tv Today NBC May 3, 2012 7:00am-9:00am EDT
good morning. change of heart. the blind dissent who es dayed from house arrest and fled to the u.s. embassy in beijing now says he fears for his family's safety and wants to be taken to the united states. this just a day after he left u.s. protection. we're live in china. high drama. john edwards' daughter leaves his trial in tears as jurors hear emotional testimony on how elizabeth edwards reacted to news of her husband's affair. but does any of it help the government's case? and london calling! one of the world's most spectacular cities preparing for a very big summer. the pageantry of the queen's diamond jubilee and the excitement of the olympics. matt's so excited he's already
there on the grounds of kensington palace today, may 3rd, 2012. captions paid for by nbc-universal television >> announcer: "today" in london with matt lauer. live from kensington palace. and ann curry. live from studio 1a in rockefeller plaza. >> and welcome to a special split edition of "today" on this thursday morning. i'm ann curry in new york. and matt, i know you already consider yourself royalty, but do you really have to rub it in? >> yeah, how about this background, huh, ann? this is kensington palace behind me on what they call a beautiful spring day here in london. temperature, 48 degrees. a little wind and rain. if this is spring, i can't wait for summer. but boy, isn't it nice? they just spent two years and about $19 million renovating this beautiful palace. including that statue right
there that you see of queen victoria who, by the way, was born here at kensington palace. we're going to take you inside and give you the royal tour in just a couple of minutes. as you know, it is a real big event coming up here because the duke and duchess of cambridge, aka william and katherine, are about to move in here full time, at least the time during their stays in london. we understand prince harry will also be joining them here on the grounds of the palace. and it's a big summer, as you know, in london with the queen's diamond jubilee coming up in a month or so, celebrating 60 years on the throne for her. and then 85 days from now, the world will look toward london as the summer olympic games get under way. we'll preview it all. and i want to tell you that i'm also here in london to sit down with pop royalty, pop superstar adele. i did that the other day. she has had an enormous 2012 including all those grammy awards and records sold.
so we sat down with her. and we're going to talk to her about her pinch-me moment. it's all part of a primetime special coming up on nbc in about a month, ann. >> looking forward to all of it, matt, thanks. also much more coming up from here as well including an exclusive live interview with the parents of the 6-year-old girl who vanished from her own bed in the middle of the night. and it's the first interviews they've given since their daughter disappeared nearly two weeks ago. and also coming up this morning, there is a new online ad that's featuring ashton kutcher that's causing a lot of controversy. he appears in brown face portraying a bollywood producer. some critics have called it racist. the ad has now been pulled. and the company is apologizing. so we'll have more on that. let us begin with a check of the morning's top stories from natalie morales joining us from the news desk. hey, natalie. >> good morning, everyone. secretary of state hillary clinton is in beijing as the fate of that blind chinese disdented is now up in the air. nbc's ian williams is in beijing. ian, good day to you.
>> reporter: natalie, with the u.s. brokered deal unraveling, the face of chen guangcheng is turning into a diplomatic nightmare for hillary clinton. they were trying to make it look like business as usual. the secretary of state meeting top chinese officials this morning for previously scheduled talks. addressing human rights only in broad terms. >> we believe that all governments do have to answer to citizens' aspirations for dignity and the rule of law and that no nation can or should deny those rights. >> reporter: the real test of u.s./china relations was being played out across town. u.s. officials sweeping into a beijing hospital where the blind human rights lawyer now says he's anxious to get out of china. in a telephone interview, he said, "i want to leave as soon as possible. i feel very unsafe. my rights and safety cannot be assured here." it's a dramatic turnaround. chen was brought to the hospital
personally by the u.s. ambassador, gary locke, wednesday after six days in the u.s. embassy and after an apparent u.s./china deal to guarantee his safety in china. >> apparently he's had a change of heart. we're just going to have to sit down with him and talk about it and review all the options. and again, they're going to have to make a decision. >> reporter: u.s. officials say chen was never pressured to leave the embassy. they say he never once asked for asylum. according to one report, chen has asked to leave on the same plane as hillary clinton. but the reality is he's now in a chinese hospital and the chinese jurisdicti jurisdiction. and getting him a ticket out of china may now be far more complicated. natalie? >> ian williams in beijing for us, thank you. the final thoughts and plans of terror leader osama bin laden go public today as the combatting terrorism center at west point releases documents seized in the raid on his compound today. the correspondence reveals bin laden was out of touch, struggling to keep his widely
dispersed terror network tuned into his leadership. hunkered down in his pakistani hideout, he said he feared al qaeda would not survive the deaths of its leaders. a college student is suing for $20 million after he was forgotten in a holding cell in san diego for days without food, water or even a toilet. he was picked up for questioning in a drug sweep and never charged for arrested. when he was eventually found four days later, he was hospitalized and treated for dehydration, kidney failure and a perforated esophagus. daniel chung's lawyer say his treatment constitutes torture under international law. the d.e.a. has since apologized. and "the scream" is now the most expensive work of art ever sold at auction, going for $120 million last night. the iconic painting broke the previous record by about $13 million. it's 7:06 right now. back over to ann and al. i think it will look nice in
matt's living room. >> i know. we didn't want to bust him. >> $120 million. wow! >> i could sell you my "home alone" poster. >> i'd buy. okay, mr. roker, tell us about the weather today. >> well, we've got more severe weather to talk about, unfortunately. right where we had it yesterday. on the radar you can see we're looking at showers and thunderstorms firing up from nebraska into illinois. from kansas city to green bay as far east as western new york. we've got a risk of strong storms. also down in southern texas including del rio. moist air all creating supercells. look for one to three inches down around the gulf coast. also from kansas city out to davenport, iowa, up to milwaukee, up to three to four inches of rain. and out west, in the pacific northwest, we're looking at more rain causing big problems there. we take a look at that in the next half hour. that's what's going on >> good morning. we are contending with some showers and thunderstorms this morning. they should taper off to the
late morning hours. we're hoping to get and that's your latest weather. ann? >> al, thank you. now to a dramatic day in court in the trial of former presidential candidate john edwards. on wednesday his daughter left the courtroom in tears as testimony turned to her mother's reaction to her father's affair. nbc's lisa myers is joining us from the courthouse in greensboro, north carolina, once again this morning. hey, lisa, good morning. >> reporter: good morning, ann. this was the most emotional day so far. the day the jury heard about elizabeth edwards' pain and rage over being betrayed. and the day that edwards' eldest daughter, cate, could no longer hide the anguish of this very personal family drama.
throughout this trial, cate edwards has always been there, by her father's side. she sits right behind him in the courtroom, maintaining her composure during days of embarrassing testimony. but on wednesday, that changed. when the prosecution called christina reynolds, a former campaign staffer and confidante of elizabeth, to testify about elizabeth's knowledge of her husband's affair. soon after reynolds took the stand, edwards turned to his daughter and said, "i don't know what's coming. do you want to leave?" cate broke down in tears and hurried out of the courtroom as her father called her name. >> it was probably the most human moment that we've had in this trial and really drove home the human drama, about the human tragedy of what's really happened to the edwards family. >> reporter: in dramatic testimony, reynolds says elizabeth called her to the edwards home in the summer of 2007. she told me that mr. edwards had had an affair. and he said it was over.
