While in rehab, ubiquitous Ben Affleck has been here, there, everywhere
For the most part, in medicine, you can be an inpatient or an outpatient. But actor Ben Affleck, who on July 29 checked into Promises, a ritzy Malibu rehab center, to wrestle with an alcohol problem, seems to have invented a new category: the out-and-about patient. Since starting therapy Affleck has taken full advantage of a policy that allows patients accompanied by a staffer to leave the Promises premises. Shopping in Malibu Aug. 3? Yep, that was Affleck. At the Teen Choice Awards nine days later? “I wasn’t supposed to be here, but it was important to me,” he told the audience. The peripatetic patient also caught a screening of Planet of the Apes in Marina del Rey and days later strolled with his mom, Chris. Heck, he even made a baseball game on Aug. 21 in Anaheim, where the Angels played Affleck’s hometown team, the Boston Red Sox. Although Affleck’s therapy regimen may seem a little unusual, 9 out of 10 doctors agree that a Sox victory—they won the game, 8 to 5—is the best medicine for any true Bostonian.
Like Audrey with Tattoos
She famously wears her husband’s blood in a pendant around her neck, recently gave him his-and-hers burial plots as an anniversary present and once told a reporter, “Before I die, I want to taste everyone in the world.” Clearly, Angelina Jolie is no Audrey Hepburn. Nonetheless, the colorful, controversial actress—and wife of colorful, controversial actor Billy Bob Thornton—is the latest celeb to help out the UN. Appointed an official Goodwill Ambassador for refugees at a ceremony in Geneva on Aug. 27, Jolie, who has visited with refugees in several nations, was subdued and serious. “In Sierra Leone I met people whose limbs had been cut off,” she said, adding that “my impressions are hard to cope with, so I write them down.” Excerpts from her journal are on the Web at http://www.usaforunhcr.org.
In Search of an Emotional Rescue
Can’t get much satisfaction? Concerned that you can’t always get what you want? Headed, perhaps, for your 19th nervous breakdown? You’re not alone: Rocker Mick Jagger is cranky after happily sitting for an interview, only to see himself turn up as the coverboy on Saga, a British publication for seniors—apparently not the audience Jagger, though himself 58, had in mind. Jagger, said his publicist, is “very disappointed” that Saga and the journalist had not had “the courtesy to ask permission.”
Hey, just cool out, Mick, counsels Betsy Carter, editor-in-chief of My Generation, a magazine published by AARP (formerly known as the American Association of Retired Persons): “He shouldn’t think people don’t notice that he is 58. He shouldn’t worry about it.” Actually, he’s in good company. Paul McCartney, Cheryl Tiegs and Jeff Bridges have all graced the covers of seniors magazines. “Our magazines are not just about ulcers and hemorrhoids,” says Carter.
I’ll Take Two on Gilligan’s Aisle
Scene II: A tropic night, a sandy beach, a three-hour tour. As the Professor stews in his hut, Gilligan finally puts the moves on Mary Ann….
Okay, it doesn’t happen quite that way. But in Gilligan’s Island: The Musical—a stage show created by the sitcom’s producer Sherwood Schwartz that just wrapped a run in Los Angeles and is preparing for a possible tour—there’s love and lust among the coconuts. Why tamper with genius? “So you have romantic things to sing about,” says composer Laurence Juber. Still, at least one knowledgeable source had trouble accepting the hook-up. “She might go with the Professor, but Gilligan?” asks Dawn Wells, who played Mary Ann on TV. “Come on. Gilligan would have been her best buddy, her brother, you know?” Sorry, little buddy.
Pashmina may be passé, but today’s cutting-edge Hollywood woman is getting that warm and fuzzy feeling from Tinseltown’s newest trend: knitting.
