Updated: September 24, 2012 6:25AM
Friends of Christina Aguilera are increasingly concerned about the singer and actress’ erratic behavior.
Her wild partying and heavy drinking have snared tons of headlines — and one longtime professional associate is concerned “how it’s beginning to take a toll on her looks. Youth can only carry you so far. Xtina is starting to look haggard!”
† In addition, Aguilera’s temper flareups — like her alleged run-in with her “Burlesque” co-star Julianne Hough (which reportedly infuriated Hough’s boyfriend and Hollywood power broker Ryan Seacrest) also have folks worried. They attribute a lot to emotional turmoil stemming from the collapse of Aguilera’s marriage to Jordan Bratman. “But it’s got her acting too crazy,” said a pal Thursday.
† While no one is saying Aguilera’s problems require rehab, one recent episode — where she passed out in the master bedroom during a party at actor Jeremy Renner’s house — has Hollywood players saying Aguilera needs to calm down and get her act together.
“After all, she is the mother of a 3-year-old little boy [son Max]. She needs to act more responsibly,” said her friend.
WORKING AT IT: Gwyneth Paltrow has always been very tight-lipped about her marriage to Coldplay rocker Chris Martin — even as rumors swirled about troubles in that high-profile couple’s relationship.
A source extremely close to the Oscar winner tells me the actress’ recent interview with Good Housekeeping “is remarkably candid, and very close to how Gwyneth and Chris have been working hard to keep things together.”
In the magazine, Paltrow is quoted as saying, “Marriage is hard. Chris and I have had our ups and downs, big-time. … But hopefully we keep heading in the same direction and getting through the obstacles.”
The Paltrow pal tells me she’s convinced “they will hang in there and stay married. They love each other tremendously and are crazy about those terrific kids of theirs.
“I think they have figured out how to give each other proper space, and those breaks they take are how they make it work. Frankly, that probably would be a good idea for other famous stars — too much time spent together can make things burn out!”
BOOK IT, BEARS! The most literary Bears-Packers bet on Sunday’s game is the one between Chicago Public Library Commissioner Mary Dempsey and her counterpart at Green Bay’s Brown County Public Library.
Our Town’s library has bet a basket of books, including Sara Paretsky’s Hardball, Aleksandar Hemon’s Nowhere Man, Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson and The Universe in Miniature in Miniature by ex-Green Bay guy Patrick Somerville (now in Chicago) — plus such popular kids’ books as The Stinky Cheese Man by Jon Scieszka, Chicago History for Kids by Owen Hurd, Meet the Bears by Mike Kennedy and Blue Balliett’s The Wright 3.
The booky cheeseheads’ assortment includes Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie and David Maraniss’ When Pride Still Mattered, which has been turned into a play — currently on Broadway.
MORE BEARS: The person behind the new music video “Hest Is the Best” is a huge Devin Hester fan, TV producer Bonnie Kaplan, who wrote the lyrics and tapped Chicago’s Happiness Club to sing it. Only up on YouTube since Monday, the video — also available on iTunes — already has received more than 5,000 hits.
YOUNG AT HEART: Chicago favorite Irma P. Hall (“Soul Food,” “Collateral,” “The Ladykillers”) is still going strong at 75 — actually playing an older woman on David E. Kelley’s new “Harry’s Law” show, starring Kathy Bates, airing at 9 p.m. Monday on WMAQ-Channel 5.
In the episode, Bates’ Harry character defends an impoverished 87-year-old woman (Hall) who commits armed robbery to buy food.
SEEN ON THE SCENE: More than 800 folks showed Wednesday for the Time Out Chicago bash at Blokes & Birds — celebrating season two of “You’re Cut Off!,” with the VH1 reality series’ host Laura Baron front ’n’ center. … ’80s heartthrob Corey Feldman squired a bevy of beauties to Rosebud on Rush — three nights running — giving Alex Dana’s special pumpkin ravioli a big thumb’s up.
Bill Zwecker reports regularly on “Good Day Chicago” and “Fox Chicago News at 9” on WFLD-Channel 32.