'Idol' Ruben Gets More Squeezable
The latest "American Idol" champ -- whom Gladys Knight nicknamed "The Velvet Teddy Bear" because of his big sound and even bigger shape -- now has a teddy bear in his image that will go on sale in mid-September, reports the New York Post.
"Ruben Studdard: The Velvet Teddy Bear," as it will be called, will be available in two sizes: small (7 inches tall), for about $7.50, and super-size (15 inches), for $15-$19, says the paper.
The bear, which wears a Ruben-style cap and T-shirt with stars and the name "Ruben" across the chest, is manufactured by Applause, which also makes merchandise related to Mickey Mouse, the Simpsons, Snoopy, Raggedy Ann and, yes, Winnie the Pooh.
Meanwhile, in other Studdard sightings, the 24-year-old singer is set to appear in an all-star video for Luther Vandross's "Dance with My Father," reports MTV News.
Vandross, 52, suffered a stroke this past Easter and is still hospitalized -- so last week video director Diane Martel gathered several of the R&B legend's pals and fans to shoot a home-movie-style visual companion to the single, says a J Records rep.
Besides Studdard, others appearing in the clip include Beyonce, Monica, Stevie Wonder, Johnny Gill, Nona Gaye, Holly Robinson Peete ("21 Jump Street"), Garcelle Beauvais-Nilon ("NYPD Blue") and the Wayans brothers.
Wyclef Jean, Whitney Houston, Babyface, Brian McKnight, Celine Dion, Patti LaBelle, Quincy Jones and basketball star Jason Kidd also contributed pictures and their own footage of themselves, says MTV.