Julianne Moore, Daryl Hannah, Debra Messing and more than 50 other needle-wielding celebs are contributing squares to a blanket for charity in a plan dreamed up by Hollywood knitting guru Edith Eig. “She’s the Deepak Chopra of knitting,” says Caroline Rhea, the comedian who is taking over Rosie O’Donnell‘s talk show next year. Eig will join the 7-in.-by-9-in. pieces into a blanket to be auctioned on eBay in October to benefit Warm Up America, which provides blankets for the needy.
“I always wanted to knit but never thought I could until I met Edith,” says Hannah. Shelley Morrison—manic Rosario on Will & Grace—offers this purl of wisdom: “Knitting is also spiritual. I can be in touch with my inner self.”
Blake Seeks a Retreat
With his Studio City house a stop on Hollywood’s Crime Scene Tours since the unsolved May shooting death of his wife, Bonny Lee Bakley, actor Robert Blake, 67, has decided to move. Blake, who has not been ruled out as a suspect, told a local TV station, “A bus drives by here, and they say ‘Yeah, well, we just went up to the Manson place…and O.J.’s place, and now we’re coming by Robert Blake’s house.’ ” The asking price for the property, including a guest house, is $1.1 million. “I can’t imagine how he stayed there,” says listing agent Patty Ray. “People stare and look in his windows—it’s like living in a fishbowl.”
In the Name of the Father
On tour in Europe, U2’s Bono flew home to Dublin nightly to visit his ailing father, former postal worker Bob Hewson, who later died of cancer on Aug. 21 at age 75. After leading the funeral procession in the Irish seaside town of Howth, Bono (born Paul Hewson) and his guitarist the Edge (David Evans) sang a duet of their ballad “Sometimes You Can’t Make It on Your Own.” Shortly after his father passed away, Bono performed in London, where he told the audience, “I want to thank my old man for giving me this voice. He was a fine tenor and always said if I had his voice, who knows what might happen.”
with Anthony Hopkins
Ten years ago Anthony Hopkins linked himself forever with fava beans in Silence of the Lambs. Next came this year’s sequel, Hannibal. Now Hopkins has signed up for a third course: He will again portray the quirkily carnivorous shrink Hannibal Lecter in Red Dragon, a prequel to the other two that will begin shooting this fall. An Internet poll recently named Hopkins, 63, the scariest screen villain of all time. How, Scoop asked, does he feel about that?
Do we call you Sir Anthony?
Oh God, no. Just Tony.
Why do audiences love Hannibal?
I am fascinated, and I think we all are, by the odd and the quirky and the dark side of ourselves. I guess audiences go along to watch and give themselves a fright. Hannibal Lecter gives them a fright as did Bela Lugosi or Anthony Perkins.
Ever worry about influencing your audience?
If millions of people come to see it and nobody is acting in an aberrant way, then what’s the problem?
Do you miss Jodie Foster?
I was disappointed when Jodie turned down Hannibal. I think we all were. She said she had her reasons. I was very pleased when they chose Julianne Moore [to replace her]. I think that she is a remarkable performer.
What did you learn about serial killers by playing a serial killer?
Nothing. I didn’t want to know anything about them. Hannibal is a fictional character.
Anything surprising about your own diet?
I am actually not a meat eater. I eat a bit of fish. I am a vegetarian, almost. Let’s say that I am a fisharian. I am not Hannibal Lecter—I prefer some pasta, some risotto.
ON THE BLOCK
MADONNA‘S LUNGCHING PAD
Back when her biggest gig was singing into a soap-on-a-rope, Madonna lived in this 2,739-sq.-ft. Rochester Hills, Mich., two-story colonial with her father, retired engineer Silvio “Tony” Ciccone, stepmother Joan and seven siblings. The four-bedroom home is up for sale on eBay until Sept. 20. Minimum bid is $324,000—about what scalpers were charging for tickets to Madonna‘s latest tour. Tony Ciccone, now living on a vineyard in Suttons Bay, Mich., sold the home in July for $269,924 to a real estate investor who promptly put it up for sale again. Papa may lack his daughter’s commercial knack: On the Internet, bids zoomed past $1 million.