but she believed it was still going on. that october, the first tabloid story about john edwards' affair appeared. the next day outside a hangar at the raleigh airport, reynolds testified that john and elizabeth edwards fought. "she was very upset. she stormed off and collapsed into a ball in the parking lot." reynolds vividly recounted that a few minutes later, elizabeth confronted john again, screaming, "you don't see me anymore as she tore off her shirt and bra." reynolds said john didn't have much of a reaction but called elizabeth's doctor and then flew off to a campaign event. some experts say that testimony had nothing to do with the government's charges that edwards accepted illegal campaign contributions which he denies. what is the prosecution's purpose in putting on this witness? >> i think to dirty up john edwards, to make the jury dislike him, by showing his
callous behavior towards his wife. there she is, unable to go on, and yet he gets on a plane and goes on and continues to campaign. >> reporter: cate had returned to the courtroom when the defense countered by asking about elizabeth's final days. again, cate wipes away tears as her mother's friend testified that despite all the turmoil and betrayal, john edwards was there attending to elizabeth as she died. ann? >> lisa myers, thank you so much. hampton dellinger is an nbc analyst who's been following the trial. good morning to you, hampton. >> good morning, ann. >> amid all these dramatic moments, cate edwards leaving the courtroom in tears, this testimony about elizabeth's grief over this affair, were you able to observe how the jury was reacting? >> well, the jury has to feel sympathy at a human level certainly for john edwards' family. there hasn't been much sympathetic said about john
edwards. and cheri young's turn on the stand really boosted the prosecution after her husband, andrew's, performance. but this case has been an emotional roller coaster as well as a legal one. and we don't know yet where the jury's sympathy will ultimately lie. >> on the question, whatever they think about john edwards' character, on the question of whether he knowingly violated campaign laws by allowing donors to give money to cover up his affair, where are we? >> well, the government is not very far in terms of surmounting that hurdle. there has not been a single witness nor piece of documentary evidence that suggests that john edwards knew or should have known that the money to his mistress constituted a federal election law crime. that he may be a bad husband, had terrible political judgment, but his legal judgment still is fairly unimpeached. >> all right. to be continued, hampton, thank you so much for joining us this morning. we turn now to a tragic death that has rocked the sports world.
former nfl star junior seau was found dead at his home on wednesday in what police say appears to have been a suicide. a death that is once again focusing attention on the mental health of formers players. nbc's gabe gutierrez is in san diego with this story. gabe, good morning. >> reporter: ann, good morning. the makeshift memorials have been growing both at seau's home in oceanside and here at his restaurant in san diego. it is clear that he touched many lives both on and off the field. overnight, they gathered to mourn. many wearing number 55. >> i can't believe he's gone. >> i was devastated. i couldn't believe he was dead. >> junior! >> reporter: his mother inconsolable. >> i pray to god, please. take me. take me. leave my son! but it's too late! >> reporter: wednesday morning at his beachfront home, junior seau's girlfriend found his body, police say, with a gunshot wound to the chest.
>> this case at this point is being investigated as a suicide. >> reporter: the san diego chargers drafted junior seau in 1990. his career included 12 consecutive pro bowls and since with the miami dolphins and new england patriots. >> today is a very sad day, a very tragic day for the city of san diego. >> when you know the man -- >> reporter: former teammate marcellus wily broe ywilybroke espn. >> today is the worst day. >> reporter: for seau, life after football wasn't easy. in 2010, he was arrested on a domestic violence charge. hours after his release, he drove his suv off a cliff. seau said he wasn't trying to kill himself. he had just fallen asleep at the wheel. now he is the second retired nfl player to commit suicide in the past few weeks. former atlanta falcons safety ray easterling shot himself.
and last year dave derson also took his own life. both families have sued the nfl over head injuries. >> there have been a number of well publicized cases in retired athletes who have committed suicide. and there is some concern over whether those issues may be related to changes that occur in the brain. >> reporter: in recent years, the nfl has focused on player safety, cracking down on hits to the head. as for seau, his ex-wife told the associated press that he had suffered concussions during his career, but she didn't know whether they contributed to his death. junior seau was 43. seau did not leave behind a suicide note. the medical examiner is expected to finish his autopsy later today. ann? >> gabe gutierrez, thank you so much for your reporting on this very sad story. we want to switch gears now. and at 7:15, let's go to london and say hi again to matt. >> reporter: all right, ann, thank you very much. though a tragic story here getting a lot of attention as well. it's on the cover of "the daily
telegraph" this morning. it concerns a spy, an mi-6 spy recently found dead inside a safe house in london dead inside a locked duffel bag. officials admit they may never know what happened. stephanie gosk is also here in london with details on that. stephanie, good morning to you. >> good morning, matt. this case has transfixed the country and stumped investigators. 31-year-old gareth williams worked for mi-6, the spy agency of james bond fame. unlike the movies, the miystery of williams' death may never be solved. for nearly two years, investigators have been trying to determine what happened to the brilliant code-breaking spy whose body was found stuffed in a duffel bag, zipped, padlocked and placed inside his bathtub. the heat turned high in the middle of summer. his iphone wiped clean. hanging from a chair, a can
did-colored wig. after a 21-month investigation, a british coroner announced this was probably a criminal act, but there are no clear signs of who was behind it. >> i urge anyone who knows gareth, who had contact with him, to search their conscience and come forward. >> reporter: failed attempts by experts who locked themselves up in a similar bag seem to prove that williams couldn't have acted alone. >> the door was closed to mask decomposition smell, and the heating was turned on full. so there was no visible marks or evidence that he could have done this. >> reporter: a day after this cctv video was shot of williams, he stopped showing up for work. it took over a week for his mi-6 coworkers to report his disappearance. because of the delay, the body severely decomposed, making cause of death impossible to determine. the coroner now says it was either asphyxiation or some unidentified poison. the coroner knocks down the
wildest theories. no clear connection to williams' visits to bondage websites or the $30,000 worth of high-end women's clothes found in his bachelor pad. >> this is a gift to the conspiracy theorist to have an unexplained death under any circumstances, of course, gives rise to huge amounts of speculation. >> reporter: the head of mi-6 apologized to the family for the delay in reporting williams' disappearance, but it doesn't seem to have helped. >> our grief is exacerbated by the failure of his employers at mi-6. >> reporter: now mi-6 itself is under suspicion. the coroner says investigating british intelligence services is a legitimate line of inquiry. so the few questions seemingly answered by the coroner have only raised dozens more. and today there are reports from the british press that 50 agents at mi-6 are facing dna tests. matt?
