Actor Abe Vigoda Dead at 94

THIS TIME IT IS SADLY TRUE, ABE VIGODA HAS DIED …

Abe Vigoda, the actor most known for his role as Tessio in The God Father, The God Father II and detective Phil Fish in the 1970s TV series “Barney Miller,” has passed away at the age of 94 in New Jersey. According to accounts, Vigoda died Tuesday morning in hospice care his sleep in Woodland Park, New Jersey of old age. His career spanned 7 decades with his most prominent roles of that on Barny Miller, Fish and The God Father movies. He was one of my favorites.

I know what  many are saying, but I thought he was already dead. Well so did People Magazine three decades ago In 1982, People Magazine erroneously declared Vigoda dead. Oops. However, the incident made him a cult figure and Vigoda and others were able to keeping all in good humor. Okay People magazine, you can now accurately report his passing.

Rest in Peace Abe Vigoda

abe_vigoda_Fish

Abe Vigoda – Barny Miller

Character actor Abe Vigoda, whose leathery, sad-eyed face made him ideal for playing the over-the-hill detective Phil Fish in the 1970s TV series “Barney Miller” and the doomed Mafia soldier in “The Godfather,” died Tuesday at age 94.

Vigoda’s daughter, Carol Vigoda Fuchs, told The Associated Press that Vigoda died Tuesday morning in his sleep at Fuchs’ home in Woodland Park, New Jersey. The cause of death was old age. “This man was never sick,” Fuchs said.

His death brought to an end years of questions on whether he was still alive — sparked by a false report of his death more than three decades ago. Though Vigoda took it in stride, the question of whether he was dead or alive became something of a running joke: There was even a website devoted to answering the much-Googled question, “Is Abe Vigoda dead?” (On Tuesday, it had been updated with “Yes,” with the date of his death.)

Vigoda worked in relative obscurity as a supporting actor in the New York theater and in television until Francis Ford Coppola cast him in the 1972 Oscar-winning “The Godfather.”

Vigoda played Sal Tessio, an old friend of Vito Corleone’s (Marlon Brando) who hopes to take over the family after Vito’s death by killing his son Michael Corleone (Al Pacino). But Michael anticipates that Sal’s suggestion for a “peace summit” among crime families is a setup and the escorts Sal thought were taking him to the meeting turn out to be his executioners.

New York Times: Abe Vigoda, of ‘Godfather’ and ‘Barney Miller,’ Dies at 94.

Abraham Charles Vigoda was born in New York City on Feb. 24, 1921, to Samuel Vigoda, a tailor, and the former Lena Moses, immigrants from Russia. Abe, one of three brothers, began acting as a teenager and turned professional in 1947, performing almost entirely onstage for the next 20 or more years.

In 1960, he starred in an Off Broadway production of the Strindberg drama “The Dance of Death,” and he appeared frequently at the New York Shakespeare Festival in the early ’60s, as John of Gaunt in “Richard II” and King Alonzo in “The Tempest,” among other roles.

In 1963, he had the lead in an Off Broadway production of Shaw’s “Mrs. Warren’s Profession.” Five years later, he was on Broadway in Peter Weiss’s “Marat/Sade.”

In addition to his daughter, Mr. Vigoda is survived by three grandchildren and a great-grandson, The Associated Press reported. His second wife, Beatrice Schy, died in 1992.

Eagles Co-Founder & Musci Icon Glenn Frey Has Passed Away at Age 67 … RIP

OMG, ANOTHER MUSIC GIANT HAS DIED FAR TOO EARLY … THE LIGHTS ARE A LITTLE LESS BRIGHT TODAY AT THE HOTEL CALIFORNIA.

Glenn Frey, the co-founder and guitarist of The Eagles has passed away at age 67 in New York City. Frey co-wrote most of the legendary Eagles songs that we all know so well and grew up with.  And then there is an entire generation of people who are saying Eagles who, we know him for the soundtrack and his recurring role from Miami Vice. No matter what the case, Music just lost another one of their giants and far too young. This one hurts. The Eagles broke up in the 80′s and thankfully “hell froze over” in 1994 when the Eagles got back together for their monster Hell Freezes Over tour and recorded music till the end.

We’re told the cause of death was a combination of complications from rheumatoid arthritis, acute ulcerative colitis, and pneumonia.

Frey had been battling intestinal issues for months and had surgery in November. We’re told in the last few days his condition took a turn for the worse. He died in New York City.

