Insider

UPDATED 08/14/2000 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 08/14/2000 at 01:00 AM EDT

Television's sexiest Manhattan-based quartet pack their Manolo Blahniks and head to Los Angeles for two Sex and the City episodes set to air next month. Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) checks out a movie deal in Hollywood. Naturally her sidekicks, played by Kim Cattrall, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis, tag along for a much needed vacation. Or as executive producer Michael Patrick King says, "The other girls are going because they've gone through every eligible bachelor in New York." The 11-day filming session includes a stop at the Playboy Mansion in L.A.—yes, expect to see Hugh Hefner—but not at the Democratic National Convention. "Just getting our girls anywhere near Gore would be too much excitement for the White House," says King.

Matthew McConaughey rushed to the front door to be the first to greet two-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong at a celebration bash thrown by Nike in L.A. The actor and the athlete, both Texans, are longtime friends as well as golfing buddies. By the way, McConaughey was dateless at the event, although he has been linked recently with Salli Richardson (Family Law). Both actors, however, have insisted publicly that they are just friends.

Not content with simply sharing Sunninghill Park, their home outside London, where they live in separate quarters, Sarah Ferguson and her ex-husband, Prince Andrew, now have the same fitness guru. Personal trainer Josh Salzmann, whom the Duchess of York has called her "secret weapon," has been seen in London slipping into Buckingham Palace—where Andrew spends most of the week—to put the prince through his paces. From time to time the royal also works out at Salzmann's gym in Surrey, as does Fergie, who recommended the strapping Salzmann. In fact the ex-couple's sessions occasionally follow one another.

Hot young leading man Heath Ledger is apparently not just a Patriot—he's a swell patron too. A few weeks back the Australian actor walked into West Hollywood's Gamine salon for a haircut from owner James Kendall. But when it came time to pay the $85 tab, Ledger found he barely had enough money to cover the trim. He apologized about not being able to leave a tip and left. Three days later, Ledger pulled up in front of the salon, dashed in, handed Kendall a $20 bill and said, "Thanks for the cut, mate."

Fast takes: Courteney Cox Arquette Arquette recently visited hubby David Arquette in Vancouver on the set of his comedy See Spot Run. Despite talk that she would do a cameo in the film, which also stars Michael Clarke Duncan, I now hear that she'll stay on the sidelines....

Patrick Stewart (X-Men) tells us that his reps are in preliminary talks for the Brit to star in a movie based on J.K. Rowling's bestselling novels about a magical boy named Harry Potter....

Harrison Ford sampled the wild mushroom-and-artichoke bruschetta at Chadwick, his son Ben's newly opened Beverly Hills restaurant, and later shook hands with the staff.

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