Phil Spector met Lana Clarkson one evening in February, and within hours she was lying on the floor of his foyer, dead of a gunshot wound. This month Steve Pond reconstructs the fatal convergence of the once-powerful producer and the aging starlet. Bob Love, Playboy's new Editor at Large, directed Pond's efforts. The result is an atmospheric journey through the less glamorous side of Hollywood, replete with shades of Sunset Boulevard. "Even as strangers Spector and Clarkson were bound by a common sense of desperation," says Pond, "a feeling that they'd lost their juice and would never get it back. It's true of many in LA, celebrities and strivers alike. As hope slips away, they make bizarre moves and odd choices."
Soft-spoken starlet Charlotte Ayanna wants to make you believe in divine intervention. "My last name means blessed and everlasting bloom," says Ayanna. Recently she has started to fulfill the promise of her name. She peeled it all off in Dancing at the Blue Iguana and offers the only respite from strung-out meth freaks in this year's dark comedy Spun. But her life hasn't always been charmed. "I was taken from my real mother when I was an infant," she says, "and I never knew who my real dad was." In 1996 Charlotte wrote a well-received book, Lost in the System, about her chaotic years in foster care. "Right now I'm writing a more raw and mature book about my life once I got out of the adoption system," she says. And what a ride it has been. She won a teen beauty contest, appeared in a Ricky Martin video and turned to acting. "It's funny how one minute you're just another girl on the block and the next you're catapulted," says Charlotte. "I nearly got the part of Rogue in X-Men, which led to parts in Kate and Leopold and Training Day, and people started noticing me." Now single, Charlotte was with 60-year-old legend Robbie Robertson from the Band for three years. "I never thought I'd be a cliché," she says, laughing, "like dating a rock star and living below the Hollywood sign. But we're all a little crazy out here."
From the White Lotus supper club in LA comes the Red Apple Saketini: Combine three quarters of an ounce each of sake and vodka, an ounce and a half of Sour Apple Pucker schnapps (by DeKuyper), a half ounce of cranberry juice, a spritz of citrus and ice in a shaker. Shake, strain and serve with apple wedges.
Besides saving a bundle on tuxedo rental, why would anyone want to get hitched in the buff? To flesh out the answer, we accepted an invitation from 29 couples who shed tradition, and their clothes, for the world's largest nude wedding. The ceremony took place at—where else?—Hedonism III in Jamaica and even included clothing-free bachelor and bachelorette parties. We spoke to nudist newlyweds Burnam Hudson and his bride, Caddis, who persuaded him to carry her buck naked across the threshold. Now, that gives new meaning to the word honeymoon.
Lucky bastard. That was the underlying tone of the press coverage regarding Nascar bad boy Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s stint as a guest Playboy.com photographer. His nude shoot with Erica, Nicole and Jaclyn Dahm—a.k.a. Misses December 1998—was touted everywhere from Sports Illustrated to The Boston Globe. Earnhardt told one reporter, "I don't know which is more fun—hanging out with Playmates or driving a race car. I haven't seen all the pictures, but who knows? Maybe I can do this when I retire as a driver." Just before he won this year's Daytona 500, Michael Waltrip was asked about Junior's side job: "There is one reason he would agree to be a photojournalist: if there were three girls instead of one," Waltrip said. The photos reportedly gave Nascar chairman Bill France Jr. whiplash. According to one article, "When a reporter slid a laptop in front of France and asked for comment on Earnhardt's extracurricular activities, France said, with an arched eyebrow, "Interesting. I have no other comment."
A man has to know when to hold 'em and when to fold 'em, and I am now in a folding phase of my career. The cards have been dealt and I've played a good hand. But the time has come for me to pull up stakes and move on from this rewarding assignment (the best job a writer of my temperament could ever hope to have) and concentrate on other things—like writing a book about what's happening to me.