>> reporter: all right, stephanie gosk in london for us this morning. stephanie, thank you very much. on a much lighter note, a lot of attention here in london is being paid to two major upcoming events, the queen's diamond jubilee, which is from june 2nd to the 5th. a lot of events surrounding that. and, of course, 85 days from right now, the summer olympics get under way with the opening ceremony on a friday night, july 27th. so how is london getting ready? nbc's michelle kosinski is in east london at olympic park. michelle, good morning. >> reporter: london is transforming. london park will be set to hold more tha 100,000 people. first we need to make sure everything works. that's what organizers are doing right now. brimming with excitement, beaming with pride. next month marks the queen's diamond jubilee, her 60-year reign. with more pageantry, parades,
all the pomp and circumstance worthy of the royal family. then in july comes a celebration of global proportion. but before you throw in olympics, one must build it piece by piece. today the big venues are impressively, even eye-poppingly constructed. only finishing is needed. here, the 80,000-seat olympic stadium will host the opening and closing ceremonies. this is the olympics on the starting blocks. and this week, a big dress rehearsal. the water polo pool, a battle is raging in the chess match between britain and hungary. last week, this was a construction site. at the gleaming new field hockey pitch, argentina pummeled china. also a test, the athletes themselves to determine who makes the team, whose olympic dreams come true. have you had to tweak anything after the test events? did you realize, like, really? >> yeah, yeah. >> reporter: what do you find? >> that's the point. it's always interesting. did you find anything wrong in a
test? of course we did. the bmx track, the jump for some of the women was a bit too big when the wind was blowing in the wrong direction. so we had a slightly too many crashes. >> reporter: do you always feel like you have to top the last one or outdo beijing? >> every city brings something completely different. >> reporter: and olympic-sized security is also undergoing a test this week. fighter jets, river maneuvers, four-legged protection. these apartments residents were stunned to get a pamphlet in the mail informing them their home would be housing a missile. >> i don't think anyone wants to live in a militarized apartment building. >> reporter: but the military response -- >> i think all of you would expect us to have a plan in place that works so that if it were to happen, we could deal with it. >> reporter: one of the rare times you can plan ahead. for the past seven years, just about ready. now, unusual things you encounter, debris, an ancient
skeleton. even though this games could cost $17 billion, organizers say it's been very important that every dollar goes towards the future whether it's reusing these venues or simply marketing england. matt? >> all right, michelle kosinski over in olympic park this morning. michelle, thank you very much. still to come on a thursday morning, we'll take you for a little tour inside kensington palace, the future home of the duke and duchess of cambridge. and i'll give you a preview of my sit-down interview with adele. first, t
an exclusive interview with the parents of a missing arizona girl after this. sounds like a mini-wheats day to me! and becka's science fair is on the 8th. she's presenting the solar system. hey i've got just the whole grain fiber to help keep her full so she can stay focused. um...you rock. she'll be ready to rock. right here! [ female announcer ] make your kids big days, mini-wheats days.
and tastes simply delicious. for those of us with lactose intolerance... lactaid® milk. the original 100% lactose-free milk. >> live from television hill in baltimore, wbal-tv 11 news continues. >> good morning. i am stan stovall. house leaders are expected to meet with gov. o'malley today to iron out details of a special session that could help maryland avoid a doomsday budget. statehouse officers and teams have agreed to a revenue package hammered out by members of the house and senate committees of the last day of the session.
the session could be called on may 14. here is sarah caldwell and traffic pulse 11. >> an accident coming in. we have an lot of them this morning. tenured road, at the extra careful. delays are starting to form heading towards mt. carmel. in glenarm, this one is still clearing. delays in place on 95 and the northeast on the west side. mountain road, magothy beach road in pasadena, watch for an accident. you can see on track and, we are doing ok. once we get closer to owings mills, that is where the backup begins. heavy delays from coldspring to the construction zone. tony, over to you. >> the weather has improved since early this morning.
just some sprinkles right now. there is another batch of rain out of pennsylvania just north of hagerstown at the present time. we will keep a chance for a shower or thunderstorm in the forecast this morning. temperatures will be in the upper 70's. going into the weekend, 84 tomorrow. it will feel like a summer on friday. chance for storms late in the afternoon. 80 on satur
♪ that's some great footage. you're looking at some video right now of a very young prince william with his parents, prince charles and princess diana. some of those images taken in the gardens of his childhood home which, by the way, happens to be kensington palace. and that is where we are this morning for this thursday morning, may 3rd, 2012, a split edition of "today." i'm matt lauer joining you from the grouchds of the newly refurbished kensington palace. pop quiz. how many rooms do you think are
in this thing? >> 600? what do you think? i don't know. >> reporter: 547. that is a darn good guess. 547 rooms. >> i read it in my notes, matt. >> reporter: we'll take you for a tour inside some of them. oh, you cheater. >> i didn't know you were even going to ask the question. so there you go. >> reporter: anyway, we'll take you for a tour of some of those rooms behind us in just a little while, ann. also coming up, matt, from here there's a story that's been getting a lot of attention. a new jersey mom charged with child endangerment for allegedly taking her daughter into a tanning booth. coming up, what she had to say after her first court appearance and also hear from the salon owner. and there's a new ad featuring ashton kutcher in brown face. now that's been pulled after critics call this ad an example of racism. we'll get to the bottom of that. now let's go back to you, matt. >> reporter: well, i also want to tell you we'll have more of our exclusive interview with
bobby brown. he'll talk about why he left whitney houston's funeral so abruptly. what were you circumstances surrounding that? and he'll be talking about their daughter, bobbi kristina. a lot of people are concerned that she may be dealing with some of the same issues her parents dealt with. so he'll be talking about that. and as i mentioned, i was here in london to do a sit-down exclusive interview with pop superstar adele. and we talked about the year she's had and some of the highlights. take a listen. what was the pinch-me moment of the year? >> i think the grammys was the pinch-me moment of my life, really. it's going to be up there at the top moments of my life ever. i'm so young. i've got so many other things to do. i doubt i'll ever achieve anything as that spectacular as that night. >> reporter: she's a real talent and has an extraordinary sense of humor. you'll see more of that interview and see her performing in a special nbc primetime concert special. that one's coming up early in
june, ann. >> sounds like a lot to look forward to, matt. thanks so much. we want to begin this half hour with the search for a 6-year-old arizona girl who vanished from her own bedroom in the middle of the night. in a moment, we'll talk to her parents in their first live television interview since their daughter disappeared. but first, nbc's miguel almaguer has the latest on this story. miguel, good morning. >> reporter: ann, good morning. isabel celis was last seen here at her home. her parents say they put her to bed, and when they woke in the morning, she was gone. detectives say they consider this home a crime scene, and on wednesday, they were back here again. escorted separately by investigators, sergio and becky celis walked detectives through her home, reenacting what happened in the hours before their daughter disappeared. 6-year-old isabel, the vibrant first grader who lit up a room vanished from her bedroom nearly two weeks ago. police have received more than 500 tips but have named no suspects. >> i know she'll come home. >> reporter: speaking exclusively to nbc news, isabel's parents admit they're
frustrated with the speed of the investigation. >> it's one more day that we don't have her here. and not having answers, you know, you want those answers. you want isabel -- we want isabel home. >> reporter: the celis family says isabel was kidnapped, but police have labeled the case a suspicious disappearance. though her window was found open, the screen pushed aside, the family home is surrounded by a five-foot wall. dogs were both inside and outside the house when the first grader vanished. >> both parents have taken polygraph tests. there may be some other people that we ask to do the tests, but we never talk about the results of that. >> reporter: the police chief says the family is fully cooperating. investigators talked to isabel's parents every day. >> we look at everyone to include the family. it's not that we are saying the family's responsible, but we're also not saying the family is completely clear. everyone's a suspect till we find out otherwise. >> reporter: detectives have scoured isabel's neighborhood, searching nearby lakes, parks and landfills and have contacted mexican authorities,
distributing the 6-year-old's picture along the border. the case, investigators say, has not gone cold. >> the police are being very quiet and strategic in what they've uncovered in their investigation. remember that they know a whole lot more than what the general public knows. >> reporter: gone 13 days, neither police or isabel's family have given up hope. >> we love you so much. we miss you so much. >> reporter: every night, a mother and father pray for their daughter, a vigil in their home, a candle lit until she returns. >> we will always look for you. we will find you. you will be home with us. >> reporter: tucson police are working with the sheriff's department who is investigating a nearby home invasion where there was a suspect who walked into a home and touched a young girl. as of now, police do not believe these two cases are connected. they say they are offering a $50,000 reward for information that leads to isa. ann? >> thank you so much, miguel almaguer, for your reporting on this story. isabel's parents, sergio and
becky, are now joining us exclusively this morning. good morning to both of you. >> good morning. >> good morning. >> this is our first chance to really get to know a little bit about your daughter, isabel. what do you want to tell us, becky, about your girl? >> she is a girly girl. she loves to get her makeup on and paint her nails, do your nails, do my nails, do her hair. she loves to put -- she loves to go out and play with her brother, play hard in the dirt and then come back in and get herself all girled up again. she's very caring. she's a loving little girl, loves to come and give mom and dad hugs all the time, tell us we love her -- or that she loves
us. a beautiful baby girl. >> we can see from the videotape, just so full of life. and sergio, i'm wondering, you know, we just saw from the videotape, you were asked to reenact the hours before isabel disappeared. what do you remember about the last time you saw her, sergio? >> just that sweet little face. just that sweet little face. she had just gotten her hair done. it was just before she went to bed. she had a baseball game early the next morning. and becky braided her hair up. so she was going to be ready for early morning. and i was asking her if she was hungry. and she just had that little sleepy look as she was walking by. and she just said, "no, daddy. i'm tired." she was just walking by. she is so full of life, and she is just so wonderful. and we do miss her so much. and her brothers miss her so
much. he said he loves her so much. we just need everyone out there, everyone, just to keep praying for her. keep your eyes out. >> as you know, any time there is a case of a missing child, the parents and family come under scrutiny. becky, what do you want to tell us about how intense that scrutiny is now? has it lessened? is it still as intense? and how do you feel about it? >> it's necessary to do. and if it's anything close to getting isa back home safely, then whatever it takes. it's nothing we can't handle. we want her back. so whatever it takes to get her back, we will do. >> you know, there is no easy way to ask this question, but because this is your first live television interview, sergio, let me ask you this question. what do you want to say about questions about whether you had anything to do with your daughter's disappearance?
