Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Friday, February 16, 2018

John Mahoney, Who Played Cranky Dad on ‘Frasier,’ Dies at 77

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-02-16/f7565de5-e100-4417-981d-b2d89789f8ce.pngJohn Mahoney, popularly known for his role as the gruff-but-lovable Martin Crane on the television series Frasier, died last week at the age of 77. Paul Martino, Mahoney’s manager for over 30 years, said the actor passed away after a brief stay in the hospital. The cause of death was not provided. Kelsey Grammer, who played Frasier Crane, Martin’s well-to-do and often arrogant son, said of Mahoney’s death: “He was my father. I loved him.”

Mahoney was born in 1940 after his pregnant mother’s evacuation to Blackpool, England. He later followed a sister to Chicago, where he fell in love with the city. In a 2015 interview, Mahoney highlighted his favorite attributes of the city he loved: “The lake, the skyline, the museums, the symphony, the lyric opera…my favorite place in the world.”

See Lynn Elber, John Mahoney, Who Played Cranky Dad on ‘Frasier,’ Dies at 77, USA Today, February 5, 2017.

February 16, 2018 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

American Horror Story' Murder House Owners Have Video Proof of Fan Nightmares

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-02-14/37b44eea-a05a-4732-8991-d8e210dacc96.pngAngela Oakenfold and Ernst Von Schwarz, the current owners of the Murder House featured on "American Horror Story (AHS)," are suing the prior owner for failing to warn them of the home's on-air history. The pair claim the house has has become a "macabre tourist attraction" enticing fans to trespass on to the property in an effort to see inside. A couple of AHS fans were so desperate to catch a peak of the interior of the house that they occupied a nearby dumpster hoping to catch a glimpse when the trash truck lifted the bin to empty its contents. Even when fans are not trespassing, they are lined up outside the home behind a chain link fence. While the frustrated duo say their impatience is not with AHS fans in general, they feel as though some go too far and make them feel unsafe.

See American Horror Story' Murder House Owners Have Video Proof of Fan Nightmares, TMZ, February 14, 2018.

 

February 16, 2018 in Estate Planning - Generally, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Teletubby Tinky Winky Actor Simon Shelton Dies at 52

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-01-23/7e694153-4aa2-49a7-9c6b-8520c8582385.pngAccording to his son, Simon Shelton passed away last Wednesday at the age of 52. Shelton was best known for his role as Tinky Winky, the purple Teletubby. Emily Atack, Shelton’s niece, said of her uncle’s death that he “was taken so suddenly.”

See Teletubby Tinky Winky Actor Simon Shelton Dies at 52, TMZ, January 23, 2018.

January 23, 2018 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, January 22, 2018

Connie Sawyer, Hollywood's Oldest Working Actress Dies at 105

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-01-23/ac4953dd-6856-4906-b71a-e21a4de1e45a.pngConnie Sawyer, Hollywood's oldest working actress, died today at the age of 105. She starred in movies like Dumb and DumberPineapple Express, and When Harry Met Sally. She also played in a number of TV series over the span of six decades, including: The Andy Griffith Show, SeinfeldStarsky & Hutch, and Mary Tyler Moore. She died in her Woodlands Hill home. While the cause of death is unknown, it is presumed to be related to age. 

See Connie Sawyer, Hollywood's Oldest Working Actress Dies at 105, TMZ, January 22, 2108.

 

January 22, 2018 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Kim Kardashian Inspires NFL Star Branden Albert to Donate $1 Mil to Charity

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2018-01-11/23f244d8-dd1a-44cb-bcdd-172dc38ce4e1.pngFormer NFL lineman Branden Albert is a veritable example proving that “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” is not a total drain on humanity. Albert, who played for the Dolphins and the Chiefs, said an episode of the TV series showcasing Kim Kardashian and a visit to Alexandria House, a shelter for women and children in Los Angeles, inspired him to donate $1 million to the organization. A representative from Alexandria House said they intend to use the money to build another complex that will house an additional 600 people in need.

See Kim Kardashian Inspires NFL Star Branden Albert to Donate $1 Mil to Charity, TMZ, January 11, 2017.

January 11, 2018 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Sports, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Duke of Windor’s Will to Be Unsealed at Last, but Only So The Crown’s Writers Can Get Their Facts Straight

Db6b38f8d678d789bb49ceeaea687773The Duke of Windsor, once called King Edward VIII, abdicated his throne in 1936 to marry an American divorcee, Wallis Simpson. His voluntary relinquishment of the throne, a singular instance in British history, sent shockwaves through the island nation. The Duke passed away in 1972 with a will. Sir George Baker, then-President of the Family Division of the High Court, ordered the will sealed. Sir James Munby, the current President of the Family Division of the High Court, ordered the will’s seal broken in order to provide a member of the Queen’s archivists a copy of the will. This shift in precedent is borne of a need to identify the beneficiary to the Duke’s copyrights. Writers of The Crown, a biographical drama series, want to use the Duke’s letters in their program and need to identify the current holder of the copyrighted materials to do so.

