By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Inquiring minds still want to know about Tom Cruise's screen schlong, which looks positively serpentine when he strips down to his underwear in that very cocky piece of cocky, Magnolia. The worldly wiener seems so enormous that i almost woke up, though i assumed Tom had simply used Mark Wahlberg's prosthesis from the same writer-director's Boogie Nights, especially since some people involved in the film have been coy about certifying its authenticity. Well, Fashion Wire Dailyjust pursued this devastatingly important issue, and everyone they contactedfrom the producer to Tom's costar in that sceneinsists the garden hose is 100 percent real meat, at least to the best of their knowledge. I'm still très skepticalmy on-the-set source says it's an utter fake (respect the sock?)but if it's true, no wonder Nicole Kidmanwalks a little funny.
Tom ballsily thanking his publicist before anyone else was one of the high points of those kooky Golden Globe Awards, among manyHollyweird moments worth straining to catch: Tina Brownmaking a face on entering; Annette Beningpraying in the audience; Faye Dunawaydisapprovingly shaking her head when Courtney Lovewas announced; the utter gayness of so many of the American Beautypeople; the way Pedro Almodóvarsuddenly became Roberto Benigni; the category that pitted Peter O'Tooleagainst David Spade; the reduction of Rubin "Hurricane" Carterto just another Hollywood schmoozer; the contention that Tumbleweedswas a comedy; and, mostly, the revelation that Barbra Streisandwho seemed absolutely transported by her own film clipswas inspired by "those monochromatic frames" of Akira Kurosawa. I'll have to take another gander at The Mirror Has Two Facesand see if it's more Rashomonor Seven Samurai.
At the Players Club tribute to Eli Wallachand Anne Jacksonwho are clearly inspired by Lunt and Fontanne via Stiller and MearaMagnoliasomehow bloomed again when Jason Robardsturned out to be one of the celebrity presenters. At the T. Schreiber Studio benefit, I asked the acting great if his deathbed rendition of that Aimee Mannsong was, in fact, his singing debut. "My singing debut? It was only one line," he said, laughing. "Paul Thomas Andersontold me, 'Go ahead. We'll see what happens.' He's like one of my sons." Robards also likes his tumescent screen son Cruise ("I wish I could have spent more time with him"), and of course Eli and Anne, who were only upstaged that night by, sure enough, Stiller and Meara. At my table, the star was Betsey McCaughey Ross, who, in the midst of a discussion of fake jewelry, divulged, "My husband gave me fake bonds. I went to cash them in and they weren't worth the paper they were printed on." I bet Tom Cruise only gives out real ones.
Inspired by Kurosawa, I shot Forgive or Forgetwith that show's new host, Robin Givens, who I must say is fast and lively and even played along with jokes about her relationships with Brad Pittand Donald Trump(who apparently wanted her). But Robin knows where the line is. During commercials, audience members kept chanting "Go, Robin!" and begging her to do that little chugalug dance, but wisely, she maintained her dignity and refusedthe sign of a true star.
On a jaunt down to Palm Beach, tra la, a glimpse through the hedges at Trump's magnificent Mar-a-Lago estate made me wish he wanted me. But the most fun to be had was in Fort Lauderdale, where the gay scene is diverse and friendly, and who cares if your trick has a mansion (or a trouser serpent)? Naturally, I chugalugged to the most extreme places, like the Coliseum, a dance club that's upbeat, sexy, and fraught with possibility, and Cathode Ray, a high-tech hangout with the fruitiest sports room in town. The Eagle is more about watersports; the back room has a lovely area where you can get urinated on, and not just by anyonemembers of the Rainmakers of South Florida have been known to, um, go there. In the bathroom, there's a sign for something called the Piss and Moan Club, under which, interestingly, another placard says "State LawWash your hands." But one bartender told me he'd really like to wash his hands of all those "twinkies" who come to the place and turn their noses up at all the wee-wee. "They're always complaining," he related, angstily. "They'll say, 'I was gonna suck his dick, but then he went and peed on me!' " Picky, picky!
The bodacious diva of bathroom jokes, Jenny McCarthy, is back and more of a pisser than ever. McCarthy recently played a prostie in the Kirk Douglas? Lauren Bacallstarrer Diamonds, and now she stays closer to home as an actress in Stab 3, the movie within the movie in Scream 3. For a while, we were all screaming that this little vixen made Gwyneth Paltrowlook underexposed. "I was in the danger zone," McCarthy admitted to me last week. "I got to the point where if I saw myself on television one more time, I'd feel myself going, 'Jesus, shut up already.' I took a year off and regrouped."
Most straight men and lesbians feel she's grouped just fine, but in any case, the new Jenny is married to her Diamonds director John Mallory Asher, "and I feel so complete. When I watch the movie, I see in my eyes that I'm so filled with love, I'm beaming right off the screen!" Still, Diamonds wasn't a girl's best friend when it came to measuring up to legends Douglas and Bacall. "I was dying inside," McCarthy told me. "I felt a little inexperienced next to them." And she seems pretty experienced. She was actually fine in the part, but maybe she's more comfy in Scream 3, though she's not sure because she hasn't seen it yet. (Screenings have been scarce.) McCarthy never even got a full script, "I guess because with Scream 2, the word got out on the Internet, so this time they made it more secretive. On the set, we were all asking each other if we're the killer." Could they possibly be minimizing the screenings because the flick's a stinker? "No, it's real good, baby," she laughed. "I'min it now!"