Meghan McCain ABC Execs Privately Calling BS ... On Her Toxic 'View' Story

Meghan McCain is pissing off some of her old bosses with her scathing assessment of her tortured time on "The View" -- because they believe it's the exact opposite of how she's framing things.

Sources close to the production tell TMZ ... ABC honchos are furious about Meghan's new memoir, and the subsequent interviews she's recently done -- characterizing "The View" as a toxic work environment, full of coworkers/cohosts who despised her.

We're told there are many points of dissent -- for instance, ABC execs say the notion Meghan left on her own volition is wrong, and ditto for her claim everybody except her was oozing toxicity.

Our sources tell us Meghan was essentially forced out of her role after an internal investigation into the environment she describes -- which we're told was, in fact, real ... but mostly due to Meghan's behavior on and off camera, not her coworkers' -- other way around.

Our sources say new ABC chief, Kim Godwin, did a thorough investigation -- meeting with key stakeholders of the show, like talent and producers -- and in the end, we're told she found Meghan was the source of a lot of the in-fighting that ultimately played out on the show ... something Godwin had to address head-on in an emergency Zoom meeting.

Those on-camera blow-ups are well-documented, and even though a lot of the hosts are often seen bickering ... we're told many at ABC feel Meghan was, more often than not, the instigator of these arguments -- or she was the one who kept them going longer.

As for her departure ... our sources didn't have details on the negotiations behind the exit, but we're told the bottom line is it wasn't simply her decision after hitting a breaking point. The network was ready to move on too.

Of course, we're told this was a long time coming ... as many at ABC apparently felt the old boss, James Goldston, didn't have the stones to give MM the boot earlier, because he allegedly feared a conservative backlash.

Now that Meghan's gone ... our sources say the mood on set is way better, and people at home can see it for themselves. The temperature in the room, we're told, has lowered. Not just that, but the ratings are steady ... with the show remaining #1 on daytime TV.

We've reached out to reps for ABC/"The View," as well as Meghan, for comment ... so far, no word back.

Kate Beckinsale Yeah, I'm Super Smart ... But It's Hurt My Acting Career

Kate Beckinsale had a super-interesting chit-chat with Howard Stern Wednesday ... she said her off-the-charts IQ has actually damaged her career.

Howard did an excellent job of mining for gold, knowing that Kate was extremely brainy. He pushed to know where Kate landed on the IQ spectrum, and Kate either didn't remember or didn't want to say.

But Howard pressed, and eventually, Kate called her mom for a memory jog. Mom came through and revealed Kate's IQ was a VERY impressive 152.

Now the conversation turns, because Kate says doctors told her she'd be a lot happier if she were 30% less smart. Howard's response is hilarious.

And then, Kate dropped the bombshell ... that her smarts have actually hurt her career. She didn't really explain how, other than the intimation she doesn't suffer fools.

Howard wanted to know how that affects her dating life, especially when the man doesn't measure up in the cerebrum department.

Kate doesn't name names, but she does say she can forgive a lot if the dude is funny.

It doesn't take an Einstein to figure that one out.

Brian LAundrie Family Attorney Says 'Strong' Chance Remains Found Are His

Brian Laundrie's parents are "heartbroken" after their family attorney says remains found off a Florida trail almost certainly belong to their son.

Steven Bertolino, who has repped the Laundrie family for weeks now, told CNN's Chris Cuomo Wednesday, "the probability is strong, that it is Brian's remains" found by the FBI.

Bertolino says Laundrie's parents contacted authorities Tuesday night to let them know they wanted to search the trail Wednesday, and the finding of his belongings was a total coincidence.

THE LIKELY RESULT
CNN

The FBI said in a press conference Wednesday that the area where Brian's backpack and notebook were found near what appeared to be human remains was previously under water. Authorities have not yet identified the remains, and say investigative teams will be in the area for several days gathering evidence.

Bertolino told Cuomo, "It's quite sad, you can imagine as a parent, finding your son's belonging alongside from the remains. That's got to be heartbreaking. And I can tell you that they are heartbroken."

Bertolino says Laundrie's dad, Chris, first found a white bag in the woods about 20 feet off the trail ... and shortly after, law enforcement discovered Brian's backpack.