See Fiona Parker, Duke of Windor’s Will to Be Unsealed at Last, but Only So The Crown’s Writers Can Get Their Facts Straight, DailyMail.com, November 15, 2017.

Special thanks to Joel C. Dobris (Professor of Law, UC Davis School of Law) for bringing this article to my attention.

November 16, 2017 in Current Events, Estate Administration, Estate Planning - Generally, Television, Wills | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Like ‘Car Talk,’ but with Dead People

24WIP2-master768-v2Brothers Vincent and Robert Gardino share an avid love for history and celebrity. This alone is not unusual, but the manner in which the brothers express their passion is quite unique. Vincent and Robert take trips through cemeteries seeking out the headstones of long-forgotten celebrities and politicians. Their comical banter solicited encouragement by close friends to start a show. So, they did just that. The pair is now financing a television series that follows them as they visit gravesites and delve into the history of the deceased. PBS has offered to pick up the series once it is completed.

See Helene Stapinski, Like ‘Car Talk,’ but with Dead People, The New York Times, September 21, 2017.

Special thanks to Ken Coughlin for bringing this article to my attention.

October 3, 2017 in Estate Planning - Generally, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, September 22, 2017

Frank Vincent's Body Cremated for Presentation at Memorial Service

0915-frank-vincent-getty-7Frank Vincent, a star of “The Sopranos” and “Goodfellas”, died last Wednesday during open-heart surgery due to complications. The body was transported to a funeral home in Montclair, New Jersey where it was cremated. The memorial service will feature Vincent’s ashes in an urn surrounded by phots of the actor at various stages of his life.

See Frank Vincent's Body Cremated for Presentation at Memorial Service, TMZ, September 15, 2017.

September 22, 2017 in Current Events, Death Event Planning, Estate Planning - Generally, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Judge THROWS OUT Lawsuit Filed by Sofia Vergara's Own Embryos As Part of Her Ex-Fiancée’s Legal Battle over Frozen Eggs That He Named Emma and Isabella

VergaraA Louisiana judge dismissed a case filed against Sofia Vergara by her ex-fiancée, Nick Loeb. Loeb and Vergara had two viable embryos frozen while they were dating. Loeb wants to find a surrogate for the embryos, which he has already named. Vergara wants them to remain frozen. Vergara is pointing to the original agreement the couple signed dictating both she and Loeb would need to provide consent for the embryos to be implanted. Whoever wins this legal battle, victory will not be found in the Bayou State. The judge held that the Louisiana court did not have jurisdiction over the embryos as they were conceived in California.

See Kaileen Gaul, Judge THROWS OUT Lawsuit Filed by Sofia Vergara's Own Embryos As Part of Her Ex-Fiancée’s Legal Battle over Frozen Eggs That He Named Emma and Isabella, Daily Mail.com, August 25, 2017.

August 29, 2017 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Science, Technology, Television | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, July 24, 2017

Tiger Lily Set to Inherit Millions

43ee5dfc074bb33c73a3cc1ff09ca5c7--happy-th-birthday-tiger-liliesRecent speculation indicates the daughter of Paula Yates, an English television actress, and Michael Hutchence, lead singer of INXS, may inherent millions of dollars when she turns twenty-one next week. Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily Hutchence Geldof, known as Tiger Lily, may possibly receive an inheritance through a trust fund set up by her father prior to his suicide.

Geldof’s life weaves a sorrowful tale rife with loss. Geldof’s father took his own life in a hotel in Sydney in 1997. Fewer than three years after her father’s death, Geldof’s mother died from an accidental heroin overdose. In 2014, her half-sister, Peaches, also died from overdosing on heroin.

Despite his fame, Hutchence was rumored to have died penniless. The family he left behind sued his estate, but were stunned to find the estate was worth almost nothing. The family was also flummoxed to discover that Hutchence excluded the publication rights and royalties from music and record sales. Any windfall gained by Geldof would probably stem from these excluded rights her father left behind.

See Stephanie Linning, Michael Hutchence's Daughter Tiger Lily Is Set to 'Inherit Millions' on Her 21st Birthday Next Week Through a Trust Fund Set up By Her INXS Musician Father, Daily Mail.com, July 16, 2017

See Jay Brinker, New Sensation, Jay Brinker Blog, July 20, 2017.

July 24, 2017 in Current Events, Estate Planning - Generally, Music, Television, Trusts | Permalink | Comments (0)