tv 2020 ABC February 10, 2017 10:01pm-11:01pm PST
i love the camera. it's like -- making out with the camera. >> the tenth anniversary of the death of anna nicole smith, who blazed her way into pop culture fame, and infamy. >> beautiful duet. >> tonight, only on "20/20," the man who perhaps knew her better than anyone. larry birkhead. and the little girl who never knew her,
tonight, how marriage to a billionaire 60 years older turned vicki lynn into anna nicole. the turmoil over a fortune that took her all the way to the supreme court. the debate over who was dannielynn's father. >> was there any doubt in your mind who was the father? >> the original star of reality tv morphing into train wreck tv. and the ongoing mystery. is dannielynn inheriting a fortune? now, anna nicole smith in her own words. >> i want to be remembered as someone sweet who came to hollywood saying, follow your dreams. >> hello. i'm elizabeth vargas, david is
away tonight. it was ten years ago this week when anna nicole smith died. the legal case that took her to the support twice. and tonight, a rare look at her private home life, from larry birkhead, now sharing her private diary with us. here's debra roberts, who has followed this story for a decade. >> reporter: dannielynn birkhead is a typical 10-year-old obsessed with snapchat. >> wow, so beautiful. >> reporter: and finding a new love for her dad. >> so your dad says that you're determined to get him a girlfriend. is that true? >> reporter: and she's got in mind a woman who's not your typical blind date. >> nicki minaj. >> nicki minaj. >> reporter: dannielynn lives a quiet life with her dad, larry, just outside louisville, kentucky.
but for a twist of fate her life could have been so different. looking at her now you'd never guess this carefree little girl was once at the center of a media firestorm. an infamous paternity scandal. >> dna results are in. >> i told you so. >> reporter: look closely and you can spot the resemblance to the mother she doesn't remember, but who so many others can't forget. >> i'm not going to comment on that. >> reporter: this week marks ten years since the larger than life platinum blonde known as anna nicole smith died of an accidental drug overdose in a florida hotel room. she was just 39 years old. she will always be anna nicole smith's daughter.
how much is she like her mom? >> i would say she is fearless like her mom. she'll get on any roller coaster that you put in front of her. she can work me like her mom could work people. she gets what she wants. but i think i could stand right next to my daughter, and we could look like twins. and the first thing they'll say is, "anna nicole, spitting image of the mother." >> reporter: you think people want to project onto her -- >> it's just like any other kid who's lost a celebrity parent. they think that the child is automatically destined for the same path. >> reporter: later tonight, you'll hear more about how her father is determined that dannielynn takes a different path from her mother, who seemed to travel a troubled road from the start, a journey she had difficulty talking about. what did she tell you about her childhood? >> the stories that she told me were not the happiest of stories. poor, abused. >> you would not have imagined that she would have become an internationally known figure. that she would have flash bulbs and paparazzi and fascination about her life. none of that seemed possible. >> reporter: not for the girl named vicki lynn hogan, growing up just south of dallas in
sleepy mexia, texas, population 6,500. >> welcome to mexia, texas, my hometown. >> reporter: what was your relationship like as mom and daughter? >> oh, it -- it was -- it was a good relationship. >> reporter: i met anna nicole's mother, vergie arthur, back in 2007. >> she was beautiful as a child, >> reporter: was there any doubt that she was going to be a big sensation? >> oh, no. >> reporter: be so famous? >> no doubt. from the time she was 5 or 6, she was always saying, "when i grow up, mom, i am going to be a model." >> reporter: along the way, vicki lynn drops out of high school at 15 and takes a job at jim's krispy fried chicken. >> anna nicole smith had this remarkable backstory. a mom at the age of 19, married to a fry cook at the fried chicken place where she worked, mother to a son named daniel. >> daniel's my life, he's my inspiration. he's my everything. >> reporter: in 2000, the budding star tells abc her first marriage collapsed after a year, leaving her broke and alone to
raise her baby boy, daniel. but, with stars in her eyes, she makes her way to houston, where she notices the burning bright lights in the texas sky. >> there was this big neon sign, it was blue and white. and it had this lady in high heel shoes and she had the bikini on and it would flash, tip-toe, then back, tip-toe, then back, like that. and i was like, "oh how --" you know, "how neat." i can dance, i would love to do that. i didn't know it was topless, though. i didn't know anything about that. >> reporter: incredibly, she's at an age too tender to tend bar, yet old enough to try her hand at the other commodity being served up at gigi's cabaret. >> the day that i went on to dance the first time, i ran out because i was so horrified and so ashamed of myself, but i looked down and saw all this money, and i was like, "wow."
