James Lipton, watch your back. Star Jones Reynolds is nipping at your heels. Her passion for brown-nosing film actors-as demonstrated during her E! channel red-carpet coverage of the Golden Globe Awards-makes her a strong contender to unseat you as the reigning Uriah Heep of the entertainment industry.
The heartfelt stream of superlatives that flowed from Ms. Jones Reynolds’ lips on Sunday night-”You do good work all the time” (Tim Robbins); “You are truly one of the greatest actresses of our time” (Glenn Close); “You do it so well and you do it all the time. You give us good work each and every time” (Laura Linney)-was so unrelenting that it left me seriously wondering whether, rather than lauding the actors and actresses in front of her, she might actually be taking the piss out of them. Her gushy interviewing technique had a curiously paralyzing effect on her interviewees, most of whom stood mute while she did all the talking. By the time Ms. Jones Reynolds had finished telling them how unbelievably fabulous she thought they were, all they could do was stare wanly at the massive Chopard diamond which clung precariously to the ruched green chiffon, which in turn clung precariously to the ample Jones Reynolds bosom. (More of those later.) Don’t get me wrong: I’m not complaining about Ms. Jones Reynolds. There was actually something strangely compelling about her unusual approach.
Adding a dash of genuine hilarity to the mix was Star’s co-host, Kathy Griffin, who elected to perk up her section of the red carpet by asking inane, belligerent questions: “Got any weed?” “How’s my breath?” “Do you want to swing with me and my husband?” “Scientology or Kabbalah?” If her interviewees dared to wave to friends or look away for a split second, she would berate them with a stern “Focus! Focus!” Her main goal of the evening seemed to be spreading a vile rumor that Dakota Fanning, the 10-year-old star of Hide and Seek, had gone into rehab “for drugs and alcohol.”
Paradoxically, it was the wacked-out Ms. Griffin, as opposed to the enraptured Ms. Jones Reynolds, who unearthed the most interesting factoid of the evening. “How do you know Joel Schumacher?” barked Ms. Griffin provocatively at The Grid’s Julianna Margulies.
“I met him when I was waiting tables in the 80′s,” she said.
“Where?” demanded Ms. Griffin.
“At 150 Wooster in New York,” replied the crisply attired Ms. Margulies. Who knew? O.K., so it wasn’t that interesting. But with the Rivers duo relegated to the unfindable TV Guide Channel, that’s about as pithy as it got. Come back to the five-and-dime, Joan and Melissa, Joan and Melissa!
The absence of any Riversian machine-gun badinage caused my thoughts to wander on several occasions. I started thinking, not without a certain amount of excitement, about the upcoming Michael Jackson trial and the E! channel’s historic and highly commendable decision to provide daily theatrical re-enactments. Who will play Michael? How about Amy Poehler? She does such a great job of imitating Mr. Jackson on Saturday Night Live. Dakota Fanning seems assured of a bit part. Victim sibling? Is there a role for Star Jones Reynolds? The mother of one of the accusers, perhaps. Her new husband, Mr. Reynolds, could definitely play Jermaine.
Regarding that Jones Reynolds marriage, this is one area where Star and I agree 100 percent. Graft! Graft! Graft! I have been advising women for years to find a sponsor for their weddings. It makes perfect sense. Why empty your father’s bank account for something which may not even last six months? The more freebies, the better. Nobody has followed my advice with more verve and creativity than Star. I like to think that she got the idea from reading one of my bridal columns in this very paper.
Look, there’s Diane Sawyer with nominated husband Mike Nichols. Did you happen to catch that probing ABC Primetime Live special last year where Diane charted the rise and fall of a young porno star? It was quite riveting. At one low point, Ms. Sawyer-sincerity going full throttle-lowered her voice and said something like, “And then she gave away her most precious gift.” What could possibly constitute “her most precious gift,” I wondered as I sat quivering with anticipation through the commercial break? Cut to porno star, who reveals all, saying something like, “So I was offered a lot of money to do double anal, and I …. ” Diane, really! “Most precious gift” equals “double anal”? How come that show never copped a Golden Globe? How many women on Sunday night’s red carpet have given away their most precious gifts? If so, what were they?
We are supposed to be talking about the frocks.
The grooviest look: Cate Blanchett, radiantly skinny and eccentric in her forget-me-not Jean Paul Gaultier.
The chicest older lady: Glenn Close wearing a gorgeous vintage Geoffrey Beene, in homage to the recently deceased designer.
The freakiest personage: that supersized, unknown young man with the center-parted ringlets who came as someone’s date. You seemed like fun. Who are you?
The most adorable gamine (in the absence of Dakota Fanning): Natalie Portman in Chloé.
The most unimpeachably gorgeous and timelessly beautiful broad: Diane Lane in her jade-colored Monique Lhuillier.
Certain trends manifested themselves:
Drapey: Teri Hatcher in Donna Karan, Jennifer Garner in Valentino.
Feathery: Nicole Kidman in Gucci and Ashley Judd in Prada.
Cocktail-y: Eva Longoria in Oscar de la Renta and Renée Zellweger in Carolina Herrera.
These style moments were dwarfed by the biggest, most noteworthy mega-trend of the evening: Boobs are out! Tits are toast! Knockers are no more! Those massive industrial-strength Hollywood hooters are now a thing of the past.
Yes, there were cleavages hither and thither, but they were discreet dual mozzarellas pushed up to form two pleasant fleshy mounds: e.g., Hilary Swank. Some stars opted to wear intriguing frocks which pushed their chicer, smaller boobs in opposite directions: e.g., Halle Berry and Kate Hudson. The most extreme proponent of this revolutionary anti-mammary trend is Ellen’s new girlfriend, the boyishly figured Portia de Rossi-who, in her white Valentino, seemed devoid of not just breasts, but nipples too.
And now the men.
News flash! It’s official. I am no longer in love with Johnny Depp. Johnny, you looked great in your kingfisher blue suit. I love the fact that you deviated from the fascist black-tie-and-black-shirt 90′s moment. And I particularly loved your Anne Slater blue glasses. (Blue was another demi-trend of the evening.) But, Johnny, I have to break it to you: My heart has been stolen by another. I’m talking, at the risk of sounding like Star Jones Reynolds, about the incredible, talented and electrifying Mr. Jamie Foxx.
Not only is Mr. Foxx breathtakingly beautiful, but he is also smart as a whip and fun! Snappy, unpretentious and celebratory, his acceptance speech probably ranks as one of the best in the history of award shows. Ever! Right, Star? His innate glamour and energy, not to mention his butchness, made all the other blokes present-especially Michael Imperioli in that dreary gray suit-look like the cast of The Office.
Jamie, je t’adore!
Re next year: Here’s my suggestion for E! coverage. Bring Joan back and pair her up with Kathy Griffin. Melissa and Star can co-host a special E! losers’ after-party together-no winners allowed. Here the girls can use their passion for flattery to restore the damaged egos of the crestfallen. Jamie and I will probably stop by at some point, but don’t count on it.