David Letterman in Money Trouble Again|
December 4, 1996
David Letterman has stepped in it again. You'll recall that back
in March, the late-night talk show host gave actress Anna
Paquin $10,000 cash after she sank a basketball shot on the air.
After the show, Letterman's staff took the money back, claiming that
Letterman only offered it to the thirteen-year-old Oscar
winner as a joke. The incident, which was dubbed Paquingate by the
press, was defused after Letterman made a $10,000 donation to the
Make-A-Wish Foundation. But now, New York's Daily
News reports that Letterman is facing another potential
situation in these increasingly literal times--let's call it
"Sivareddygate." It seems that last month, Letterman read a piece of
viewer mail from one Sivareddy Gotike, who asked what kind of coffee
he drinks on the show. In typical Dave fashion, Letterman exclaimed,
"Sivareddy Gotike! If anyone can prove that's their real name, I'll
give him a million dollars." Well, Sivareddy faxed over his license
and Social Security card, demanding that CBS pony up the dough.
Letterman's people told Sivareddy that it was all a joke, and asked
him to sign a paper to that effect. In exchange, they offered him
and a friend plane tickets to New York, a paid hotel room, and a
limo. To sweeten the deal, they also threw in free tickets to
Cats and a Jets game. Look for a less-spontaneous Letterman
in the very near future.