>> gosh. i wish i knew where to begin. we are so frustrated to try to understand why this is happening, why this had to happen, why isabel had to be targeted. we just don't understand that. and to whomever did this, please, look at her. look at her. she's beautiful. she doesn't deserve this. she deserves to be home. she deserves to be home in her room playing with her brothers and just loving life the way she does. this is -- there's so many things that are just so frustrating and so difficult to deal with. >> you -- >> we just want her home. we just want her home. >> do you have any reason to believe that someone is holding her for ransom, sergio? >> no demands have been made.
>> not because it's been made and not because it's been said, there have been no demands. there have been no calls for ransom. we have the reward ready. there has been no communication that we're aware of. the detectives and the investigators have, you know, been good in communicating with us every day. but at the same time, you know, there's only so much they can tell us. there's only so much they do tell us. they keep us at bay. and all of that is frustrating. we understand that they can't bring false hope. but at the same time, you know, we're desperate. we're desperate in finding out information. we're extremely frustrated that it's taking so long. and we understand that they're doing absolutely everything possible. and sometimes it does feel that, yes, we do feel sometimes that they're wasting time with us even though we know we have to
be under, you know, scrutiny, absolutely, understandable. but my goodness. she's still out there. >> we just want her home. we want people to keep praying for her so that she comes home to us, and keep your eyes open. just as many prayers as you guys can do to bring her -- to help us bring her home. prayers to have whoever took her to have a change of heart and want to bring her home. prayers for investigators to please have a break in the case and be able to bring isabel home where she belongs, her favorite place in the world. >> her favorite place in the world. >> sergio and becky celis, i am certain that after hearing you this morning, you have a lot of people praying for you and isabel. thank you so much for joining us. >> and we want to thank everybody for all their prayers. this is the most unbelievable
prayer around the world, as we understand it. it's not just across the nation. we understand it is worldly. and we thank everybody from the bottom of our hearts. >> our community. >> our community. everybody's so involved. the volunteers. there are endless efforts. it's unbelievable. we have to thank everyone doing everything they're doing. and please, please keep your eyes open. keep your eyes open. >> and continue praying, please. >> may your prayers be answered. thank you. and now let's get a check of the weather from al. >> all right, thank you so much, ann. and as we see what's happening in the pacific northwest, they've got a lot of rain to talk about, some snow mixing in in some of the upper elevations. rainfall amounts going to be an inch to an inch and a half of rain especially around portland, just to their west. we're also looking at a lot of hit-or-miss showers and thunderstorms through the gulf coast. look for a risk of strong storms from nebraska all the way to western new york and western pa
as a >> good morning. scattered showers will be ending. we will get sunshine this afternoon to break through. and that's your latest weather. ann? >> all right, al, thank you so much. coming up next, we'll lighten things up and head back to matt live at kensington palace for an inside look at the soon-to-be london home of william and kate. that's coming up right after this. whoa.
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and welcome back to "today" on this thursday morning. a special split edition of our program from new york and london, kensington palace in the background. they say this is a place of secret stories and public lives. some of the most famous kings and queens of england have lived in this building behind me. and inside the walls, they have experienced love and loss and triumph and tragedy. and after a $19 million renovation, they are inviting the public back to take a look around. >> reporter: through the years, kensington palace has been home to times of incredible joy. princess diana raised her sons, william and harry, here. and a symbol of profound grief, the golden gates became a makeshift memorial during the days after diana's tragic death. and now kensington palace is a place of new beginnings as prince william has returned to live not only with his new bride, katherine, but reportedly also his brother, prince harry, in separate accommodations, of
course. there are 547 rooms in the palace. divided into various apartments. most occupied by other royal relatives, as they have been for centuries. >> in the 20th century, the early part of the 20th century, when there were quite a few elderly members of the royal family living here. >> reporter: kensington palace or k.p. as some call it was first built in the 17th century as the country getaway for newlyweds king william and queen mary. yes, that william & mary. sadly, both died here, mary from smallpox, and william, a horse accident. queen victoria was born here in 1819 and found out she would be queen here. she was awakened before dawn to be told at the age of 18. her romance with the love of her life, albert, would also begin within these walls. she met him on this staircase. her wedding dress currently on display. albert would leave the queen a
widow at the young age of 42. victoria famously went into seclusion and wore black for the rest of her life. those who worked here say kensington palace had a brighter spirit when diana was its most famous resident and probably the only resident to have a bouncy castle installed as she did for young will. merv lived and worked here for 13 years as head chef for the prince and principess of wales. >> i had great times with the family. always fun, always lots going to. certainly happy memories, water fights out of the window. >> reporter: and even as the palace has a rich history of kings and queens and heirs to the throne, it's clear they have a bigger legacy in mind, to keep kensington as a palace for everyone. as we mentioned, william and katherine are living right now on a cottage on the grounds. they are about to move into apartment 1a, all four floors, 20 rooms of it.
they'll do that soon. it used to be the home of princess margaret before she passed away. we're going to have more from london coming up. and also coming up, more of our exclusive interview with bobby brown as he talks about how his daughter, bobbi kristina, is doing. that's all coming up right after these messages. wake up! that's good morning, veggie style. hmmm. for half the calories plus veggie nutrition.
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>> live in television help from baltimore, wbal news continues. >> i am mindy basara. time for a check of the morning commute. >> lots going on out there. roads are still drying out. hampton road, edgewood, we have an accident coming in. honeygo boulevard, look at the delays from 95. glenarm road, long green pike, a crash still clearing. sparks, up belfast road, tanyard road, watch for an accident. 10 miles per hour from the west
side outer loop. southbound 795 backed up as a result. some delays on eastbound i-70 . i afford, that delay stretches back to the northeast corner. j.f.x., not much better. southbound delays towards the construction zone. tony, over to you. >> we started out with heavy rain in some neighborhoods. things have settled down. 66 at the airport. 54 degrees in parkton. shower and a thunderstorm activity may not be completely over with. light rain out of pennsylvania and north of hagerstown. that may hold together with sprinkles on light showers. after that, i expect clouds to break up and we will get sunshine. it will feel better than yesterday.
