By Tom Cunneff
May 21, 2001 12:00 PM

George Clooney turned 40 on Sunday, May 6, but he began celebrating the night before. Joined by his ER buddy Noah Wyle and his costars from the upcoming Ocean’s 11, Brad Pitt and Matt Damon (leading lady Julia Roberts was in New York City), Clooney had a blowout at his Hollywood Hills home, where the movie’s producer Jerry Weintraub gave him a restored 1974 Cadillac station wagon worth about $30,000. The birthday boy’s reaction? “He went nuts over it,” says one partygoer.

Some may wonder whether she can really sing, but a source who has heard parts of Lisa Marie Presley’s long-awaited debut album is all shook up. The source, who has no stake in the project, says she shows off a deep, sexy voice and a nice way with a tune on the yet-to-be-titled disc, which has been two years in the making. She cowrote all the music, primarily with producer Glen Ballard, the man behind Alanis Morissette’s breakthrough album Jagged Little Pill, but Presley herself penned all of the lyrics for the album, which could be out by this fall. One ballad, about her famous father, contains the line, “I want you to know I haven’t forgotten you.” It’s safe to say the King would be proud.

After preview audiences gave him a big thumbs down, Steven Spielberg is ready with a new edit of his latest project: a plan to build his wife, Kate Capshaw, an indoor horse-riding ring in the posh L.A. neighborhood of Brentwood, near their home. Area residents objected to the original plan, calling the proposed 27,000-sq.-ft., five-story structure a neighborhood buster. “We think the new plans will be received very positively,” says Andy Spahn, an executive at DreamWorks SKG, Spielberg’s studio. “Everyone will be satisfied.” Residents will decide for themselves when they see the revise in a week or two.

What a year it’s been for Drew Barrymore: First her house burned down, then she and Tom Green claimed they got married in secret. Now she has quit smoking, about eight years after she started. She gave up cigarettes three months ago, she tells us, with the help of Yefim Shubentsov of Brookline, Mass., who helps people break bad habits and has also worked with Billy Joel and Courteney Cox Arquette. In a two-hour session costing $65, Shubentsov, who has no formal medical training, employs something called “bio-energetics,” which involves waving his hands over a client while exhaling loudly. Afterwards the client is supposedly free of addiction. Barrymore can’t explain it, but insists, “Whatever it is, it works!”

Arnold Vosloo’s career is waxing, but he isn’t. Returning as the title character and ultimate grumpy old man in the smash The Mummy Returns, starring Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz, the South African actor had to keep his body as smooth as an egg. Vosloo first tried waxing but couldn’t handle the pain, so instead he had his entire head, face, chest, arms, legs, back and even his rear shaved as often as twice daily during the five-month shoot.