It all raises the question ... how did Laundrie's dad zero in on something the FBI couldn't find for more than a month?

THE SEARCH CONTINUES
Fox 13 Tampa Bay

Law enforcement has said it's expected to take a while to examine the remains and make a positive ID.

Jon Stewart From the Best Pizza to the Worst Comedy Set!!!

BOMBS AWAY
@adamglyn

Jon Stewart is the kind of guy who seems good at everything ... but sometimes even he takes an L ... which he confessed to in the middle of some serious pizza talk!!!

Stewart was out in NYC Wednesday night when he bro'd down with the photog over the best Jersey Shore pizza. Seems Jon spent the summer on the shore, and journalist Adam Glyn had some serious suggestions on the best pie, and Jon made it clear -- he's always on the hunt for a great pizza.

The convo went from food to failure ... when Jon was asked about bombing hard during a comedy set. You'd think Stewart never experienced the heartbreak of dead silence, but that was not the case.

So, where did Jon bomb ... at one of the most iconic venues in these United States of America -- Radio City Music Hall.

Here's the upside. His description of the massive audience is hilarious, and wait'll you hear which big celeb offered him solace in the form of a big, empathetic hug!

Leslie Jordan I'm Conflicted Over Chappelle's Netflix Special ... But He Did Cross the Line

CROSSED THE LINE
TMZ.com

Leslie Jordan is visibly conflicted over the conflict raging at Netflix over Dave Chappelle's latest special.

We got Leslie Wednesday at Reagan National Airport in D.C., and he said right out of the gate he has conflicting loyalties ... he's both a comedian and a strong supporter of the LGBTQ+ community.

Leslie feels good comedy must have a subversive element, but at the same time, it shouldn't be designed to hurt people's feelings.

THE CONVERSATION ISN'T OVER
TMZ.com

You see his mind at work as he navigates the controversy. He ultimately concludes Chappelle crossed the line because of the impact it had on the trans community ... a community that has been misunderstood and marginalized for decades.

WALKING OUT
TMZ.com

As we reported, there was a walkout over at Netflix Wednesday to protest the CEO's decision to keep Chappelle's special on the menu.

As for Leslie ... he seems to think Chappelle is different from other comedians. The question ... what exactly does that mean?

NIKOLAS CRUZ Victims' Families Not Buying Apology ... Give Him Death Penalty!!!

Nikolas Cruz -- the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High mass shooter -- doesn't deserve a second chance ... according to his victims' families, who want him sentenced to death.

The fathers of 2 of Nikolas' 17 victims tell TMZ ... they're not buying the courtroom apology Cruz offered Wednesday, and they say he shouldn't get another shot as his trial looms.

Max Schachter, the father of 14-year-old victim Alex, says straight-up ... Cruz "is a sadistic murderer and he deserves to die." Max also says his plea for a second chance is "laughable" and believes he should get the death penalty.

Tony Montalto, whose 14-year-old daughter Gina was among those gunned down, doesn't accept Cruz's apology either, saying ... "If he wanted to do something for our families, he would've not killed our loved ones."

The way Tony sees it ... Cruz didn't give his daughter a chance when he shot her 4 times, so why should he get a second chance at life???

ADDRESSING THE FAMILIES
Law & Crime Network

As we reported ... Nikolas changed his plea to guilty Wednesday and told the families of his victims he was sorry and he loved them, while begging for a second chance and making it clear he doesn't want a death sentence.

Tony, who was in court to listen to Cruz, says the mea culpa was "ridiculous" and "painful" ... and he wants Cruz prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law as a way to deter future mass shootings.

Cruz is facing life in prison or the death penalty after pleading guilty to 34 counts -- 17 premeditated murder and 17 attempted murder -- and while he thinks it should be up to the families to decide his fate ... it sounds like Cruz might not like their answer.

Mel Gibson 'John Wick' Casting Shocks Creator But Give Him a Chance!!!

Mel Gibson will star in the new "John Wick" TV series -- a controversial casting that left even the franchise's own creator in shock, but the guy's still willing to let it be ... for now.

