Just like her beloved chimpanzees ... Jane Goodall is throwing crap at the wall -- at least that's the word from people who witnessed Michael Jackson's relationship with Bubbles.
Several people who were with Bubbles on almost a day-to-day basis tell TMZ ... MJ adored the chimp, and treated him like a member of his family -- and the notion that he or anyone around him brutalized the chimp is garbage.
We're told the Michael Jackson Estate has recognized how much the singer loved Bubbles by contributing money to the sanctuary where the chimp now lives.
Bubbles, we're told, was almost joined at the hip with Michael, mimicking him and various others at Neverland. We were told one story where Bubbles got down on his knees after seeing one of the maids and started dusting the floor. The whole slave labor thing aside, Michael proudly hugged the chimp.
And Michael actually made Bubble's his plus one at his lawyer John Branca's wedding. Bubbles showed up in a tux to cheer on Branca -- who now runs the MJ Estate.
Chimp Expert Jane Goodall
Bubbles Was Beaten
On MJ's Watch
3/14/2014 4:30 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
The world's leading chimp expert says Michael Jackson's famous pet monkey Bubbles was brutalized at Neverland and she blames MJ.
Jane Goodall dropped the bombshell leaving an event in Washington, D.C. ... saying Bubbles was BEATEN while in Michael's care. She doesn't say who beat Bubbles, but she does say she confronted MJ and it "ticked him off."
Our photog was clearly caught off guard and didn't ask the circumstances surrounding the alleged beating. La Toya's ex-husband, Jack Gordon, claimed the singer did indeed abuse Bubbles, saying, "I saw Michael punch Bubbles, kick him in the stomach. Michael used to say, 'He doesn't feel it. He's a chimpanzee. I have to discipline him.'"
Various people in the MJ camp denied the claims, and there are stories that Bubbles was actually treated like a hairy king, eating at the dining room table with MJ and having free access to the fridge for Haagen-Dazs fixes.
FYI -- Bubbles -- now 30 -- is alive and well ... living in a Florida animal sanctuary.
'Snakes in a Cab' Prankster
Taxi Commission Can Take My License
I'm Bigger Than a Cabbie Now
3/12/2014 10:15 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
A NYC cabbie who pranked passengers with a live snake -- and posted their reactions to YouTube -- doesn't give two craps if the Taxi and Limousine Commission yanks his license ... he tells TMZ, he's on to much bigger things now.
Check out Jimmy Failla's video above -- it's pretty funny -- but New York City's TLC isn't laughing ... calling the prank "monumentally poor judgement on the driver's part." A rep says the commission is now actively reviewing Jimmy's TLC license. It's up for renewal next week.
But Jimmy tells us, if TLC wants to take his license away ... they can have it.
He says he shot the YouTube video to promote his new book ... and he's also making a living as a stand-up comedian -- so he doesn't need to drive cabs anymore. He never really liked doing it anyway.
Fun fact: Jimmy says he HATES snakes.
'Basketball Wives' Star
Pregnant Women Should KILL Temperamental Cats
3/12/2014 6:42 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
"Basketball Wives" star Jackie Christie thinks pregnant women with ornery cats should kill the kitties by hanging, choking or other means if necessary.
It's pretty shocking ... our photog asked Jackie (in the dark blouse) and her friend, Sundy Carter (who appeared in "Bringing Down the House" and "Soul Plane") about what a pregnant woman should do with a temperamental cat.
Both women have no mercy for fearless felines. In fact, Jackie actually thinks cats can suck the soul out of babies and even kill them.
You gotta see this.
Legendary Racehorses Exhumed
From Trackside Graves
3/11/2014 8:36 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Forget beating a dead horse, they're EXHUMING them at the Hollywood Park race track ... in an effort to relocate the expired animals before the track is torn down.
One of the horses being dug up is Native Diver ... a former champion who won over $1 million in his career before he died in 1967. He was buried beside the track in a grave marked with a special monument.
But now that Hollywood Park is closed for good, Native Diver's former owner says he doesn't want to see the horse buried under the real estate development that's set to replace the track.
So, he went to USC and asked the archaeology department to help excavate the horse ... which will be moved to Del Mar race track in San Diego before he's placed in a permanent resting spot.
The students who are assisting on the dig have already unearthed Native Diver. According to reports, there are two more horses set for excavation.
Reunited with Husband
After Publicly Cheating on Him
3/11/2014 1:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Katharine McPhee's back with her hubby ... and their dogs.
It's been nearly 5 months since Katharine publicly sucked face with her married "Smash" director Michael Morris -- and sources close to the actress tell us, Katharine has been working hard to patch things up with her husband Nick Cokas.
Katharine and Nick are currently living apart -- but we're told they've been hanging out together more and more often recently ... Katharine even bought Nick a brand new Rolex as a make-good for the public humiliation.
