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The Holidays with Hollywood: What the Stars Are Doing This Year

Wondering how your favorite film, TV and music stars will be celebrating the holidays? Hollywood.com asked some of today’s biggest names and found where they’re planning to go, what they’re giving and the holiday surprises they’re hoping to unwrap this year.

“This year a lot of my friends have been sponsoring a family,” explained Cameron Diaz, “so we’ve all kind of said ‘If you want to give me something for Christmas, give me some money for this.’ So everybody has just sort of been passing cash off to each other and we’re going give it to the family.” And if Justin Timberlake wanted to gift his girl with something practical, she said she needs “a coffee maker. I took up coffee again after 15 years and I kind of like it. I like a cup a day.” 

Kate Winslet knew exactly what she wanted from her husband Sam Mendes. “I want the full range of Jamie Oliver kitchen wear—it’s new,” she enthused. “I’ve just never had a full set of anything before. I just really would love to have it, because it looks so brilliant and so practical and the kind of thing you would always have.”

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“I’ve done pretty well this year, so I don’t really need anything,” said George Clooney, who’s pretty satisfied with the presents he’s already received—including an Academy Award. He’s just looking forward to some time off. “I’m going do a little traveling and come back in time for Christmas.”

“We’re just gonna kick it, just chill,” said Jada Pinkett Smith of her holiday plans with husband Will Smith and their kids. “Hopefully we’ll go on vacation somewhere, get snowed in and get some peace and quiet. That’s what I want for the holidays: peace and quiet.”

“It’s going to be a good Christmas for me to remember the friendships and stuff that are made over time,” Matthew McConaughey told Hollywood.com. “Right now I just keep wishing for health. My mom is 75, healthy as she’s ever been, and my brother, who is 53, just had a baby boy and all my friends are having babies, so there’s kids all over the place. It’s going to be a good one.”

“At Christmas I’m always all about giving,” said Eva Longoria. “I’m trying to top what I did last year for my mom or my dad. I’m into giving trips, like a free ticket to Spain. I’d rather give people an experience. My publicist is probably the luckiest one. She works so hard that I gave her a trip to Cabo, and I gave her a trip to Hawaii.” 

Dakota Fanning already got a great gift: a new best friend who was making the holidays a little more challenging. “It’ll be the first Christmas with our dog, so we’re trying to figure out where to put the tree and how do I block the tree so she won’t destroy it, because she’s destroyed a couple of things,” Dakota explained. “We had the Vanity Fair with Suri and Tom [Cruise] and Katie [Holmes] on it, and I came home and I found, like, Suri’s nose by the refrigerator. I was like, ‘No!’ She’d torn up the whole Vanity Fair, so I’m sure she’d go after the tree in a heartbeat.”

Socks are usually the last thing on anyone’s wish list, but Eva Mendes is hoping for “a whole box of them because I don’t buy those myself—a huge box of them, though. I only buy one pair at a time.”

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“I think I’m a pretty hard person to get gifts for,” admitted Matthew Fox. “I feel so lucky about where I am in my life right now, so I would really want to spend a lot of time with my kids and my wife over the holidays. That would be the best gift that I could get.” 

Sheryl Crow is asking for “a cookbook I can understand. I’m such a terrible cook that I really, honestly, need a cookbook that just walks me through. Like ‘Make four steps to the right’, like one of those car directionals. ‘Pick up spoon from drawer.’”

“I really do want to take a vacation,” confessed Wilmer Valderrama. “I want to go somewhere like a beach, somewhere where water’s hitting something and you’re taking naps in the middle of the afternoon. I’m looking forward to sitting for a little bit, recharging my batteries and go for another round.”

“I’m hoping for some snow,” said a wistful Jennifer Connelly. “I am really looking forward to hanging out with my family and friends, and we are going to have a big gathering. I think I am responsible for cooking dinner for everyone, and that really terrifies me!”

Heroes cheerleader Hayden Panettiere was also wishing for “a white Christmas. I will be in Indiana this year so I am hoping to see some snow.” But she also knew what she wanted to find under the tree: “A digital camera. I had one but I lost it. I just use my friend’s cameras. I stopped taking pictures so I need to get back on track.”