Screenwriter Derek Kolstad -- who penned the initial "John Wick" movie, and contributed to the other 2 installments, tells TMZ ... like many others who heard the Gibson news this week, he too was surprised by the decision -- adding he had no idea it was coming.

Kolstad says that even though his creator status earns him an executive producer credit on the show -- which will be a prequel titled, "The Continental," the name of the hitman hotel in the flicks -- he hasn't been in on the creative process playing out behind the scenes, including casting.

Despite being in the dark, DK tells us he's willing to give the guy a shot, and will watch the series with naked eyes.

As for why Mel deserves a chance here ... well, Kolstad tells us he simply doesn't believe in canceling someone over previous mistakes -- of which, Gibson's had several.

Fact is, Gibson was never canceled -- despite the anti-Semitic moments and alleged domestic violence, he's been acting and directing for years now ... even after the scandals.

Still, the Twitter mob is pissed he's been tapped to carry the flag for a mega-franchise like "John Wick" ... especially in 2021, where folks are getting called out for lesser transgressions than Gibson's old messiness.

Perhaps in the interest of his brainchild continuing to expand, Kolstad, at least, is rooting for ol' Mel at this point.

Tawny Kitaen Died From Heart Disease ... Opioids a Contributing Factor

Tawny Kitaen, the late actress who starred in "Bachelor Party" and whose personal life was filled with radical ups and downs, died from heart issues ... this according to her autopsy.

According to the Orange County Coroner's Office, Tawny's official cause of death is dilated cardiomyopathy ... the most common type of heart disease.

Other contributing factors include clogged arteries, antidepressants, sedatives, Tylenol, nerve pain medication and opioids.

TMZ broke the story ... Tawny died May 7 in Newport Beach, CA and cops told her family there was nothing found at the scene suggesting alcohol, drugs or pills were a factor in her death, nor were there any signs she took her own life.

Tawny's death came not long after her father passed, and her brother told us their father's loss was simply too much for her to handle.

Her family and close friends recently gathered to remember her one last time with an intimate celebration of life in Newport ... and she's been cremated.

Tawny lived a pretty storied life -- she acted in films like the one mentioned above, and has credits in flicks like "The Perils of Gwendoline" and "After Midnight" -- as well as several hit TV series, such as "Santa Barbara," "The New WKRP in Cincinnati," "Eek! the Cat," "Hercules," "Moms Anonymous," and many, many more over the years.

And, Tawny famously was featured in some music videos ... notably Whitesnake's "Is This Love," and "Here I Go Again."

Tawny was 59.

Charles Barkley I Have No Beef With Kenny Smith ... After On-Air Vax Debate

JUST GET THE JAB
TMZSports.com

Charles Barkley says there's no bad blood with Kenny Smith after their passionate debate over Kyrie Irving's refusal to get vaccinated ... telling TMZ Sports everything's cool between them.

We talked to Chuck outside LAX on Wednesday ... and asked the Hall of Famer if he was beefin' with The Jet after the 2 buddies got into a heated conversation on "Inside The NBA."

"Me and Kenny are great. We’re great," Barkley said, adding, "We can be different, it's all good."

If you missed it, Smith -- who is vaccinated -- basically said there's nothing anyone can do to force Kyrie to get the jab ... because the NBA All-Star is clearly willing to accept the consequences of not being vaxxed.

But, Barkley wasn't hearing it ... and the almost always light-hearted and jovial former NBA MVP vehemently disagreed with Kenny's take on Irving.

So, fans wondered ... could the friends be on the outs? Thankfully, Barkley set the record straight.

Chuck also doubled down on the vax, again pleading with the unvaccinated to get the shot.

"They do have the right, but this is not about the right for you. You’re trying to take care of other people. You do have the right not to get vaccinated, but that's selfish in my opinion. I wouldn't want to get somebody sick."

Barkley's message, in closing ... get the damn shot.

"Hey Listen, do the right thing, it’s plain and simple. We all have the right to make decisions. Like I said, it ain't just about you. You’re not on this planet by yourself. We all got families, we’ve all got friends."

Moaning Myrtle in 'Harry Potter' 'Memba Her?!

