NEWSMAKERS

I'VE GONE TO A COUPLE OF EYE SURGEONS VHO ASSURED ME THE GLASSES WILL HELP MY EYES’ -‘TRAILER PARK BOYS’ STAR MIKE ‘BUBBLES’ MITH SUSPECTS THOSE SURGENOS ARE ON THE TAKE

October 23 2006
NEWSMAKERS

I'VE GONE TO A COUPLE OF EYE SURGEONS VHO ASSURED ME THE GLASSES WILL HELP MY EYES’ -‘TRAILER PARK BOYS’ STAR MIKE ‘BUBBLES’ MITH SUSPECTS THOSE SURGENOS ARE ON THE TAKE

October 23 2006

I'VE GONE TO A COUPLE OF EYE SURGEONS VHO ASSURED ME THE GLASSES WILL HELP MY EYES’ -‘TRAILER PARK BOYS’ STAR MIKE ‘BUBBLES’ MITH SUSPECTS THOSE SURGENOS ARE ON THE TAKE

NEWSMAKERS

RONA AMBROSE

TAKING THE HEAT ON THE ENVIRONMENT

Federal Environment Minister Rona Ambrose has undergone her own form of climate change. Her portfolio is one of the hottest in Ottawa and she’s been ducking calls from all parties for her resignation. The fuss has helped Ambrose emerge as one of the few in the Harper cabinet to actually sound like an individual and not a prime ministerial puppet. Asked how Quebec would regard her plan to focus on limiting emissions while forgoing a forced cap, she snapped, «■« “Quebec is not a concern to me.” Before a Commons committee, Ambrose hammered against recommitting to Kyoto targets. Recent polls reveal scant faith in the Tories’ commitment to the environment, and such low expectations provide the young minister with an opportunity to exceed them, even with minor improvements. Ambrose may

yet get a day away from the heat.

MIKE SMITH

WIDE-EYED SUCCESS HAS ITS HEADACHES

Seen through the wonky glasses he wears as Bubbles on TV’s Trailer Park Boys, Mike Smith’s eyes have always been larger than life. But they’ve never been as big as they were on Oct. 6: when Trailer Park Boys: The Movie opened, earning $1.2 million, this tale of Great White Trash was Canada’s top-grossing comedy, outdrawing U.S. movies about losers, Employee of the Month and Jackass Number Two. Smith, 34, a Halifax musician and actor, says he was given the joke glasses by a girlfriend, who found them in a Texas flea market. But don’t they hurt his eyes? “They give you a headache,” says Smith. “But I’ve gone to a couple of eye surgeons who both assured me the glasses will help my eyes in the long run—the muscles are trying to focus. Those were two eye surgeons the producers set me up with, so maybe they were paid to

saythat."

PATRICIA DUNN

A TOUGH EXECUTIVE IS DOWN BUT NOT OUT

The 53-year-old former chairman of Hewlett-Packard has had a month from hell. A few weeks after being inducted into a San Francisco Bay-area business hall of fame, Patricia Dunn was ousted from her job at HP over an espionage scandal. Last week, that scandal came to a climax when authorities charged her with illegally spying on board members and journalists. Then, on Friday, she began chemotherapy for advanced ovarian cancer. Just two days after that, the executive who started her career as a

temp secretary was on the counterattack and she was doing it nationwide. Appearing in a taped 60Minutes, Dunn claimed she’s a victim of a Martha-Stewartstyle witch hunt. Dunn denies any culpability but had some hard-nosed thoughts on corporate espionage: “If you think that Hewlett-Packard is the only company that has an investigations

force' she told her inter viewer,"you're~~~~ naive."

