updated 08/21/2000 AT 01:00 AM EDT
•originally published 08/21/2000 AT 01:00 AM EDT
Not to be outdone by the wedding of fellow NBC sitcom star Jennifer Aniston, Will & Grace's Debra Messing, an Emmy nominee for best lead actress in a comedy, is planning nuptials of her own. She and actor-writer Daniel Zelman, 33, her boyfriend of eight years, are planning a late September wedding. Neither Messing, 32, nor Zelman, who share a home in the Hollywood Hills, has been married before.
So much for the power of the press and professional courtesy. A few weeks before the release of the box office hit Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, the staff of The Oprah Winfrey Show—on which Eddie Murphy was a guest—tipped off Dateline NBC coanchor Stone Phillips that he was the object of Grandma Klump's affections in the movie. Chris and Paul Weitz, members of The Klumps' writing team and the duo behind American Pie, came up with the idea of having the randy granny (played, like the rest of the adult Klumps, by Murphy) rave about her fantasies of making love to the 45-year-old telejournalist. At any rate, Phillips is being a good sport about the ribald scene: he says he finds the idea "very amusing."
Sharon Stone and director Paul Verhoeven (who is celebrating the $26.4 million opening-weekend grosses for his science-fiction thriller Hollow Man) dined in L.A. on Aug. 7 to talk about the possibility that he will direct Basic Instinct 2. Verhoeven was at the helm of the original 1992 hit, and Stone has already signed to reprise the role of Catherine Tramell in the sequel.
Fast takes: Meg Ryan and husband Dennis Quaid may have separated, but it seems they're determined to remain committed parents. The estranged couple were spotted taking son Jack, 8, to a showing of The Klumps in Santa Monica. Quaid and Ryan also attended church together the same day....
Meanwhile, Ryan's frequent companion Russell Crowe, who was rocking with his band 30 Odd Foot of Grunts in Austin, Texas, on Aug. 4, gladly accepted a stuffed dog thrown onstage by a fan—and used it to wipe his face and arms, which were as sweaty as if he'd been fighting in the Colosseum....
Eighteen-year-old Leelee Sobieski, who starred in last year's CBS mini-series Joan of Arc and has been busy shooting movies nonstop (her current project is The Glass House, a thriller in which she plays an orphaned teenager), will soon be taking a break. The private school student wants to start studying for her SAT exams in New York City.