“I just want family love and unity,” said American Idol judge Randy Jackson, while the show’s chanteuse Katharine McPhee is adding compassion into the mix: “I’m actually adopting a family for the holidays, a shelter that houses battered women and children in Orange County. It’s what I wanted to do.” She also wouldn’t mind a couple of fashionable trinkets for herself. “I like to get stupid stuff like makeup and girly things like shoes and stuff to wear.

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“Now that I have a kid, it’s great getting gifts for him, although he’s got a lot of stuff,” revealed Matthew Broderick. “He’s obsessed with Scooby-Doo, so anything with Scooby-Doo on it will please him.” Shopping for his super-stylish wife Sarah Jessica Parker was more challenging. “Maybe pajamas with feet? I don’t think I’ll buy her an outfit. She has everything and she gets everything free, so what am I gonna do? Do you have any ideas?”

“I just plan on being together with the family,” said Forest Whitaker. “We are going to take a trip to Europe this year. I usually vacation in Mexico so this will be a change.” No matter where in the world he is, he hopes to find a very special gift from home under the tree: “An American Bulldog!” 

Jennifer Tilly keeps her list simple: “A girl can never have too many diamonds, really. I don’t have a favorite—I like them all, and I don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings.”

CSI: Miami detective Emily Procter’s holiday hunting is over. “I bought a lot of science toys. There are so many good science things now. I think because of the show you can find science-based toys” She also suggested spreading the spirit of the season beyond her immediate kin. “My family and I got together and decided that we were going to do charities—St. Jude’s, a local animal rescue in North Carolina, the Waiting Child in Cleveland, and the Los Angeles Mission.”

“I’ve done all my shopping online, which I’m very happy with,” said Lance Bass. “My sister loves clothes so I got tons of clothes for her. And I love my niece and nephew so I got them clothes, toys, everything. I don’t know what I want, but I’m a big gadget guy—anything iPod, or a new cell phone.”

“I love giving cards, actually writing out the cards and talking about how much you care about somebody,” said Elisabeth Shue. “It’s actually more meaningful than all the presents…As you get older you don’t really care about what you get. It’s what you give.” 

Cedric the Entertainer voiced a goose in Charlotte’s Web and the role has impacted what entrée will be served on his holiday table. “It’s like ‘Oh, darn it, I have to do more chicken. [Laughs] I can’t kill a goose—I played one!” He’s even considering ordering that cornucopia of fowl feasting, the Turducken. “It’s like chicken stuffed in a turkey stuffed in a duck. I was like “Wow, that is enough bird for everyone.

“I got a beautiful diamond bracelet, so I’m all set,” said Jennifer Finnigan. She explained that her beau Jonathan Silverman is tough to shop for “because there’s not a lot he wants, but I think something fun that he could use at work. I like giving really thoughtful gifts.”

“I want my own radio station,” exclaimed singer Gavin deGraw, who knew just how he’d program it. “No sponsors, just tunes. No social responsibility, just whatever you want to hear. And no repetition—you cannot play the same song more than once in the same day.”

“The Chanel clutch is on my list,” revealed Haylie Duff, who was more cryptic about the gifts she had in mind for her sister Hilary Duff. “I can’t say what I’m giving, or my sister and my mom will find out. It’s something you could wear and smaller than a breadbox.”

“I would like to get one of those remote control things that you can walk in the house and push one button and all your lights and stuff come on,” said Josh Duhamel. “That’s about the one thing that I would really like to have. I don’t know if you ever saw Win a Date with Tad Hamilton, but he walked in, clapped his hands and everything turned on.”

“I ask everyone what they want and get them that,” Miley Cyrus said of her simple approach to shopping. “My sister Brandi wants a scarf. I want more clothes—an Urban Outfitters outfit, or something like that”

“I really would like a treadmill so when the kids go to nap I don’t have to go anywhere or do anything,” revealed Angie Harmon. “I can just go in the back bedroom and turn on Will Smith [movies] and start running. Even in LA, it’s just too cold to do it outside. ‘I don’t want to run in this!’ And it’s still like 68 degrees outside.”

And considering that the holidays are typically all about family, Jane Fonda’s wish seemed very appropriate indeed. “I want a new grandchild,” she said. “That would be very nice.”

–Additional reporting by Fred Topel, Gerri Miller, Margi Blash, Jenny Karakaya and Carlene Davis.

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