8:00 on this thursday morning, the 3rd i day of may, 2012. we have people here from coast to coast with yummy beef products joining us on rockefeller plaza. i'm ann curry alongside al roker. i'm in my raincoat. i thought it would be raining, but it's okay. >> not too bad here in the northeast. meantime, our matt is hanging out in london at kensington palace. hey, matt, how's it going? >> reporter: good, ann and al, good to see you both.
i'm standing at the gardens, really an oasis of beauty on the grounds of lovely kensington palace. you see the lovely flowers in bloom from april to october and the fountains that remind me i've got to go to the bathroom pretty soon, but it is beautiful to be here. you stand in this location, ann and al, and it's hard to realize that you're just on the outskirts of one of the biggest and busiest cities in the world, london, but that is exactly where we are. and coming up, we'll have more of our interview with bobby brown. he's going to talk about what happened when he went to whitney's funeral not long ago and left abruptly. he'll explain the circumstances of that and he'll open up about his daughter with whitney houston, bobbi kristina, is doing in the wake of her mother's death. ann? and also we'll talk about a case that's getting a lot of attention, the case of a mother who's been accused of allegedly taking her child to a tanning salon. she's been charged with
second-degree child endangerment. we're going to find out what she had to say to the judge coming up this morning. and talking about being a little too brown and getting into trouble, ashton kutcher had an ad online where he was in sort of brown face. and a lot of folks a little upset about it. >> indian-american. >> yeah, we'll look at the controversy concerning this in just a little bit. >> reaction swift and brutal. >> it's since been pulled. meantime, let's go inside and find out what the top stories of the morning are from natalie morales. >> good morning, everyone. the fate of a blind disdented is straining ties between china and the u.s. during a high-profile visit by hillary clinton. a u.s.-brokered deal to guarantee the safety of chen guangcheng is apparently falling apart. chen now says he fears for his safety and wants to be taken to the united states. police in suburban phoenix are investigating the shooting deaths of five people including a toddler found in a home on
wednesday. police say the gunman is among the dead. 13 people will face charges in the fatal beating of a florida a&m university drum major. officials say the 26-year-old's death cannot be attributed to any single blow. the defendants face felony hazing as the most serious charge. the ex-wife of former nfl great junior seau says he sent loving text messages to her and their three children the day before his apparent suicide on wednesday. the all-pro san diego chargers' linebacker was found with a gunshot wound to the chest and a handgun nearby. he was 43 years old. and now for a look at what's trending today, our quick roundup of what has you talking online. as we've been talking about that ad featuring ashton kutcher has triggered outrage across the internet. kutcher appeared in brown face and used a fake indian accent to pose as a bollywood producer. take a look. >> i would taste the sweetness on my lips.
these are the bombay. >> pop chips has pulled the ad, and it has since apologized. we'll have more on the story and the controversy coming up. journal entries from a long-ago ex-girlfriend of president obama are heating up the internet and providing some new insight into the president's time as a college student in new york. interprets from a new book genevieve cook denies the unique aroma in obama's bedroom as a mix of running sweat, brute spray deodorant, smoking, eating raisins, sleeping, breathing. and of their relationship, she acknowledges, quote, sexual warmth, but cook writes when she told the young obama she loved him, his reply was, "thank you." and video of a little boy's trip to the oregon zoo is hot online. take a look as 1-year-old jack appears to be unfazed as a lion tried to make a snack out of him. it probably didn't help that jack's striped jacket makes him look a little bit like a baby zebra.
cute. good thing there's that glass partition there in between them. it is now five minutes past the hour. let's go out to al with a check of your weather. >> thanks so much. a little snack there. very cute. we've got some nice folks out here. very cute there. and show you what we've got. our pick city of the day just happens to be monterey, california, channel 8. partly sunny, 56 degrees. and as we check out your temperatures today, it is nice and toasty throughout much of texas and the mid-atlantic states with temperatures in the 90s. 50s in the pacific northwest. 60s in the northeast. that's what's going on >> good morning. we are contending with some showers and thunderstorms this morning. they should taper off to the late morning hours. we're hoping to get
that's your latest weather. ann? >> al, we've got a huge contingent from wisconsin right behind me. meantime, we'll be talking about the mom who's been charged for taking her then 5-year-old daughter into a tanning booth, allegedly, and making her first court appearance. now what she's got to say about this case coming up right after this. credit card, we earn more cash back for the things we buy most. 1% cash back everywhere, every time. 2% on groceries. 3% on gas. automatically. no hoops to jump through. no annual fee. that's 1% back on... wow! 2% on my homemade lasagna. 3% back on [ friends ] road trip!!!!!!!!!!!! [ male announcer ] get 1-2-3 percent cash back. apply online or at a bank of america near you. ♪ [ announcer ]line or at who could resist the call...u.
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back now at 8:09. the new jersey mother accused of causing skin burns to her young daughter by taking her into a tanning booth had her day in court on wednesday. nbc's mara schiavocampo is in nutley, new jersey, with more. >> reporter: good morning. it's cloudy here this morning, but nom pa trimom patricia kren says her daughter good a burn from standing outside, not inside. >> i'm innocent. >> reporter: patricia krentcil who herself is very tan pled not guilty to second-degree child endangerment. the charges follow allegations that krentcil brought her then 5-year-old daughter, anna, due a tanning booth. >> i would die right now for her. >> that child was never in that tanning booth. she loves her child more than her own life and would never, ever allow her child to go inside a tanning bed. >> reporter: but according to the essex county prosecutor's
office, a trip to the city tropics salon over a week ago caused the girl to suffer burns to her body. >> this whole thing's been blown out of proportion, bottom line. >> reporter: according to reuters, authorities say krentcil's daughter, now 6, turned up at her elementary school with a sunburn on april 24th, prompting a school nurse to contact police. krentcil says anna had spent time outside on a sunny day and says she took anna to the tanning salon but not inside the tanning booth. >> we went for a walk. i tan. she doesn't tan. it's called a tanning booth and a tanning room. i'm in the booth. she's in the room. >> reporter: anna's parents say when anna went to school the next day, she told her friends she went tanning with her mom. they think someone at school overheard that and call the case a big misunderstanding. >> she was outside tuesday, it was 85 degrees out, she got sunburned. that's it. >> reporter: according to state law, no one under age 14 is
allowed to use a tanning booth. the salon denies that the 5-year-old even entered the establishment, saying she waited outside with her father and brother. in a statement to nbc news, the salon owner said, quote, it absolutely did not happen here. we wouldn't let a minor tan. i have seven kids. i'm not going to let a kid tan, nor would anyone else here. everyone knows, we would never let this happen. the child is still living at home with her mother and father, though the state's child welfare agency is monitoring the family. >> she's home. they're not taking her away. she's home. >> reporter: krentcil remains free on bond. her next court appearance is scheduled for june 4th. and her tanning membership here has reportedly been revoked. ann? >> dr. jennifer ashton is a women's health specialist and author of "your body beautiful." star jones is a former prosecutor and veteran legal commentator. good morning to both of you. >> good morning. >> girfirst, how dangerous is
excessive tanning that patricia krentcil has admitted to doing? >> we have to remember whether you get a tan from natural sun or indoor tanning, the world health organization clarifies ultraviolet radiation as a known human carcinogen. they put it on the same level as cigarettes, on the same level as plutonium, so it's dangerous. >> life threatening. >> absolutely, in excess, yes. >> all right. star, you know, krentcil says that her 6-year-old daughter was never -- then 5-year-old, now 6-year-old daughter, was never in the tanning booth, and she's pleaded not guilt counterto second-degree child endangerment. what kind of evidence would be required to prosecute a charge like that? >> well, this is a very serious charge. it's a second-degree felony in new jersey. and so it could carry up to ten years in prison, $150,000 fine. i mean, obviously, we are so far away from that. the prosecutors would be looking for some direct evidence as to whether or not the child actually went into the tanning booth. and from everything that i've heard, all the witnesses say that did not occur. so they're going to have a little bit of a mountain to climb in this regard.
