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I promise not to turn this into a Hollywood gossip blog, but I can't let this one slide.
Naomi Campbell turned 40 this weekend, and after celebrating on the French Riviera, she's throwing a huge bash in Moscow tonight with minigarch boyfriend Vladislav Doronin. Tons of people are flying in to attend the party Campbell is hosting for her new children's charity NEON, founded with dubious art guru Dasha Zhukova, girlfriend of oligarch Roman Abramovich.
But this is Russia, and a party is never just a party, so let the scandal begin.
First, the birthday bash. Campbell and Doronin flew to Moscow late last night on their private jet, accompanied by Jennifer Lopez and husband Marc Anthony. According to tabloid life.ru, J-Lo and Anthony (or "Mister Entonee" as he is known in Russian) were promptly detained for two hours at Vnukovo, the shoddiest of Moscow's three airports (but, inexplicably, the only one with a private VIP hall). Their crime? Mister Entonee had packed what the tabloid calls "a suspicious rare knife," prompting customs officers to search his mounds and mounds of baggage. I'd pay to see photos of J-Lo trawling Vnukovo's halls in her diamonds and fur.
But J-Lo and Anthony are no strangers to this part of the world. In March, they were special guests at the birthday of Alia Nazarbayeva, daughter of Kazakhstan's de facto president for life. And a couple of years ago, she regaled the Azeri elite with a private concert at a birthday party for Telman Ismailov, the controversial celebrity-loving tycoon who once owned Russia's most infamous black market. Lopez got nearly $1.5 million for what was reportedly a 10 minute performance. Not bad. Video below.
Back to Campbell. Monday's charity event, sponsored by Chopard, Capital Group and MAC, with a Sotheby's-run auction and a fancy fashion show, was due to be a highlight of the spring social calendar — at least for us celebrity obsessed reporters. But now it turns out, none of us is allowed to attend. All accreditation rescinded. Campbell's people blame that on "the participation of some exceptionally high level VIP guests." I guess they're referring to the likes of Penelope Cruz and Axl Rose, both due to attend. I wonder if the media blackout has anything to do with the fact that last week Campbell was called to testify in war crimes trial of former Liberian dictator Charles Taylor for accepting a blood diamond from him? Watch this space.