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The daily dish ... a spicy serving of celebrity news

Hoffman is a lifesaver

A man who had a heart attack while jogging in London's Hyde Park says his life was saved by a famous passer-by -- Dustin Hoffman.

Sam Dempster says the actor called an ambulance and waited with him after he collapsed April 27.

On his recovery blog, Dempster thanked medical staff and "my newfound favorite celebrity, Dustin Hoffman, who called 999 and waited by my side until paramedics arrived."

The Sun newspaper quoted paramedic Martin Macarthur as saying Hoffman told medics, "Great job, guys" after they resuscitated Dempster with a defibrillator.


'Leap of Faith' folding

Too few people were willing to consider taking a "Leap of Faith."

Producers of the Broadway musical based on the 1992 film starring Steve Martin said Tuesday the show will close Sunday. It will have played 24 previews and 20 regular performances.

The musical has new songs by Alan Menken and stars Raul Esparza as a devious faith healer who is ready to scam residents of a down-and-out Kansas town. It got a Tony Award nomination for best musical but no other nods and some poor reviews.

Last week, it earned just $171,381 at the box office from a potential of $1,315,655.


Will Smith says 'tax me'

One of Hollywood's biggest and best-paid stars is supporting President Obama's call for higher taxes on the country's top earners.

Will Smith said while promoting "Men In Black III" last week that he supports the move.

"I'm very supportive of that idea," Smith told the Associated Press in an interview. "America has been fantastic to me. I have no problem paying whatever I need to pay to keep my country growing."

Obama has proposed that everyone earning $1 million a year or more should pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes. One research group said the change would affect around 210,000 taxpayers.

Vanity Fair has reported that Smith was paid an estimated $20 million for "Men In Black III."


Artist died of overdose

Officials are confirming that artist Thomas Kinkade died from an accidental overdose of alcohol and prescription tranquilizers.

The Santa Clara (Calif.) County Medical Examiner-Coroner's Office said Tuesday the self-described "Painter of Light" died April 6 due to a combination of ethanol and Diazepam intoxication, or in common terms, alcohol and the tranquilizer often marketed as Valium.

Before his death, the 54-year-old Kinkade produced sentimental scenes of country gardens and pastoral landscapes that he sold in a nationwide chain of galleries.

In recent years, however, he had run into personal difficulties, including a 2010 bankruptcy filing by one of his companies.

-- From News and wire services