Though he often plays a tough guy onscreen, Four Brothers star Mark Wahlberg is an admitted softie when it comes to daughter Ella Rae, who turns 2 on Sept. 2 (Mom is model Rhea Durham). “It changes every aspect of your life for the better,” says Wahlberg of daddyhood. “She’s been talking – the stuff that comes out of her mouth.”
The two recently took a trip to Toys ?R” Us, where “I would’ve bought her whatever she wanted.” So, what was on Ella’s shopping list? ?She only wanted a little Hello Kitty and a Get Well Elmo, which is so random, because she was sick today, so I tucked her in with her Elmo. He’s got a little cast. And he got a Band-Aid on his leg.”
And Wahlberg’s next project is even kid-friendly: He’ll star in the Disney film Invincible, a true story about football player Vince Papale, who became the oldest rookie in the NFL at the age of 30.
Secret Agent Woman
Charlize Theron had to go from saggy abs to a six-pack for her role as a sexy secret agent in the upcoming sci-fi thriller Aeon Flux, and it wasn’t easy. “The first month was the hardest because I had just come off of Monster and for that entire time – for about a year – I hadn’t done anything with my body. I had just gone and gained 30 lbs. So, for the first month I couldn’t walk. Literally couldn’t walk and I didn’t know how I was going to get through it,” she told us at the comic-book conference Comic-Con in San Diego recently.
So, how’d the Oscar winner whip herself into shape to play the title character, who first debuted as a cartoon vixen on MTV’s Liquid Television? “I worked six days a week for four-and-a-half hours or five hours. I had a trainer from Cirque du Soleil to learn gymnastics. And some really intense stretching. I really got a great high from it,” she says. “It wasn’t just about making my body look a certain way. It was about learning a whole new craft.” And she doesn’t even regret suffering a herniated disc between her vertebrae: “I tore many things, but they’re back now.”
Caught in the Act
• Jamie Foxx, rocking the microphone at SushiSamba’s rock ‘n’ roll karaoke-themed Wasabi Tuesday party in Miami Beach. The night kicked off with Foxx serenading the crowd with the Rick James hit “Super Freak.” Foxx, who partied with his sister and several pals, danced and sang karaoke all night while sipping Grey Goose vodka & rose champagne.
• Entourage star Kevin Connolly, scoring $5,000 for the Michael J. Fox Foundation at a celebrity charity poker tournament at the ESPN Zone in New York City. The actor, who finished second in the tournament to Apprentice winner Kelly Perdew, told us that rumors of a breakup with girlfriend Nicky Hilton are “preposterous. It’s not true at all. Things couldn’t be better.”
• By AMY LONGSDORF, JESSICA HERNDON, JON WARECH and MARK DAGOSTINO