Frolicking on the beaches of Thailand for her comedy sequel Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason really burned up Renée Zellweger. "I'm not great in the sun. That was a challenge: to shoot a scene in the water for six hours and then cover up my sun rash for the next six weeks," says Zellweger, 35. "All the English folk, who don't get so much sun usually, had their shirts off and were very proud of their blaring DayGlo-white [skin]. But I had at least 22 layers on because I'd burn through a hotel wall. I'm never going to live it down. I seriously looked like I was wearing a pup tent the whole time I was there."
Sarah Michelle Gellar had some Bill Murray-like Lost in Translation moments filming her horror movie The Grudge with Japanese director Takashi Shimizu in Tokyo. "That scene where the director is talking and talking and talking but the interpreter just says, '[Look in camera]' would happen constantly to me," says Gellar, 27, who plays an exchange student who learns the secret of a mysterious curse. "I kept thinking, Is that really all he said? I know there's something you're not telling me, like the part about where I suck or the part about how I had toilet paper stuck to my shoe.' "
He's only 4 years old, but Richard Gere's son Homer (with actress wife Carey Lowell) is starting to make all the right moves. "He's flipping me out because he plays chess. He doesn't think three moves ahead, but he senses danger and gets his pieces out of the way," says Gere, 55, currently starring in the romantic comedy [Shall We Dance?] with Jennifer Lopez. "The other day he was doing this incredible thing. He had a bowl of pasta. He'd eat some, then make a move, go back to eating pasta and then move [again]. It was like watching old guys in the park."
DISHING with DAME EDNA
With a new DVD, The Dame Edna Experience: The Complete Collection, and a Broadway show opening Nov. 21, the cross-dressing comic opined about style, celebrity and a few of her famous friends.
Have you kept up with the princes, Harry and William?
They call me Auntie Edna, though I have told them it makes me feel old. William once told me he liked "mature women" and gave me a spooky look. Since then, when we meet, it's air kisses only.
What do you think of America's royalty—Hollywood celebs?
They make me tense. They're so common and suffer from the horrible combination of too much money too soon with too little brains.
What's the greenroom at The Tonight Show with Jay Leno like?
Backstage is just a horrible little corridor. The dressing rooms are tiny, which may be why they give such tiny gift baskets—decent gifts wouldn't fit.
What about the other stars who have been on with you?
Sometimes I hear them through the wall in the next dressing room pathetically practicing funny things to say.
You're friends with Mel Gibson. What should he do next?
I am longing for Passion 2. Mel's people have already approached me to play a female rabbi who isn't mentioned in the Bible. In those days female achievers never got much of a mention.
Has Elton John ever borrowed eyewear from you?
The only thing Elton has ever borrowed was some herbal happy pills I had rattling around in my Prada purse. His style is all his own. He'll wear anything, as long as it's expensive—including that carroty wig, which I think ages him.
What about your wigs?
I have never worn a wig in my life! I have beautiful mauve hair, and with my unusual coloring, I flaunt it.
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