Who cares if the hood scoop and trunk spoiler say "Ticket me, officer." Where's the nearest winding road? Subaru's World Rally team inspired the new Impreza WRX STi and, for once, we didn't get a neutered version of the model offered in Europe and Asia. In fact, the STi's 2.5-liter turbocharged power plant (that's 300 hp) is exclusive to North America. Standard equipment includes all-wheel drive, sporty suspension, oversize analog gauges, 17-inch wheels and a six-speed transmission with a leather-covered shifter knob. A stereo system is optional. Price: Around $30,000—which should leave you enough extra cash to bribe a state trooper.
On the Edge anybody can buy a sharp-looking kitchen. It's the sleek accessories that call for some thought. Instead of just dumping your knives in a drawer (eventually you'll get bit reaching it there), invest in Mundial's new future collection--for seamless high-carbon stainlesssteel knives proudly housed in a lacqueredwood and acrylic block. Blade sizes include a four-incher for paring, a six-inchers. That's all you need, unless you're tossing brontosaurus T-bones on the grill. Price: $144 for the set.
My girlfriend insists that I answer my cell phone whenever she calls. For her, it's a tracking device. Sometimes I can't answer, or I turn off the ringer. But no matter what reason I give for sending her to voicemail, she assumes I'm with someone else. What does the Advisor think? —D.P., Austin, Texas
Many Americans first heard of marijuana grower Ed Rosenthal this past February, when the jury that convicted him of three felonies (growing more than 100 plants, conspiring to cultivate and maintaining a growing operation) demanded that its verdict be overturned. Five panelists and an alternate stood on the steps of the federal courthouse in San Francisco and said they had been duped into sending a man who was not a criminal to prison.
He was an aging eccentric rock genius, more famous for guns and tirades than for hit records. She was a beautiful B-movie actress who needed a break. When the sun rose on their late-night meeting, she was dead, and he was in handcuffs. The timeline of a tragic Hollywood intersection
<p>The road leading to Playmate of the Year has more twists than a contortionists' convention, and no one knows this better than Christina Santiago. Last year, when the no-nonsense Puerto Rican beauty from Chicago lost out on Fox TV's reality series Girl Next Door: The Search for a Playboy Centerfold, it seemed her Playmate dream was over. But finalist Christina had made a lasting impression and soon returned as Miss August.</p>
Though it's inspired by the venerable Disneyland attraction, don't expect some Mickey Mouse production. This Jerry Bruckheimer—produced action behemoth features Johnny Depp as a good pirate, The lord of the Rings' Orlando Bloom as a British naval hero and Geoffrey Rush as an evildoer who kidnaps newcomer Keira Knightley and seeks the treasure that will remove a curse from his crew of ghouls. Will director Gore Verbinski (The Ring) evoke classic swashbuckling adventures, or recent waterlogged wrecks like Cutthroat Island? Spooky special effects and a splash of high-seas humor from Shrek scribes Terry Rossio and Ted Elliott can't hurt. Pass the Dramamine just in case.
Remakes starring Mark Wahlberg have been iffy prospects (Planet of the Apes, The Truth About Charlie), but at least this one promises a great car chase. The 1969 original had Michael Caine diverting attention from a heist by creating an enormous traffic jam. In the new incarnation, a heist goes off as planned in Italy, but when thief Wahlberg is double-crossed, he plans to reswipe the swag by manipulating traffic signals across Los Angeles. Charlize Theron and Edward Norton also appear, but the real star may be the Mini Cooper, which we'll see barreling up sidewalks and zipping through subways.
Video-game seductress and slayer Lara Croft is back in action, better served (we hope) by this Jan de Bont-directed sequel. (Did we really need that treacly father-daughter subplot last time around?) Angelina will scale cliffs, ride motorcycles and get slippery wet on a personal watercraft, all in the service of thwarting a Chinese crime syndicate. If any residual anger at Billy Bob got channeled into the fight scenes, we might be in for some cathartic violence. Lara's a globetrotter, so expect location work in Greece, China and Africa, including an underwater opener and a sequence on the rim of a volcano. Like we'll be looking at any scenery besides Angelina.
