -- and it's at the top of the album chart.

The pop star's sexy fourth album, "In the Zone," debuted at No. 1 with more than 609,000 copies sold in its first week, according to industry figures released Wednesday.

The disc, which contains the single "Me Against the Music" with Madonna, has received mixed reviews. It showcases an all-grown-up Britney, panting about her sex drive, her shopping sprees and her all-night partying.

The showing is a slight drop from the 21-year-old singer's last album, "Britney," which also debuted at No. 1 with 746,000 copies sold during its first week in November 2001.

No cheerleaders, Mr. Mayor

New York City -- When Mayor Michael Bloomberg told U.S. troops in Kosovo that he'd considered bringing the New York Giants cheerleaders along with him, the soldiers laughed and hooted.

Problem is, the Giants don't have cheerleaders.

"I actually thought about bringing the New York Giants cheerleaders this time," Bloomberg told U.S. peacekeepers Monday at Camp Bondsteel in Kosovo. "Eh, well, I'm not so sure if you see them (you'd) want me, too, but that's OK."

The Giants play their home games in East Rutherford, N.J., and share the stadium with the New York Jets, a team that doesn't have cheerleaders either.


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