Scottish actor Shirley Henderson is best known for playing the ghostly girl Moaning Myrtle -- whose dramatic antics in the bathroom ... and later in a bubbly bathtub ... help the young magicians ward off dark spirits -- in the 2002 film "Harry Potter and the Chamber Of Secrets" and the 2005 installment "Harry Potter and the Goblet Of Fire."

Before her role on the fantasy films Henderson was cast as the party girl who still lived at home Gail in "Trainspotting" and the shy friend Jude in the three "Bridget Jones' films.

Guess what Shirley Henderson looks like now almost two decades from the first Potter film!

Lil Nas X Atlanta Declares Today's Lil Nas X Day

IT'S AN HONOR

Lil Nas X is getting his own special day in Atlanta ... the city just declared a day in honor of the "Industry Baby" rapper.

The Atlanta City Council is behind the move to proclaim Oct. 20 as "Lil Nas X Day" ... and they just surprised Nas with a plaque commemorating the special honor.

ATL says LNX is shaping the city and the world with his "artistic influence and transformative influence" ... mostly through his super-popular songs.

Lil Nas X got the plaque Wednesday night at a special dinner at The Gathering Spot ATL ... and it was presented by city councilman and mayoral candidate Antonio Brown, the city's first Black LQBTQ+ council member.

Nas has deep connections to the city ... he was born and raised in the Atlanta area.

Kandi Burruss, Todd Tucker and Miss Lawrence were among the celebs on hand to see Lil Nas get the special honor.

Don't forget to mark your calendars!!!

Lori Loughlin & Mossimo Giannulli Ask Permission for Cabo Pt. 2 ... Tenemos Una Boda, Juez!!!

Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli are gunning to head south of the border once more -- only this time, its for a wedding ... but first, they'll need to get the all clear from court.

The convicted couple just filed legal docs asking for permission to take a week-long trip down to San Jose del Cabo next month ... where they say they plan to be in attendance for someone's nuptials. Lori and Mossimo say they'd be gone from Nov. 5 to Nov. 12.

As for why they should be allowed to go, the pair note they've been compliant with the terms of their supervised release since getting out of prison. Lori cites the $150k fine she had to fork over as part of her sentence and says she's done with her community service.

Mossimo, for his part, says he's paid his $250k fine and says he's making progress on the community service. In other words ... we've paid for our college admission scandal sins.

Worth noting, this is is the exact same reasoning as last time -- remember, they went to Cabo back in June, and cited the same rationale, which a judge approved. So, ya gotta figure they'll be given the green light again.

Lori and Mossimo also claim their probation offices have their back in the ask -- which should help get it approved.

The judge has yet to rule.

Brian Laundrie FBI Confirms Remains Found, No Identity Yet ... Brian's Backpack, Notebook on Scene Too

1:37 PM PT -- The FBI just confirmed both Brian's backpack and notebook were found in the area near what appears to be human remains ... but they can not yet determine if the remains belong to Brian. The agent said the spot had previously been under water, and the investigative team will need several days to finish gathering evidence.

THE SEARCH CONTINUES
Fox 13 Tampa Bay

12:58 PM PT -- The FBI will hold a press conference at 1:30 PT to update the public on the discovery of the remains.

11:14 AM PT -- The FBI has finally weighed in themselves on what the heck is going on down there -- but they're not copping to any body that may or may not have been found.

FBI Tampa says, "Items of interest were located at the Carlton Reserve this morning in connection with the search for Brian Laundrie. An #FBI Evidence Response team is processing the scene. The reserve is closed to the public and no further details are available at this time. @FBIDenver." No official word on why a Medical Examiner has been summoned.

11:06 AM PT -- Law enforcement found what appears to be partial human remains in an area that was underwater, near where some belongings believed to belong to Brian were found, according to NBC.

10:19 AM PT -- The Pasco County Sheriff's Office tells TMZ ... North Port Police requested the Sheriff's Human Remains Detection Team be sent to the area, and the Sheriff also sent a K-9 unit.

K-9 ON THE CASE
Fox 13 Tampa Bay

We're told the K-9 was called in to search the area, and the dog is trained to detect the odor from human remains.

It's not clear if human remains were found at the site, but we're told the Human Remains Detection Team and K-9 does not traditionally get called in if a body has already been found.

