Melrose Place mainstays Josie Bissett, who has played perky Jane Mancini for 5½ seasons, and her husband, Rob Estes, who plays Kyle McBride on the series, have a joint production planned for their summer hiatus: Bissett is pregnant and due July 23. They will find out whether the baby–their first–will be a boy or a girl in a couple of weeks. I’m told the couple, who have been trying to have a child for some time, are ecstatic.
Another pair of husband and wife actors, Renee Taylor and Joe Bologna, also have a joint project in the works. Taylor, who plays Fran Drescher‘s constantly noshing mother, Sylvia Fine, on The Nanny, has lost 45 pounds in real life. On the show we’ll discover that she has lost weight because she’s having an affair. Bologna, who has been married to Taylor for 33 years, was offered the part of her TV husband, Morty, but decided to play her lover instead. (Steve Lawrence will guest star as Morty.) The first of two episodes will air in March.
There isn’t a speck of bad blood between actress Frances Fisher (Titanic) and Los Angeles TV anchor Dina Ruiz Eastwood, who is now married to Clint Eastwood, Fisher’s former boyfriend and the father of her 5-year-old daughter Frannie. In fact, Fisher, who will costar with Eastwood in his upcoming drama True Crime, told me that Dina helped her shop for the striking dress Fisher wore to a pre-Golden Globes party in Beverly Hills, and that they have become good friends. Dina, she says, is a fabulous stepmom, always asking what time Frannie should go to bed. But, Fisher adds with a laugh, “I know when Frannie goes over [to their house], she’s going to party.”
On Feb. 11, many of Hollywood’s A-listers, including David Duchovny, Calista Flockhart, Brooke Shields, Greg Kinnear and Mike Myers, are committed to a party in Los Angeles benefiting Project ALS. The goal is to raise a million dollars for research devoted to Lou Gehrig’s disease. Theater producer Jenifer Estess, 35, a member of the experimental Manhattan theater group Naked Angels, was stricken with the disease almost two years ago, and her famous friends want to help. Though the party is still being planned, I hear that Ben Stiller and Kristen Johnston will host, and that singer Melissa Etheridge will perform.
Aussie actor Bryan Brown (F/X) was attracted to the film Two Hands, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival (Jan. 21-31), partly because it shows Americans how Australian mobsters (“crims”) differ from their U.S. counterparts. “We in the rest of the world see GoodFellas and The Godfather,” Brown says. “Your boys wear Armani suits. They like a bit of opulence, the good gear. Our boys probably wouldn’t know what Armani was. It doesn’t interest them.”