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BUSTED

Maybe the tyke voted for Kelly. On June 28, in a Grand Prairie, Tex., park, cops issued American Idol's Justin Guarini, 24, a $145 ticket for allegedly nearly hitting a 5-year-old girl with his water scooter. His reps had no comment.

COURTS

She's J. Woe to him. On July 2, Jennifer Lopez (right), 32, filed suit with the California labor board against former manager Benny Medina, 45, claiming he lacked a valid talent agent's license during the five years she was his client. Lopez seeks the invalidation of all remaining partnerships and the reimbursement of any money Medina made between 1998 and 2003, a figure certain to run well in the millions of dollars. ''One would have hoped that two people who have worked so closely together for so long could have resolved any differences...in a less confrontational and more private manner,'' says Medina.... On July 8, in a Manhattan court, Spike Lee and Viacom reached an agreement to allow TNN to change its name to Spike TV. Lee cited ''protection of freedom of expression'' as ''a critical value'' in the decision.... Los Angeles-based MPH Entertainment, which optioned Nia Vardalos' My Big Fat Greek Wedding in 1997, is suing the indie bride, HBO, and Playtone, claiming it has not received the 3 percent as stipulated by their agreement. Vardalos' lawyer says ''Nia should never have been named in this lawsuit and we are extremely confident that she will soon be dismissed from the claim.''

DEPARTURES

Michael Savage, host of MSNBC's The Savage Nation, was fired July 7, after wishing that a confrontational caller die of AIDS. An MSNBC rep called the comment ''extremely inappropriate'' and said ''the decision to cancel the program was not difficult.'' A statement on the controversial personality's website says his words were ''not meant to reflect my views of the terrible tragedy and suffering associated with AIDS.''

SPLITS

Sharon Stone, 45, and San Francisco Chronicle editor Phil Bronstein, 52, are calling it quits after five years of marriage. They have a son, Roan, 3.

WEDDINGS

Was the WB frog invited? On July 5, Dawson's Creek stud James Van Der Beek, 26, married Party of Five's Heather McComb (below), 25, in Malibu, Calif.

DEATHS

Jazz flutist Herbie Mann, 73, who helped popularize the musical style called bossa nova, of prostate cancer, July 1, outside Santa Fe, N.M.... Namibian bushman-turned-actor N!xau, best known for his role as a Coke-bottle-discovering native in the 1984 comedy The Gods Must Be Crazy, of tuberculosis, while out hunting with bow and arrow, July 2, near his hometown of Tsumkwe. -- Missy Schwartz and Sumeet Bal

Originally posted Jul 18, 2003 Published in issue #719 Jul 18, 2003 Order article reprints