The Pitch Based on the surprise best-selling book by Laura Hillenbrand, this nostalgic drama trats out the hottest sports star of the Thirties—a stubby-legged, ornery racehorse whose win-streaked career inspired millions. So what have you done lately? (July 25)
Since you'll be dragging your significant other to Matrix Reloaded and Terminator 3, you're going to have to sit through one of her picks. We vote for Reese Witherspoon's return as empowered sorority babe Elle. (OK, maybe we're biased because she wore a Playboy Bunny costume in the first movie.) The sequel finds shallow yet crafty Elle—now a high-powered lawyer—lobbying Congress to stop cosmetics companies from testing their wares on cute little dogs. Yes, this comedy is pinker than a bubble-gum explosion in a Laura Ashley store, but Wither-spoon is one of Hollywood's most watchable comediennes, and the legendary Bob Newhart has a key role as a doorman who provides Elle with inside political information.
When Vin Diesel demanded $20 million to do the sequel to The Fast and the Furious, Universal decided that the franchise's success was more about cool cars than one bald strongman and told him to hit the road. Metropolis-of-the-moment Miami is the backdrop for returning star Paul Walker and ex-MTV-host Tyrese as they go undercover to nab a drug kingpin (Cole Hauser). The original's multiethnic appeal is still in force, with Cuban-American actress Eva Mendes getting our motors hot. Boyz N the Hood director John Singleton is behind the wheel, and has promised something faster than his usual snail-paced dramas.
Think of it as a cacophonous class reunion, as Will Smith, Martin Lawrence and director Michael Bay return to the project that established all three as action-movie players. A lot has changed since Bad Boys rocked the multiplex in 1995, including Smith's becoming one of Hollywood's biggest stars, but in Bad Boys 2, he and Martin are still streetwise cops equally quick with banter and bullets. This time they're taking on a Miami drug lord, white supremacists and citywide corruption, leaving just enough space between Bay's earsplitting explosions for Smith to get jiggy with his partner's sexy younger sister (Gabrielle Union). Maybe that wild-looking chase scene is just him trying to get the hell out of town.
Not much about John Holmes was small, but this under—$10 million take on the porn star's involvement in a 1981 drug-related quadruple homicide has a distinctly indie feel. Val Kilmer channels 13-incher Holmes, Lisa Kudrow plays his wife, Dylan McDermott is nearly unrecognizable as a smack-dealing biker, and Kate Bosworth, Eric Bogosian, and Janeane Garofalo round out the ensemble. The murders were never solved, so the film plays around with shifting perspectives, plus offers Kilmer in a bloody, confessional nude scene. The filmmakers are mum on whether the budget allowed for prosthetic enhancement.
George Jacobs worked as Frank Sinatra's valet from 1953 to 1968. For Mr. S., as Jacobs called him, these were the Glory years, when Sinatra Reigned as the most Powerful man in show Business. Jacobs not only dressed his boss, he also cooked for the man's girlfriends, paid his hookers and Babysat some of the most Glamorous names in Hollywood. The Closest thing Sinatra had to a confidant, Jacobs was also a keen observer of Sinatra's inner circle, which included Dean Martin. Sammy Davis Jr. and the rest of the Rat Pack. But Sinatra's most complicated—and Mysterious—Relationship was with the Kennedy Brothers. The Architects of Camelot. Jacobs has never shared these tales with any reporter or Sinatra Biographer—until now.
You have seen Tailor James before. The 22-year-old Canadian ice-melter was one of the girls featured in our February 2003 Cyber Girls pictorial. "A friend of mine is a photographer, and it was his idea to try the whole Playboy thing," says Tailor. "It's funny—most of my baby pictures are of my cousin and me running around nude in my grandmother's backyard. I guess things haven't changed much."
