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Celebrity News: Bill Maher talks up Jay Leno

Maher backs Leno

Bill Maher took advantage of pal Jay Leno’s Television Academy Hall of Fame induction to offer a spirited attack on what Maher called undeserved ‘‘bad publicity’’ for the former ‘‘Tonight Show’’ host. Introducing Leno at Tuesday night’s ceremony, Maher said his behavior never warranted the brickbats tossed at him over Conan O’Brien’s short-lived tenure as ‘‘Tonight Show’’ host. ‘‘Jay Leno reminds me a little bit of Israel,’’ Maher, host of HBO’s ‘‘Real Time,’’ said. ‘‘He’s not perfect, but he’s held to a standard nobody is expected to live up to but him.’’ After Maher’s introduction, Leno’s remarks proved mild. Repeating assertions he made when he ended his 22-year tenure as host in February, Leno, 63, said it was the right time to turn ‘‘Tonight’’ over to the younger Jimmy Fallon, who is 39.

Iggy rocks Carnegie Hall

New York’s Carnegie Hall is a seated venue, but fans watching Iggy Pop and members of New Order on Tuesday night rushed the stage at the 24th annual Benefit Concert for Tibet House US, a nonprofit organization charged with preserving Tibetan culture. Pop joined Bernard Sumner, Phil Cunningham, and Tom Chapman during ‘‘Transmission’’ and ‘‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’’ when fans enthusiastically rushed out of their seats to get closer to the stage. Patti Smith and her band closed the two-hour-plus concert with Pop, New Order, members of the National, and others on ‘‘People Have the Power.’’

More Bieber questioning?

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A lawyer wants Justin Bieber to return to Florida so he can ask more questions about the singer’s ex-girlfriend, Selena Gomez, as part of a photographer’s lawsuit against Bieber and his bodyguard. Attorney Mark DiCowden says in the motion filed Tuesday that Bieber’s attorneys wrongly prevented him from asking about Gomez during a March 6 deposition.

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