Glenn co-wrote and sang on most of the Eagles hits, including “Take It Easy,” “Tequila Sunrise,” “Lyin’ Eyes,” and “Heartache Tonight,” to name a few. He also co-wrote “Hotel California” and “Desperado” with Don Henley and took home 6 Grammys with the band.

Tequila Sunrise

From The Eagles comes the following,

It Is With The Heaviest of Hearts That We Announce …

the passing of our comrade, Eagles founder, Glenn Frey, in New York City on Monday, January 18th, 2016.

Glenn fought a courageous battle for the past several weeks but, sadly, succumbed to complications from Rheumatoid Arthritis, Acute Ulcerative Colitis and Pneumonia.

The Frey family would like to thank everyone who joined Glenn to fight this fight and hoped and prayed for his recovery.

Words can neither describe our sorrow, nor our love and respect for all that he has given to us, his family, the music community & millions of fans worldwide.

Don Henley issued a statement following the news, in which he called Frey “the one who started it all.”

Henley praised his fellow musician’s work ethic, “encyclopedic” knowledge of music, and devotion to his family. Read Henley’s moving and profound statement below:

“He was like a brother to me; we were family, and like most families, there was some dysfunction. But, the bond we forged 45 years ago was never broken, even during the 14 years that the Eagles were dissolved. We were two young men who made the pilgrimage to Los Angeles with the same dream: to make our mark in the music industry — and with perseverance, a deep love of music, our alliance with other great musicians and our manager, Irving Azoff, we built something that has lasted longer than anyone could have dreamed.

“But, Glenn was the one who started it all. He was the spark plug, the man with the plan. He had an encyclopedic knowledge of popular music and a work ethic that wouldn’t quit. He was funny, bullheaded, mercurial, generous, deeply talented and driven. He loved his wife and kids more than anything.

A great tribute at Instapundit.

Fantastic Glenn Frey interview from 1992

Dan Haggerty, Actor Who Played Grizzly Adams, Dies at 74 from Cancer

SAD NEWS, ACTOR OF ONE OF MY FAVORITE 70′S SHOWS PASSES AWAY …

Dan Haggerty, the actor who played mountain man Grizzly Adams with his sidekick, a real bear named Ben, in the 1974 movie (VIDEO) that would become a NBC TV weekly show, The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams, has passed away. Dan Haggerty died Friday in Burbank, California at 74 as a result of cancer of the spine. Haggerty. who rose to stardom with his rose as the gently mountain man, Grizzly Adams, who was falsely accused of murder and fled to the woods. On a personal note, how I loved this show growing up as a kid and could not wait for it all week to come on. Grizzly Adams and his relationship with an orphaned bear named Ben, Hollywood take note. The TV series ran from 1977 to 1978. Why does it seem like it was so much longer? Maybe it was because it was one of my favorite TV shows of all time!

Dan Haggerty – Rest in Peace

dan_haggerty_with_Ben

Early on in his career and this was something I never knew, Haggerty was cast in a small non-speaking role as a bodybuilder in the 1964 film Muscle Beach Party, with Franky Avalon and Annette Funicello, and also as a bodybuilder in Girl Happy. These were followed by appearances in various biker and wildlife films such as Easy Rider, Angels Die Hard, The Adventures of Frontier Fremont, and Terror Out of the Sky.

dan_haggerty

Dan Haggerty IMDb

Dan Haggerty, who played a gentle mountain man with a luxuriant beard and a bear named Ben in the 1974 movie “The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams” and the NBC television series of the same name, died on Friday in Burbank, Calif. He was 73.

The cause was cancer of the spine, his friend and manager Terry Bomar said.

Mr. Haggerty was working as a stuntman and animal handler in Hollywood when a producer asked him to act in some opening scenes he was reshooting for a film about a woodsman and his bear. Based on the novel “The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams,” by Charles Sellier Jr., it told the story of a California man falsely accused of murder who flees to the woods, where he develops a rapport with the animals around him and tames an orphaned bear.

The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams – The Adams Cub

ABC News has confirmed with the actor’s manager Terry Bomar:

“Dan Haggerty, a beloved Father and friend, has died at 4:30 this morning at St Joseph Hospital in Burbank, CA, surrounded by his family that loved him. He had fought a long hard battle with cancer of the spine that was discovered in August of this year,” Bomar wrote in a press release.

He continued, “All the awards pale in comparison to his huge laugh and wonderful sense of humor that made everyone laugh with him. He would light up any room he entered. He loved life, loved his family, loved his friends and fans.”