and it was like $50. i'm like, "whoa, $50." and back then that was a lot of money for me. >> reporter: but mom virgie, a local sheriff's deputy, is not impressed, and is not having it. >> i said, "this is not going to happen." >> reporter: not in your family. >> not in this family, no. so i go down there. and i am in uniform, and so the manager comes over there. and he says, "yes, ma'am, can i help you?" i said, "do you see that child over there?" i said, "that is my daughter. and i want her out of here." and i said, "if you don't want me to come back here every night that you are open," i says, "she better not be in here again." >> reporter: but it would take more than a mom's texas-sized determination to chase vicki lynn from the local gentlemen's club. >> and that, in a weird way, is where her story begins, because that's where she was onstage dancing the night that an incredibly wealthy man in a wheelchair came in to that club. >> reporter: it's 1991, and 86-year-old j. howard marshall, an oil baron, is mourning the loss of his wife and mistress. vicki lynn is ready to fill the void.
>> for, i believe, the obvious reasons, he found vicki smith to be quite compelling. >> he got a huge smile and, you know, he had these gorgeous blue eyes and he got a little twinkle in his eyes and he asked me to dance for him. and i did. >> reporter: undeterred by the more than 60-year age gap, the stripper and the aging oil tycoon become an item, which for her, includes all the perks of dating a billionaire. >> he took me to neiman marcus. it's kind of like "pretty woman," except for the older gentleman. he paid me enough money not to have to go back to that place i was working at. and he took care of me and my son. >> reporter: her beau even buys her a 15-acre ranch outside houston, where some unforgettable video is shot, like the pair riding an atv together around the grounds and celebrating their first christmas as a couple, complete
with a surprise gift for marshall. the couple's very may/december romance would lead to a june wedding three years later in 1994. >> they got married. he couldn't stand up out of the wheelchair, god bless him. didn't have to. she bent down to kiss him. >> reporter: but the nuptials come after the would-be pinup girl gets the proposal she really wants -- and her shot at fame. after sending in photos to "playboy," they offer a full page spread. >> i think there's a myth that she came into "playboy" and took "playboy" by storm. >> reporter: stephen wayda was the photographer. >> that wasn't the case at all. she was just this -- like a scared child. she just sat in the makeup room, isolated, not saying anything. once she got out on set, it was a performance. i mean, she just came alive. >> i love the camera. it's like making out with a camera. >> reporter: she eventually
lands the cover as playmate of the year. >> anna nicole stood out because of her face. she had that look. she was kind of almost the embodiment of a bombshell. the marilyn monroes. that's what was her appeal. >> reporter: and soon that fresh face would be just as big of a hit with her clothes on, modeling for guess jeans. >> "playboy" made her famous for people who liked "playboy." the guess ads made her an international superstar model out of nowhere. >> reporter: next, vicki lynn has a new life and a new name. but when her billionaire husband dies, and she squares off with her 61-year-old stepson for the money, fireworks ensue. >> you're just up there making stuff up as you go along. >> i am not making anything up, rusty. >> reporter: stay with us. ♪
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>> reporter: and they're not the only ones with a new life. ♪ i saw the sign it opened up my eyes ♪ >> reporter: former small town texas girl, vicki lynn hogan is now anna nicole smith. she's gone from poverty to playmate, is the face of guess jeans. she's married a billionaire, 60 years her senior. and now, at 27, she's about to break in to hollywood. >> she was in "the hudsucker proxy." that's a coen brothers movie with paul newman. she didn't play lady macbeth. but "hudsucker proxy"'s a pretty good little movie. >> reporter: next, a small role in the screwball comedy "naked gun 33 1/3" alongside leslie neilsen. she used to write in a diary. tell me about her entry in this diary. >> she writes, "august 2nd, my experience with 'naked gun,' met the cast today, they were great. so maybe this won't be so scary. wish me luck." she was living the dream. >> reporter: and while some see her as a movie star, plenty of others see anna nicole as a
