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HomeNews London Free Press: Canadians Walk The Walk
03/09/2006, 05:37 PM

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London Free Press: Canadians Walk The Walk

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TORONTO -- Actor Pamela Anderson, singer Jann Arden and game show host Alex Trebek will be among the latest inductees to Canada's ever-expanding Walk of Fame.

Others to receive the honour are: actor Brendan Fraser, musician Paul Shaffer, comedian Eugene Levy, singer Robert Goulet and the "Crazy Canucks" ski team of Dave Irwin, Ken Read, Dave Murray and Steve Podborski.

Slabs of sidewalk embossed with a stylized maple leaf will be unveiled at a ceremony June 3, to be hosted by wrestling star Trish Stratus and aired on CTV.

"Some of you may know me from the picture your son has downloaded from the Internet," quipped Stratus at a news conference at which the inductees were unveiled.

Turning serious, she added: "I have enormous pride in this country and I believe that it is vital that we recognize the contributions our athletes, entertainers, writers and thinkers make not only to Canada, but to the world."

The celebrities are all scheduled to attend, including the three living members of the Crazy Canucks, who reigned over the world of downhill skiing from the mid-1970s to the early '80s. The group received its nickname from a journalist who saw them walk away unharmed from numerous disastrous falls. Murray died in 1990 after a long illness.

The new inductees bring the total number of stars to 101. The Walk of Fame snakes through Toronto's downtown theatre district.

This year's honourees were chosen from more than 100,000 submissions received from around the world, said Toronto entrepreneur Peter Soumalias, who founded the Walk of Fame.

"We just stopped counting after that," he said.

To qualify, a candidate must have been born or spent formative years in Canada, and have been successful for at least 10 years.

Soumalias said the selection board -- which this year included Universal Music Canada president Randy Lennox and Standard Broadcasting head Gary Slaight -- grapple for hours on end about who to add each year.

"The most difficult decisions that we make, and the ones that cause the most debate, is who should be on the Walk of Fame," he said. "The people who aren't on this year but should be -- it's a very, very long list. We will get to everyone."

Soumalias added that the list is long enough to continue adding stars to the Walk for many years. Stratus said she'd like to see Bret (Hitman) Hart added.

"Very much overdue, I agree," conceded Soumalias.

Previous recipients include Alanis Morissette, Paul Anka, Jim Carrey, Shania Twain, William Hutt, Wayne Gretzky and Michael J. Fox.

Anderson is also scheduled to host the Juno Awards next month.

Quipped Stratus: "I think that CTV is looking to hone in on their 18-to-24 demographic."

source: http://lfpress.ca/newsstand/Today/Entertainment/2006/03/09/1479322-sun.html

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