Grizzly Adams Pilot Episode Part 1

Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

NY Times OBIT:

Daniel Francis Haggerty was born on Nov. 19, 1942, in Los Angeles. His parents separated when he was 3, and he had a troubled childhood, escaping several times from military school before going to live with his father, an actor, in Burbank, Calif.

At 17 he married Diane Rooker. The marriage ended in divorce. His second wife, the former Samantha Hilton, died after a motorcycle accident in 2008. He is survived by his children, Megan, Tracy, Dylan, Cody and Don.

His first film was “Muscle Beach Party” (1964), in which he played a body builder named Biff opposite Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello. Bit parts in biker and wildlife films followed, as characters like “Bearded Biker” or “Biker With Bandana.” He appeared briefly in “Easy Rider” as a member of the hippie commune that Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper visit.

He made several films with an outdoor setting, including “Where the North Wind Blows” (1974), in which he played a Siberian tiger trapper, and “The Adventures of Frontier Fremont” (1976). He appeared as a dog trainer in the David Carradine film “Americana” (1983). In “Grizzly Mountain” (1997) and “Escape to Grizzly Mountain” (2000) he played a character very much like Grizzly Adams.

As his career cooled, Mr. Haggerty appeared in horror films like “Terror Night” (1987), “Elves” (1989) — playing an alcoholic mall Santa — and “Axe Giant: The Wrath of Paul Bunyan” (2013).

Legendary Musician David Bowie Dies at 69, Rest in Peace

THIS MORNING I WOKE UP STUNNED AND SADDENED …

David Bowie, one of my all-time favorite musicians, has passed away at the age of 69. According to reports, Ziggy Star Dust died after an 18-month battle with cancer. Honestly, I never knew he had it. Bowie had just released his last album, “Blackstar,” this past Friday on his birthday. His music spanned so many generations and Bowie kept reinventing himself and his music. See David Bowie in concert was more than a concert, it was an epic event. The man was a music legend with more fantastic songs than most band have songs. In 1975, Bowie achieved his first major American crossover success with the number-one single “Fame” and the hit album Young Americans. But that is not before the glam rocker had such huge hits as  ”Space Oddity” and “Star Man.” However, probably my favorites are probable “Changes” and “Heroes”. But there are just too many to pick from. Then there was the MTV years where Bowie hit it big with “Let’s Dance,” “Modern Love” and “China Girl.”

You will be missed, Rest in Peace.

David Bowie – Space Oddity

David Bowie, the infinitely changeable, fiercely forward-looking songwriter who taught generations of musicians about the power of drama, images and personas, died on Sunday, two days after his 69th birthday.

Mr. Bowie’s death was confirmed by his publicist, Steve Martin, on Monday morning.

He died after an 18-month battle with cancer, according to a statement on Mr. Bowie’s social-media accounts.

“David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family,” a post on his Facebook page read.

Mr. Bowie wrote songs, above all, about being an outsider: an alien, a misfit, a sexual adventurer, a faraway astronaut. His music was always a mutable blend: rock, cabaret, jazz and what he called “plastic soul,” but it was suffused with genuine soul. He also captured the drama and longing of everyday life, enough to give him No. 1 pop hits like “Let’s Dance.”

David Bowie – Changes

The Guardian – The legendary musician known for musical innovation and experimentation with his image died 18 months after being diagnosed with cancer.

The singer’s death was confirmed in a Facebook post on his official page: “David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18-month battle with cancer. While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family’s privacy during their time of grief.”

Writing on Twitter, Bowie’s son, the film director Duncan Jones, 44, said: “Very sorry and sad to say it’s true.” The news came as a shock to some, who were initially sceptical, but Bowie’s publicist, Steve Martin, told the Reuters news agency: “It’s not a hoax.”

David Bowie – Heroes

More from the NY Times obit:

Born David Robert Jones on Jan. 8, 1947, in South London, Mr. Bowie was a person of relentless reinvention. He emerged in the late 1960s with the voice of a rock belter but with the sensibility of a cabaret singer, steeped in the dynamics of stage musicals. He was Major Tom, the lost astronaut in his career-making 1969 hit “Space Oddity.”

He was Ziggy Stardust, the otherworldly pop star at the center of his 1972 album “The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars.”

He was the self-destructive Thin White Duke and the minimalist but heartfelt voice of the three albums he recorded in Berlin in the ’70s, often considered his greatest work: “Low,” “ ‘Heroes’ ” and “Lodger.”

