Nancy Perry Graham
October 18, 1999 12:00 PM

Debbie Matenopoulos says rumors of her nose job have been greatly exaggerated. “If I was trying to alter my appearance, I wouldn’t have left a big bump on it,” says Matenopoulos, who broke her nose in February when she was hit by a swinging door, shortly after being fired from The View. “I quite liked my nose, but touching my ear, it wasn’t so cute,” she says. Matenopoulos, whose doctor reset her nose a week later, has had a tough year. After losing her ABC job in New York City, she moved to L.A. to be with her then-fiancé, but two weeks later he dumped her. “That made The View thing seem like a walk in the park,” she says. But now she’s back in the game, having just shot a cable TV pilot she describes as “me being me,” and holds no grudges. “I thank God every day I met Barbara Walters,” she says. “If not for The View I wouldn’t have the opportunities I have now.”

Filming of Jeff Bridges’ movie The Contender, about a U.S. President (Bridges) who nominates a female Vice President (Joan Allen) after the elected veep dies in office, hit an unexpected glitch recently. While shooting a White House ballroom scene in a Richmond, Va., country club, writer-director Rod Lurie noticed what could have been a major gaffe: a large oil portrait of Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederacy, hanging prominently on the wall. The crew wasn’t allowed to remove pictures, so extras stood in front of the painting to hide it. “A good old low-tech fix,” said a spokesman for the film, which also stars Gary Oldman and Christian Slater.

The former Mrs. Bruce Springsteen, actress Julianne Phillips (Sisters), is staying close to home in Toronto with her beau, Italian-Canadian cameraman Frank Tata, and loving it. “He’s sexy in every way,” says Phillips of Tata, who is six years her junior. “He’s older than I am on many levels.” Phillips still has a home in L.A. but is taking time off from acting, perhaps permanently. “I’m reassessing the whole thing,” she says, “[deciding] if I even want to stay in that end of the business.”

Actress Nora Dunn admits that the female war reporter she plays in Three Kings, the new film about the civilian uprising in Iraq after the Gulf War ended, resembles CNN correspondent Christiane Amanpour. “I’ve always romanticized her,” Dunn says. “I had strong feelings about the press being shut out of the war, and my character was symbolic of that. She has testosterone but doesn’t get anywhere.”

Fast Takes: I hear that a spring wedding may be in the air for actors Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston. The Friends star has started shopping for a wedding gown designer….

Stevie Wonder is a first-time grand-daddy. On the morning of Sept. 28 his daughter Aisha gave birth to a 4 lb. 10 oz. baby boy. Could a hit song be far behind? Following Aisha’s birth in 1975, Wonder wrote the hit “Isn’t She Lovely.”…

Jenna Elfman, the costar of Dharma & Greg, will be seen on the Romance Classics network throughout October urging viewers to adopt a dog. It is part of an “Unconditional Love” campaign with the ASPCA. Elfman has two adopted dogs, Willie and Guinevere.

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