Don't call it liposuction

"Survivor's" Richard throws down the cash for a tighter bod; Anne Heche might be back in boytown after all. Plus: Madonna gets down on her knees before the U.N.

By Amy Reiter
Published August 28, 2000 4:55PM (EDT)

Has the world seen the last of Richard Hatch's blurry, blubbery naked booty?

Will you ever again get lost in the folds of his stretchy flesh? Watch as it jiggles in mud and wiggles as he dances a strange sort of jig?

Thanks to the wonders of cosmetic surgery, the answer to those last two questions is ... no. Although Hatch has yet to lay his conniving hands on his $1 million check, the ultimate "Survivor" has already splashed out on a little nip and tuck since departing the island of Pulau Tiga.

"I did not have liposuction," he insists, combating rampant fat-removal rumors.

"But," he reveals to TV Guide Online, "if you saw that flopping around stuff on the last episode, I had that removed. It's called resection and it's skin from having lost over 140 pounds that could not retract."

Hatch, who reportedly was already shopping around a book about his time on the island as the last episode aired (I know, he swore he had no plans -- you believed him?), says the surgery took place on May 9. It was absolutely necessary, he says, because the flesh "had been stretched past the point of ever being able to come back."

Sort of like our cultural self-respect now that "Survivor" has had its way with us ...

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To play or not to play ...

"He was offered it and might end up doing it, but he might also play in the NBA."

-- Robin Williams' manager David Steinberg on whether his client will play Liberace in an upcoming biopic.

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Straight scoop on Anne and Ellen?

That's no lesbian breakup ... that's a man, baby?

Word around Hollywood is that Anne Heche and Ellen DeGeneres split up over a man, despite their contention that no third party was involved.

But while Mitchell Fink of the New York Daily News reports that Heche is rumored to be involved with a fella on the set of her new flick, "John Q," the New York Post's Cindy Adams contends that the interloper is none other than Vince Vaughn.

It's not the first time Heche's name has been linked with Vaughn's. Rumors of a budding romance between the two stars kicked up back in 1998, when they were filming the remake of "Psycho," but fizzled fast in the face of Heche's apparently abiding love for DeGeneres.

DeGeneres, for her part, is said to be taking the breakup rather hard. Lunching at Orso's in Los Angeles with her agent as word of the split hit the press, DeGeneres looked "physically agitated, distracted, nervous," according to Adams.

Maybe it's time to call Steve Martin and get that "After Anne" support group off the ground.

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Aged action

"In America, they tell me I am still a young boy -- 'Look at Clint Eastwood,' they say."

-- Jackie Chan, 46, on how Hollywood likes its action stars a little on the grizzled side.

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Juicy bits

Martin Scorsese's getting fashionable. The director is set to direct "Gucci: A House Divided," about the Italian fashion family's ascent from poor farm folk to the upper echelon of haute couture. According to Variety, the film will be based on Gerald McKnight's 1987 book of the same name, but is likely to include the recent arrest of the family's matriarch for arranging the murder of a fellow Gucci family member. Who says cement shoes aren't in fashion?

After a four-year court battle, Woody Harrelson has been cleared of marijuana charges by a jury in Kentucky -- thus avoiding a possible 30-day jail sentence. The environmentally inclined actor had deliberately flouted state law by planting hemp seeds in an attempt to prove that there is a difference between industrial hemp and cannabis. But now that it's all over, the actor admits he was "afraid, there was a very real possibility of going to jail." He added that he's "not planting any more seeds. I don't want to go through this again." In other words, he's over the hemp hump.

Madonna to the United Nations: Help me. The Material Mom wants to be master over her own domain name, and she has filed a formal complaint to the U.N.'s World Intellectual Property Organization to enlist its help in wresting ownership of away from New Jersey entrepreneur Dan Parisi, who until recently used it for a porn site. "We do not believe that because Ms. Ciccone named her act after the Virgin Mary that gives her the right to stop any other party from using the word 'madonna' as a title of their Web site," Parisi said, adding that he intends to turn to domain name over to the Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital in Lincoln, Neb. But Madonna's publicist, Liz Rosenberg, contends that the singer has a right to the name because she "happens to be the most famous Madonna in the world." Anyone else having we're-more-popular-than-Jesus flashbacks?

Amy Reiter

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