Recruitment

'Smallville' actress recalls Allison Mack encouraging her to join NXIVM

Former "Smallville" actress Alaina Huffman thoroughly remembers her co-star Allison Mack touting NXIVM, the controversial self-help group that many believe was actually a sex cult in upstate New York.

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In fact, Alaina said Allison invited her to join the group several times.

"As a young woman, 27, 28, on 'Smallville,' Ally was a couple of years younger than me and here she was flourishing, very well put together, a really peppy and independent woman," Alaina told Page Six. "She invited me a few times to some of these events and for whatever reason, I never made it maybe because I was married and had kids and I might have had something else that grounded more than I needed that kind of grounding but I can understand the appeal."

Allison, who won two Teen Choice Awards for her role as Clark Kent's sidekick Chloe Sullivan on "Smallville, made no secret of her NXIVM beliefs, and she even spoke openly on the set about her plans to move to Albany, New York, where the group was headquartered, Alaina recalls.

Allison was high in the NXIVM food chain. Within NXIVM was a secretive group called DOS, which stood for "dominus obsequious sororium," which is Latin for "master over the slave women. Allison quickly became a "key recruiter" for DOS, multiple reports and documentaries show. 

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Women who were part of DOS were allegedly forced to become "slaves" to the their masters. These "slaves" were required to provide "collateral," often in the form of nude photographs, to prove their loyalty to their "master." They were also reportedly required to seduce NXIVM founder Keith Raniere, who's initials were also branded on the women (many claim Allison's initials can also be found in the brand.)

Alaina, who starred in "Supernatural," said Allison wasn't the only actress to try and recruit her to NXIVM. Former member Bonnie Piesse, who had a role in "Star Wars," also implored her to join.

"We went out for dinner and she was like, 'Oh, you've got to come to this group,'" Alaina recalled. "I said, 'Oh yeah, I know it from Ally.'"

Bonnie later left the group and joined other former members on a crusade to take NXIVM down. She and her husband, filmmaker Mark Vicente, are prominently featured on HBO's "The Vow," which centers on the group, which had deep ties in the entertainment industry.

Public interest in NXIVM has been peaked recently due to "The Vow" and Starz's "Seduced," which is produced by India Oxenberg, who was a part of DOS. India is the daughter of "Dynasty" star Catherine Oxenberg. 

On Oct. 28, the Oxenbergs celebrated as Keith, NXIVM's founder, was sentenced to 120 years in prison for sex trafficking and other crimes, all of which stem from his leadership of NXIVM.

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Last year, Allison pleaded guilty to racketeering and conspiracy charges, including extortion and forced labor, for her role in NXIVM. She is awaiting her sentencing.

Dating again

Amanda Kloots is dating again, and it's 'terrifying'

Amanda Kloots is putting herself out there again, and she admits that it's "terrifying."

The news comes just over a year after her husband Nick Cordero passed away due to COVID-19.

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The 39-year-old says she's actually very new to the dating process and doesn't quite know what she's doing.

"Both of my husbands, I met doing Broadway shows. We became friends first, then we got married," she said while co-hosting "The Talk" on July 23. "Obviously with Nick, we had a child. I've never actually had to date."

For Amanda, this is a whole new world.

"I just started dating again and it is so crazy to be dating for the first time at 39 years old," she said. "And it's quite terrifying and really out of your element, and it's just hard. It is hard."

Still, she told co-host Elaine Welteroth that everything was going well.

"It's all wonderful," she said. "It's been a great process so far. But I'll just say it's very hard without getting into too many details."

Amanda has not said who she's gone on dates with. 

Earlier this month, Amanda marked Nick's death anniversary with a heartfelt public post

"Today hurts, there is no other way around it. One year ago you left us and became our angel in heaven. You were surrounded by so much love and Led Zeppelin playing on Spotify-no doubt that was your doing, not mine. What happened was unthinkable, losing you was my biggest fear. I used to tell you all the time, 'Don't you dare go anywhere. If I lost you, I don't know what I'd do,'" she wrote alongside a seven-minute video on Instagram. "There hasn't been a day this year where you weren't missed, thought about and talked about. Thank you for being our guardian angel, for sending me signs, for being my DJ in heaven."