>> and we just heard in the statement from the owner a denial. i mean, if, in fact, it did happen, to what degree is the tanning salon itself culpable? >> the tanning salon, quite frankly, would be in trouble with the state law because the state law prohibits a salon from allowing a child to tan. however, the real issue is probably the only reason why we're really talking about this is because the woman sort of looks a little cuckoo for cocoa puffs. i mean, that's not a legal term, but it is an accurate term. and i don't think that legally we would be really having this discussion with the amount of evidence that's been presented. >> obviously, someone needs to intervene. if you're saying, dr. ashton, this is life threatening to her, the mother, someone needs to intervene and say, stop this now. doctor, star, thank you is both. and coming up next, more of our exclusive interview with bobby brown.
why he left whitney houston's funeral and what the future holds for their daughter. that's coming up right after this. doing project with different stores is a really cool idea. we want to bring a little piece of the boutique experience to target. a real taste of luxury. it's pretty special for us to imagine this little nook of polka dog will be in target stores all around the country. the shops we fell in love with, collected and curated for you. exclusively at target.
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live claritin clear with non-drowsy claritin. inchsz we're back now at 8:17. we have more of our exclusive interview with bobby brown, his first interview since the death of his ex-wife, whitney houston. he's going to open up about how their daughter, bobbi kristina, is doing. we start by talking about the controversy surrounding whitney's funeral and the reports that he was not invited. >> they definitely wanted me there. it wasn't that i wasn't invited. i was invited. just coming to pay respects to my ex-wife. they would not, you know, hold me from, you know. that's not the type of family the houston family is. they're a great family. i appreciate them very much, you know. >> what happened? >> whoever the security was there asked me to have my -- what they called my entourage,
which was my children, sit somewhere else. we had to sit apart. and i was not willing to sit away from my children. so, you know, after the third time of them coming to me, i felt a little, you know, disrespected by the security that was there. i decided that, you know, it would be best if i just left. i kissed the casket. and me and my children left the building. >> after she passed away, you talk about calling bobbi kristina. did you call anybody else in her family? did you reach out to any of them? >> i tried to reach out to whitney's mom. i haven't been able to reach her yet. >> and it's been two months. >> yes. >> does she just not want to talk to you? >> no, i wouldn't say that. i know she's going through it deeply, deeply going through it. she lost her only daughter. i love her dearly, and i'm here anytime. anytime she wants to talk. i'm here. >> i want to ask you about your current status.
you were involved in a dui arrest not long ago. >> yes. >> are you clean and sober right now, bobby? >> i'm very much clean and sober from narcotics. i do drink. i'm not allowed to drink for the next 30 days. i do have a cocktail occasionally, you know. i will again, i know that. but i'm seven years clean from narcotics. you know, i'm living -- i'm living the life that i want to live. >> other people continue to talk. and the doubters are out there. >> they can doubt all they want. >> and when they worry, bobby, and they look at bobby brown and they say, our fear is this will end badly, too, you say? >> i say, you've got the wrong one. you've got the wrong one. >> let's talk about your daughter, all right? bobbi kristina. a smile comes to your face, which is nice. but she's got to be going through a really tough time. how's she doing? >> actually, she's a strong girl. her mom taught her well.
i think we raised her really well. she's fine. she knows that her mom is gone. and she knows that she has to live. >> and yet there are reports, bobby, and that her family is concerned about her, that whitney's family is concerned about her, there have been some incidents where she was seen smoking pot. some people say other things as well, other drugs. are you worried about that? >> i would always be worried about that. >> is it a real concern? >> right now, no. >> yeah. >> no, no. because i know -- i know what she is actually doing. i think people are, you know, making assumptions of what my daughter is and how strong she is. people tend to want to control strong-willed people. and that's what i see. >> so in your opinion, there is no issue with bobbi kristina and addiction at this moment? >> right.
i am her father. she talks to me about everything. >> there are also reports about her dpating life. >> she's a young lady. you know, i would expect her to have a boyfriend. >> but is that boyfriend her adopted brother? >> i don't know about that. i don't think so. >> would she tell you? >> she would definitely tell me. >> you're sure? >> i'm positive. >> would that be an appropriate relationship, in your opinion, if it were to be true? >> nick's a good kid. i have nothing against nick. >> you say she's my daughter. i'm her father. she would tell me everything. have you asked her? have you come right out and said, are you dating nick? >> yes, i have, actually. >> come on. what did she say? >> she said no. she said no. definitely not. >> though bobbi kristina is the best known of bobby brown's children, he has four other kids from other relationships. landon is 26. he's a performer like his dad.
laprincia and bobby brown jr. both attend college in massachusetts. then there's the youngest, 2-year-old cassius. his mom, bobby's manager and fiancee. they say they want to set the record straight about bobby brown. >> my dad's a great person. he's been my best friend my whole life. if i ever have a problem with anything, i know i can always go to him. >> yeah? the rest of you? is that the reason you're here? >> yes, definitely. >> because you don't feel that the public has -- >> they definitely do not have the right perception of him. >> my father's always had the bad-boy image. you know, they just -- they keep following that, you know? >> is any of it deserved? >> i think the bad-boy image is just a part of the performance, stage performance, stage presence. not what people put on him. >> everyone goes through their up downs. you can't be judged forever about one event in your life or a bad decision made, you can't
always be judged by that. >> alicia, you're engaged to this man. >> what are you thinking? >> thank you. because i was going to say, how many times have your girlfriends or your family members come up to you and said, do you know what you're getting into? >> if they're my friends or my family, they know that i know what i'm getting into, absolutely, because they know this man. we go through the ups and downs together. and it's meant to be. >> bobbi kristina is not here. what's your relationship with her like, guys? >> i've always been really close with my sister. as of lately, we haven't really spoken. when she is ready to speak, when she is ready to have the love that we all want to give her, we'll be here. >> my relationship, we've been close. of course, i'm her older brother. so we got along very well. and i love her. >> i just want to talk a little bit about whitney's funeral. it turned a bit controversial. your dad has explained it to me. i'd love to hear it from your
perspective. >> they sat us -- >> oh, we were an entourage. that's what we were. >> yeah, we were the entourage. they sat us. i saw someone talking to my dad, but i didn't know what they were saying until he tapped me and said, "let's go." >> all i know is that i've known that woman since i was, like, 3 years old and that i cared about her, and i loved her. i wanted to be there to say good-bye to her and be there to support my sister. i didn't get that chance. >> if you could say something to whitney's family, cissy and people like that, what would you like to say to them? >> that we love them and wanted just to say good-bye to her and we love her. we were all family at some point. we spent so much time together. >> by the way, we invited bobbi kristina to join us during that interview. she declined our invitation. we're going to have much more ahead from london and new york on a thursday morning. but first, these messages and your local news.
