There’s no way to lip-synch your way through a workout – especially one led by Tae-Bo guru Billy Blanks. So you know when Ashlee Simpson brought a few friends to Blanks’s L.A. studio recently to film an episode of The Ashlee Simpson Show, it was the real deal. “They all did the workout all the way through,” Blanks tells us of Simpson and her crew, who did his new “Boot Camp” routine. “Some of them were a little uncoordinated, but they all stuck it out. It was awesome – we had a good time.” Blanks noted that because Simpson and her friends are young and stay in shape through dancing, “I think they didn’t think it would be so hard. It was a test for them, and they all passed – but it was a challenge. Ashlee said, ‘Wow, I have to start working out.’ ” Blanks’s “Boot Camp” workout will be available via infomercial in January; his session with Simpson will air in the second season of her MTV show, due early next year.
Street Fighting Man
Now that Ryan Reynolds has moved away from funny-cute (Van Wilder) and into the dark realm of vampires in Blade: Trinity, has he become a tough guy? Apparently not. “I was (director-writer-producer) David Goyer’s little punching bag,” the actor (and Alanis Morissette’s betrothed) said recently. Though he took martial arts classes to prepare for his role as a vampire-hunter, “I don’t think that it worked very well because I got the crap kicked out of me repeatedly,” he said. Blade: Trinity, also starring Wesley Snipes and Jessica Biel, opens Dec. 8.
We asked Joe Farrell, host of Trading Spaces: Family, for his quick takes on a few hot topics.
• 57-year-old woman gives birth to twins: “Twins are hard enough – I can only imagine how hard they would be at 57.”
• Martha Stewart’s Thanksgiving in prison: “I hear the cranberry sauce is spectacular.”
• Kirstie Alley in Fat Actress: “I feel good for any actor who’s working.”
• Britney Spears wants to start a family: “Hmm. She does?”
• Bill Clinton Library opens: “Are the sections rated?”
• Cameron Diaz scuffles with a paparazzo: “They obviously haven’t seen her movies, cause she could kick my butt.”
• My favorite TV show is: Alias.
• My guilty pleasure is: “Wife Swap – I watch it with my girlfriend.”
Look for Farrell on the Travel Channel special, World Poker Tour: American Chopper vs. Trading Spaces, on Sunday night.
No more Ms. Nice Lady: Jane Seymour is taking a break from her squeaky-clean image and showing her naughtier side. “I’m doing Smallville right now, five episodes,” she told us recently. “I’m somewhat evil. And the movie I did with Owen Wilson (The Wedding Crashers, due next year) – I do a whole Graduate thing. I’m not Dr. Quinn anymore!”
Caught in the Act
• Vince Vaughn, mingling at Tabu Ultra Lounge at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. “He was one of the most outgoing celebrities I have seen,” said a spy. “He had no problems taking photos, shaking hands and talking with people.”
• By AMY LONGSDORF, MARISA LAUDADIO and KIMBERLY LANSING