By Stacy Jenel Smith
Oops, she did it again.\Britney Spears
, who's made a habit of giving fans something to talk about that has nothing to do with music, adds to the list her Jan. 3, 5:30 a.m. "joke" wedding in Las Vegas to childhood chum Jason Allen Alexander. She reportedly aranged to have it annulled within hours. By Jan. 4, Alexander was back home in Louisiana, with his grandfather telling reporters he'd "been through a lot...and didn't have much to say."
And Britney's friend George Maloof, Jr., owner of the Palms Casino Hotel, was busy denying rumors that the world's No. 1 celebrity attraction of the moment had to be carried out of the nightclub in his establishment on New Year's Eve, drunk.
All in all, it's obvious the 22-year-old Britney has started off her year with a large dose of self-humiliation.
Perhaps it would make her feel a tad better to realize she's not alone. Indeed, when it comes to quickie embarrassing weddings, the celebrity contingent offers Britney lots of companionship.
Think, for example, of Drew Barrymore. In 1994, she suddenly and surprisingly wed L.A. bar owner Jeremy Thomas. That marriage lasted less than two months.
And who could forget this one? On Nov. 14, 1998, former "Baywatch" actress Carmen Electra wed rainbow-haired, cross-dressing then-Chicago Bulls basketball star Dennis Rodman at the Chapel of the Flowers in Vegas. The bride wore a black Mark Wong Nark shirt and capris, and black high-heel platform shoes, and the groom wore a t-shirt, jeans and a baseball cap. After the ceremony, they went to breakfast at the Hard Rock Hotel with friends, and later, Carmen headed back to L.A. to shoot her "Hyperion Bay" series.
Two days after the event, Rodman's agent issued a statement claiming the marriage was "not legal" and that his client had been too intoxicated to know what he was doing. On Nov. 23, Rodman filed for an annulment citing "fraud" and an "unsound mind."
It couldn't have been much worse, but today finds hope for happy endings after all. Both Dennis and Carmen have since remarried -- he to Michelle Moyer, with whom he has two children, and she to rocker Dave Navarro.
Dennis Hopper and Michelle Phillips were show business king and queen - he, the hot star and director of "Easy Rider" glory, and she the lovely Mamas and the Papas singer -- when they married in a surprise Halloween quickie wedding in 1970. But the marriage lasted a mere eight days, with Hopper publicly confessing he was in a fog of drugs and alcohol much of the time. Both survived the embarrassing fiasco quite well, however, each racking up career and personal successes in following years.
In 2000, Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton surprised the public (as well as Billy Bob's fiancé, Laura Dern) with an impulsive wedding on the Las Vegas strip. It lasted a comparatively long time -- into 2002 -- but there was plenty of embarrassment along the way. They shared intimate oddities about their relationship and gave lots'a public displays of affection, attesting to their wild passion. He said he liked to wear her lingerie under his clothes. They had his 'n' hers tattoos and wore vials of each other's blood around their necks.
Come to think of it, we were the ones who were embarrassed -- not them.
Producer/former studio chieftain/Hollywood legend Robert Evans hastily wed 32 years younger actress Catherine Oxenberg in 1998 -- and the marriage was annulled in nine days. He explained to Variety, "I forgot it had only been six weeks since I had been hit with a stroke."
Charlie Sheen's wedding to model Donna Peele in 1996 came as a surprise to many -- with him having testified just a few weeks earlier to having spent $53,000 on trysts with Heidi Fleiss' call girls. Cynics groused that the marriage was all about Sheen trying to clean up his image. He insisted that wasn't true, but either way, six months later it was over.
Now, however, Sheen and wife and mother-of-his-child Denise Richards seem to have found true happiness.
So, Britney, remember: it might hurt now, but in a matter of years, or maybe just months, you could be on the path to true marital bliss.