Vanessa Bryant (pictured with Kobe in 2009) reportedly was upset to learn he had laughed off his past apologies to her. | Kevork Djansezian~Getty Images
Updated: January 20, 2012 8:17AM
People who know both Vanessa and Kobe Bryant long wondered what it would take for the NBA star’s wife finally to throw in the towel and exit the couple’s 10-year marriage.
Yes, Vanessa stood by her husband’s side as he faced that 2003 scandal and alleged rape charges brought by that Colorado concierge. And yes, Mrs. B suffered in silence as she learned about Kobe’s repeated affairs and flings with other women.
However, two things supposedly led Vanessa to file the divorce papers earlier this month:
† Kobe’s latest extra-marital affair was so blatant, the couple’s daughters were said to be in the woman’s presence on a number of occasions and were fully aware their dad was cheating on their mother.
† And the Lakers superstar’s wife learned that Kobe’s many promises to “never do that again” were just a bunch of hooey, and that he laughed off his apologies to her in conversations with his closest friends.
BRITNEY’S BEAU: Sources close to Britney Spears are universal in praising the pop star’s fiance and ex-agent Jason Trawick as the best thing that’s ever happened in Spears’ personal life. “Jason has taught Britney what it means to be an adult,” said a longtime Spears sidekick.
“He’s stable, he’s smart, he adores her and he’s a true gentleman. … She is so lucky,” added another friend of the entertainer, who has known her for more than a decade.
Also very pro-Trawick is Spears’ ex-husband, Kevin Federline. Apparently, Trawick has treated K-Fed with “nothing but respect,” said a Britney buddy, who also is friendly with Federline. “Jason understands how important Kevin’s kids [with Britney] are to him, and he’s been particularly kind to him.”
CHICAGO CONNECTION: Fast-rising Hollywood screenwriter Graham Moore — who grew up on the South Side — has been tapped by Warner Bros. to pen the script for the film based on Erik Larson’s bestselling The Devil in the White City — which has Leonardo DiCaprio attached to star as Dr. H.H. Holmes, the notorious serial killer of young women attending the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893.
COULD BE JUICY: If Tom Sizemore truly tells all, his planned memoir could make for one of the juiciest Hollywood star books in recent memory. The talented actor, whose battle with drugs and alcohol derailed a very successful career, is expected to honestly recount his addiction stories, his famous fling with “Hollywood Madam” Heidi Fleiss and his failed marriage to soap opera actress and former North Shore resident Maeve Quinlan — who wisely left Sizemore once he turned abusive.
TV TALK: This should be a hoot: “Betty White’s 90th Birthday: A Tribute to America’s Golden Girl” airs Jan. 16 on WMAQ-Channel 5 — the night before the entertainment legend’s actual birthday. Immediately following that will be a sneak peak of “Off Their Rocker,” a half-hour hidden-camera series, with White hosting a group of seniors she sends out to pull pranks on the younger generation.
† Fans of former “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” star Chris Meloni wlll be happy to know the actor has joined the hit vampire series “True Blood” as a regular cast member.
† It shouldn’t be too much of a stretch for Jane Fonda when it comes to her recurring role on Aaron Sorkin’s new HBO drama series. The yet-to-be-titled show will be a behind-the-scenes look at a fictional cable news network. Given Fonda was married to CNN founder Ted Turner, we can assume she’ll have lots of real-life experiences on which to draw!
HOLIDAY HAPPENINGS: Robin Ventura will make his Goodman Theatre debut Wednesday night — and make a Make-A-Wish Foundation child very happy. The White Sox manager will join budding actress Emily Beazley, 9, in the annual production of “A Christmas Carol,” the fifth year the Goodman and Make-A-Wish have joined forces to fulfill the dream of a child battling a life-threatening disease.
Ventura and Emily will wear specially created costumes in selected scenes in the holiday classic.
† “Thumpety thump thump, look at Frosty go!” is bound to be on the lips of folks watching Frosty the Snowman making special appearances at Kohl Children’s Museum for story hour and family photo ops, Monday through Wednesday this week.
SPORTS SHORTS: Cubs honcho Theo Epstein got his French bistro fix the other night — dining with a pal at Mon Ami Gabi. … Ex-Bull Eddy Curry, now with the Miami Heat, was seen touring the Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy in the Loop. The NBA pro was there to discuss a future animation project.