Was Elmo puppeteer a serial tickler?
An unidentified Florida man has sued Kevin Clash
, the ex-Elmo puppeteer who quit his gig in the midst of a sex scandal, saying Clash met him in New York after trolling gay telephone chat lines seeking underage boys for sex.
The lawsuit seeking unspecified damages was filed in Manhattan federal court Tuesday.
The man says he met Clash on a chat line when he was 16 years old in 2000 and exploring modeling opportunities in New York.
The suit goes on to say that Clash had numerous Elmo dolls in his apartment when he met the teen for sex.
The man is the third to make claims against Clash, who resigned from "Sesame Street" last week after 28 years.
A spokeswoman says Clash "believes this lawsuit has no merit."
* Director David Anspaugh
screenwriter Angelo Pizzo, the Indiana natives who created the movie "Hoosiers," are being inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame.
Organizers announced Tuesday that the pair will receive the St. Vincent Health Silver Medal for contributions to Indiana high school basketball other than as a player or coach.
The 1986 movie is loosely based on the 1954 state championship team from tiny Milan High School and often tops lists of best all-time sports films. Anspaugh grew up in Decatur and Pizzo is from Bloomington. They also collaborated on the Notre Dame football movie "Rudy."
* Simon & Schuster is teaming
up with Author Solutions to create Archway Publishing, which will focus on self-published books.
"Self-publishing has become a viable and popular route to publication for many authors, and increasingly a source of content for traditional publishers, including Simon & Schuster," Carolyn Reidy, Simon & Schuster's CEO said in a statement.
So if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.
Maybe even exploit 'em.
Archway will offer a range of services, from a basic $1,599 package that includes "editorial assessment" and "cover copy review" to a $24,999 "Outreach" program for business books that features an "author profile video" and a reception at BookExpo America, the industry's annual national convention.
Interestingly, Author Solutions is owned by Penguin, a rival publisher to Simon & Schuster.
* Comic Katt Williams is being
sued (again) over his onstage meltdown in Oakland, Calif.
The San Francisco Chronicle reports it's the second Alameda County lawsuit filed over Williams' bizarre 10 minutes onstage at the Oracle Arena earlier this month, when he took off his clothes and challenged people to fight.
Talk about a punch line.
* The piano used for the song "As
Times Goes By" in the classic 1942 film "Casablanca" is going up for sale at Sotheby's in New York on Dec. 14 to commemorate the film's 70th anniversary. The auction house estimates it'll fetch up to $1.2 million.
For a piano that only knows one song?
It's being offered by a Japanese collector who purchased the movie prop at Sotheby's in 1988 for $154,000.
If only we could put our 401(k) in such an investment.
* Faustino Ibarra, who says
Tim Allen left the keys in one of his custom cars so Ibarra could drive it to Denver, is now in jail for stealing the car.
But he is in Denver.
Denver police spokesman
Sonny Jackson said Ibarra is being held without bond while awaiting extradition to California after his arrest on Saturday.
In a jailhouse interview with KDVR-TV, Ibarra claimed Allen adopted him years ago.
Jackson said there is no evidence of any adoption.
* Lenny Kravitz, who knows a
thing or two about sexual healing, has signed on for his first lead film role, playing Marvin Gaye in a biopic to be shot next year.
Kravitz recently had a small role in "The Hunger Games."
Rolling Stone says Kravitz will portray Gaye during the 1980s when he was fighting his addictions and attempting to restart his career. Gaye died in 1984 after being shot by his father.
* Jon Bon Jovi, Dave Grohl and
Eddie Vedder are joining next month's Hurricane Sandy benefit concert (dubbed "12-12-12") at Madison Square Garden.
They will join Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, Paul McCartney, Kanye West, Roger Waters, Alicia Keys, The Who, Billy Joel and others on Dec. 12 to raise money for the Robin Hood Relief Fund to benefit devastated areas of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.
Tickets for the concert go on sale Dec. 3 at noon.
- Daily News wire services
contributed to this report.