punchline. >> married to that 90-year-old billionaire. >> i want people to understand, forget about the damn age. he saved my life and i saved his life. he took me out of a terrible place and he cares for me and my son. >> reporter: did she genuinely love him? >> that was no act. i don't know if it was the physical type of thing, but it was what he did for her and what he did for daniel. >> he knew me when i was nobody. and that's what people don't understand. and i don't want to be called a gold digger because i'm not. i'm not a gold digger. i could have married him a week after we met, i didn't. i went out and i made something of myself. >> reporter: and while anna nicole was making that name for herself, her wealthy husband was showering her with gifts, spending, by some estimates, nearly $12 million to keep her happy. but the lavish life comes to an abrupt end when, after just 14 months of marriage, the 89-year-old oil magnate meets his maker. and in an even bigger shock to
anna nicole, there is no mention of her in his will. >> he just always promised that once we're married, you know, half of everything is mine. that was his promise to me. >> reporter: if that's true, her husband never put it in writing. a big problem for anna nicole, since the sole heir to marshall's estate, his 61-year-old son pierce, is not in a generous mood. he cuts anna off and even fights her on his father's final resting place. >> i have nothing to say. thank you very much. >> they got to stage consecutive funerals. the image that many people will have of the funeral of j. howard marshall ii is anna nicole smith, wearing the wedding dress that she'd worn when the two of them were married. >> reporter: after the dueling funerals, the legal bickering is on, with anna suing for half her late husband's money and her stepson suing her right back. pierce marshall's lawyer rusty hardin in 2001.
>> there was never any evidence of any corroboration from any source that j. howard marshall ever intended to leave her half of anything. >> reporter: and hardin today. >> he was going to give her all of this money and things during his lifetime that would be sufficient to support her the rest of her life, and most of us can get along on $12 million. >> reporter: he says marshall's son was only following his dad's wishes, which were clearly spelled out in his will. >> i used to say that one reason i could understand anna was that she was a glutton. she wanted all of everything. >> reporter: yet after her husband's death, everything is gone, in anna's bank account, anyway. she files for bankruptcy in california, insisting she's owed money from her late husband's estate. and in a bombshell ruling, the court agrees, awarding anna nicole, get this, nearly half a billion dollars. but she still has her stepson pierce and that lawsuit in texas to deal with. the trial stretches to nearly six months and becomes red meat for the media.
>> our top story tonight, anna nicole smith. >> you graduated from which school? >> yeah i'm a dropout rusty. i'm not a bookworm. i'm not a smart person but i know that my husband was choking to death. >> you're just up there making stuff up as you go along. >> i am not making anything up, rusty. >> reporter: hardin presses anna nicole on what he calls her unusual efforts to ingratiate herself into marshall's will. >> sometimes, ma'am, isn't it true when you were doing these tapes you would take off your top while you sat there next to him while you got him to say these things, wouldn't you? >> oh, mr. hardin, you're a pervert. >> if somebody was to -- pardon me? >> that's not true, and i think you're sick. >> reporter: hardin recalls one light moment while questioning anna nicole's exorbitant spending habits. >> miss marshall, how do you spend $100,000 a week? and she looks at me like i'm from mars and says -- >> you got to buy gowns. you got do buy shoes. you got to pay hair and makeup. i mean, it's very expensive to be me.
i mean, it's terrible. >> that was my favorite line. and that was something we could agree on. >> reporter: and then, that famous exchange from her six days of sparring with hardin on the stand. >> miss marshall, have you been taking new acting lessons? >> screw you, rusty. >> you know, ten years later, i'd be on a southwest airlines plane putting a bag up and some little blue-haired lady in the back would yell, "screw you, rusty," and -- it never did offend me. >> reporter: in the end, the jury doesn't believe anna nicole. >> the jury's verdict was she wasn't entitled to a dime. they understood this was really a son that's just trying to fulfill what his father wanted. >> reporter: in 2001, 12 of those jurors spoke to abc news. >> my favorite moment was when rusty hardin, he was just so frustrated with her and finally he just sat back in his chair and he goes, mrs. marshall -- >> what is that written across the top of your dress? >> spoiled. >> pass the witness. >> pass the witness, i'm done. that's it. that's what she was, she was spoiled.
