Shakira determined to fight her ex’s lawsuits — wherever, whenever
By Bill Zwecker April 17, 2013 7:20PM
Colombian singer Shakira (L) and her boy
Updated: May 19, 2013 6:04AM
The legal battle between Latin superstar Shakira and her former boyfriend and business associate Antonio de la Rua could be fought in courtrooms in a number of international jurisdictions.
De la Rua, the son of a former Argentine president, has filed a $250 million lawsuit against the singer, claiming he is responsible for creating her “brand” and further claiming credit for inspiring some of Shakira’s biggest hits, including “Hips Don’t Lie” and “Waka Waka.” He also takes credit for orchestrating an estimated $300 million deal Shakira inked with Live Nation in 2008.
The “Voice” mentor scoffs at the allegations and has gone into Manhattan Supreme Court in New York, requesting the suit be dismissed forthwith. Shakira insistes her career was well-established and she was already a major star before she and de la Rua met and began dating, after a concert in Argentina in 2000.
Their relationship ended in 2010, and de la Rua was axed from Shakira’s management team in 2011. She now is involved with Spanish soccer star Gerard Pique, the father of her new son, Milan.
Along with his filings in New York, de la Rua has filed similar lawsuits in the Cayman Islands, California and Switzerland.
A source who has been close to Shakira for years said Wednesday. “You can be sure Shakira will fight this one with everything she’s got. This is not just about business, but also very personal. Lots of ugliness here.”
RUSHING AHEAD: Jodi Arias is still on trial for the 2008 murder of her boyfriend Travis Alexander, but already the Lifetime network is about to begin filming “Dirty Little Secret: The Jodi Arias Story,” with “Lost” actress Tania Raymonde negotiating to play the title role. Jesse Lee Soffer, who starred in the Chicago-made “The Mob Doctor,” is in talks for the part of Alexander. Filming is slated to begin almost immediately in Los Angeles.
BABY BEAT: Oscar nominee Edward Norton is notoriously privacy-obsessed, so it’s not surprising the March birth of his and fiancée Shauna Robertson’s baby boy is just now leaking out. Norton’s representative is not commenting on the report — also not surprising, given the actor has never officially confirmed either Robertson’s pregnancy or their engagement.
ACADEMIC ACTION: Congrats to fellow Sun-Times columnist Mary Mitchell, just named Alumna of the Year by her alma mater, Columbia College Chicago. Mary will be honored with two fellow alumni, cinematographer Michael Goi (“American Horror Story”) and Indiana-based radio executive Len Ellis, during commencement ceremonies May 18 and 19.
† During its spring graduation celebration, Columbia also will be conferring honorary degrees to author Jane Hamilton (“The Book of Ruth,” “A Map of the World”), musician Herbie Hancock, choreographer Lorenzo Harris, philosopher Martha Nussbaum, music and club entrepreneur Joe Shanahan, artist Jessica Stockholder and filmmakers Robert Teitel and George Tillman Jr.
TAPPING THE CLASSICS: Veteran award-winning Chicago journalist and public radio broadcaster Mara Tapp will host “Mara Tapp Live” at Fourth Presbyterian Church’s Gratz Center on East Chestnut, beginning at 6:30 Thursday. Featuring Chicago author Aleksandar Hemon and ShawChicago’s artistic director Robert Scogin, the evening will also include local actors performing scenes from George Bernard Shaw and Shakespeare — all benefitting Tapp’s Cool Classics!, the after-school program she created seven years ago to improve literacy and reading comprehension among low-income public elementary school students, while expanding their sense of arts, humanities and culture. For more information, go to coolclassics.org.
LATE FEE: When Oscar winning director William Friedkin hit the stage at the Pritzker Auditorium Tuesday night at the Harold Washington Library, he snared big guffaws from the full house by pulling out a book — admitting he had failed to return it to the library’s Lakeview branch back in 1951 (!!!) while a Senn High School student.
Fortunately, a library representative on hand accepted the “return” — giving the Chicago native a pass on any fine for the 62-year-overdue book.
The “Exorcist” and “The French Connection” filmmaker has been making the rounds of events in town this week, promoting the release of his memoirs, “The Friedkin Connection.”
FAMILY MATTERS: While Magic Johnson’s son, E.J., says he hadn’t expected to publicly come out as gay quite this soon, his NBA legend father told TMZ he’s “a million percent” behind his son — as are all the other members of the 20-year-old man’s immediate family.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Culinary cousins Carrie and Michael Nahabedian, owners of the long-popular Naha restaurant on North Clark, are excited about the “soft” opening of their new, nearby Brindille eatery, 534 N. Clark, on Friday. The official opening happens Monday.
SEEN ON THE SCENE: Rhea Perlman, in town rehearsing for the world premiere of “Stella and Lou” at Northlight Theatre, stopped by Steppenwolf the catch her co-star Francis Guinan’s performance in “The Birthday Party.” Also in the audience were Rick Bayless and Gary Sinise — again proudly watching his daughter Sophia and wife Moira Harris, who also star in the production. … Can’t blame Giuliana Rancic — joined by baby son Duke — for sampling a few of those yummy cupcakes at Magnolia Bakery in the Loop, while taping a scene for her and hubby Bill Rancic’s “Guiliana and Bill” reality show. ... Cub pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Matt Garza hit Lincoln Park mainstay R.J. Grunt’s for burgers and a salad bar fix. … Recent sightings at the Oak Street steakery Del Frisco’s have included the Hawks’ Ray Emery and Johnny Oduya, the Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo and Alfonso Soriano and “Mr. Cub” himself, Ernie Banks.