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Nick, a Tony-nominated actor-singer was one of the first high-profile names to die after being infected with the coronavirus. His three-month hospitalization was chronicled by his wife.

Hospitalized

'Bachelor' alum hospitalized with postpartum complications

"Bachelor" alum Lauren Burnham has been hospitalized with mastitis just a few weeks after giving birth to twins. 

The reality TV star's husband, former "Bachelor" Arie Luyendyk Jr., shared the news on his Instagram Story, saying that her condition was "getting worse." In sharing a picture of Lauren in the hospital, he added, "Hate this for her." 

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Mastitis is an inflammation of breast tissue that leads to infection.

"She'll be here overnight. IV antibiotics and scans for any abscess," he captioned another image. "She's been through a lot this week."

The hospitalization comes a little over a month after welcoming twins, Lux & Senna Luyendyk. The couple also shares daughter Alessi, 2.

Arie and Lauren have both had a rough go of late. After welcoming their twins on June 11, the couple was unable to take their daughter home, as she was having trouble breathing. After a week in the neonatal intensive care unit, Senna was finally released. 

Lauren and Arie met while filming "The Bachelor" in 2018. He initially picked Becca Kufrin, but soon broke off proposal because he couldn't stop thinking about Lauren. He proposed to Lauren on the "After the Final Rose" special. They married in Hawaii in January 2019.

Vacay vibes

Cher responds to Britney's Instagram about a dream vacation with her

Cher is ready to take Britney Spears to paradise.

Earlier in the week, the pop star railed against her conservatorship and rattled off a list of things she'd like to do, but can't because of the stranglehold the conservatorship has on her choices. She specifically referred to pictures she saw of Cher in Saint-Tropez in France.

"Maybe I'll just be nice and plant here and keep my dreams alive by thinking about visiting St. Tropez with @cher and eating ice cream… She was one of my favorite singers as a kid and I loved to dress up as her," Britney wrote on Instagram. 

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On July 24, the "Believe" icon saw the message and responded.

"When #FreeBritney is FINALLY FREE, I'm Taking her to San Tropez & We'll Eat Ice Cream To Her Hearts Content," Cher tweeted. 

Cher has spoken about Britney's battle before. In June, she tweeted, "OK let's talk about Britney & those people. I said long ago, everyone on the [Las Vegas] strip heard about her father (didn't know about her conservator acting in concert with her dad) giving drugs so she could perform, but made sure she couldn't have a life, but no one could get 2 her."

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Britney, Cher said, "was a prisoner."

"I have one question. I've performed since I was nineteen, & doing the kind of shows Britney & I do is hard fkng work !!," she continued. "What drug cocktail did they give her 2 force her perform, but keep her from having a life!! a few times i heard she was zombie like. She must have been in a living (flame emoji)."

Officially done

Jana Kramer finalizes divorce from Mike Caussin

Jana Kramer is a single woman. 

On July 22, she finalized her divorce from Mike Caussin, officially ending their six-year turbulent marriage.

"Today has not been easy and I didn't know if I would even say anything. If I'm honest I had no idea how I would feel. Relieved? Sad? But I got the "final" call that I'm officially divorced and the tears came," she captioned a relaxing Instagram photo. "My first feeling was failure. That I failed my kids. That I was unlovable, not enough. I had moments of anger that I never wanted this for my reality, for my kids."

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Getting that phone call, she said, brought out "all the feels." Still, she takes solace in the fact that she knows she "didn't fail [her] kids."

"I'm showing them a strong momma and I'll continue to do that and walk away knowing I did everything I could," she said. "This isn't the end…it's just the beginning of my story and I'm excited, hopeful, and ready to continue the healing so I can be stronger, and love deeper. Okay back to work. Love you all! We got this!"

On July 23, she shared a lighthearted video in which she said she was "enough."

"Day 1…..who dis. New beginnings…..," she captioned a video.

She also posted a photo to her Instagram Story at 12:01 a.m. on July 23 and proclaimed it was a "new day."

