Pop Culture

Zsa Zsa’s husband says he could be baby’s dad

The husband of actress Zsa Zsa Gabor said Friday that he had a decade-long affair with Anna Nicole Smith and may be her infant daughter’s father.

The claim by Prince Frederic von Anhalt comes amid a paternity suit over Smith’s 5-month-old daughter, Dannielynn. The birth certificate lists Dannielynn’s father as attorney Howard K. Stern, but former Smith boyfriend Larry Birkhead is waging a legal challenge, saying he is the father.

“If you go back from September, she wasn’t with one of those guys, she was with me,” von Anhalt told The Associated Press in an interview Friday.

He said he would file a lawsuit if Dannielynn is turned over to Stern or Birkhead.

Von Anhalt, 59, and Gabor, 90, have been married for more than 20 years.

Gabor, a onetime sex symbol and star of such 1950s films as “Moulin Rouge” and “Queen of Outer Space,” has been in declining health in recent years and suffered a stroke in 2005. She was partially paralyzed in a car crash in 2002.

Von Anhalt, who is Gabor’s eighth husband, said he and Smith met in the 1990s when Smith was still married to elderly oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall II. He said Smith approached him and Gabor at the Plaza Hotel in New York.

“She was a very big fan of Zsa Zsa and wanted to be like Zsa Zsa,” he said. “She wanted to be a princess.”

He said the two started an affair soon after, meeting over the years in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York. For much of that time, he said, Smith urged him to make her a princess like his wife.

But short of divorcing the actress, he said the only solution would have been adopting Smith. Von Anhalt said he did consider that and even filled out adoption papers, but Gabor refused to sign them.

  • Slideshow Photos

    Jessica Rinaldi / X01704

    Celebrity Anna Nicole Smith's photo is seen in a 1985 Mexia High School year book under the name, Nikki Hart, in Mexia

    Anna Nicole Smith

    The short, tragic life of the former Playboy playmate and model.

  • Celebrity Anna Nicole Smith's photo is seen in a 1985 Mexia High School year book under the name, Nikki Hart, in Mexia

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Texas teen -

    Anna Nicole Smith's photo is seen in a 1985 Mexia (Texas) High School yearbook under the name Nikki Hart. School officials say Smith went by the name Nikki Hart during her brief tenure there.

    Reuters / Reuters
  • Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Short, tragic life -

    The cover of the June 1993 Playmate of the Year issue of Playboy magazine featured Anna Nicole Smith. Smith, the pneumatic blonde whose life played out as an extraordinary tabloid tale -- jeans model, Playboy centerfold, widow of an octogenarian billionaire, reality-show subject, tragic mother -- died Thursday, Feb. 8, 2007, after collapsing at a Hollywood, Fla., hotel. She was 39.

    Playboy / Playboy
  • Smith & Her License Plate

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    She had drive -

    Smith holds a Texas license plate that reads "PMOY 93" (Playmate of the Year).

    Time & Life Pictures / Time & Life Pictures
  • ANNA NICOLE SMITHⓡ HOWARD MARSHALL    after his death, anna nicole smith fights

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Happy husband -

    Millionaire J. Howard Marshall II made headlines in 1994 when he married Smith. She was 26 and he was 89. He died Aug. 5, 1995, when he was 90. Smith and Marshall's son, E. Pierce Marshall, battled over Marshall's estate. The boy next to Marshall is Smith's late son, Daniel.

    Sipa Press / Sipa Press
  • NICOLE SMITH

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Daniel's short life -

    Smith and her son Daniel, 13, leave a federal courthouse in Los Angeles on Oct. 27, 1999. His body was found in the Bahamas on Sunday, Sept. 10, 2006. A coroner's report ruled the death was caused by an overdose of anti-depressants and methadone.

    AP / AP
  • MARSHALL SMITH STERN

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Fighting for her share -

    Smith listens in court in Houston with her attorneys Tom Cunningham and Howard Stern on Monday, Oct. 2, 2000. Sixteen jurors, four of them alternates, were seated to hear the lawsuit where Smith laid claim to a share of the oil fortune of her deceased husband, J. Howard Marshall II. Smith married the Texas oil tycoon in 1994 and he died the following year. Stern later reportedly married Smith and claimed to be the father of Dannielynn Hope Marshall Stern.

    Pool via AP / Pool via AP
  • SMITH

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Back to work -

    Smith is surrounded by members of KISS at the conclusion of the Lane Bryant show featuring plus size fashions in New York on Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2002. The legendary rock band gave a live performance throughout the runway show, which kicked off New York Fashion Week.

    AP / AP
  • Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Activist -

    In this handout image from PETA, Smith poses as Marliyn Monroe for a 2004 ad campaign titled, Gentlemen Prefer Fur Free Blondes. PETA's Michael McGraw said in reaction to Smith's death, "She was a great friend to animals and used every opportunity to speak out against senseless cruelty."

