Sideshow: Elmo's human resigns

Puppeteer Kevin Clash , who had played Elmo for nearly three decades, has departed "Sesame Street." CHARLES SYKES / AP
Puppeteer Kevin Clash , who had played Elmo for nearly three decades, has departed "Sesame Street." CHARLES SYKES / AP
Posted: November 21, 2012

Kevin Clash, the puppeteer who played beloved Sesame Street character Elmo for nearly three decades, has resigned amid accusations he had sex with a teenage boy. Clash last week denied claims by a 24-year-old man that he had sex with Clash when he was 16. Clash admitted having a relationship with the man but said it was only after the latter had turned 18. The accuser, recanted his story for a $125,000 settlement, TMZ reports, and agreed to state that the sex was between consensual adults. Now TMZ reports that the man has changed his mind, saying he was pressured into settling. He plans to file a lawsuit. Meanwhile, a second accuser has filed another suit, attorney Cecil Singleton tells the Associated Press. Sesame Workshop called the controversy "a distraction that none of us want" and says it led to Clash's decision to leave the show.

The hunt for the hunt for bin Laden

"It's the story of a lifetime," director Kathryn Bigelow tells Entertainment Weekly of her pic, Zero Dark Thirty, the story of America's hunt for Osama bin Laden. The film opens locally on Jan. 4.

"This is the world's most dangerous man - it was a manhunt that eluded a couple of administrations and took place over a decade. So I was fascinated by that," says Bigelow, 60, who won an Oscar for her Iraq war film, The Hurt Locker.

Bigelow and writer Mark Boal say they based all the characters and events on real people, including Jessica Chastain's character, Maya, a CIA officer who played a pivotal role in the mission.

Boal says the film takes pains to protect the real players' identities.

But how do you make a film about a mission that was beyond top secret?

Well, um, well, they had some kinda access, OK? That ticked off some politicos, including U.S. Rep. Peter King (R., N.Y.), who last year asked for an investigation of how the filmmakers got their material. "It was surreal," Boal says of King's request. "I hope people see the movie and judge for themselves."

Kanye West in Atlantic City

Between disappointing revenues and the wallop the Jersey Shore took from mondo-storm Sandy, there's been plenty of talk about how Atlantic City's still shiny-and-new Revel resort is struggling to survive. The casino hotel, which celebrated its grand opening with four nights of Beyoncé in May, is still pulling in big-name attractions. To wit, Kanye West will play three shows at Revel's Ovation Hall Dec. 28-30. Tix at Ticketmaster.

- Dan DeLuca

Bon Jovi announces tour

Beloved Jersey rockers Bon Jovi will begin their "Bon Jovi Because We Can" coast-to-coast tour on Feb. 9 in Uncasville, Conn. They will play Philadelphia, at a date yet to be announced. Info:

R. Kelly bringing 'Closet' to Broadway

A genius in R&B, hip-hop, rock, soul, jazz, and the rock opera, R. Kelly is about to bring his massive creative Geist (and accompanying 10-ton ego) to the Broadway stage. Kelly plans to bring his multipart magnum opus, Trapped in the Closet, and its charming characters - Twan, Sylvester, and Pimp Lucius - to that sacred mid-to-high-culture temple, the theater. "To transform it into a Broadway version, that's what I'm working on," Kelly told a packed house at the Sunshine Cinema in New York on Monday night. Kelly's latest chapters of Closet will debut on the IFC channel on Friday.

Indian feast for Dylan, Knopfler?

To what cuisine does America's greatest troubadour turn to reenergize after a big show? Indian. Friends tell us that Tashan restaurant on South Broad Street received an order for "pretty much . . . the entire menu" Monday night at 9:30 for delivery to the Wells Fargo Center, where Bob Dylan was playing a show with opening act Mark Knopfler.

Real estate tidbits

   Madonna's about to take a bath. The triple-wide Upper East Side New York townhouse she bought in '09 for $32.5 mil is being put on the market for $23.5 mil, the New York Daily News says. . . . Andrew Garfield is using his Spider-Man paycheck to secure a $2.5 mil Beverly Hills love nest to share with Emma Stone, reports the Real Estalker blog.

This article includes information from Inquirer wire services. Contact "SideShow" at

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