The arrival of MTV in the 1980s was the perfect complement to Mr. Bowie’s sense of theatricality and fashion. “Ashes to Ashes,” the “Space Oddity” sequel that revealed “we know Major Tom’s a junkie,” and “Let’s Dance,” which offered, “Put on your red shoes and dance the blues,” gave him worldwide popularity.

Mr. Bowie was his generation’s standard-bearer for rock as theater: something constructed and inflated yet sincere in its artifice, saying more than naturalism could. With a voice that dipped down to baritone and leaped into falsetto, he was complexly androgynous, an explorer of human impulses that could not be quantified.

 David Bowie – Starman (1972)

 

Posted January 11, 2016 by
Celebrity, Deceased, Music, Obituary | one comment

“Glee” Actor Mark Salling was Arrested Tuesday on Suspicion of Possessing Child Pornography

Noah “Puck” Puckerman  in some serious trouble …

33 year old Mark Salling was arrested on Tuesday by LAPD on suspicion of possessing child pornography. Members of the LAPD Internet Crimes Against Children task force unit served a search warrant at his Sunland home at the 9900 block of Helen Avenue in Shadow Hills. According to CWD, the police used a battering ram to force entry into Salling’s residence Tuesday morning. Authorities say when they knocked on the door, announced their presence and called out Salling’s name he did not answer. The actor best known for his role in “Glee” was held on $20,000 bail and released at 2:26 p.m.

This isn’t Salling’s first brush with the law. In 2010, he was accused of committing sexual battery. A judge ordered him to pay the woman $2.7 million in the resulting lawsuit.

Mark_Salling

Glee” actor Mark Salling was arrested Tuesday after an LAPD Internet Crimes Against Children task force unit served a search warrant at his Sunland home, police said.

The task force was sent to search a home in the 9900 block of Helen Avenue, Officer Liliana Preciado of the Los Angeles Police Department confirmed to KTLA.

Sources told Crime Watch Daily that Salling lives at the address and was arrested on suspicion of possessing child pornography.

Salling’s arrest was confirmed by Officer Tony Im of the Police Department,  but Im would not say what the actor was arrested for. Im confirmed to the Los Angeles Times that investigators were searching Salling’s home for child porn.

Salling was facing  a felony charge and was held on $20,000 bail, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s inmate records. He was released at 2:26 p.m., records showed.

UPDATE I: Police sources will not confirm the identity of the individual who tipped them off.

Police sources tell “Crime Watch Daily” “hundreds” of images were found on one of Salling’s personal devices during the search.

Salling’s computer and other electronic devices were also seized after he refused to share his passwords with authorities, sources tell “Crime Watch Daily.” Investigators are now searching for further images on the devices.

Motörhead’s Lemmy Kilmister Has Died at 70 … Rest in Peace to a Heavy Metal Rock Legend (Video)

SAYING GOOD MY TO A TRUE ROCK AND ROLLER …

Lemmy Kilmister, the founding member and frontman of Motörhead, has dies at the age of 70. Sadly, Kilmister passed away today after a short battle with an extremely aggressive cancer. The WAPO described Lemmy as follows, “a voice like shrapnel and a bass tone to match. A steady diet of rock ‘n’ roll and rebellion, fueled by, until not so long ago, a bottle of Jack Daniels per day and sexual escapades too numerous to count. Plus: muttonchops.” Yeah, and your point? Lemmy Kilmister did it his way and I have to admit, Motörhead was one of my guilty pleasures. When you want to blow off some steam, hear some serious rock and crank the music at 11, Motörhead was on that playlist. Rest in Peace Lemmy Kilmister.

WWE pays tribute to The Ace of Spades

Lemmy Kilmister, the founding member and frontman of Motörhead, and a leading figure in hard rock’s resurgence in the late ’70s and its endurance since, has died of cancer, according to the band’s Facebook page. He was 70 years old.

“There is no easy way to say this…our mighty, noble friend Kilmister passed away today after a short battle with an extremely aggressive cancer,” the band wrote on Facebook, adding that the rock veteran had just learned of his condition on December 26th (two days after his birthday), while at home with his family, “sitting in front of his favorite video game from The Rainbow… We cannot begin to express our shock and sadness, there aren’t words.”