    PETA via AP / PETA via AP
  • NYC: Heatherette - Fall 2004 - Runway

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Hot pink -

    Smith walks the runway at the Heatherette fashion show during Olympus Fashion Week in New York on Feb. 12, 2004.

    Getty Images / Getty Images
  • "G-Phoria - The Award Show 4 Gamers" in Los Angeles

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Always outrageous -

    Smith feigns a "wardrobe malfunction" before announcing Rikku in "Final Fantasy X-2" as the Hottest Character award winner during "G-Phoria -- The Award Show 4 Gamers" in Los Angeles on Aug. 1, 2004.

    Corbis / Corbis
  • ANNA NICOLE

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Strange behavior -

    Smith waves during an appearance backstage during the Live 8 concert in Philadelphia on July 2, 2005. The production company behind the concerts claimed in a lawsuit against Trimspa Inc. that its reputation was damaged by Smith's attire and conduct. Smith, a spokesperson for Trimspa, was not named as a defendant in the lawsuit.

    AP / AP
  • SMITH STERN

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Wowing the Supremes -

    Smith and her lawyer Howard K. Stern leave the U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 28, 2006. In a unanimous decision, the court ruled that Smith could continue her claim for part of her late husband's fortune.

    AP / AP
  • Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Home sweet home? -

    Smith holds her daughter Dannielyn Hope and poses with Stern and "Entertainment Tonight" co-host Mark Steines at the couple's home in the Bahamas on Saturday, Oct. 28, 2006. Businessman and former boyfriend G. Ben Thompson threatened to evict Smith from her Bahamas home, claiming she wasn't making the mortgage payments.

    Entertainment Tonight via AP / Entertainment Tonight via AP
  • Anna Nicole Smith watches a boxing match from the ringside at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    No sign of trouble -

    Smith watched a boxing match from near ringside at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Fla., on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2007. She died Feb. 8, 2007.

    Reuters / Reuters
  • Virgie Arthur (C) mother of Anna Nichole

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    A mother mourns -

    Smith's mother, Virgie Arthur, center, and her husband James Arthur, left, embrace as the coffin of Anna Nicole leaves a Bahamas church on March 2, 2007, as the former Playboy model headed to her final resting three weeks after her death. A throng of Bahamians, tourists and media crushed behind police barriers as the pink-laced white coffin was carried into the Mount Horeb Baptist Cathedral in Nassau, Bahamas, for a funeral ceremony closed to all but 300 invited guests.The church was reportedly filled with pink roses, and sources close to the funeral said Smith's body was clad in a gown and tiara.

    AFP - Getty Images / AFP - Getty Images
  • Locals stand before the grave of Anna Ni

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Laid to rest -

    Locals stand before the grave of Smith at the Lakeview Memorial Gardens in Nassau, Bahamas, on March 2, 2007.

    AFP - Getty Images / AFP - Getty Images
  • Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    'I told you so!' -

    Larry Birkhead rejoices after hearing in a Bahamian court on April 10, 2007, that he has been proven to be the legal father of Smith's baby, Dannielynn. Birkhead later hugged Howard K. Stern, who had been acting as the baby's father.

    AP / AP
  • Image: Larry Berkhead, Dannielynn

    Anna Nicole Smith

    of

    Derby day with daughter -

    Birkhead and Dannielynn feed a pony at the Kentucky Derby Museum in Louisville, Ky., on Wednesday, April 28. 2010. Birkhead, a Louisville native, first met Anna Nicole at a 2004 party around the famous horse race.

    AP / AP

He said he never admitted the affair to his wife, but that he’s sure she knows. She would sometimes answer the phone when Smith called him, von Anhalt said.

“She was a very sexy woman,” von Anhalt said. “To have an affair with her is the top, you know.”

Publicist Edward Lozzi, who said he handled publicity for Gabor when she was convicted of slapping a Beverly Hills police officer during a 1989 traffic stop, said he doubted von Anhalt’s claim, calling him a “chronic fabricator.”

“There are some people who are married to famous people and take advantage of it,” said Lozzi, who said he dated Smith three times and spoke with her within the last year.

Both von Anhalt and John Blanchette, Gabor’s longtime publicist, said Lozzi was a hanger-on and never the family’s official publicist.

“He’s the one taking advantage of it,” von Anhalt said.

Ronald Jason Palmieri, an attorney who has represented Gabor and von Anhalt for 15 years, was also skeptical about the paternity claim.

“I have to believe my client, but it’s still surreal,” he told the Los Angeles Times. “I would find it completely implausible that he is the father of that child, to put it lightly.”

Von Anhalt’s royal credentials have been the cause of speculation over the years. According to stories in the British press, he was born Robert Lichtenberg, the son of a German policeman, and bought his title after being adopted as an adult by a bankrupt daughter-in-law of the last kaiser.

TOP