The country singer filed for divorce from Mike in April and hinted that Mike was unfaithful to her, citing "inappropriate marital conduct, irreconcilable differences and adultery" as the cause for the split. Sources close to the former "One Tree Hill" star later confirmed the speculation. 

Jana and Mike didn't exactly have a fairytale marriage, as he was involved in multiple cheating and sexting scandals. Last fall, he was also hit with more cheating accusations.

cardboard connection

Margot Robbie slept with cardboard cutout of John Cena for 2 years

Margot Robbie had a close years-long relationship with John Cena years before they actually met… or before he even knew! It was more of a cardboard connection.

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While appearing on Jimmy Kimmel Live alongside John to promote their "Suicide Squad" film, Margot recalled her history with the wrestler-turned-actor.

"I watched WWE when I was growing up," she said. "When I was a kid, I loved the Undertaker, and then obviously when I was a teenager I kind of stopped watching. But then, as a late teen, early 20s, I had a boyfriend who was obsessed with John Cena — so much so that he dressed as John Cena for his 21st birthday, and [he] had a cardboard cutout of John Cena in his bedroom."

For two years, Margot slept "with a life-size cardboard cutout of John Cena in the room," she revealed.

"Sometimes I'd wake up in the middle of the night and [gasp] and then I thought, 'Oh, it's just John Cena, it's okay,' she said.

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Being a working actress, Margot wondered if she might cross paths with the actual human version of John.

"And I remember thinking, 'I wonder if now that I'm going to work with John Cena, should I tell him this or is that going to be weird?'" she said. "And I thought, 'I'm just going to keep that to myself. I'm not going to tell him. That'd be a weird way to start our working relationship.' And then five seconds into meeting him, I'm like, 'I used to sleep in a room with a life-size cutout of you.'"

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John, Robbie said, was hardly creeped out. 

"Now I know that there's very little to weird out this guy," she said as she sat next to John, who was wearing his "Suicide Squad" costume.

"In my defense, I was more than likely wearing jean shorts," John said reassuringly.

To even the odds, Anthony Anderson, who was subbing for Jimmy Kimmel, brought out a life-size cardboard of Robbie's Harley Quinn character.

"You also have to sleep with that for two years to level the playing field," Margot told John.

Gray days

Andie MacDowell embraced her gray hair as a 'power move'

Andie MacDowell earned praise earlier this month when she showed off her beautiful gray hair at Cannes. She now reveals that several members of her team were blue in the face in trying to talk her out of embracing her salt-and-pepper strands.

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"My managers had actually said to me, 'It's not time [to go gray],'" she told Vogue. "And I said, 'I think you're wrong, and I'm going to be more powerful if I embrace where I am right now. It's time because in two years I'm going to be 65. If I don't do it now, I won't have the chance to be salt and pepper. I always wanted to be salt and pepper!"

Trying to "please people," Andie, 63, looked into wigs to hide her hair. But she eventually decided to let her gray locks flow naturally, calling it a "power move."

"Once I did it, it was just so clear to me that my instincts were right because I've never felt more powerful," she said. "I feel more honest. I feel like I'm not pretending. I feel like I'm embracing right where I am. I feel really comfortable. And in a lot of ways, I think it's more striking on my face. I just feel like it suits me."

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Two things aided her in her hair transformation: one was her family, and the other was the pandemic.

"At the very beginning of quarantine, my hair started growing and every time my kids would see me, they kept telling me I looked badass with my gray hair. When I pulled it up in a bun, all you could see was the salt and pepper, which is what I am, you know, dark and silver," she said. "I like to compare myself to George Clooney because why not? I've been saying for a while now it was time for me, personally, to make that transition because I felt like it was appropriate for my personality and just who I am."

In doing some research, she found some inspiration in other high-profile women who have happily gone gray.

"I don't want people to have the expectation that I need to look younger to have value or to be beautiful or desirable," she said. "We don't do that to men! We love an older man. We love men as they age. I would love the same expectation for women, and we're getting there … you know, baby steps."