Must have worked too -- we're told Nick's leaning toward taking her back.
What did the rooster say the morning after his wife cheated? Cuckoldoodledoo.
Fails to Kill at Gun Show
3/10/2014 9:53 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
George Zimmerman has figured out a way to exploit what made him famous -- GUNS.
Zimmerman did a meet-and-greet Saturday at an Orlando gun shop. People lined up for an autograph pic of Zimmerman and his dog ... actually only around 20 people lined up.
It's a page out of the OJ playbook ... get acquitted of killing someone, and then show up places and sign autographs.
One funny thing ... the pic Zimmerman signed is clearly from days past, when he weighed 50 lbs less ... and that's being generous.
Vanity ... it's not just for good people.
Handler Whales on Photog
For Asking About SeaWorld
3/8/2014 12:33 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Bindi Irwin -- the newly-minted spokesperson/tool for SeaWorld ... will gladly talk about Australian mammals, but dare to even dance around the subject of whales and you'll get shut down.
Bindi and her mom were cruising through Rockefeller Plaza in NYC when our photog asked the 15-year-old about her favorite animal. She was all chatty until our guy switched gears and asked her if she was an animal expert ... and that's all she wrote.
The handler swooped in and shut things down, because it was clearly headed in a "Blackfish" direction.
Shame on SeaWorld ... it's so transparent -- hiding behind a teenager to do their dirty work.
Hated Dog For Being Piss Poor
House Manager Claims
3/8/2014 12:20 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Alanis Morissette was knee deep in piss -- courtesy of her 10-pound stray dog -- and she wanted to 86 it from her life ... so claims her former "house manager" who's accused of stealing the pooch.
Maria Garcia tells TMZ she's had the chihuahua/dachshund mix, Circus, full time at her home on orders of Alanis.
Garcia says Alanis couldn't stand the dog because he was an aggressive eater, had health issues and pooped and peed with aplomb indoors. On top of that ...Alanis was allergic to the pup.
Maria tells us ... Alanis has only seen the dog once in the past year and when Garcia asked if she wanted him back ... she said absolutely not.
We broke the story ... Alanis claims Garcia stole Circus out revenge after being fired -- and now Morissette and her husband are suing Garcia for $25K ... and she wants the dog returned.
Garcia says she can't afford to fight the lawsuit ... but feels compelled to clear her good name.
Screwed by the Law
Over Stolen Dog
3/6/2014 3:10 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
A Dog-Gone Thief
3/6/2014 12:35 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Alanis Morissette claims her housekeeper stole her precious pooch out of revenge and she and her husband are both heartbroken and PISSED.
Alanis' husband, Mario Treadway, filed a lawsuit ... claiming he and Alanis found a stray, 10 lb Chihuahua/Pug mix roaming the streets back in May, 2011. Mario says they did the right thing and took the dog to an animal shelter but no one came to retrieve it.
So Alanis and Mario adopted the pugnacious pooch, which they named Circus.
All was fine until January, when they fired their housekeeper (in rich people's lingo they call it "House Manager"), Maria Garcia.
According to the lawsuit -- filed in L.A. County Superior Court -- Maria wanted Circus as part of her severance, because they claim she had the dog and refused to return it. Maria sent an email to their business manager saying she wanted "ownership" of Circus. Apparently Maria grew attached to the dog because she took care of it while Alanis and her hubby were on the road a lot.
Now Alanis and Mario are out for blood. They're suing Maria, asking for more than $25K and they want the judge to order the return of the dog.
UN-FUN FACT: Under California law dogs are considered property ... so an individual dog is almost never considered so special that a judge would order its return ... the only remedy is money. And that's a sad dog tail.
Death on Set
3/4/2014 2:00 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Tragedy struck on the set of the "Entourage" movie today -- TMZ has learned, a crew member's dog got hit by a car and died.
Sources tell us, Tucker -- a 1-year-old Aussie Shepherd -- somehow escaped from a production trailer and darted onto busy Wilshire Blvd near downtown L.A.
We're told Tucker was immediately taken to a nearby vet, but it was too late. The dog passed away from his injuries. Tucker was surrounded by friends and family at the time of his death.
Goodnight sweet prince.
Tells Dog ... Urine Luck!
3/3/2014 6:02 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
The director of the Oscar Winning live-action short "Helium" may have been high himself ... telling our photog his Oscar will become a canine toilet.
Anders Walter and producer Kim Magnusson were leaving a post-Ocscar party at Ago in West Hollywood ... when Walter talked about losing the doggie door in his home and jerry-rigging a statuette to accomplish the function ... and he fully expects his dog to mark his Oscar territory.
And then ... Walter dropped the best humble brag of the evening.
These dudes are fun.