It seems that while the big Hollywood donkeys got their rest after Day One of the Democratic National Convention, President Clinton had a little more partying to do. Especially since he was about to receive Tinseltown's biggest honor.
Yep, that's right -- after he wistfully practiced an acceptance speech with Kevin Spacey's Academy Award (and having Spacey take it away from him) during his famous "Clinton: The Final Days" video spoof, President Clinton finally received an "Oscar" for Best President at the Democratic Party's Welcoming Party Monday night.
The trophy, in true Hollywood fashion, was presented by California Gov. Gray Davis at Paramount Studios. Clinton, accompanied by wife Hillary and daughter Chelsea, joked, "I had Kevin Spacey's Oscar and he was ungracious enough to come and take it away from me just because he won it and I didn't.
"So now that I have one of my very own, I'll be able to lord it over him."
But the real question of the evening was not whether Gov. Davis was hoarding one of the missing Oscar statuettes all this time, but where the "star-studded" part of the evening was to commence. After all, the biggest stars on the red carpet (lined with 'Academy Award' statues, of course) were Jim Carrey (well, actually a pretender, complete with Ace Ventura hair and talking out of his butt) and Marilyn Monroe (ditto, but no butt-talking).
Where were all those high-profile Gore supporters, like TV's "West Wing" president, Martin Sheen, or Kevin Costner, or Dylan McDermott? Where was Enrique Iglesias?
Presidential Partyer Gary Busey By 9 p.m., much to the infuriation of all reporters, the biggest star on the scene was ... Gary Busey. Nonetheless, Busey drew such a desperate press frenzy (likely the largest of his career) that one journalist was asking, "Who is that? Is that God?"
By 9:30 p.m., with press cages bare and reporters sipping Coronas, hope of finding any famous face among the thousands faded quickly.
"My friend thinks she saw Jeff Bridges pull up in a car," one lady offers. We think we spot the skimpy-dressed Christina Aguilera -- until she looks our way. (Turns out we were off by 30 years).
Other sightings included Tobey Maguire, Carmen Electra, Anjelica Huston, Victoria Rowell ("The Young and the Restless"), Johnny Rotten of The Sex Pistols and '80s popster Tiffany.
Meanwhile, the available star power did their best. Actor Joe Pantoliano ("The Matrix") and Kevin Pollak ("The Whole Nine Yards") made the introductions, the latter bombing through a number of stand-up jokes (including impressions of Ross Perot and Gore's running mate Joseph Lieberman). Celebrity Democracy Readings featured Frances Fisher, Noah Wyle, Laurence Fishburne and Alfre Woodard reciting famous orations by John F. Kennedy and Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., to name a few.
We'd like to think that Whoopi and Barbra didn't pass the disorganized but ultra-tight security entrance, but we're pretty sure they were hiding out in the V.I.P lounge instead, laughing as the masses sway to "Lean On Me," meant to be a unifying Democratic anthem, led by Michael Bolton.
Yes, Michael Bolton. And no, Gary Busey did not join in.
Cybill Shepherd, actress, model, spokeswoman, is giving new meaning to the term "tell-all." In her new Jerry Springer-style confessional, "Cybill Disobedience: How I Survived Beauty Pageants, Elvis, Sex, Bruce Willis, Lies, Marriage, Motherhood, Hollywood and the Irrepressible Urge to Say What I Think" (in stores today), the outspoken actress/model lives up (or down) to her rep.
To save inquiring readers the time of sifting through the tome's 294 pages, we've poured over the manuscript ourselves and highlighted the more lubricious moments below for quick reference and easy access. (Indexed by their corresponding page numbers, but of course):
Pgs. 43-44: Scene of deflowering with a Mick Jagger lookalike mop top named Mike at the nubile age of 15. Writes Shepherd of the experience: "I felt oddly detached from my first time, as if it were more a rite of initiation to be crossed off a list than a sexual epiphany." Scale of raciness: Low. Neither her age nor her subsequent disappointment in her first sexual experience constitutes any kind of revelatory surprise in this day.
Pgs. 47-48: A short (and essentially platonic) fling with upstanding Ivy Leaguer Joseph Graham Davis. Nicknamed Gray, the-then Columbia law student would go on to become the sitting governor of California, known as Gray Davis. Scale of raciness: High. Even though they never "did it," bedroom tales that involve a political figure still make for some jaw-dropping stuff. We put a call into Davis' office for comment, but they never got back to us. An oversight, we're sure.
Pgs. 49-50: A tepid account of two other trysts with college-age maletypes who were not and have never been famous or powerful. Scale of raciness: Low. Be warned, dear readers, this is the last sex-related entry until the fabled Bogdanovich affair some 30 pages later.
Pgs. 85-102: The aforementioned illicit affair with her "The Last Picture Show" mentor Peter Bogdanovich that began on, and outlasted, the film's shoot. Writes Shepherd of their first meeting: "The immediate attraction was so strong, I was flummoxed." Scale of raciness: Low. Despite the expository nature of the biography, this liaison is remembered with an exactitude and completeness that's strangely devoid of sexual details.