and she knew it and we knew it. >> reporter: now, bizarrely, anna is dead broke in texas and a multimillionaire in california. >> you had two courts with very different views as to whether or not anna nicole smith was entitled to a large chunk of money from her husband's estate. >> reporter: in fact, in the years ahead, the battle for marshall's billions would take the former stripper all the way to the steps of the supreme court. >> anna nicole smith gets to hear justice david souter and ruth bader ginsburg talk about her situation. not always in language that she can perhaps appreciate or understand. but she's there. part of history in this totally unexpected way. >> reporter: the land's highest court hands her a victory, yet court hands her a victory, yet the case is appealed again and again and the grieving widow never collects a penny. when we come back, anna nicole reinvents herself. >> like all things anna nicole, it was hugely successful and, kind of, a train wreck.
>> reporter: the reality show with a little too much reality. and the girl from tiny mexia, texas, finds herself rubbing shoulders with a certain future president. stay with us. [car engine failin] [clicking of ignition] uh-- wha-- woof! eeh-- woof! wuh-- [silence] [engine roars to life] [dog howls] ♪ dramatic opera music swells from radio ♪ [howling continues] something bigger.here.
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>> reporter: by 2002, anna nicole smith's strange journey from stripper to the supreme court is now a spectacle tailor-made for a then growing phenomenon, reality tv. >> 2002 was the debut of "the osbornes." >> i'm really about to lose it with her. >> reporter: the osbornes are riding high in a new kind of family drama with their outlandish antics. >> and so obviously anna nicole smith was cut out to be in a reality show. and so e! gave her one. >> reporter: but anna nicole's close friend raymond martino doesn't like the idea. >> i told her, i said, "anna, please don't do this show. it's not a good thing for you to do. anything that you want private, they'll take advantage of it." and she says, "oh, i'll show you." ♪ >> reporter: sure enough, the
show is an instant smash. the premiere giving e! entertainment its highest ratings ever. the stars include anna's lawyer/best friend/publicist, howard k. stern. >> it's a [ bleep ] eating contest. >> reporter: and her now teen son daniel reluctantly in the spotlight. straight man to his wacky, outrageous mom. >> see-saw. see-saw. >> daniel was constantly trying to protect his mother on the show. but anna thought she was doing a sitcom. >> i like fast men, fast cars, and fast food. >> reporter: comedic moments aside, the show pulls back the curtain on a life that appears out of control. >> i've been up since 4:00 a.m. >> reporter: anna's slurred voice and strange behavior leading to rumors of substance abuse.
>> like all things anna nicole, it was hugely successful and kind of a train wreck. >> reporter: it's during filming that anna nicole meets photographer larry birkhead at kentucky's annual barnstable-brown derby party. but through his lens, he's not seeing the train wreck everyone else is. >> and she had totally transformed herself. >> reporter: in what way? >> like, she dropped a ton of weight. but it wasn't just the weight. it was her whole attitude. it was as if she was back at her guess days. she was back on top of her game again. >> reporter: do you remember the first thing she said to you? >> she didn't say it to me. she said it to her attorney, howard. "who's that?" she kept waving at me and blowing kisses. and, i mean, she knew how to work the camera. >> reporter: she was flirting with you. >> you know, i don't know. i looked over my shoulder, she's got to be talking to somebody else. >> reporter: 31-year-old larry is soon hired to take photographs of anna nicole at a camp for children living with hiv. e!'s cameras rolling.
he describes the impression she made when i first met him back in 2006. >> she was totally stripped down of all her make-up, hair in a ponytail, working with the kids. she stayed like eight days. >> reporter: so you were taken with her? >> i really was. >> reporter: soon a romance is budding and larry moves to l.a. to live with anna nicole. >> the thing about anna was, it was almost like a split personality. because when the camera was going, she was a whole different thing. that was more, to me, an act than it was the real person who she was. >> reporter: he also gets an inside view on his girlfriend's health, and says her battle was different from what her millions of voyeuristic viewers suspected. >> there's this big misconception that anna was on street corners looking for heroin or crack. and she had doctor treating her for pain. >> reporter: she had prescription medication. >> she had prescription medication. she had pain from her breast enhancement surgery, from her back. she had chronic pains and this, that and the other. she had seizures. so there was all this stuff she was getting treated for. now, did she take it like she was supposed to?
