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The Insider

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It’s been almost two years since she starred in the Broadway musical Sunset Boulevard, but wonderful things still happen when Glenn Close sings. According to the environmental newsletter Green Light, Close and her daughter Annie joined Pierce Brosnan, Bobby Kennedy Jr. and others on an expedition looking for whales in a coastal lagoon in Mexico’s Baja California. When someone remarked that whales can be attracted by music, Close stood up and began singing “Amazing Grace.” And wouldn’t you know, a 40-foot female Pacific gray whale and her calf surfaced right next to the boat and even allowed themselves to be petted….

I may have some bad news for Angela Bassett, who is set to start filming the starring role next month in How Stella Got Her Groove Back, a $25-million movie now in preproduction at Fox. The film is based on the best-selling novel by Waiting to Exhale author Terry McMillan. I hear the project is now up in the air and may be cancelled by the studio because of script problems. A decision should be made by the end of this week….

That was no ordinary sparkler Rosie Perez was showing off at the May 5 tribute to Sean Connery by the Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York City. No, that was a 3.25-carat diamond engagement ring she received from her boyfriend of two years, Seth Zvi Rosenfeld, the writer-director of her latest movie, A Brother’s Kiss. Perez’s rep says the couple, who have not set a wedding date, actually became engaged in December “but wanted it kept quiet.” So nobody said anything—until now….

And here’s a second-generation romance of note: James Caan’s 20-year-old son Scott Caan, who currently appears in the comedic drama Nowhere, is dating Ford model Kimberly Stewart, 17, daughter of ex-spouses Rod and Alana Stewart. Some guys have all the luck….

Hugh Grant and Elizabeth Hurley, who recently bought a $1.6-million house together in London, are still on a house hunt—in Los Angeles. A real estate source tells me the couple are looking to buy an authentic 1920s Mediterranean-style home….

In other real estate news, the Los Angeles Times recently reported that “a computer executive” bought producer-director John Landis’s Beverly Hills home for $9 million. The Times didn’t name the executive, but I can tell you he is billionaire Paul Allen, the cofounder of Microsoft and owner of the NBA’s Portland Trailblazers. The 8,000-plus-square-foot house, owned for more than 20 years by Rock Hudson until his death, sits on three acres and has seven bedrooms and eight bathrooms. A source close to the deal tells me that Allen, who resides mostly in the Seattle area, intends to use his new digs “as his weekend L.A. retreat.”…

Finally, Arnold Schwarzenegger made his first public appearance since his April 16 heart operation when he accompanied his wife, Maria Shriver, to the May 3 benefit in Beverly Hills for the Fulfillment Fund, an organization that mentors disadvantaged youth. Before Shriver presented an award, she turned to her husband and asked, “Do you want to say anything, Honey?”Joked Schwarzenegger: “This is such a shock! I never get to say a word at home. Since my operation, she’s getting nicer to me.”