October 19, 1998 12:00 PM

It’s simply not true that Hollywood’s A-listers go to big, flashy galas like the Oscars and the Emmys just to wallow in orgies of self-congratulation. Sometimes they go to tasteful affairs like the Beverly Hills bash thrown Oct. 4 by the Museum of Television & Radio just to wallow in orgies of self-congratulation. The congratulatees were Jerry Seinfeld and producer-writer David E. Kelley, whose string of hits includes Chicago Hope, The Practice and Ally McBeal. Among some 800 guests were Calista Flockhart and her Ally McBeal cast-mates, Dylan McDermott and his Practice associates, Bette Midler, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and, oh, yes, Michelle Pfeiffer, who is married to Kelley. The crowd witnessed moments of both hyperbole—Mario Thomas, a museum trustee, described Seinfeld and Kelley as “geniuses”—and humility. “I am amazed and overwhelmed that people want to say thanks beyond just laughing,” said Seinfeld, “because, really, laughing is enough.”

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