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Ventura awarded $1.8 million

A jury awarded former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura $1.8 million Tuesday in his lawsuit against the estate of “American Sniper” author Chris Kyle.

On the sixth day of deliberations, the federal jury decided that the author of the 2012 best-selling book defamed Ventura in its description of a bar fight in California in 2006. Kyle, regarded as the deadliest military sniper in U.S. history, wrote that he decked a man whom he later identified as Ventura after the man allegedly said the Navy SEALs “deserve to lose a few.”

Ventura testified that Kyle fabricated the passage about punching him. Kyle said in testimony videotaped before his death last year that his story was accurate.

Franklin a fan of state fair food

Aretha Franklin is jazzed about more than music at the Ohio State Fair: She’s also looking forward to the food.

“I love the state fair, and I love the elephant ears,” says the Queen of Soul, who is scheduled to perform Thursday night.

There may be plenty of opportunities for fried, sugary treats ahead, given that her busy 2014 tour also includes performances at the Wisconsin and Minnesota state fairs in August.

Franklin made headlines last week while on tour after publicizing that a server at a Johnny Rockets restaurant in Niagara Falls, Ont., screamed at her for trying to sit down to eat her takeout order. The franchise owner apologized, citing the employee’s youth and inexperience.

After some health issues, the 72-year-old R&B diva says she’s feeling as good as she did in her 50s. She says she’s planning a vacation to New York after her Wisconsin gig, including a stop at the U.S. Open.

‘Girls’ to be filmed at New Paltz

Some scenes for the HBO series “Girls” will be shot at New Paltz State College.

The Times Herald-Record of Middletown reports that series star and creator Lena Dunham will be directing scenes Tuesday afternoon on the campus 75 miles north of New York City.

Scenes will be shot outside the Haggerty Administration Building and at the campus quad.

Some students and staffers will serve as extras.

‘Superstar’ halting causes rift

The abrupt cancellation of this summer’s North American arena tour of “Jesus Christ Superstar” is apparently not being forgiven.

The Really Useful Group, the London-based production company of “Superstar” composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, said Tuesday that it was taking legal action against music and theatrical producer Michael Cohl for the “unilateral decision” to scuttle the tour, which was to star punk legend John “Johnny Rotten” Lydon and Michelle Williams of Destiny’s Child.

In a statement, The Really Useful Group said it “has no option but to proceed with legal action to recover its costs associated with the project and in turn, satisfy outstanding payments to suppliers and contractors.”

Cohl’s S2BN Entertainment had no immediate comment Tuesday.