Pgs. 108-109: A rendezvous in 1972 with a pill-popping Elvis in his Graceland mansion where instead of "Love Me Tender," cunnilingus (yowza!) and an act of fellatio (hello!) were performed. Scale of raciness: High. Besides the innate humor in this whole scene, the incident also holds a mirror up to the somewhat sexist, peanut-butter-sandwich-chunking, drugged-up eccentric that the rock icon had become shortly before his death.
Pgs. 185-186: In the early 1980s, Shepherd came out of a post-divorce slump and had her first meaningful fling with "The Last Picture Show" co-writer and longtime friend Larry McMurtry. "Our friendship never faltered because we became sexual or because we stopped," writes Shepherd. Scale of raciness: Low. Frankly, not dramatic or titillating enough. And, anyway, does anyone even know (or care) who Larry McMurtry is? Pgs. 194-197: A menage-a-trois with two stuntmen subsequently known as "The Cybill Sandwich." This encounter is memorialized with an entire chapter -- dubbed, yes, "The Cybill Sandwich" -- and featuring excerpts such as: "'The Cybill Sandwich' turned out to be a positive sexual experience." Scale of raciness: Middling. Time's a changing -- a threesome just doesn't get the kind of head-shaking gasps that it used to.
Pgs. 203-204: The unconsummated sexual tension between her and co-star Bruce Willis on the set of "Moonlighting." Shepherd expounds, "[Bruce and I] never did finish what we started in private, but anytime we had a kissing scene, he stuck a big camel tongue halfway down my throat." Scale of raciness: Low. It would be infinitely more interesting if the Bruce Willis she was flirting with was the post-"Die Hard," Demi Moore-married mega-movie star.
Pgs. 214-215: A five-minute quickie with yet another one of her co-stars, this time Don Johnson, from the television movie "The Long Hot Summer." Scale of raciness: Middling. Yawn. The novelty is definitely wearing thin. We're just thankful that this is basically Shepherd's last conquest of the book. Besides, is it still news when somebody sleeps with Don Johnson?
Last weekend, it was a gang of car thieves who raked in the box office bonanza with "Gone in 60 Seconds," but now a badass cop-turned-private eye is here to run the bad guys outta town in "Shaft."
The reinvented 1970s black superstud, as portrayed by Samuel L. Jackson, is this weekend's heaviest hitter, while Fox's animated sci-fi flick "Titan A.E." and the teen romance "Boys and Girls" starring "Freddie Prinze Jr. also wade into the increasingly crowded summer box office waters.
Meanwhile, Disney is expanding its "Fantasia 2000" onto 1,300 screens nationwide, to offer something else for parents who've already taken their kids to see "Dinosaur" 10 times.
Here's a brief rundown of this weekend's new entries:
SHAFT (See the trailer) The skinny: Director John Singleton puts a 2000 spin on "the black private dick that's a sex machine to all the chicks," except that he's a cop instead of a PI, and he doesn't really get much tail. The upside: The new John Shaft is played by Samuel L. Jackson, the epitome of the fast-talking, street-smart tough guy. And ya gotta love that theme song, which stll holds up 30 years later. The downside: Brandon Gray, editor of BoxofficeMojo.com, tells us: "Much like 'M:I-2,' where the only similarity to the old TV show is the theme song and the exploding messages, the only thing similar in 'Shaft' to the old one is the theme song. It certainly hasn't hurt 'M:I-2,' and it probably won't hurt this one either, at least not in the opening weekend."
TITAN A.E. (See the trailer) The skinny: Director Gary Goldman and animator Don Bluth, the team behind Fox's "Anastasia," reteam for this big-budget, post-apocalyptic sci-fi feature. The upside: Voices by Matt Damon, Bill Pullman, Drew Barrymore, Nathan Lane, Hank Azaria, Lena Olin, Jim Breuer, Janeane Garofalo, Joseph Corso and John Leguizamo. Oh, my! The downside: Says Gray: "It looks like it was made for the same kind of audience as 'Battlefield Earth,' but it won't have the Scientologists coming out during the opening weekend to beef up the box office. There is no evidence that the public really wants sci-fi animated movies. The only ones I can think of in the past are "Iron Giant," the "Transformer" movies and "Heavy Metal," all of which bombed."
BOYS AND GIRLS The skinny: Another romantic movie starring Freddie Prinze Jr. and Claire Forlani. What else do you need to know? The upside: Prinze starred in "She's All That," which was a teen hit two years ago. The downside: He also starred in "Down to You" and "Wing Commander," which weren't hits.
FANTASIA 2000 (See the trailer) The skinny: The non-IMAX version of Uncle Walt's reinvented animation classic goes into national release. Hooray! The upside: Nothing will ever replace the 1940 "Fantasia," but this melange of digital and cell animation is pretty neat nonetheless. The downside: Is Disney trying to snuff out Fox's attempt to get a piece of the animation pie? Do carnivores eat meat? Just as it re-released "The Little Mermaid" on the same weekend as "Anastasia," so comes "Fantasia 2000" to compete with "Titan A.E." Then again, maybe that's not such a bad thing.
Elsewhere, "Gone in 60 Seconds," "M:I-2" and "Dinosaur" are expected to stay within the Top Five, while other recent contenders such as "Shanghai Noon," "Frequency" and "Gladiator" will vie to remain in Top 10 contention.