TMZ

TMZ SPORTS

  • FS1
    M-T-Th-F:
    9:00 PM PST

    W:
    9:30 PM PST

'American Idol' Judge Budget Running Dry ... How 'Bout a Disney Deal?

9/7/2017 12:40 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

"American Idol" is struggling to land judges to join Katy Perry because of budget limitations, but it still has a weapon on reserve to lure 'em in -- a partnership with Disney.

Our 'A.I.' sources tell us ... the show's talent budget has a $40 million cap, which has been depleted by signing Perry for $25 mil and Ryan Seacrest for just over $10 mil. So, producers are having to get creative and sweeten the deal by offering celebs Disney perks that will turn into a big payday.

We're told the perks include production deals, licensing and merchandising deals for Disney properties ... and also theme park partnerships. For example, Disney's Hollywood Studios features the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith ... but can always add more names.

As we reported ... 'Idol' made an offer to country star Luke Bryan to be judge #2. As far as we know, the deal isn't sealed ... at least not yet.

Perhaps we'll be seeing Space Mountain starring Luke Bryan.

Bill Nye the Science Guy Disney Screwed Me With Bad Cash Formula!!

8/24/2017 5:39 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Bill Nye the Science Guy is having a bad reaction to his old TV partners at Disney, which is why he's suing them for $9 million!

Bill filed docs Thursday in L.A., saying Disney -- which marketed and distributed his show -- cut him a check in 2008 for back-end profits. The check was for $585k, but a couple months later he says Disney drastically changed it's story ... and claimed he needed to return $496,000!

According to the docs, Disney told Bill it made an accounting error, and informed him he wouldn't get any future checks until it recouped the $496k. 

All of this made Bill suspicious, and he called for an audit of Disney's book in 2016. In the docs, Bill says the auditor found he'd been shorted by $9.3 mil since signing his deal in 1993.

Bill's now retained attorneys at Hamrick & Evans to get his dough. We reached out to Disney, but no word back.

Side note: Science, apparently, pays like a mutha! Who knew Bill was such a baller??

'Mighty Ducks' Goalie Busted for Possession of Meth ... 5 Days After Jail Release

8/8/2017 12:10 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Shaun Weiss -- who played Goldberg in 'The Mighty Ducks' -- got busted again 5 days after serving a jail sentence ... this time for meth.

Law enforcement sources tell TMZ ... cops in Burbank got a 911 call last Wednesday for a suspicious person stumbling around yards in a neighborhood near the Warner Bros. studio lot. 

Cops responded and arrested Weiss around 2:30 PM, booking him for possession of a controlled substance. We're told he had meth on him ... unclear exactly how much, though. He's being held on a $20,000 bond.

We broke the story ... Weiss was sentenced to 150 days in jail for petty theft just last month, but only served 12 days due to overcrowding. His manager told us at the time Weiss was hoping jail could help him, and that he'd be trying to write a script or jokes while behind bars. 

We've reached out to his manager again ... so far, no word back.

Disney Legend Marty Sklar Dead at 83

7/28/2017 7:17 AM PDT

Marty Sklar, legendary Imagineer and designer of Disney parks, died Thursday at his home in the Hollywood Hills.

Sklar was one of the company's last remaining links to Walt Disney. He started with Disney in 1955 and helped Walt market Disney World and Epcot Center. He went on to become the Mouse House's top Imagineer -- supervising the design of its parks in Paris, Tokyo and Shanghai.

He officially retired in 2009 as an Imagineering ambassador and, officially ... a Disney Legend.

Sklar was 83.

Ex-Kermit the Frog Puppeteer Disney Fired Me Over the Phone!!! (But That's None of Our Business)

7/13/2017 12:27 PM PDT

Someone break out the Kermit tea meme -- the puppeteer who was behind Kermit the Frog's voice for 27 years is saying Disney actually fired him ... over the phone.

Steve Whitmire -- who started at age 19 back in 1990 -- wrote a blog post explaining his side of the story after news broke earlier this week that he was being replaced. He said he was told the role would be recast back in October but had hoped the sides could work things out, but to no avail.

Whitmire said, "I have offered multiple remedies to their two stated issues which had never been mentioned to me prior to that phone call. I wish that we could have sat down, looked each other in the eye, and discussed what was on their minds before they took such a drastic action.”

Whitmire's successor will become only the third person to play Kermit since Jim Henson created the frog back in 1955.

Rob Kardashian & Blac Chyna Mickey Gets 'Em Together ... For Father's Day

6/18/2017 5:51 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Remember Rob Kardashian and Blac Chyna had a kid together? We almost forgot too ... until we saw they'd all resurfaced at Disneyland for Father's Day.

Rob and BC worked out their differences to come together Sunday with their 7-month-old daughter, Dream, for a day at the Happiest Place on Earth.

Eyewitnesses spotted them getting on and off It's a Small World -- with Chyna and Dream both rockin' Mouse ears ... and Rob opting for his go-to outfit, of course.

As we reported ... Rob and Chyna have had some bumps in the road ever since Dream was born back in November. And yet, time and time again they reunite for sweet moments like this

From the looks of their stroller couple action, you'd never guess anything was amiss. Happy Dad Day, Rob!

