'Call me madam' is Hollywood hit

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The Independent Online
WASHINGTON - Fax machines and telephones in Hollywood have long been red-hot with chatter over the best script of the season, the real-life scandal of Madam Heidi, writes Phil Reeves.

For days, the entertainment industry has been been abuzz with speculation about the activities of Heidi Fleiss, the 27-year-old daughter of a respected paediatrician who, police say, was Hollywood's top 'madam to the stars'. Attention has focused on the contents of her not- so-little black book of clients.

This week the plot thickened with the arrest of her ex-boyfriend, Ivan Nagy, a former director of Starsky and Hutch, whom police also accuse of pandering - procuring. On the day Mr Nagy was picked up, three other madams who have also allegedly been servicing the wealthy of Los Angeles' Westside were detained. 'These were high-dollar madams, with high-dollar clients,' a police captain told reporters.

The connection of these events to Ms Fleiss has yet to be clarified, although it has stoked the gossip machine into overdrive. She professes to despise Mr Nagy and responded to news of his arrest by announcing she was going out to celebrate.

Everyone is interested in the same thing: names. To date, the gossip has been impossible to unravel from the facts. The LA Times has named several of Ms Fleiss' well-known show business friends, including rock star Billy Idol. Ms Fleiss is expected to appear in court on Monday. A movie executive has reportedly offered her dollars 300,000 ( pounds 202,000) for her story. And Daily Variety this week reported that she was prepared to sell for dollars 1m - a sum that would ensure she sings like a bird.