no. >> reporter: in fact, anna nicole admits to overdosing on prescription drugs in an incident that almost proved fatal. >> i went to betty ford clinic. i was on prescription pain medication and i was taking too much and i went into a coma for that. when i came out of the coma, i couldn't talk and i couldn't walk. it was scary, pretty scary thing. >> reporter: by 2004, ratings of her show are ailing too. it's cancelled after only two seasons. >> that's just so not right. >> i guess even a car accident makes rubberneckers look away after a while, and maybe that's what happened there. >> reporter: but like a chameleon, anna nicole makes a quick change. her face popping up in a music video for a then up and coming hip hop artist -- kanye west. penning a column for the
"national enquirer" and seemingly predicting the future. suggesting 12 years ago that real estate magnate donald trump could be president and she his first lady. and she's the face of the diet pill trimspa. >> you like my body? >> reporter: owner alex goen and his wife monique say anna nicole came up with their famous tagline. >> and she just simply said, "trimspa, baby," put her arms out like this. and at that moment, we said, "that's it." >> reporter: as their partnership develops into a friendship, they notice how devoted anna nicole is to her son daniel, who travels with her to her events and appearances. >> she made it clear to me he was the most important thing in her life. and that because of him, it saved her on many occasions. >> anna nicole smith. >> reporter: and she appears to need saving. at this infamous appearance at the 2004 american music awards, her rumored struggle with substance abuse is again on
public display. >> and if i ever record an album, i want this guy to produce my -- make me beautiful duets. >> there was no doubt you looked at her and you said something really wrong was going on. and yet, that was our entertainment that was like, well, that's anna nicole. there she is. it wasn't like, "wow, look at how she's fallen. she needs help." it was like, "that's hilarious." that's where she was in the landscape of the culture then. >> reporter: but soon no one is laughing. when we come back, even larry's ready to walk. >> she said, "if you go and pack, you're going to be feeling really stupid because --" and she took her -- my hand and she put it on her stomach. >> reporter: and the tawdry turns tragic. >> really bad stuff was about to happen. >> reporter: stay with us. rs, wn almost everything, so we know how to cover almost anything. even a "truck-cicle."
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insists on some privacy, like her relationship with photographer larry birkhead. were you in it for the fame and the money? >> no one ever knew that i was her boyfriend, the whole time we dated. if you look at all the video, i'm in the back carrying my camera bag. >> reporter: it's 2004 and larry says he was happy being on the sidelines and that the secret courtship is serious, with talk of marriage, even babies. >> anna always wanted a little girl. that was her dream, and she went from city to city, as far back as the '90s, and she would collect outfits and hope that one day that she could dress her in all these, you know, frilly outfits pink this and pink that -- >> reporter: she wanted a girly girl. >> she wanted that. >> reporter: but it's no fairy tale romance, larry says it's unpredictable and tumultuous. >> she was a little bit controlling. she wanted you there when she wanted you.
we sat back and laughed at the movie "the war of the roses" because that's what we said was our relationship. >> reporter: why did you stay in the midst of that circus-like atmosphere? >> i packed a couple times to go. and she was crying, and she said "if you go and pack, you're going to be feeling really stupid because --" and she took my hand and she put it on her stomach. and she said, "because we're going to have a baby." >> reporter: his dreams of becoming a father were coming true. then nearly six months into the pregnancy, larry says it's vintage anna nicole, another fight and this time she hightails it out of los angeles and ends up in the bahamas. he says it's a calculated plan to keep him out of the picture. soon after, anna nicole shares her pregnancy with the world in this video posted on her website. >> let me stop all the rumors, yes, i am pregnant. i'm happy. >> reporter: back in the u.s., larry is left to wonder about the fate of his unborn child. you were concerned about the drugs she was taking.
