Berlusconi Insults Merkel; Diaz in Denial Over A-Rod Split

Plus: Ashleigh Banfield may be headed to CNN's 'American Morning'

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Welcome to the Smart Set. Every morning we bring you the gossip coverage, filtered. Today: Silvio Berlusconi vulgar insult about Angela Merkel, Alex Rodriguez completes his break-up with Cameron Diaz, and Peter Orszag and Brianna Golodryga are expecting.

  • The FBI confirmed that it's investigating how a pair of self-shot nude photographs of actress Scarlett Johansson popped up online yesterday after apparently being hacked from her phone. TMZ reported back in March that Johannson was one of nearly 50 female celebrities who had pictures and videos stolen from their phones and email accounts by a group of hackers, who those close to the investigation believe are apparently motivated by the "thrill and challenge" of finding and releasing any risque materials they stumble upon. [Fox News
  • Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi reportedly called German Chancellor Angela Merkel "culona inchiavabile" during a July phone conversation with an Italian journalist that was recorded by investigators. According to The Daily Mail the phrase roughly translates to "unf---able lard---." The comments were recorded during an investigation into an extortion plot against the Italian prime minister. In the same call, he also described Italy as a "shitty" country.  [The Daily Mail and GQ Italia via Business Insider]
  • Former White House budget director Peter Orszag and his wife, Good Morning America weekend anchor Bianna Golodryga, are expecting their first child. The pair married last September after a courtship that generated no small amount of inside-the-Beltway intrigue, mostly stemming from the he-said, she-said of Orszag's split from pregnant ex-girlfriend Claire Milonas and subsequent relationship with Golodryga. The mother-to-be is due in the spring. [TV Newser]
  • CNN special correspondent Soledad O'Brien could be returning to anchor the network's 7-9 a.m. spot on the network's American Morning. O'Brien held the post from 2003 to 2007 before being replaced by the "recently axed" Kiran Chetry. Insiders say O'Brien is "a favorite of CNN Worldwide President Jim Walton" and would likely be supported by "an ensemble cast." The network is also said to be eyeing former MSNBC host Ashleigh Banfield to take over the show's 5-7 a.m. slot. Both moves could apparently happen "as early as next month." [Page Six]
  • New York Yankees third basemen Alex Rodriguez and Cameron Diaz have reportedly broken up, and this time "it looks like it’s over for good," sources say. Apparently Rodriguez had been trying to end their two-year romance "for weeks" but Diaz was "in denial" about the split. No word on whether the exasperated slugger yelled, "Turn your key, Cameron Diaz!" to help speed the process along. [Page Six]
  • Critics Roberta Smith and Holland Cotter have been named co-chief art critics for The New York Times. The two-headed art reviewing hybrid replaces Michael Kimmelman, who was named chief architecture critic for the paper in July, despite only having one head. [The New York Observer]
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