>> live from television held in baltimore, wbal-tv 11 news continues. >> good morning. i am mindy basara. here is sarah caldwell. >> very busy this morning. it is really hectic. ramp to harford road, we have an accident blocking the ramp. the that the delays as we expand the area. west side, begins at the harrisburg expressway all the way to the west side on the outer loop. alameda, county line, and perry hall boulevard and honeygo
boulevard, crashed there. harford county line all the way to the beltway, slow ride. north and west side, delays, average speed is 13 miles per hour. here's the accident on the inner loop ramp 244 road. you can see that there is a truck diverting you from that right now. j.f.x. to coldspring, just ms. -- just a mess. john collins joins us with a look at the forecast. >> clouds this morning. it feels warmer than yesterday. cloud cover over us in northern maryland. if you showers to the northwest. yes, shower activity. maybe a rumble of thunder or two. humidity is up, barometer is up as well. this should kept temperatures a little higher.
glorious days, one event transforms us. the 2010 london olympics coming this summer to the networks of nbc universal. ♪ and we are back, 8:30 now on a thursday morning, the 3rd day of may, 2012. and you are looking at stunning kensington palace here in london, england, on kind of an overcast, drizzly, chilly day. and guess what? 3,000 miles away, a carbon copy
out on rockefeller plaza. we've got some smiling faces taking in the sights and sounds of your city. in london, i'm matt lauer. back on the plaza, we've got ann curry, al roker and natalie morales. good to see you all. >> did you get to the bathroom? i know you were worried. did you get that royal flush going? >> i did get the royal -- you know what's funny? they do have these little signs here at kensington palace to tell you which way the bathroom is. it's got the stick figures with the crowns on top of the men and women. no, they do. >> you're looking at it right there. >> quite literally. that's funny. >> cute. >> that tells directions to the royal throne, i guess you could say. anyway. >> i like the baby one. >> coming up from here, we're going to take you to a place along the english coast that is spectacular. it's also the home of tourists and treasure hunters alike. and it's known for legendary sights and song.
so ben fogle is here this morning. and he's going to take us on a tour of that, guys. >> all right. that looks like a lot of fun. also coming up, we'll be finding out more about this ad we've been talking about all morning regarding ashton kutcher. it's now been pulled from the web because some indian-americans have reacted, you know, against it saying that they thought it was racist. that's coming up. a little bit later on, portia derossi will be here. and she and ellen degeneres' personal chef to give us a lesson in the kitchen to show that vegan can taste good. >> okay. that sounds good. also, "today's professionals" are back in the house. coming up, they're going to weigh in on everything from that ashton kutcher ad that's causing all this controversy to the octo-mom, nadya suleman, filing for bankruptcy. also, what age is it appropriate to let your child, your daughter, start experimenting with makeup? and much, much more. first, do you mind if we bring in carson daly? >> not at all.
>> come on in here, carson. >> nice to see you. >> we're bowing to you as well. >> how are you? >> we're good as well. i understand you're very happy about the final four. >> we're very excited. it's been an awesome season two of "the voice." so much talent. our elite eight was great last week. that monday night show, i was really proud of all the performances we had, great artists, their families, our coaches grinding it out. you see jermaine paul there. it's going to be a great finale on "the voice," monday and tuesday, and we'll have a winner on tuesday night. >> especially when it's live. you've got to keep things moving. you've got to react to people leaving. i mean, you're more than a traffic cop. >> it's like -- i have some experience in my mtv days here in new york in times square. and i feel like a traffic cop. all right, you can go. you sit tight. it's a fast-paced show. there's a lot going on. we've got four big personalities in our coaches and i've got to wrangle it all in, but it's a
blast. it's a dream job. >> i can only imagine the job that the judges have. the talent is unbelievable this season. any predictions from you? i know you're not going to tell us who you think is going to win. >> no. we have a really diverse final four which is great. everything from chris mann who does opera to jermaine paul with a big voice and juliette sims who has a lot of mojo going right now. it's going to be exciting. i have no predictions. >> you talk about being excited. is it true that your 3-year-old son, jackson, grooves to "the voice"? he's a fan? >> my 3-year-old, he calls it the big hand show because of the big statue. he calls it the big hand show every week. he's a rock star backstage. he loves it. he loves it. >> good for you to have a son. happy with your work. and meantime, we want to tell everybody that the final performances are next monday night. and the winner of "the voice" will be crowned next tuesday here on nbc. >> and wednesday, we'll have the winner here. >> which will be great. okay. meantime, let's get a check of the weather. >> all right. let's see what we've got for you
starting off look ing ahead toward your weekend. the kentucky kerrbderby, the ru of the roses in churchill downs. partly cloudy, 78. the heat, 86 degrees and a 50% chance of thundershowers. saturday, rest of the country, showers in the pacific northwest. rain through the plains. wet weather mid-atlantic into the southeast. sunday, sunny and mild conditions in new england, but a lot of wet weather for the eastern half of the country. then out west, most of them sunny to mild in the pacific northwest and the plains states, hot from west texas on into the >> good morning. scattered showers will be ending. we will get sunshine this afternoon to break through.
that's your latest weather. and for you, folks, if a gust of wind happens, we're in trouble. >> hoda and kathie lee are joining us. they have a very special hour coming up about cosmetic surgery. is it true you're going to have some done live? >> yeah, you got a problem with that? >> no. >> the earrings are a nice touch, hoda. >> we're just going to do a procedure. we'll also do a live procedure calls cellulaise. >> which is the latest procedure. >> it gets rid of cellulite. we'll do it throughout the course of the show. not us particularly. but patients during the show. >> are you getting some done? >> we are each getting an individual. >> you're doing something together. >> keep it down. back off, barbie. >> whoa! >> whoa! >> i'd get down, but the wind
back now at 8:39. the new ad campaign featuring ashton kutcher that's being labeled racist by critics, natalie's here with more on the story. >> that's right, ann, this ad was released online. kutcher pretends to be a bol bywood producer. and the uproar began almost as soon as it appeared online. >> this is your president of pop culture speaking. >> reporter: in a snazzy online
campaign, pop chips proclaims ashton kutcher is president of pop culture. but a new ad from the potato chip brand launched just this week has left kutcher in a campaign crisis. >> looking for romance? it's here with worldwide lovers. >> reporter: in a series of web videos spoofing dating ads, kutcher plays different lonely characters looking for love. >> i'm sorry, i was holding my breath to look skinnier. >> reporter: but one in particular is getting the cold shoulder from critics. >> i'm raj. i'm a bollywood producer. >> reporter: to tackle the role, kutcher wears brown makeup and speaks with an indian ak sencce. >> like kardashian hot. i would give that dog a bone. i like snooki. >> reporter: after his high-profile split from demi moore last fall. >> your waiting room's like a freak show. are we all in the same category?
>> reporter: after the ad was posted wednesday, critics quickly call it had racist. one blogger tweeted, "newsflash to @popchips, never heard of you before. now i'll see your name and think racists, not yummy snack. fail. since then, they've yanked the ad but a spokeswoman says the ad was created to provoke a few laughs and was never intended to stereotype or offend anyone. kutcher, of course, no stranger to controversy. he actually suspended his twitter account for a while last fall after tweeting his support for the late penn state coach joe paterno. as for this latest incident, we reached out to kutcher for comment, but we have not heard back. the ad spokespeople have pulled the ad. >> i bet he kind of has a thing or two to say. >> he probably didn't think it was going to be offensive. but then sometimes when you see these things on tv or online, there's the cringe factor.
>> portraying characters and thought, maybe this is just a character. >> on the other hand, if you're part of a disenfranchised group, you are more sensitive. and i think that's the dilemma is that it's hard to imagine how people might feel. thank you so much. >> it's sparked a lot of controversy online. we'll have more with the professionals coming up. >> good to know. thanks so much, natalie. we're going to go back to matt live in london to explore britain's wild, wild west. but first, this is "today" on nbc.