The man known to most as simply Lemmy was born Ian Fraser Kilmister in Staffordshire, England, and founded Motörhead in 1975. In his long tenure as the group’s singer, bassist and primary songwriter — he was its sole remaining original member — Lemmy became a heavy metal icon; though the group’s hard-charging approach also nodded to punk, and appealed to its fans.

Kilmister, whose gruff vocals and pummeling bass were central to that sound, cut a distinctive presence offstage as well, with his mutton chops and prominent facial moles. He appeared in a number of films and video games, and inspired a titular 2010 documentary that featured such admirers as Dave Navarro, Alice Cooper, Nikki Sixx and Slash.

Ace of Spades

Motorhead Frontman Lemmy Dies at 70.

A rock and roll hellraiser par excellence, the British musician was a member of Hawkwind in the early 1970s before founding Motorhead. The band’s biggest hit was “Ace of Spades” in 1980.

Always cutting a distinctive figure with his giant mutton-chops, large facial moles and low-slung Rickenbacker bass, Kilmister was born Ian Fraser Kilmister in Staffordshire, England. A rock and roll lifer from the moment he saw the Beatles at Liverpool’s Cavern Club as a teenager, Kilmister played in a variety of British bands during the 1960s, briefly served as a roadie for the Jimi Hendrix Experience, and played bass in space rock outfit Hawkwind from 1972 to ’75 (when he was fired after being arrested for drug possession at the U.S.-Canada border). But it’s as the founder and lone constant member of Motorhead that most of his legend relies.

The rare group to be revered by metalheads and punks in equal measure, Motorhead’s compulsion to push rock music to its fastest, loudest and most primal form left a profound influence on thrash and speed metal, though Kilmister himself always insisted that the band should be described purely as rock and roll. Famously laying out his ambitions for the group to become “the dirtiest rock and roll band in the world; if we moved in next door, your lawn would die,” Kilmister sang with a guttural yet surprisingly melodic growl, and played bass in the style of a rhythm guitarist, heavy on distortion and power chords.

Motörhead – The Game / Live at WWF Wrestlemania XVII, 2013

Have you Heard “An American with A Remington” by Larry Gatlin and Billy Dean? (VIDEO)

 ”AN AMERICAN WITH A REMINGTON” … 

By any chance have you heard the song, “An American with a Remington”? If not, take a listen below and let us know what you think. Its a song by country greats Larry Gatling of the Gatling Brothers fame and Billy Dean. The song was written in response to radical Islamic terror attacks and innocents having their heads cut off at the hands of ISIS. As Larry Gatlin said, “I really pissed us off”.  From Billboard comes the Gatlin Brothers defending their so-called controversial song about guns. Please, its not controversial, people in this country have become too gutless and sensitive and are offended about everything.

Gatlin — who is a frequent guest commentator on the Fox News network — also pushes a few buttons with the candid “An American With a Remington,” which the singer co-wrote with Billy Dean. “We’d been watching TV one night and saw the bad guys burning people alive in cages and cutting their heads off because they wouldn’t convert to Islam. We didn’t like that. A week later, he said he had an idea for a song. We wrote it and put it on Facebook and got 16 million hits. Then, we decided to let some friends of ours do it because they were a bigger act than us, but their record company wouldn’t let them put it out. I was mad about it for about five seconds until I realized that we were supposed to record it.

I think this pretty much says it all for how most Americans feel when it comes to deal with terrorism and those that what to affect out way of life. Most Americans are live and let live. But if you screw with us, you will feel our wrath. One of the lines from the song goes, “Hey, I wanna live in peace, but you come after my family, You’ll be staring down the barrel of my gun An American with a Remington.”

GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!

An American With A Remington

By Billy Dean and Larry Gatlin

Dear worthless, gutless cowards
You say I must convert or die
Well I guess you gonna have to kill me
Least you’re gonna have to try

Does Lexington and Concorde
Mean anything to you?
How about Bunker Hill, San Juan Hill
Or the Island Peleliu?

You’re not the first who’s ever tried to kill me
What makes you think I would turn and run?
You underestimate these United States
And the righteous might of people standing as one

We exist to fan the flame of freedom
We’ve fought and bled and died, we overcome
Hey, I wanna live in peace, but you come after my family
You’ll be staring down the barrel of my gun

An American with a Remington

Now that rifle helped put food on our table
When my Daddy came home from Viet Nam disabled
And like him I answered the call
And I was ready to give my all
In the mountains of Afghanistan

You’re not the first who’d ever want to kill me
What makes you think I would turn and run (I won’t turn and run)
You underestimate these United States
And the righteous might of people standing as one

We exist to fan the flame of freedom
We’ve fought and bled and died, we’ve overcome
I wanna live in peace, but you come after my family
You’ll be staring down the barrel of my gun

An American with a Remington
An American with a Remington
Yours truly
An American with a Remington

You’re not the first who’s ever tried to kill me…

An American with a Remington – The Gatlin Brothers

Of course and then there is Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Democrats who want to take away your Second Amendment rights and take away your Remington’s.