Modern science has cured plagues and mapped the outer reaches of the cosmos, but what about important issues like boob symmetry and porcupine fornication? We dove into 50 years of sex studies and made this startling discovery: There's no topic too weird, or too obvious, for the lusty lab-coat crowd—especially if someone can get a grant for it. Just be careful with that Bunsen burner, Dr. Horndog.
The overarching reason to invest in quality shades: You'll be wearing these fashion statements on your face. This summer, a couple of trends are emerging. Forget the yellow-and-amber conformity of the past two seasons—lens colors are multiplying fast. Purple? Rust? It's all part of the current mix. And while most styles come in larger sizes this year, they're still extremely lightweight. These days, sunglasses go everywhere—so it's best to own several pairs. The glasses that help you maintain your poker face while sealing a business deal are not what you need for slurping cocktails at a beachfront bar or paddling toward the sun in a sea kayak. Ray-Ban makes the rectangular glasses (1) with gray lenses ($130). The pair with metal frames (2) is by Calvin Klein ($200). The titaium-frame glasses with green lenses (3) are by Morgenthal Frederics ($365). The copper-colored pair (4) is by Bevel ($375). Paul Smith makes the amber plastic wraps (5) ($215). The wraparounds (6) with amber lenses are by Donna Karan ($340). The gold aviators (7) are by Selima ($250). The pair of metal-frame glasses with purple lenses (8) is by Nike Eyewear ($140).
Everyone who watched Fox's megahit Joe Millionaire was shocked when Evan Marriott picked Zora over Sarah Kozer—everyone except Sarah herself. "I think the other girls on the show were happy that Evan picked Zora, because we thought Zora really liked him," says Sarah. "I didn't know there was supposed to be a millionaire on the show when I agreed to go to Paris, and I never went into this expecting to get any money or compensation. I figured out quickly that Evan didn't have any money. I thought, Who inherits $50 million and calls Fox to say that he needs a girlfriend?"
Now that I've had you shut down your little hate site in my Honor, Weevk, I really want to know what possessed you to put up such a vile, mean—spirited and wholly accurate account of my personal life in the first place.I don't know, Mr. Duck.
Below is a list of retailers and manufacturers you can contact for information on where to find this month's merchandise. To buy the apparel and equipment shown on pages 32, 43–44, 86–89, 114–119, 120–121 and 163, check the listings below to find the stores nearest you.
Slaving over a pyramid of barely glowing coals is an ancient manly art, but wouldn't you rather be knocking back a margarita with the rest of the barbecue crew on the deck? The newest gas grills fire up restaurant-level BTUs in seconds and offer more counter space than some studio apartments. And don't forget all the accessories absolutely essential to any grill master worth his filet mignon: sword-size tongs, forks and spatulas, along with marinades and sauces from famous rib joints. You can even catch an inning or two of the game on television while burgers, chops and ribs—sizzling to perfection—are monitored by a digital gizmo that transmits cooking time and temperature to a receiver in your pocket. —Larry Olmsted
Playboy (ISSN 0032-1748), June 2003, volume 50, number 6. Published monthly by Playboy in national and regional editions, Playboy, 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Periodicals postage paid at Chicago, Illinois and at additional mailing offices. Canada Post Canadian Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement No. 40035534. Subscriptions: in the U.S., $29.97 for 12 issues. Postmaster: Send address change to Playboy, P.O. Box 2007, Harlan, Iwoa 51537-4007. For subscription-related questions, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Editorial: email@example.com.
Lisa Marie Presley—The King's Princess tells all about her doomed marriage to Nicholas Cage, her even stranger union with Michael Jackson. Loving scientology and growing up with a daddy named Elvis. Clearly, Lisa Marie has not left the building. A rocking Playboy Interview By Rob Tannenbaum. Plus: Famous rock daughters—an all-access pass