♪ back now in london on a thursday morning. you're looking at the grounds of kensington palace. we've got some good news for you because coming up in the next couple of weeks in the run-up to the summer olympic games here in london, our special correspondent, ben fogle, is going to be bringing us a series of adventures. and ben is here this morning at kensington palace with
destination number one, ben. good morning. >> good morning, matt. well, in this year of the olympics, the diamond jubilee, the world's spotlight will be on many different locations in britain. i headed off to one of my favorite, the rugged southwest coast, to cornwall, land of sea, surf and seaweed. at the very edge of england, almost surrounded by sea lies cornwall. steeped in tales of pirates and smugglers, sea monsters and mermaids. it even has its own atlantis, a legendary kingdom said to lie just off the coast. they say on some nights if you listen very carefully, you can hear the bells ringing beneath the sea. beneath the sea is where i'm going next. this rugged coastline is one of the most treacherous in the world and as local artist john sim captures in his eerie paintings, the graveyard of many hundreds of ships which is why cornwall has become a paradise for divers and treasure hunters.
scuba diving's all very well. it's brilliant. but i want to find out what it would have been like for a wreck diver 100 years ago. >> one size does fit all. >> those are the biggest shoelaces i've ever seen. i feel like frankenstein. charles diving school is the only place in the uk where you can do this. >> ben, everything okay? >> with air pumping down the tube and weighed down by 80 pounds of lead, i take a leap into the unknown. >> okay, ben, everything okay down there? >> this is very eerie down here. it does feel a little bit like walking on the moon. it feels very strange. it would have been terrifying.
the coastline is dotted with dozens of tiny fishing villages. fishermen. and for centuries, fishermen earned their living from the sea. ♪ what do you do with a drunken sailor ♪ ♪ hurray in the morning >> reporter: these fishermen now earn their living singing traditional sea songs. ♪ they're the fishermen's friends. ♪ and they've recently landed a million-dollar recording contract. ♪ >> one night we just started singing. >> reporter: now their amazing story's being turned into a movie. but back to the serious business of fishing, and it looks like i've just caught dinner. we need someone to cook it. and a few ingredients to go with it. >> this is called gutsweed. >> reporter: caroline davey runs food courses at her local beach.
very salty. how is this with lobster? >> you'll have to wait and see. >> reporter: back in caroline's kitchen, we put it all together. there's a bit. looks delicious. >> it's going on top. >> reporter: hear that crackling. everything's been foraged. beautiful. finally it's time to taste caroline's cornish cuisine. honestly, that is so good. we can taste where we are. do you hear the bells? sadly, i didn't make it as the newest band member of the fishermen's friends, but the lobster was delicious. matt? >> talk about that table with a view, that was beautiful. >> special. >> what are some of the other
places you'll go? >> we'll go up to scotland, kilts, games. >> are you going to wear a kilt? >> i'm going to wear a kilt. you'll have to wait and see. >> i've already heard about it. can't wait to see that. >> it's a really exciting year for the uk in general, and i'm going to be getting wet and muddy. >> yeah. we're going to spend some time with you here. ben, looking forward to it. thank you very much. we appreciate it. that does it for me from london on this thursday morning. we're heading back to new york in just a couple of minutes. and there's more ahead of "today." but first, this is "today" on nbc.
back now at 8:50. and this morning on "today's kitchen step-by-step," our lesson in vegan cooking. roberto martin is the personal chef to ellen degeneres and portia derossi. and in his new book called "vegan cooking for carnivores," he shares more than 100 recipes that promise to be so good that we're not going to miss the meat. is that right? you promise? >> absolutely. >> okay. let's get a start. first of all, let's talk about this idea because you and ellen have been eating vegan for some time. >> five years. >> a lot of people look at this food and they think, you know, we know it's good for us, but how can it be tasty? >> that's one thing. everyone knows it's healthy. you get the protein but without the saturated fat and cholesterol. it's good for the environment and good for animals, obviously.
but it's got to taste good. that's where roberto comes in. he managed to make all the foods that we love, he managed to make them vegan instead of making vegan food. >> there you go. how did you do that? >> well, i wasn't a vegan chef to start off with. and i went ahead and just said first i'm just going to make the food i always made before. i'm going to stut tubstitute th animal pro fetein for plant-bas protein. >> before we start a fire here, you're going to make a chicken dish. >> it is fried chicken. >> tell us how you do that in the vegan way. >> we take our little pattys here. >> which are? >> these are plant-based protein. >> you can buy them in the store? >> you can buy them anywhere in the store, all across the country. they come in these little cutlets. >> right. >> but we shape them into these little pattys. >> you just squish them and they'll do that. >> the thing about fried chicken is the skin. that's what makes it so
wonderful and crispy. i came up with this way of putting some skin on the chicken. and we use these rice papers like the spring roll papers. >> this is inventive, roberto. >> thank you. >> what do you think about this, portia? >> it's creative. i call him a mad scientist in the kitchen. i mean, to think of doing this is pretty amazing. >> okay. >> you're so complimentary. i call it wrap it up burrito style. and we flip the sides over. and we tuck and roll. >> nice. and it ends up looking like that. now, we've got to dredge it. right? >> now we use, instead of buttermilk, we take some cashew cream. >> cashew cream. now, that's something that's not always easy to find. >> no, you make it. cashews and water. >> blend it. >> blend it until it's smooth. it's so easy. it's a substitute for heavy cream. you could do alfredo sauce with that. >> nice. >> so we add hot sauce to get that southern flavor going on. >> yeah, this is particularly
good. it has a fraction of the fat and the calories of regular cream. >> mm-hmm. >> it leaves a little extra room for frying. as far as the calories go. >> i'm going to do something weird. i'm just going to give a little taste of that. >> definitely. >> it tastes like nuts. it's not too intense. it has a nice pecan flavor. okay. we need to cook this thing. you need to take that, put it in there, dredge it. >> let's season our flour real quick. >> right. that's garlic. >> garlic salt, onion powder, some old bay, and some blackening spice. >> all right. there we go. >> then we do flour. and cream. >> oh, do you go back and forth a couple of times? >> just once. yeah. >> get it nice and dredged. >> nice and dredged. and that's what makes the crispy crunchy. >> now, you do fry it, so this is not a lo-cal food. >> no, it's not. but if you compare it to its animal-based partner, it's much
lower in fat. >> okay. >> much lower in saturated fat. >> and you'll see golden brown and delicious. >> nice. >> nice crispy crunchy. >> do you eat this, portia? >> oh, yeah, yeah. >> ellen said that when she eats the food that roberto is this vegan food, that she's lost some weight. >> we both have lost a lot of weight going vegan. you maintain a lower weight. >> yeah. >> oh, high, guys. >> dance party back here. >> definitely. >> we do that because that's what ellen does on her show. people are dancing behind you. and then when you turn around -- >> they're dancing. >> they stop dancing. >> we're so funny. >> dancing for me. >> of course, that, too. >> anyway, let's try this thing. what is this? >> this is a mac and cheese. >> a little bit of cashew cream.
dairy cheese. >> bring it. >> what's this? >> just some regular salsa. >> oh, okay. that's vegan. >> roberto, thank you so much. the book is called "vegan cooking for carnivores." >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news in baltimore. >> good morning. i am mindy basara. baltimore police are investigating an attempted armed robbery that ended with a sauce suspect being shot. during the robbery attempt,