Wayne Newton and Johnny Carson, two of the biggest stars in the entertainment world, both set their sights on buying the Aladdin after regulators stripped the resort’s owners of their gaming licenses. Newton, the “Midnight Idol,” was the number one headliner at several hotels. Carson co-owned a Las Vegas television station and performed stand-up comedy on weekends on the Strip. Once friendly, their feud started after Newton got the upper hand in buying the resort. Carson started skewering Newton in monologues, ending with a sudden confrontation in Carson’s office in Burbank. But untangling the Aladdin from mob allegations wasn’t easy.
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