Two months after pulling the plug on her VMA performance due to health issues related to an alleged drug overdose, Amy Winehouse has canceled her appearance at the mtvU Woodie Awards on November 8.
The performance was to be Winehouse's first U.S. gig since canceling a North American tour that was to kick off in September, which was scotched following a hospitalization in August due to the alleged overdose. At the time, her spokesperson said Winehouse would not be touring for the rest of the year and had been ordered by her doctor to rest. She has since made a handful of live appearances in Europe and has booked an extensive U.K. tour that stretches into next month, but word came down on Wednesday that her gig at New York's Roseland Ballroom as part of the Woodie Awards had been scratched due to visa issues, according to an MTV spokesperson.
Winehouse will not be able to travel to the U.S. for the show, and a replacement is expected to be announced soon. The current lineup of performers for this year's Woodies includes the Academy Is ..., Tokyo Police Club and Spank Rock. Winehouse was announced as a last-minute addition to the bill for the MTV Europe Music Awards, which will take place Thursday night (November 1) in Munich, Germany.
It was unknown at press time if Winehouse's recent arrest on marijuana possession charges in Norway played a role in her visa issues (see "Amy Winehouse Arrested For Marijuana Possession In Norway"). Winehouse's father, Mitch, told English TV program "This Morning" that when Winehouse was arrested on the possession charges she mistakenly signed a form taking responsibility. "It didn't belong to her, it belonged to someone else on the tour," he told the program. "They arrested Blake [Fielder-Civil, Winehouse's husband], Amy and the person who was responsible. ... They only released them after they signed a form, which they were told was a release form. ... It was in Norwegian. It was actually a confession, so this is being dealt with now by the Norwegian authorities and the British consulate because the ramifications of that are that she now can't get into the States and she was meant to go next week."
A spokesperson for Winehouse could not be reached for comment at press time and a spokesperson for the State Department, Karl Duckworth, said he was forbidden from discussing specific cases or confirming whether there was an issue with Winehouse's visa. However, he did say that under the Immigration and Naturalization Act, foreigners seeking work visas in the United States could be denied based on illegal actions.
Also on Thursday, Winehouse's Norwegian attorney said the singer will appeal her fine for marijuana possession, claiming that the Norwegian police made mistakes in the case. The Associated Press reported that attorney Ole Kvelstad said Winehouse was appealing the October 18 arrest on the grounds that she hadn't understood that under Norwegian law, accepting a fine is the same as pleading guilty. After her arrest on October 18, Winehouse spent a night in jail and was released the following morning after paying a $715 fine.
Kvelstad told AP that Winehouse was interrogated without legal representation or an interpreter and had not fully understood the Norwegian-language charges she was signing, which could seriously impact her chances of seeking entry to the United States for appearances — and maybe already have. An attorney for the Bergen, Norway, police countered that Winehouse was questioned by an English-speaking police officer, who translated charges and explained the consequences of accepting the fine. If the appeals court lets Winehouse withdraw acceptance of the fine, the original charges could go to trial.
[This story was originally published on 11.1.07 at 11.29 a.m. ET.]