The 2008 Pulitzer Prize winners were announced April 7 in NYC. Among those feted: Junot Diaz’s novel about a Dominican-American teen, -The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao (fiction); Saul Friedlander’s history of the Holocaust The Years of Extermination (general nonfiction); and Tracy Letts’ darkly comic Broadway play, August: Osage County (drama). For his ”profound impact on popular music and American culture,” Bob Dylan, 66, received a special citation.
On April 7 in L.A. and Santa Barbara, Rob Lowe, 44, filed three $1 million lawsuits against former employees for defamation, breach of contract, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The actor alleges that one nanny used drugs and accused him of sexual harassment, that another spread ”malicious lies” about him and wife Sheryl, 46, and that a chef stole prescription pills and had sex on their bed. The defendants couldn’t be reached for comment…. On April 4 in London, Nicolas Cage, 44, received an apology from Peggy Sue Got Married costar Kathleen Turner, 53, for the ”distress and embarrassment” caused by false allegations in her ‘08 memoir, Send Yourself Roses. Cage filed a libel suit over her claims that he stole a dog and was arrested for drunk driving while making the 1986 film. She’ll also pay his legal fees…. Cell-phone-tossing supermodel Naomi Campbell, 37, was arrested April 3 at London’s Heathrow Airport after allegedly spitting on a police officer during a dispute over lost luggage. (She was out on bail the next day.) ”Once on the plane she was told one bag could not be found,” said Campbell’s publicist via e-mail, adding that British Airways then called the cops to ”forcibly eject” her from the flight…. On April 8 in Manhattan, Conan O’Brien stalker David Ajemian pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and was ordered to stay away from the Late Night host for two years. Ajemian was arrested last November after sending letters, postcards, and packages to O’Brien’s and his parents’ homes.
Rock Steady Crew break-dancer (Wild Style, Flashdance) Frosty Freeze (né Wayne Frost), 44, of undisclosed causes, April 3, in NYC. ”Frosty Freeze was representative of the DNA of the style,” said friend Richard ”Crazy Legs” Colón. ”He was an inspirational figure.” — With additional reporting by Stewart Allen
JAY-Z GETS HITCHED — TWICE?
Even for a multi-hyphenate like Shawn ”Jay-Z” Carter, it was a busy week. First, on April 3, word got out that the rapper/entrepreneur was about to ink an estimated 10-year, $150 million deal with concert promoter Live Nation. It would fund several tours and three albums, and — unlike Live Nation’s other marquee signees U2 and Madonna — his own label/publishing/management project. (Perhaps that sweetened the pot for the recently departed Def Jam CEO.) The next day, it was reported that the 38-year-old had married longtime girlfriend Beyoncé Knowles, 26, in a private Manhattan ceremony. Reps for the famously publicity-shy couple wouldn’t comment, but we won’t be surprised if Jigga’s next single samples ”Here Comes the Bride.”