By Jason Lynch
October 16, 2000 12:00 PM

The Law of the Landmark

“I thought, ‘Good, now they can’t tear me down,’ ” says Jerry Orbach, 65, who along with his Law & Order costar Sam Waterston was named a living landmark last month by the nonprofit New York Landmarks Conservancy, which recognizes New Yorkers—and buildings—who bring positive attention to the city. “It’s an honor, but you feel old. When I walk down the street in Manhattan, people say, ‘You’re the quintessential New Yorker,’ and I guess it’s kind of a recognition of that.” But Orbach, who joins such other living landmarks as Walter Cronkite, Harry Belafonte and Beverly Sills, doesn’t expect the new title to change his life much. “I hope it gets me reservations in exclusive restaurants or something,” he says, joking that he’ll have to figure out how to publicize his landmark status. “I think I’ll probably wear a plaque around my neck.”

Caine Is Able

Having won an Oscar this year (his second) for The Cider House Rules, Michael Caine, 67, has learned to be choosier about his film projects. (Remember Jaws: The Revenge and Blame It on Rio?) “I get some crap scripts with a lot of money attached to them, but I just can’t do those movies anymore,” says Caine, who is currently costar-ring with Sylvester Stallone in a remake of Caine’s 1970 British gangster flick Get Carter. “Sometimes I write a letter back that says, ‘Not only will I not do this movie, but if you don’t mind me saying, and I don’t want to be unkind, but I don’t think you should do it either.’ ”

Goal Oriented

He plays a football coach in the drama Remember the Titans, which might explain why Denzel Washington can’t resist injecting his offscreen motivational sports speeches with a little patented Hollywood dramatic flair. “I tell my son [John David, 16] this story about the one game in high school where Dad ran seven touchdowns,” says Washington, 45. “That’s a challenge to my son. It was probably only three touchdowns, to be honest. But every 10 years I add two or three. When I’m 70, I’ll be saying, ‘You know son, I ran 57 touchdowns in one game. On one foot. In the snow.’ You gotta give kids goals.”

Here Comes the Bridesman

Always a bridesmaid, never a bride? Well, David E. Kelley knows the feeling. “One of my best friends in law school—a woman—and I were talking one night, and I started pontificating on the illogic of some wedding ceremonies,” recalls Kelley, the creator of Ally McBeal, The Practice and the new FOX fall drama Boston Public. ” ‘Why must men have men standing up for them and women have women? You should have your best friends.’ Three years later the phone rang. ‘Do you remember that little diatribe?’ she asked. ‘Well, the bridesmaids are wearing pink.’ ” Kelley, 44, who wore a tuxedo instead of a bridesmaid’s dress for the ceremony, enjoyed life on the ladies’ side of the aisle (though he stuck to tradition for his own 1993 wedding to actress Michelle Pfeiffer). “Bridesmaids get taken care of,” he says. “Ushers just fend for themselves.”

She’s No Angel

Farrah Fawcett returns to the big screen as Richard Gere’s mentally unbalanced wife in the comedy Dr. Tand the Women, but she won’t be making an appearance in next month’s Charlie’s Angels movie. “[Angels’producer] Len Goldberg kept calling. “He said, ‘Why not?’ ” recalls Fawcett, 53. “Because I didn’t want to, all right? Finally I said, ‘All right, I know a way to do it. Remember my character was always after Charlie? I’ll be with Charlie, so you’ll hear my voice, because I finally got him.’ He says, ‘Well, what will the other two do?’ I said, ‘That’s not my problem.’ ” Since producers had envisioned a scene where Fawcett, Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith all appear together, her idea for a vocal cameo was ultimately rejected, though she is still wistful for what might have been: “That would have been good, wouldn’t it?”