Pandora: Lawyers called in as Cox gets his (designer) toes trodden on

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The Independent Online

The unlikely business relationship between the celebrity shoe designer Patrick Cox and colourful society figure "Lord" Edward Davenport appears to have turned sour.

Last year, it was reported that Cox, whose creations have adorned such hooves as those belonging to Liz Hurley and Sir Elton John, had been forced to sell his company at the knockdown price of £2.5m to Davenport, the former party organiser turned property dealer known in social circles as "Fast Eddie".

Cox was said to have had fears about Davenport's suitability to take over the brand. And he has been proven right.

The original holding company for the brand, called Hookedge, which still owns a stake in the business, is currently consulting lawyers over claims Davenport has been offering out licences for people to manufacture and sell Patrick Cox shoes without notifying Hookedge or other members of the company board.

According a press release they've just put out, Davenport is "pretending to all and sundry that he owns the trademark, if not the company".

Davenport wouldn't return calls about the matter this week, however it's not the first time he's ruffled feathers in the fashion industry. Last year, Elizabeth Emanuel, the designer famed for creating Princess Diana's wedding dress, told a newspaper she was left "high and dry" by Davenport after he originally agreed to invest in her company.

More bad news for Michael

Disappointment for Frost/Nixon star Michael Sheen yesterday after he was overlooked by the Academy, even though his co-star Frank Langella, like Helen Mirren before him, has been given a best actor nomination.

It doesn't sound as though Sheen had a barrel of laughs on his new film Unthinkable recently either.

"I had to be tortured by Samuel L Jackson for two weeks," Sheen told Pandora recently.

"On day one he cut my finger off and took a scalpel to the genitals, after which I had to be hosed down. I came in and had to be chained to the ceiling with a hood over my head, just in boxer shorts, being hosed down by a soldier.

"I said to them, 'You're obviously not going to be doing this for real, I'm an actor.' And they went, 'We'll be doing it, we just won't be doing it for long'."

Sheen next appears on our screens as Brian Clough in The Damned United.

"He's such a complicated character on so many different levels, so it was quite demanding," he said.

Perez hits back at 'lazy' Lily

IT IS, to put it mildly, going right off between Lily Allen and mischievous celebrity blogger Perez Hilton.

This week, the precocious pop poppet became the first female since Princess Diana to grace the cover of Gay Times, in which she accused Hilton of bullying women and "slamming them for owning their sexuality and calling them sluts".

Now Hilton has hit back.

"Hopefully you'll get your partying in check and get off your lazy ass to promote and tour," he says. "It would suck if you cancelled shows, like you did last time, because you were 'tired'."

Actually, he's only half true. She also cancelled last year's US tour as she had, in her own words, "been getting really drunk".

Harry's still a Chelsy boy

Another day, another piece of malicious gossip emerges surrounding Prince Harry's eventful private life. The rumour that passed across Pandora's desk yesterday was that he had been given the heave-ho by his spirited piece of fluff, Chelsy Davy.

Happily, Clarence House tells me that is definitely not the case. So in the unlikely event that anything crops up in the papers this weekend saying otherwise, then it must be wrong – totally and utterly wrong.

Cameron's snub disappoints IDS

Ken Clarke wasn't the only "big beast" tipped for a return to the Tory front bench on Monday. The former shadow Home Secretary David Davis's name was being banded about, as was the former leader Iain Duncan Smith. In the end, both were ignored. Davis, I'm told, was stoical about the rejection; Duncan Smith apparently less so. Dogsbodies in the Commons have apparently been giving the usually congenial IDS a wide berth this week.

Sarkozy improves on Chirac's record

The French President Nicolas Sarkozy has reportedly employed a sex therapist to boost his longevity in the sack.

The news recalls the memoirs of Jean Claude Laumond, the former chauffeur of Jacques Chirac. According to Laumond, Chirac was known by female staff at his office in the Rue de Lille as "Trois Minutes, Douche Comprise."