Someone give Ryan Reynolds a glass of gin to celebrate! On Aug. 17, beverage company Diageo announced that it had acquired Aviation American Gin as part of a deal worth more than half a billion dollars. Ryan, you'll recall, became a co-owner of the gin just two years ago. Deadline reported that the deal is for an estimated $610 million depending on sales, with a $335 million upfront payment. Ryan will still have an ongoing ownership interest in the brand. After the sale, Ryan said in a statement, "A little over two years ago, I became an owner of Aviation Gin because I love the taste of Aviation more than any other spirit. What I didn't expect was the sheer creative joy learning a new industry would bring. Growing the brand with my company, Maximum Effort Marketing, has been among the most fulfilling projects I've ever been involved with. I want to thank Diageo for their incredible team and passion. We're so excited for the next chapter of Aviation Gin, which, I promise, will require just as little reading."
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Britney Spears wants some major changes in her life. The pop star filed paperwork this week asking a judge to permanently remove her father, Jamie Spears, from being the sole conservator of her person, a role he's held since 2008. Britney also expressed her desire to have a corporate fiduciary manage her business affairs (another thing Jamie currently does). However, on Aug. 19, TMZ reported that a judge decided to keep things as they are. Of late, social media has renewed its push to get Britney out of her 12-year conservatorship. In fact, during the Aug. 19 hearing, a #FreeBritney protest was occurring outside the courthouse. Jason Alexander — the man to whom Britney was married for 55 hours in 2004 — even turned out in support.
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Ashley Benson and G-Eazy's romance certainly seems to be moving fast — really fast! Earlier in the week, Page Six posted photos that showed the actress wearing a diamond ring on her left-hand ring finger. As a paparazzi photographer snapped away, Ashley appeared to hide her hand. The former "Pretty Little Liars" star donned the rock at dinner on Aug. 19 as well. She also slyly wore the ring earlier this month. The duo was first linked in May following the actress's split from Cara Delevingne.
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Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli have found out their fate. On Aug. 21, a judge, as expected, accepted a plea deal they stuck with prosecutors in regards to their college admissions case. Mossimo is set to serve five months on prison, pay a $250,000 fine and perform 250 hours of community service. Lori was sentenced to two months in prison, pay a $150,000 fine and perform 100 hours of community service. The couple was accused of bribing a middleman to get their daughters accepted into the University of Southern California as crew recruits, despite neither of them having experience in high-level rowing. During the hearing, done via Zoom due to the pandemic, Mossimo said, "I deeply regret the harm that my actions have caused my daughters, my wife and others. I take full responsibility for my conduct and I'm ready to accept the consequences and move forward with the lessons I've learned from this experience." Due to the language in the plea deal, house arrest is off the table. The Federal Board of Prisons will now decide which prison the couple will serve their sentences in. Given that both are first-time offenders and convicted of non-violent crimes, it's highly likely that they'll serve their time in a minimum security prison.
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It was a busy week for Ellen DeGeneres as she tried to repair her image. On Aug. 17, Variety reported that "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" had parted ways with three senior producers — executive producers Ed Glavin, Kevin Leman and co-executive producer Jonathan Norman — in the wake of ongoing criticism of the show's culture and allegations of bad behavior. That same day, the show's resident DJ, Stephen "tWitch" Boss, was promoted to co-executive producer. According to reports, Ellen also apologized to her staff on Aug. 17, saying she's "not perfect." She further addressed one of the rumors enveloping her — a claims that she forbids people from looking her in the eye. "I don't know where it started," she said. According to People magazine, she added, "I'm a multi-layered person, and I try to be the best person I can be and I try to learn from my mistakes. I'm hearing that some people felt that I wasn't kind or too short with them, or too impatient. I apologize to anybody if I've hurt your feelings in any way." On Aug. 20, multiple reports revealed that amid the months-long criticism, Ellen is increasing perks for her employees ahead of her show's season 18 return in September.
Stacey Dash's estranged husband is claiming he was unduly influenced in his quickie marriage to the "Clueless" actress, and that's why it should be annulled. In June, Stacey filed for divorce from fourth husband Jeffrey Marty, the Florida attorney she married in 2018 after reportedly knowing him for less than two weeks. According to an Aug. 19 report from TMZ, Jeffrey responded to Stacey's divorce filing and claimed "he only took his vows after Stacey's pastor put some serious religious pressure on him." He further alleges that 10 days before the wedding (which is basically when they met), Stacey's pastor and other clergy members urged them to marry. He now says he was unable to legitimately consent to the union due to the use of "hypnotic prayer techniques." Stacey — whose team says Jeffrey didn't show any unusual signs about his mental state at the time — isn't opposed to an annulment.
Weight-loss surgery reveal
On Aug. 20, Kelly Osbourne opened up about her recent 85-pound weight loss on the "Hollywood Raw with Dax Holt and Adam Glyn" podcast, revealing she had surgery to help her transform her body. "I did the gastric sleeve. All it does is change the shape of your stomach," she said. "I got that almost two years ago. I will never ever ever lie about it ever. It is the best thing I have ever done." She further explained, "All it does is move you in the right direction. So, anyone who's thinking of doing something like this, really think about that. I had to do a year of stand-alone therapy to prepare myself for the surgery before I even had it. … It doesn't solve all your problems. It's not a quick fix."
The zoo at the center of the "Tiger King" docuseries has closed to the public for good after Jeff Lowe, the man who operates it now, had his federal animal exhibition license suspended. Reports revealed the U.S. Department of Agriculture dropped the hammer on the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park due to numerous animal welfare violations. After the suspension, Jeff said in a now-deleted Facebook post that the USDA had "folded to the pressures of [animal rights group] PETA" and were making "false accusations" against him. Jeff said he had forfeited his exhibitors license while noting that the agency had suspended it. Jeff took over the zoo from previous owner Joe Exotic, the star of Netflix's "Tiger King." Joe is serving a 22-year prison term after being convicted in a murder-for-hire plot targeting an animal rights activist.
Dax Shepard is in pain and in need of surgery following a motorcycle accident on a California racetrack. On his "Armchair Expert" podcast on Aug. 18, the actor said he broke his clavicle and multiple ribs. "I was passing six guys on Sonoma Raceway on a motorcycle and I was braking very, very hard — hard enough that the back wheel was off the ground for a good 100 yards," he said. "I was totally at blame," he explained. "I thought I would be able to slide in between, but someone turned in and I was already under full brake and I couldn't go anywhere. I clipped their bumper and I went over the handlebars." Being that it was his first time at racetrack, Dax said the accident was a "little demoralizing," especially because track employees yelled at him. "I've been at the hospital for seven hours today," he said. "The final tally was four broken ribs, the clavicle's broken in three places, and I need surgery."
Savannah Chrisley underwent her third surgery to treat endometriosis on Aug. 18. The reality TV star made the announcement on Instagram, saying it was a "vulnerable moment." The 23-year-old reality TV star wrote, "I haven't talked about this much because honestly…I have struggled BIG TIME. I'm insanely self conscious and just feel like my body has given up on me. I was diagnosed with Endometriosis when I was 18 and it's been quite the struggle."