>> i was concerned that the medications that she was taking and how -- what impact it would have on our child at the time. >> reporter: then, adding insult to injury on september 7th, 2006, anna nicole gives birth to their baby in the bahamas. and larry is nowhere near the delivery room. but a video camera sure is. anna nicole later sells this footage and an interview to entertainment tonight for a reported $1 million. >> i had to watch my own child being born on television, and they showed all of it, the c-section, everything. >> reporter: but fate is about to cruelly intervene. anna nicole's 20-year-old son daniel heads to the bahamas to meet his new sister, only three days old. while at the hospital, he takes a nap in the bed with his mother. and then, an unimaginable tragedy. >> she wakes up and she turns to him and he's dead. fiction couldn't imagine a
moment like that. >> a shocking event. >> anna nicole. >> reporter: it was determined that daniel died accidentally from a lethal combination of prescription drugs. anna nicole's close friends alex and monique goen immediately rush to her side. >> daniel was the first person in her life that she was certain unconditionally loved her. and she lost him. >> what do you do? what do you say? there's nothing that you can say. >> reporter: larry says anna nicole, in her grief, is inconsolable. >> at the funeral, she tried to climb into the casket. she would see a cloud she thought was the shape of daniel. and she would tell people that she wanted to be with him. i knew that anna would be in no shape on her own after losing daniel, as close as they were, to take care of my daughter. >> reporter: but proving that the baby is his daughter will be a messy, public battle. remember howard k. stern, the lawyer/best friend? he goes on "the larry king show"
with this surprising revelation. >> so you are the father? >> yes, sir. >> reporter: and the name on the baby's birth certificate reflects that. dannielynn hope marshall stern. larry's lawyer braces for a fight. >> can anna nicole smith not simply submit to the tests necessary to settle the question of who is that little girl's father? >> reporter: while larry himself goes on tv. >> now you're going to meet a man who says he is fighting to be a father. >> reporter: including with me on "20/20" to make his case. was there any question in your mind about whether this was your child? >> no. i said, "this is mine, right?" she's, "yeah, dummy, i'm not a whore." >> reporter: in fact, he claims howard k. stern was behind his breakup with anna nicole. >> he would fill her head with ideas, negative thoughts about me. >> reporter: so you think he was out to sabotage your relationship? >> oh, most definitely. >> reporter: next, that baby girl at the center of so much conflict, growing up and asking questions about the famous
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>> reporter: february 8th, 2007. a 911 call comes in from the seminole hard rock hotel and casino in florida. >> hollywood fire rescue. >> if you could please respond to the hard rock. >> reporter: a 39-year-old woman is unconscious in room 607. >> it's going to be in reference to a white female. she's not breathing, and she's not responsive. she's actually anna nicole smith. >> reporter: the news explodes and the national media descends
on ft. lauderdale. >> anna nicole smith has died. >> this morning, tragic beauty. >> she collapsed at a florida hotel. >> reporter: just five months after the birth of her daughter and the death of her beloved 20-year-old son daniel, anna nicole smith's bodyguard and his wife find her. >> when i got inside the hotel, i saw my wife on top of anna saying, "something's wrong. something's wrong." >> reporter: it is too late. the flamboyant star is gone, dead, if not of a broken heart, surely dying with one. >> this is clearly a sudden, unexpected, and unexplained death. >> reporter: the medical examiner later declares smith died of an accidental overdose with nine different prescription drugs in her system. how did you hear the news? >> tv. >> reporter: the television. >> i was watching cnn. >> reporter: a day after her daughter's death i spoke to anna nicole's heartbroken mom, vergie arthur.
>> i saw her coming apart. i just couldn't stop it. she chose drugs over us. drugs are a horrible thing. it can ruin a life. >> reporter: so now you have lost your baby. >> i have lost my daughter and my grandson. >> reporter: but in death, just as in life, anna nicole is again in the throes of a legal controversy. her mom, howard k. stern, and ex-boyfriend larry birkhead face off in a florida courtroom over where her body should be buried. as always, it's like a three-ring circus, and the ringleader -- >> this body belongs to me now. don't test me. i've been tested by the best. there's no circus here, my friend. >> reporter: one unforgettable circuit court judge, larry siedlin. >> i had to decide where to bury anna nicole. >> reporter: vergie arthur wants to bring her daughter back home to texas, but howard k. stern wants anna nicole buried in the bahamas alongside her son. it's supposed to be about her final resting place but devolves into a finger-pointing referendum on anna nicole's final days.
