Pop Culture

Palin could rake in $7 million from book deal

After she spent the last few weeks talking to just about any camera put in front of her, it should come as no surprise that former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin is moving closer to inking a book deal.

Just how much could the Alaska governor make from putting pen to paper? About $7 million, according to some estimates.

Sound like a lot? Not necessarily, says one literary insider.

"Bill Clinton made more than $10 million when he signed his deal in 2001 and that was the most for a former president," says the source. "Sarah brings something different to the table — there is so much curiosity surrounding her and her life. If they move fast and get this thing on shelves, then a $7 million advance could be worth it."

As if there wasn't enough proof already that Palin has achieved full pop-culture phenom status, consider this: Paparazzi photos of the governor have surfaced.

In the photos, which have popped up online, Palin is pictured lounging poolside (in T-shirt and shorts) doing, well, nothing.

"Even photos of her of her just sitting there, but looking like a normal person, could go for solid five-figure sums," says one magazine editor.

Another editor disagrees. "If it's an all-rounder (meaning: the photos can be sold to other outlets) it would sell for probably about $300 per picture. If it's exclusive, $7,000, max. SHe's over in print ... she's doing so much press that she's overexposed."

Who's the animal here?Animal-rights activists from PETA pelted Lindsay Lohan with a face full of flour when Lohan arrived at Paris's VIP Room Theater early Saturday morning. The protester dumped a full bag of flour on the starlet while shouting "Lindsay Lohan, fur hag," PETA confirms.

Lohan, who appeared to be wearing a black fur stole, was dusted off and continued with her night, but her good friend Sam Ronson is lashing out against the PETA protester on her MySpace blog saying, "The girl who threw [the flour] acted like an animal herself. I take that back, it's an insult to animals to group her in with them, my dog is FAR more civilized than that person."

PETA says that Lohan "has enraged animal lovers by appearing in at least two different fur coats in recent days, despite PETA's repeated pleas that she consider how animals suffer for every fur garment and stop wearing their skins."

Kanye v. the paparazzi, round twoKanye West had a rough start to his weekend on Friday when he was arrested in London after an altercation with paparazzi. West is defending himself via what else — his blog — saying that the paparazzi is above the law, and he was just defending himself.

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"Let us not forget the paps killed Princess Diana," West writes. "When will there be a law passed that simply enforces that someone has to ask to take a photograph of you? That would seem like common courtesy. Right now the paps are above the law and the people they shoot are below it."

West also has his own take on the incident. ""When I left the club I was encountered by a thirsty paparazzi as usual. He felt he had more rights to my space than me, so I put my hand up to prevent him from taking my image. I didn't assault him but merely putting (sic) my hand up to cover his lens. My security yelled, 'Get the camera off him.' I guess in all the commotion the camera scraped his nose."

In September, West was accused of damaging a photographer's camera during an altercation at LAX. He hasn't been charged yet.

Aniston doesn't help '30 Rock' ratings
So far, Sarah Palin is the person most indirectly responsible for the bump in "30 Rock" ratings over last year.

The show, which premiered Oct. 30, has offered a strong line-up of guest stars, and so far none of them have boosted viewership beyond the season premiere, when Tina Fey was fresh off her stint as Sarah Palin on "Saturday Night Live."

Oprah Winfrey starred in the Nov. 6 episode, where ratings fell over the previous week, and most recently, Jennifer Aniston took a turn on the show. Her Nov. 13 appearance garnered the show's worst ratings yet this year — 7.5 million tuned in, versus 8.1 the week Winfrey appeared.

Weekend box office
Choosing "Quantum of Solace" to top the weekend box office was a no-brainer, but predicting that the Bond film would rake in more than $70 million its opening weekend in the U.S.? That would have required serious prognostication gadgetry.

Hollywood expected it to make somewhere in the neighborhood of $60 million — which might have been a purposely low estimate.

Regardless, "Quantum" pulled in more than $30 million more than "Casino Royale" did its opening weekend and it also outdid the previous opening day record for a Bond flick, which was $47 million for "Die Another Day" in 2002.

Courtney Hazlett delivers the Scoop Monday through Friday on msnbc.com.

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