Brian Laundrie's family may have actually done something helpful in the ongoing search for their son -- leading the FBI to a new trail he frequented ... which, go figure, led to his stuff being found. And ... we've confirmed the Medical Examiner is on the way to the location.

The Laundrie family attorney, Steven Bertolino, tells TMZ ... Brian's parents, Chris and Roberta, went to Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in North Port, FL Wednesday morning to look for him -- apparently, a new area that hadn't been explored.

We're told the family told authorities about their intentions, and sure enough ... the FBI and North Port police showed up as well bright and early. Bertolino says after a brief search off a trail Brian was known to have hiked ... some evidence was discovered that he'd been there.

Unclear what exactly the FBI found -- but we're told a handful of belongings, including some articles of clothing, the feds believe might belong to Brian. There's even video of them seemingly breaking this news to his parents -- this as they and bystanders looked on.

Now, Bertolino says the powers that be will focus their efforts on this location for a more thorough investigation.

It's a stunning development -- but one that surely raises an eyebrow at the Laundrie family. If this was a place they believed Brian might be or might have been since vanishing ... why hadn't they said anything until now -- and how is it that on the day they decide to go looking here, they actually find something???

It's a bizarre set of circumstances, and we're sure the feds will ask these hard questions -- but, for now, their top priority is bringing this guy in alive ... and getting to the bottom of what he knows about Gabby Petito.

Originally Published -- 9:32 AM PT

'The Masked Singer' Double Bubble, Double Trouble?!? Two Celebs Inside Costume

Get ready for some history to be made on "The Masked Singer" ... because there's going to be two celebs in the same costume, and we're told they have quite a history between them.

For the first time on the FOX competition show, there will be a double-faced costume with two people inside the same mask ... and they're set to debut on 'Masked Singer' as the beachball.

Production sources tell TMZ ... the two celebs hiding out underneath the beachball haven't always seen eye to eye, so it sounds like there could be some drama on tap.

And, get this ... our sources say the celebs making up the first-ever wild card duet have combined for a pretty up-and-down past few years ... which could make things super interesting.

BACKSTAGE AT "THE MASKED SINGER"
Fox

The big question, aside from their true identity, will there be another public blowup between them?!?

Stay tuned ...

'Nightmare On Elm Street' Iconic Movie Home For Sale

A piece of horror movie history is on the market -- the famous home from the Wes Craven classic, "A Nightmare on Elm Street" -- and Freddy Krueger is trying to help seal the deal.

The house and its iconic facade from the horror flick are listed for $3,250,000 ... and offers are being accepted through the end of Halloween. It's pretty funny, the folks trying to sell the home are going all-in on its association with the horror flick, with someone in a Freddy Krueger costume taking photos doing chores around the property.

The estate, located in the historic Spaulding Square neighborhood in Los Angeles, comes with 3 bedrooms in the 2-story main home and it's got walnut floors, a master suite, an open kitchen, patios, terraces and a bunch of French doors.

The place is decked out with a pool, citrus trees and a detached guesthouse with a covered patio and its own kitchen.

While the home is famous for appearing in 'Nightmare on Elm Street,' it's also been used in TV commercials and print ads.

Heather T. Roy and Learka Bosnak of Douglas Elliman hold the listing.

Conor McGregor Mourns Dog Hugo's Death ... 'So Heart Broken'

Tragic news from Conor McGregor -- the UFC superstar's beloved dog, Hugo, has passed away.

Conor gave a heartfelt goodbye to his four-legged friend minutes ago ... saying, "So heart broken to say my dog Hugo has passed away."

McGregor reflected on the memories he shared with the mixed-breed for so many years ... dating back to the days before he became a household name in the MMA community.

"He was with me all the way, my closest companion. From sleeping on a bed frame without a mattress to everything else that came after. Thank you for all the work put in alongside me to get this life correct for our family."

Conor shared several pictures with Hugo on Instagram on Wednesday ... showing them side-by-side as he trained, relaxed and enjoyed his downtime.

"All the love and cuddles we will miss forever and ever our Hugo! Gutted 💔"

"RIP the best boy Hugo McGregor 🙏"

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