House fire

New Orleans home owned by Beyonce catches fire

A $2.4 million home in New Orleans believed to be owned by Beyonce caught fire, and the blaze took more than two hours to extinguish.

Multiple outlets reported that the 1-alarm fire at the historic home began on July 21 at around 6:15 p.m. It was finally put out around 8:30 p.m. It took 22 firefighters to extinguish the blaze.

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No one was injured and it didn't appear that anyone was in the home at the time of the fire. Reports said a properly working smoke alarm alerted the fire department. The cause of the fire isn't known.

"If they didn't get there when they did, it could have been much worse. It's a historic home," a fire department spokesperson told The New York Post.

While the home isn't directly listed as Beyonce's property, it was purchased in 2015 by Sugarcane Park LLC, a company managed by Bey's mother. Sugarcane's mailing address is also the same as Bey's management company, Parkwood Entertainment.

Realtor.com claims the property was built in 1927 as a Presbyterian church before it was re-purposed as a ballet school. In 2000, it was converted into a home. The three-story home is spectacular, as it spans 15,200 square feet, features a main residence, 3 separate apartments, 26-foot ceilings and a green roof.

Lawmaker layoff

Tiger Woods' mistress claims she was fired from gig because of lawmaker

Rachel Uchitel, who famously had an affair with Tiger Woods, claims she was unceremoniously dropped from her spokesperson role with a sugar daddy-style dating app because of controversial Congressman Matt Gaetz.

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According to TMZ, Rachel filed a lawsuit against the Seeking Arrangement dating app, claiming her six-month contract was terminated three months early because the company worried about the aftermath of a scandal involving the Florida House member.

Gaetz has been linked to the site and there are reports that he's a member. The lawmaker is being investigated for sex trafficking over an alleged sexual relationship he had with a 17-year-old girl, whom he supposedly paid to travel with him a couple years ago. 

Rachel insists that she has no connection with the Congressman.

Under her agreement with Seeking Arrangement, Rachel says she was paid $20,000 a month and did her job well. She maintains that the company told her it needed to re-brand in the wake of Gaetz's scandal and let her go.

She's suing Seeking Arrangement for the balance owed, which is about $60,000, and damages for tarnishing her reputation. She's also asking for money for emotional distress.

Money matters

Dr. Dre ordered to pay ex $300k in monthly spousal support

Dre Day is also going to be known as pay day for Nicole Young.

According to newly obtained court documents, Dr. Dre has been ordered to pay his ex $293,306 per month in spousal support beginning on Aug. 1.

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Page Six notes that Dre will have to pay Nicole, his estranged wife, the fee until she remarries or enters into a domestic partnership. The court reserves the right to change the financial order in the future. 

The rapper must also pay expenses for two Los Angeles-area homes that he and Nicole once shared. Dre, however, owns these homes outright, so that is not surprising.

Although the spousal support fee is steep, it can actually be seen as a win for Dre, as Nicole had initially requested $2 million a month in spousal support. In her request, which was filed last fall, Nicole indicated she needed $100,000 a month for her mortgage and $900,000 a month in entertainment. She laid out the cost of more monthly necessities, as well, claiming she needed $135,000 a month for clothes and $20,000 a month for her cell phone, email and telephone.

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Dre and Nicole's divorce has been anything but amicable. In June 2020 filed divorce paperwork, ending their 24-year marriage. She citing irreconcilable differences as the reason for the split. In the days that followed, Dr. Dre revealed that they signed a prenuptial agreement back in 1996 and argued that their division of property should be governed by their prenup. Soon after, Nicole challenged that prenup and said she "unwillingly" signed the documents amid pressure from the rapper and his team.

Two years into the marriage, Nicole contends that the rapper admitted too forcing her to sign the prenup, and she accused him of "abusive coercive control."

"Andre acknowledged to me that he felt ashamed he had pressured me into signing a premarital agreement and he tore up multiple copies of the agreement in front of me," she wrote in court documents. "Since the day he tore up the agreements, we both understood that there was no premarital agreement, and that it was null and void."

In April, Dre and Nicole asked a judge to legally declare them single as they hammer out divorce details.