MIKHEIL

SAAKASHVILI

VICTORY BACKLASH

As relations continue to worsen between Russia and its Georgia —Moscow has imposed sanctions on its southern neighbour and deported 132 Georgians—domestic issues are also on full boil in the former Soviet state. President Mikheil Saakashvili, a proWestern leader who led Georgia through its Rose Revolution in 2003 by ousting the corrupt Eduard Shevardnadze, is accused of rigging last week’s presidential election. Saakashvili’s improbable-sounding claim of “a minimum of 70 per cent” majority less than an hour after polls closed on Oct. 5 triggered a backlash from opposition parties, who accused the president of running a dirty campaign. “Those who didn’t want to vote for Saakashvili were branded agents of another state,” said Labour Party head Shalva Natelashvili. But international monitors disagree. They gave Georgia’s democratic process a pass.

SÉGOLÈNE ROYAL A TOUCH OF GLAMOUR, A CARLOAD OF SCANDAL

French presidential hopeful Ségolène Royal—the “stiletto socialist” that all Paris is talking about—can’t count on her family to help her chances. Last month, her brother Antoine alleged that another brother, Gérard, a former spy, had planted the bomb that sank a Greenpeace ship in 1985. The sabotage sparked international outrage. The French appear unfazed by Gérard’s alleged role in sinking the Rainbow Warrior, which had been a foreign-policy disaster for the Socialists. They’re more curious about timing: Royal announced her candidacy for the Socialist Party leadership just days before her brother made the♦ politically damaging allegations. Family discord is nothing new for Royal. François Hollande, the Socialist Party secretary, her common-law husband and father of her children, is said to be depressed that the glamorous Royal has overtaken his presidential designs. But Ségomania has set in, and on

CHAD HURLEY AND STEVE CHEN ‘TWO KINGS’ CASH IN

The two founders of YouTube, the Internet site that shows homemade and professional videos to visitors 100 million times a day, went before the cameras themselves on Monday. Chad Hurley, 29, and Steve Chen, 27, celebrated the sale of the firm they founded less than two years ago for a jaw-dropping US$1.65 billion to Google. Hurley and Chen, who will stay with YouTube, succumbed to giggles when they described themselves as “two kings who got together.” They started as paupers in 2005, surviving on credit card debt and US$11.5 million in venture capital funds. YouTube recently began staving off potential copyright-infringement lawsuits, which would have crushed it, by negotiating usage rights with major movie and music producers. Google will give Hurley and Chen leeway to maintain the brand and will even let them keep the tiny office they now work out of. But given the sum they’ve been paid, the Internet’s latest kings

JAROME IGINLA BREATHE DEEPLY AND PASS THE PUCK

After last year’s spate of groin injuries, NHL players are following the example of the Calgary Flames captain, and signing up for yoga instruction to improve their breathing and flexibility. Iginla says his sessions have helped him soothe battered muscles and relax—no trifle for an on-ice warrior. And while he was a touch sheepish about the whole thing (the lotus position has no place in hockey), Iginla need not have worried. Several other NHL stars have hopped on the bandwagon and now swear by the benefits of yoga. Chris Higgins and Mike Komisarek (Montreal), Rick DiPietro (New York Islanders), and Iginla’s teammate Chuck Kobasew count among the converts. It all makes Andrew Ference, another Calgary Flame, a tad queasy. “Too many men in spandex and no shirts,” he said after trying yoga a couple of times. “I’ll stick to biking.”

TOBY JONES THE SECOND CAPOTE FACES THE INEVITABLE

If comparisons are odious, Toby Jones better get used to it. As the star of Infamous, the 39-year-old British actor has a tough act to follow. Less than a year after Philip Seymour Hoffman won an Oscar for Capote, Jones tackles the same character in another movie that tells the same storyhow Truman Capote was destroyed by writing his masterpiece, In Cold Blood. Or, as director Douglas McGrath puts it, “it’s about a gay writer who falls in love with a guy who killed a family of four.” Jones says he hasn’t seen Hoffman’s Capote. “I know by reputation what a great actor he is. But I also know what a complex character Capote is.” Jones’s Capote is a more flamboyant and accurate likeness than Hoffman’s. And he gets more physically intimate with the doomed killer Perry Smith. Already there’s Oscar buzz around Jones. But can lightning strike In Cold Blood twice?