Daniel Cormier I'll Fight Jon Jones at Disneyland

6/8/2017 3:24 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Daniel Cormier says the "Happiest Place on Earth" could be hell for Jon Jones -- telling TMZ Sports if JJ crashes his Disneyland date, he'll fight him right on the damn Matterhorn. 

DC says he's already got his victory celebration planned after he beats Jones at UFC 214 in July -- and it's a family fun day at the Magic Kingdom.

And if Jones tries to spoil the fun, Cormier says he'll go all Jack Sparrow on his ass.

Cormier also has a message for Jones -- STAY CLEAN AND SHOW UP!

Kim & Kanye All Smiles at 'Happiest Place on Earth'

5/23/2017 9:06 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West put down their drama and picked up some massive smiles ... proving EVERYONE is a kid at heart at Disneyland.

Kimye and their kiddos, along with Kourtney's, were down in Anaheim Monday, and it's the first time we've seen them really let go and put all the hardships since Paris behind them. We're told they were there to celebrate a family friend's birthday.

Y'know they were cutting loose because they rode Dumbo AND the Teacups. Of course, Kim had to chow down on the Disneyland-must-have ... a churro!

You're welcome.

Kim and Kanye Together Again At Disneyland!!!

5/22/2017 2:10 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Kanye West and Kim Kardashian were out and about together for the first time since Easter -- at least the first time we've seen them -- and the venue was the Mouse House.

Kanye, Kim and North hit up Disneyland Monday to celebrate a family friend's birthday. They also brought Kourtney's kids, Penelope and Mason. Kanye bundled up like he was still on a Wyoming mountaintop, despite the 75 degree weather.

'Ye's been busy working on his album after returning to L.A. He was in the studio Sunday, presumably recording what he wrote at the Wyoming resort earlier this month.

Zack Snyder It's Too Late for 'Pirates' ... But There IS a Way to Stop Hackers

5/17/2017 7:45 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Blockbuster director Zack Snyder has an idea for Hollywood to avoid another film getting hacked -- like the new 'Pirates of the Caribbean' flick -- but it's gonna require embracing LOW tech. 

We got Zack -- who's currently working on "Justice League" -- at LAX Tuesday right after hackers said they'd release 'Pirates 5' on the Internet if Disney didn't pay an enormous ransom ... in Bitcoin, no less. 

The Mouse House says it won't pony up, but Zack's already thinking about how to keep his huge movies safe. And if that plan doesn't work, he says it's up to fans to do what's right.

'American Idol' Auditions Will Go Down at Disney World!!!

5/9/2017 12:00 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

ABC ... you just snagged "American Idol." So, where you goin' for auditions? We're goin' to Disney World!!!

Yep, TMZ has learned the show will shoot audition weeks at Walt Disney World in Orlando. We're told there are 2 reasons:

-- It promotes a huge brand within the Disney company -- amusement parks.

-- It's way more cost-effective than travelling the show to various cities.

A source familiar with the deal tells us there's also talk of doing some of the auditions at Disneyland on the West Coast.

It would also give the show a cross-section of America and beyond, without having to hit the road.

Money is definitely an issue. The show got too expensive to produce, which is why it went off the air a year ago, and this will save a considerable sum.

Mariah Carey & Nick Cannon Drop Fortune on Twins' 6th Bday

5/1/2017 3:56 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Mariah CareyNick Cannon and their twins, Morocco and Monroe, looked like one happy family celebrating their 6th birthdays at the Happiest Place On Earth on Sunday, but it didn't come cheap.

We're told Nick and Mariah pulled out all the stops for the twins' big day, dropping 5 figures. Sounds expensive but they had a huge group of friends join them.

The twins got 2 cakes ... one Minnie and one Mickey. Gifts included kid-sized whips, computer stuff and a bunch of jewelry.

Not surprising they celebrated at Disneyland. The place is special to Mariah and Nick ... it's where they renewed their vows.

Good news ... it seems the twins are finally big enough for some of the faster rides at Disney, like the Matterhorn and Splash Mountain.

'Miracle' Star Michael Mantenuto Fought ISIS During Final Army Mission ... 'Something Happened Over There'

4/29/2017 12:50 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE


Michael Mantenuto
 jumped from playing an American hero in a movie to being one in real life -- fighting ISIS with the Green Berets during his final year in the Army.

Michael played Jack O'Callahan in Disney's "Miracle" before leaving Hollywood to join the Army in 2010. We did some digging and found out he was deployed last year for Operation Inherent Resolve ... which took on ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

As we reported ... 35-year-old Michael committed suicide earlier this week. The coroner in Des Moines, WA says he shot himself while sitting in his car.

Sources close to Michael tell us he was different when he returned from action -- "Something happened over there. He saw something."

The actor-turned-soldier excelled in the military. He was a Communications Sergeant with the elite 1st Special Forces Group -- the Green Berets -- and earned several commendations including the Achievement Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters and a Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.

The Army is running its own investigation into Sgt. Mantenuto's death.

Around the Web