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the Beat
March 26, 2001
The Greatest Dearest: Boxer Laila Ali (below), youngest daughter of Muhammad Ali, has just signed to write a book called Reach! Positive Motivational Power in My Life. "Hopefully her story will motivate women to make positive changes in their lives," says Laila's agent, Dan Strone. The book will also discuss her family, which she calls "dysfunctional to the max." Meanwhile, Laila's half sister, Khaliah Ali, is shopping her own memoir, Butterflies and Bees: A Woman's Search for Her Father. Khaliah is the daughter of Ali and Wanda Bolton, who were wed in a 1973 Nation of Islam ceremony, a marriage that was never legally recognized. According to Khaliah's book proposal, she believes her father views her as "a mistake" and promises to reflect on the man who "gave me a name and has flitted in and out of my life."
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March 26, 2001

The Beat

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The Greatest Dearest: Boxer Laila Ali (below), youngest daughter of Muhammad Ali, has just signed to write a book called Reach! Positive Motivational Power in My Life. "Hopefully her story will motivate women to make positive changes in their lives," says Laila's agent, Dan Strone. The book will also discuss her family, which she calls "dysfunctional to the max." Meanwhile, Laila's half sister, Khaliah Ali, is shopping her own memoir, Butterflies and Bees: A Woman's Search for Her Father. Khaliah is the daughter of Ali and Wanda Bolton, who were wed in a 1973 Nation of Islam ceremony, a marriage that was never legally recognized. According to Khaliah's book proposal, she believes her father views her as "a mistake" and promises to reflect on the man who "gave me a name and has flitted in and out of my life."

...Josh Prager, the Wall Street Journal reporter who caused a stir last month with his story on how the baseball Giants' miracle 1951 season was aided by sign stealing, has sold a book version of his article, reportedly for a whopping $500,000....

Two Olympic-themed features are in the works. Disney is in line to buy a script about the U.S. hockey team's victory over the Soviets in the 1980 Winter Olympics. At the other end of the spectrum is The Ringer, a Fox comedy about two guys planning to fix the Special Olympics. Bobby and Peter Farrelly (Dumb and Dumber) will produce, and Johnny Knoxville ( MTV's Jackass) will star....

Rutgers's new football coach, Greg Schiano, needs all the help he can get, so Rutgers alum Mark Ohlstein called his college roommate, James Gandolfini. Gandolfini agreed to appear in a TV ad with Schiano for the football program. (The spot will air locally in mid-April.) So what happens when Tony Soprano calls for a favor in return?

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