updated 09/02/2002 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/02/2002 AT 01:00 AM EDT

A Few Good Men?

Gwyneth complains about her love life and gets the Brits in a twist

Shakespeare in love? According to Gwyneth Paltrow, he may have been the last Englishman in that state. In an interview with the British magazine Now, the actress complained that during her summer in the U.K. she had been asked out on only two dates. "[In England] if someone asks you out they're really going out on a limb," Paltrow, 29, told Now. "In America it happens all the time. It's no big deal.... It's just dinner, for God's sake." Paltrow did call her two Brit suitors—A Knight's Tale's James Purefoy, 38, and an unnamed mystery man—"charming."

Predictably, the British press blasted Paltrow for dissing their lads; The Times called her an "icon of American arrogance." Even her fellow Yankee actresses think Paltrow's problem may be Gwyneth-specific. "I've had a few English boyfriends," says Heather Graham, 32, "and they were aggressive enough to ask me out."

Hoping to leave the furor behind, Paltrow went for a motorcycle spin and dinner with singer Bryan Adams, 42, on Aug. 15. Adams's rep says, "They're just hanging out, not dating." Not that it matters to the Brit scorecard—Adams is Canadian.

A Family Matter
When 18-year-old Robert Marcato's mother, Regan, 36, died of colon cancer on July 30, he turned to his best friend for comfort. The friend? Kelly Osbourne, 17, daughter of rocker Ozzy, 53, and Sharon, 49. The Osboumes took Marcato in and have pledged to finance his college education. (Family reps say Marcato's father has not been a relevant part of his son's life.) Marcato, who appeared sporadically on the family's MTV show, will become a regular in the second season. How is he adjusting to life with TV's most famous family? Sharon, who's battling colon cancer, tells People, "He's doing so well. He's in a really good place mentally. I'm the luckiest person in the world to have him in my life. My whole family is. He's a good boy."

This Song's for You, Dad
Like her clandestine Hawaiian marriage to Nicolas Cage on Aug. 10, Lisa Marie Presley tried to make her return to Grace-land a quiet affair. From the mansion's windows, Lisa Marie watched a candlelight vigil commemorating the 25th anniversary of her father's death and later made her only public appearance at an Aug. 16 Elvis tribute concert at Memphis's Pyramid arena. Presley, 34, told the crowd of 14,000: "I wrote a song to my father. I'm not going to sing it, but it's recorded." Then Elvis's only child exited the stage and the taped lyrics of her untitled homage filled the arena: "You made me/I love you/ You're still lovely/You were lovely then."

The Fat Lady Yells
Are you ready for Jerry Springer: The Opera? British composer Richard Thomas, 37, has created a highbrow take on the daytime TV trashfest, and the production, currently playing at Scotland's Edinburgh Fringe Festival, is a hit with critics and audiences. "It's got tragedy. It's got violence," says Thomas, who got the idea from watching the show. "There are people screaming at each other, and you can't understand what they're saying." And though the title character gets shot and banished to purgatory, Springer is tickled pink. "Our show has always been the stuff of opera—gender confusion, farce, infidelity and dysfunction," says Springer, 58, who will catch the zany 21-character production this weekend. Besides, he cracks, "I've finally got some culture."

Vince Neil: Crüed Words for Crowd
After playing a set of his heavy-metal classics during an Aug. 15 concert in Steamboat Springs, Colo., Mötley Crüe frontman Vince Neil, 41, tried something different. He launched into "Look in Her Eyes," a romantic ballad from his 1993 solo album Exposed. When the fans didn't sing along, an enraged Neil "called the crowd a bunch of [bleeping] losers," says nightclub manager Jim Turczynski, and "threw the microphone at the people" before storming offstage. Fans retaliated by "egging his bus," says Turczynski. Neil's rep Burt Stein calls the story "ludicrous," saying the rocker left when someone hurled an object at him. Adds Stein: "Vince adores his fans."

Too Sexy on the Sidelines?

CBS Sports reporter Jill Arrington doesn't understand the fuss. As she sees it, the racy photos of her in the September issue of men's magazine FHM are simply keen marketing. "It was a great way to promote the upcoming football season," says Arrington, 30. "It was nothing sexual."

But others, like ESPN's Robin Roberts, see Arrington's photo spread as a step back for female journalists. "It was disappointing," said Roberts, recently named newsreader for ABC'sGood Morning America. Arrington says she's earned the right to bare arms: "My looks might get the attention, but I have to ask the right questions to get the respect."

You Say Goodbye...
At first it seemed like a shocking snub. On Aug. 16 it was announced that Paul McCartney was turning down an invitation to be a 2002 Kennedy Center honoree, the first time in the gala's 25-year history that an artist had bowed out. But according to George Stevens Jr., creator of the Honors, McCartney's excuse was legit. "His niece is getting married that weekend," Stevens told PEOPLE. "She scheduled her wedding the same weekend [as the event], so he was in a difficult place. Paul said he travels so much, he really tries to make his family commitments." McCartney, 60, will be honored in 2003, and, in his stead, Paul Simon will be feted at the Dec. 8 ceremony. So how does Simon, 60, feel about being a replacement? "Honored and happy," says Simon's rep Dan Klores. "He was essentially told he was going to get it next year, but he knew they were in a crunch, so why not help out?"


with Sarah Hughes

After you win an Olympic gold medal in figure skating, what's there left to do? If you're Sarah Hughes, 17, you head back to New York's Great Neck North High School to start your senior year. Scoop caught up with America's newest ice queen as she heads off to crack the books.

Now that you've won an Olympic gold, do your friends treat you differently?
I'm just a student like everybody else. At school I'm not Sarah the skater, I'm Sarah the student. I'm there to talk about school, fashion and boys.

But you've got to know that you stand out from the crowd?
I try not to draw attention to myself. People at school know who I am, so I try not to be too flashy with how I dress. I try to blend in.

So what do you wear?
On the first day of school I'll wear a white skirt, navy flip-flops and a navy top. I love Juicy Couture T-shirts. When I find them on sale, I buy a lot of them. My dad's not too happy when he gets the bill.

What will be the highlights of the school year?
I'm really looking forward to my senior prom, because I missed my junior prom. I did go to last year's senior prom with a friend—a friend friend, not a boyfriend.

What's your favorite subject?
Science and math. There are no gray areas. There are laws of physics; there aren't always laws of life. But I'm most looking forward to European history. I've been to Paris, Milan, Venice, Budapest, so learning more about them will be interesting.

Are you a good student?
My oldest sister went to Harvard, one brother goes to Cornell, the other to Ithaca. I have to keep the standards high for my younger sisters. I do my homework and motivate them to learn.

Any homework tips?
Don't study with the TV on.



Bargain hunters, listen up: Geri Halliwell, the Spice Girl formerly known as Ginger, has slashed the asking price on her Georgian mansion in suburban London from $6.4 million to a rock-bottom $4.9 million! Halliwell, 30, originally bought the three-story, seven-bedroom converted monastery in 1998 for $3 million and then spent $1.5 million on renovations to create her sprawling dream house, complete with a formal scarlet-hued dining room (above), marble floors, gym and staff's quarters. The pop star put the home on the market last year but got no offers.

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