The Fix

Lara Flynn Boyle declares herself "100 percent for Bush," Picasso painting goes missing and Sylvester Stallone offers the world ... pudding.

By Salon Staff

Published May 20, 2004 10:30AM (EDT)

Afternoon Briefing:
The old man and the screen: Ernest Hemingway's only surviving son is cooperating with Heeltap Entertainment (who brought you the HBO movie "61*") and writer John Mulholland on a movie project about his father. The film, according to Patrick Hemingway, will focus on the writer's complexity rather than the more storied extreme behavior: "The fact that he went off to his room and wrote and wrote and wrote is too often ignored in works about my father. He was a complicated man. Not perfect, not at all, just very, very complicated. It's great to see that being dealt with, instead of the same lazy caricature." (Hollywood Reporter)

Picasso perdu? Perhaps inspired by the recent sale of a Picasso at auction for $104 million, someone may have stolen a small work by the artist from the Pompidou Center in Paris. "Nature Morte à la Charlotte," a small piece worth $3 million, was last seen in a restoration studio in January and was declared missing on Friday. (BBC)

But are you willing to give him 15 percent? Lara Flynn Boyle is throwing her weight behind Bush for president. "I'm Irish Catholic, so a Democrat by blood," she says, "but I'm 100 percent for Bush. I want my president to be like my agent: Not afraid of people, but wants my best interest." (Us Weekly via IMDB)

Rocky peddles pudding Sylvester Stallone is using his hard-body fame to launch a line of nutritional supplements, including energy-enhancing capsules, a product designed to increase the body's production of testosterone -- and a nutritionally enhanced pudding. Stallone downed some of the pudding at a Planet Hollywood press conference, declaring "I feel young again. I wish my mother had made me this." (Reuters)

-- Karen Croft

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Morning Briefing:
Moore's new spinmeisters: Despite Disney's move to block it from distributing Michael Moore's anti-Bush flick "Fahrenheit 9/11," Miramax has hired several Clinton-Gore P.R. pros to help stave off Republican attacks on the film and its maker. On hand for the film's premiere at Cannes: former Hillary Rodham Clinton campaign press secretary Howard Wolfson, Al Gore advisor Michael Feldman, and Clinton White House advisors Mark Fabiani and Chris Lehane. "We knew the film would obviously draw a lot of political attention and attacks, and we try to do what's best for our movie," Miramax spokesman Matthew Hiltzik explained. "We felt that having the political expertise to withstand the political attacks would require hiring the people who have the most experience on that terrain." (Reliable Source)

Cosby stuns host: Appearing at a party celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Brown vs. Board of Education decision in D.C. on Monday night, Bill Cosby made the following comments about the results of the struggle for civil rights: "Ladies and gentlemen, the lower economic people are not holding up their end in this deal. These people are not parenting. They are buying things for kids -- $500 sneakers for what? And won't spend $200 for 'Hooked on Phonics.' ... They're standing on the corner and they can't speak English. I can't even talk the way these people talk: 'Why you ain't,' 'Where you is' ... And I blamed the kid until I heard the mother talk. And then I heard the father talk ... Everybody knows it's important to speak English except these knuckleheads ... You can't be a doctor with that kind of crap coming out of your mouth!" According to the Washington Post, "When Cosby finally concluded, Howard University President H. Patrick Swygert, NAACP President Kweisi Mfume, and NAACP legal defense fund head Theodore Shaw came to the podium looking stone-faced." (Reliable Source)

Another Bush book: New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd is set to publish her first book, "Bushworld," in August, in a release timed to coincide with the Democratic and Republican conventions. According to a press release put out by the book's publisher, Putnam, "In 'Bushworld,' Dowd draws upon her celebrated work to probe the world of Bush, Cheney, Ashcroft, Rumsfeld, Rice, Rove and company." (PRNewswire)

Money for the Material Girl: CBS has promised to pay Madonna a reported $10 million for the right to broadcast her Re-Invention Tour as a two-hour concert special, $4 million more than Michael Jackson got in 2001 for the right to broadcast his Madison Square Garden show. (Rush and Molloy)

Russert a hypocrite? WNYC radio host Brian Lehrer says that Tim Russert was guilty of exactly the thing he lashed out at Colin Powell about -- cutting off an interview to keep on schedule. "We were given precisely 10 minutes with Russert to tape an interview about his new book from 8 a.m. to 8:10 a.m. for broadcast at 10 a.m. last Friday," Lehrer says. "My impression was that he was very tightly scheduled, and had to do five or six interviews one after the other and his people were trying to keep him on schedule ... Eight minutes into the interview, a woman's voice cut in and barked, 'WNYC, you have eight seconds left!' And the interview came to a quick end." (Lloyd Grove's Lowdown)

Apprentice abuse? Things apparently went somewhat awry the other day during the filming of a marketing task in which "Apprentice 2" contestants were to give away tubes of new Crest Whitening Expressions Refreshing Vanilla Mint, in scratch-and-sniff boxes, in Washington Square Park. Seems the contestants hired a "plump 51-year-old woman" to haul boxes for them in exchange for a whopping $20 and the woman worked so hard, she collapsed. Actually, you really need to hear this description: "After about an hour, she had worked herself into a beet-faced, sweaty daze. At one point she tumbled over and began to roll around on the ground, chanting 'Crest! Crest!' over and over." Then she passed out. Trump Organization exec Carolyn Kepcher was reported to be particularly displeased with the group's decision to hire the woman. (Lloyd Grove's Lowdown)

What the Bush girls plan to do after they graduate, besides campaigning for their father: Jenna, the University of Texas grad, will move to Manhattan to do volunteer work with schoolchildren. Barbara, the Yale student, will intern with a pediatric AIDS program at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. (People magazine via Lloyd Grove's Lowdown)

Life after "Frasier": Kelsey Grammer is planning to return to network TV with a six-episode sketch show on Fox next season. "The Kelsey Grammer Sketch Show" will feature bits about "flatulent women, promiscuous brides and viciously uncaring psychiatrists," according to the British Web site "There's a certain type of thing people expect my name to be on," Grammer says. "And farting isn't one of them." (N.Y. Daily News)

When Paris met Ron Jeremy: Porn legend Ron Jeremy is not denying the rumor that, at the Los Angeles premiere for "Wonderland" last year, Paris Hilton asked to see his famous member, and that when he replied "I'll show you mine if you show me yours," they went into a stall in the ladies' room, with Bijou Phillips along for the ride, and traded flashes of breasts for schlong. ("It's definitely bigger than Sean's!" Phillips, who was dating Sean Lennon at the time, is said to have exclaimed.) Asked about the story, Jeremy said "no comment," but smiled wide. (Page Six)

Hair today: Tom Cruise's rep, and sister, Leeanne Devett, says that, as far as she knows, there's no truth to reports that Tom Cruise has denuded himself of all body hair except the locks on his head. "This is the first I have heard of this. Tom would not be part of this trend," she said. (Page Six)

Money Quote:
Lindsay Lohan on rumors that her "t--s are fake": "I'm 17! I would never get [breast implants]. I just wear fantastic Victoria's Secret bras." (Rush and Molloy)

-- Amy Reiter

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