Morgan Freeman Injured in Crash

Morgan Freeman expects to make
Morgan Freeman expects to make "a full recovery," according to his spokesman. (Reuters)
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Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Oscar-winning actor Morgan Freeman is "in good spirits" but will undergo surgery after suffering a broken arm, broken elbow and shoulder damage Sunday in a serious car accident near his home in Mississippi.

A Mississippi Highway Patrol spokesman told Memphis's WMC-TV that Freeman, 71, and a passenger, Demaris Meyer, were heading east around 11:30 p.m. in Meyer's 1997 Nissan Maxima when the vehicle went off the edge of the road. Freeman overcorrected and the car went airborne, flipping several times before landing in a ditch. Emergency crews had to cut Freeman and Meyer from the car and both were airlifted to the Regional Medical Center in Memphis, about 90 miles north of the rural accident scene.

An eyewitness said Freeman was lucid and talked with rescue workers while being removed from the wreck. The police spokesman told the Associated Press there was no indication that either alcohol or drugs were involved and that both Freeman and Meyer were wearing seat belts.

Freeman was initially listed in serious condition, but his rep said the actor "says he'll be okay and is looking forward to a full recovery." Information about Meyer's condition was not immediately available.

Olsen Denies Role in Ledger's Death

As federal investigators have probed the accidental overdose death of Heath Ledger, one of the late actor's pals has kept mum: actress Mary-Kate Olsen, 22, who was the first person called after her masseuse found Ledger's body in his New York City apartment in January.

Yesterday, however, after a law enforcement official confirmed reports that Olsen wants immunity from prosecution before cooperating with investigators, her attorney released a statement saying that Olsen "had nothing whatsoever to do with the drugs found in Heath Ledger's home or his body, and she does not know where he obtained them," and that she has already provided the government with all the information she knows, "including facts in the chronology of events surrounding Mr. Ledger's death." (After getting the call from her masseuse on the day Ledger died, Olsen called her bodyguards in New York, instead of dialing 911, and told them to rush to Ledger's apartment.)

Drug Enforcement Administration investigators are seeking the source of two of the drugs found in Ledger's system -- the painkillers oxycodone and hydrocodone -- and suspect they were obtained with phony prescriptions or other illegal means, an official told AP yesterday.

Remains Go Up in Smoke

The ashes of "Star Trek" actor James Doohan, along with those of astronaut Gordon Cooper and 206 others who paid to have their remains shot into space, didn't quite make it to their destination after the privately funded rocket carrying them broke apart after launch Saturday night.

According to news reports, the malfunction in the two-stage rocket was caused by a fuel leak.

The Web page of the ashes-to-space service called Explorers Flight was updated Saturday night to read: "The Explorers Flight mission appears not to have reached orbit tonight."

Doohan played Montgomery "Scotty" Scott on the original "Star Trek" TV series.


Around Town: Andrea Mitchell and Alan Greenspan dined Sunday night at the Inn at Little Washington. . . . Fashion designer and "Project Runway" judge Michael Kors (khaki shorts, sandals, ubiquitous black T-shirt) chomped on calamari and a rare cheeseburger at Hook in Georgetown on Friday afternoon.

-- Marissa Newhall, from staff, wire and Web reports

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