>> howard was there when my daughter died. >> she did cut down a lot on medication that she took. >> i discovered that there are a number of people around her that enabled her. that allowed her to get these prescription drugs. and no one really shook her up and said, "look, you got to live your life this -- this particular way." >> reporter: the week of testimony is dramatic and bizarre, and so is the judge's emotional ruling. >> i want her buried with her son in the bahamas. i want them to be together. i signed this order effective almost 4:00. let's talk about larry, judge larry. i'm not a robot. i -- i -- i feel, every day i have compassion and love. i don't worry about public opinion. >> reporter: but even after anna nicole is finally laid to rest in nassau, a most important
question lingers. what will happen with 5-month-old dannielynn? both larry birkhead and howard k. stern continue to claim paternity. it would take a dna test to finally convince the world of what larry says he always knew. >> i told you so. >> reporter: howard k. stern reluctantly accepts defeat. >> i'm obviously very disappointed. >> reporter: stunningly, the two foes quickly bury the hatchet. so, you're on the same side now? >> same side, and same page. and really, to be honest, the minute after the paternity test was over, he's helping me change dannielynn's diaper. "this is how you feed her." it's been nonstop since then. >> reporter: today, the single dad is raising his daughter 2,000 miles from the hollywood glare her mother adored, but that hasn't stopped some of the questions that can come with fame. >> people think she's got millions and millions of dollars. and one of her friends came up
to her and said, "oh, i saw on youtube you're one of the richest kids in the world." and -- >> reporter: and what does she say to that? >> she came home and asked me where the money was. and i said, "i'm still looking for it." >> reporter: he insists dannielynn is no heiress. how do you earn a living? >> photography. i also work in real estate, and i flip houses. >> reporter: and then there are the more serious questions that dannielynn may ask one day. does she know how her mother died and why her mother died? >> the way i've told dannielynn in the past is that, "your mom took some medicines and she did -- she might have not taken them correctly or the right way. and, you know, the doctors couldn't help her. and they tried." >> reporter: when we come back, the cherished treasures in dannielyn's closet. and you'll hear from her on how
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>> reporter: dannielynn birkhead is a classic fifth grader. she's into fast cars. and fast food. what's your favorite? >> french fries. >> reporter: and dreams of travel. >> i want to go to washington, d.c., so bad. i want to see all the monuments. >> reporter: unlike her mom, who relished the spotlight, dannielynn is shy. though she's always up for a good time. today, at an indoor amusement park with cousin chloe. while she's growing up, her dad larry is on his own journey. ten years following the death of the woman he loved, he's beginning a new chapter in his life, starting with some redecorating. years ago, he showed me his
basement, dedicated to anna nicole's memory. her photos and glittering gown proudly on display, but today things are different. last time i saw a lot of anna nicole stuff. >> and there's no anna nicole stuff. >> reporter: oh, my gosh. it's all been moved into storage. does this signal that you're kind of trying to move on and put anna in the proper place in your life? >> you know, i think so. it's better for me. >> reporter: yet, in dannielynn's room, he couldn't part with those colorful clothes her mother collected, even before she was pregnant. so they weren't all baby clothes. >> she was thinking way ahead. it's kind of, when she wears it, it makes you feel proud that you're at least trying to, you know, carry on what she would have wanted. this was her little outfit from the guess campaign.
>> reporter: that's right, four years ago, dannielynn modeled for guess. as a way to share something special with her mother, larry says. but it was a one-time thing. >> i've had companies call me since then and ask me for her to model. and the answer's no. she doesn't show any interest in it. she wants to be a kid. >> reporter: she's a girl scout, owner of a pet lizard, and every night, there's that pesky homework. but there are some lessons her dad wants her to learn above all others. what's the big lesson out of anna's life? >> keep things simple. be careful who's around you. you can shoot for the stars. but you don't have to be a star to shoot for the stars. you know? >> reporter: through her artwork, dannielynn expresses a connection with the mother she has never known. the 10-year-old's description on her drawing bringing her dad to tears. >> i'll let you read it. i can't read it. >> reporter: "ever since my mother's death, a friend of hers said she would send me pretty butterflies. so butterflies chase me everywhere, and i let the butterfly come out of my pencil and fly on my paper with its
wings of love." that's beautiful. so this is the way she thinks of her mother. being here with her, through beautiful butterflies. >> it's her dealing with it on her own way and her own pace. i think it takes a strong little girl to write something like that. >> and as we noted, just this week, lawyers filed a motion in federal court asking a judge to reopen that california case concerning half a billion dollars. marshall's son and heir is now dead, and the hunt for the fortune continues. that's our program. from all of us, good night, and have a great weekend. pro at the timer -- protesters are outrage