Britney, One More Time

Ah, Britney. It's that time again. She has a new album, In the Zone. She sings not-so-coyly about love and lust and has been busy posing wearing not so much. So Scoop, bucking the tide, decided to turn the tables, and asked the often-controversial 21-year-old what she thinks is sexy. Quick now, no thinking....

Sexiest guy? "Brad Pitt or George Clooney. Definitely."

Date? "When one of my ex-boyfriends and I went on a horse-carriage ride in the mountains and it was the most beautiful thing in the whole world. I'll never forget it. All the stars were out."

Crush? "Heath Ledger. I think he's really cute."

Kiss? "Probably when a guy just comes up to you and grabs you and kisses you and makes you feel really vulnerable and does it very spontaneously."

Place to be kissed? "Your neck. Definitely."

Sexiest thing about a guy? "I like the hair and the neck, and I like being able to twist the hair right up above the neck—that's a real sexy soft spot. I like that."

Song? "'Wicked Game' by Chris Isaak. Definitely."

Drink? "Martini. My mom likes 'em. I'm trying to get around to adjusting."

Outfit? "Jeans and a cool T-shirt. That's cool when a girl doesn't go all out."

That said, Spears's new CD will probably draw some attention for its lyrics. For starters, there's the song "(I Got That) Boom Boom." And boom boom would be, exactly?

"It means basically I got the boom boom—it's the package," Spears explains. "You're, like, bootylicious." Girls from the South—she proudly counts herself among them—"have big rumps," she adds.

And the lyric (from "Breathe on Me") "It's so hot. I need some air/ Don't stop because we're halfway there"?

"I'm just meaning—let's get in the mood now. Come take me down, please. Just basically... devour me." Okay. We were worried we didn't understand.

And then there's the song "Touch of My Hand," which is about—well, it's about to get a lot of press, in all probability. That and, er, self-gratification. "I think if you say you don't do it, you're lying," says Spears. "I think it's a positive thing to indulge in yourself in a sexual way sometimes. I don't do it all the time. It's life. Guys can talk about it. Why can't girls? It's a positive thing.

"I think it's positive for girls not to depend on guys. Being alone—I'm one to say!—you really start to figure out what makes you happy. And then you're able to give more to other people.... When you turn yourself on, that really is what turns the guy on. So just make yourself happy and let them just kind of follow up after you."

It wouldn't be a Spears album without a little well-timed controversy.

CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION

It was a bloody fight in Vegas, but it wasn't in the ring. On Nov. 10 Christian Slater ended up with a gash over his left ear inflicted by his wife, producer Ryan Haddon, according to police. Witnesses say that at about 7 a.m. Slater stumbled out of an elevator at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, bleeding and saying, "My wife's f—-ing crazy" While the actor, a guest at the luxe property, was quickly hustled outside by employees to await an ambulance, officers arrived and later arrested Haddon. A police source said Slater initially told cops his wife threw a glass at him during an argument, but then changed his story when told she would be arrested because of Nevada's strict laws regarding domestic violence suspects. Slater's second account—which a source says he's sticking to—maintains that it was all an "accident," that he and Haddon were "joking around," and that the glass slipped from her hand. Slater, 34, received nine stitches at the Desert Springs Hospital, while Haddon, 32, was fingerprinted, photographed, booked on a misdemeanor battery-domestic violence charge and, 12 hours later, released from the Clark County Detention Center.

SIEGFRIED: ROY IMPROVING

Siegfried without Roy? It's hard to imagine. But at the American Choreography Awards in L.A. on Nov. 9, there he was, Siegfried Fischbacher, without partner Roy Horn by his side. "In 44 years it is the first time I did something on my own," Fischbacher told PEOPLE. "But I asked Roy [about attending]...and he squeezed my hand." According to Fischbacher, "things are...getting better" for the entertainer, who was mauled by a tiger during the duo's Las Vegas show five weeks ago. Officials at UCLA Medical Center, where Horn was transferred Oct. 28, will say only that he is in serious but stable condition. (His rep denied a report that Horn was in a coma.) Larry King is expected to emcee a Horn tribute during a cancer benefit at Vegas's Mirage casino Nov. 20.

Paris Hilton: Caught on Camcorder

Once again, class, let's go over the basics: If you want to be a celebrity, (a) get an agent, (b) tip heavily and (c) no matter what, do not allow yourself to be taped during sex. The tape will pop up on the Internet. Slow learners, talk to Rob Lowe, Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee after class.

The Web's latest accidental XXX star? Socialite Paris Hilton, whose romp with former boyfriend Rick Salomon is making the digital rounds. The clip, shot three years ago, is green, grainy and, alas, graphic. Hilton and her family are "completely devastated," says her rep Siri Garber. Though Salomon, 36, an Internet entrepreneur who later married (and then split from) Shannen Doherty, shot the video, he claims not to have made it public.

On Dec. 2 Hilton will make her legit TV debut on The Simple Life, in which she and pal Nicole Richie live with a family in Arkansas for one month. It's much tamer, except for the chicken plucking. The tape, says Richie, "is just a horrible thing." Adds Garber: "What nobody realizes is that [Paris] is actually kind of shy."

Incredible Shrinking Lips

Angelina Jolie has launched a thousand lips in Hollywood. But in Britain, one star has done an about-face: TV actress Leslie Ash had lip reduction—and went public. After plumping her pout with collagen, then getting another injection last year, an adverse reaction swelled Ash's lips. They "just went out of control," she told British magazine Top Santé. So the actress had corrective treatment to shrink them. Will it spark a deflationary trend? Stay tuned.

POP QUIZ
Hugh Grant

Playing a British prime minister in Love Actually, Hugh Grant, 43, is as fascinated with the state of romance as the state of the nation. Scoop took the opportunity to talk issues during a chat in London.

Is there a lesson to be learned in Love Actually?
[Writer-director] Richard Curtis really believes that people can fall in love, do fall in love. Oddly, people like me find it quite hard.

Is this a British dilemma?
When you are in France or Italy, romance is very high on everyone's daily agenda. Much higher than television or golf or going to get sordid in the pub or eating curry or being nice to your dog, which are more classic British pastimes—like gardening.

Sounds like the French have the right idea.
It somehow makes every woman you meet in life more potentially of romantic interest. Sexier. If this film does that a bit in our drab sort of Protestant British culture, then fantastic. And then maybe that will apply to America.

So what does love mean to you, and how has that changed through the years?
That is not a question I want to ramble about.

Then let's talk about acting. You recently said that you might give it up.
I don't know. I just got tired. I keep thinking every day I am going to wake up and go, "Oh, yes, let's go and make a film." But I don't particularly feel that way. I think you just go a bit mad after a bit. You want a bit of privacy.

Are you tired of fame?
I wouldn't go that far. But the desire to switch that off becomes more urgent.

You play a prime minister. What would you do as one in real life?
My policies would range from extremely left wing to extremely right wing. For instance, I would pull the plug on television.

But you love television.
I know. But it has ruined my life. And I think it has ruined everybody's life to a certain extent. So telly is gone. I would also raise taxes massively and pour money into education and hospitals. And everyone would be a little bit poorer.

ON THE BLOCK
RYAN'S ROOFTOP RETREAT
PRICE: $9.7 Million
PLACE: New York City
SPECS: It may not look like much from the street, but the three most important words in real estate—location, location, location—allow Meg Ryan to sell this pair of adjoining penthouse apartments for a bundle. In the middle of the city's fashionable SoHo neighborhood, the apartments, which Ryan bought after her 2001 divorce from Dennis Quaid, offer more than 7,000 sq. ft. of interior space, outdoor terraces and a fireplace.