Scott Weiland, Former Lead Singer for Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolve Found Dead on Tour Bus in Minnesota

Damn, another rock star dies … Scott Weiland found dead on tour bus …

48 year old Scott Weiland, the former lead singer and front man of the Stone Temple Pilots and the Velvet Resolve was found dead on his tour bus in Minnesota. Scott Weiland was on tour with his band Scott Weiland & The Wildabouts and according to reports was supposed to play a gig last night at the Medina Ballroom. As reported at the LA Times, the former lead singer of the Stone Temple Pilots struggled with drug addiction. The Stone Temple Pilots were one of my favorite grunge bands of the 90′s. Sadly, Scott Weliand is dead at the age of 48.

Scott Weiland

Scott Weiland – RIP

Rock star Scott Weiland was found dead on his tour bus in Minnesota … TMZ has learned.

Weiland was on tour with his band Scott Weiland & The Wildabouts … they were supposed to play the Medina Ballroom tonight, but the show was cancelled. A source connected to the band tells us Scott was found Thursday night on the bus around 9 PM.

Police surrounded the bus, which was parked outside a motel in the town of Bloomington, MN. The Hennepin County Coroner now has Weiland’s body.

Facebook – Scott Weiland:

Scott Weiland, best known as the lead singer for Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver, passed away in his sleep while on a tour stop in Bloomington, Minnesota, with his band The Wildabouts. At this time we ask that the privacy of Scott’s family be respected.

Everyone is familiar with Plush, but her is some ‘Interstate Love Song,’ … RIP Scott Weiland

LA Times Obit:

Weiland was born Scott Kline in Santa Cruz on Oct. 27, 1967. At the age of 2, his parents divorced. He adopted the last name Weiland when his mother remarried and the family moved to a suburb of Cleveland. His biological father, a soda truck driver, remained in California.

“My childhood was green pastures and bee stings, learning to play baseball and football, living in a nice house, waiting — always waiting — for the start of summer so I could go to California and see my dad,” he wrote in his 2011 memoir, “Not Dead & Not for Sale.”

In a 1998 interview coinciding with the release of Weiland’s solo album “12 Bar Blues,” he told The Times that he had grown accustomed to the trappings of fame brought by Stone Temple Pilots.

“I used to feel guilty about my success, but I’m over that now,” Weiland said. “It’s like, hey, some people cook for a living and some people milk cows. I write songs.”

Stone Temple Pilots – Creep

Actor Charlie Sheen Is HIV-Positive

SO MUCH FOR WINNING

According to TMZ.com, actor Charlie Sheen is going to disclose publicly on The Today Show that he is HIV-positive.  Sources connected to NBC’s “Today” tell TMZ … Sheen will sit down with Matt Lauer on Tuesday morning to make the announcement. The 50 year old actor has long struggled with substance abuse and has admitted to soliciting prostitutes in the past.

People:

Charlie Sheen is going on the Today show to discuss being HIV-positive, sources tell PEOPLE.

According to top Hollywood publicist and crisis manager Howard Bragman, he was approached by people close to Sheen six months ago to deal with the crisis, but never dealt with him directly. “The interview could open up a lot of sympathy for him, but he has to be concerned about a fear of litigation from former sexual partners. You don’t take that lightly.”

Bragman says he was informed that Sheen “is getting treatment, and a lot of people in his life know about it.”

“It’s been going on for quite awhile. He’s not necessarily comfortable talking about it. It was very hard to get up the courage for him to talk about it.”

UPDATE I: TMZ – Charlie Sheen Threats of Lawsuits Unraveled HIV Secret.

We’re told things changed when Charlie confided in several friends he thought were confidants … it turned out they weren’t, and spread the word he was HIV positive.

That led to several of Charlie’s former partners contacting him and threatening a lawsuit because they were unaware of his status when they had interaction with him. Our sources say Charlie settled several of the cases and, in return for money, got confidentiality agreements.

We’re told one of the settlements occurred late last month.

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