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INTO THE NIGHT / BILL HIGGINS

ACEd Out on Respect Perhaps, but They Still Got Some Stars

January 19, 1994|BILL HIGGINS

The CableACE Awards aren't the Oscars, but the highly touted information superhighway helped give the show something to be cocky about.

The Scene: The 15th annual National CableACE Awards Sunday at the Pantages theater, followed by a tented party at a parking lot across the street. To put the award in perspective, an ACE is to an Oscar what a Home Shopping Network zirconia brooch is to a Tiffany necklace. As with all award shows, though, it's a chance for show-business types to have their egos detailed.

Who Was There: Among the 1,200 at the show (and maybe at the party) were Ted Turner and Jane Fonda, the royal family of cable; lesser mortals included Kiefer Sutherland, Martin Mull, Larry King, Garry Shandling, Melissa Gilbert, Bruce Boxleitner, Forest Whitaker, Stockard Channing, Eric Roberts, James Woods, Paula Poundstone, Harry Connick Jr., Brian Dennehy, Patricia Arquette, Decker Anstrom and HBO's Michael Fuchs, who received the governor's award.

Local Color: As the limos detoured around the funky side streets near Yucca Street, the prostitutes yelled, "Hey, baby, come on over here!"

The Setting: The show and party had spectacular locales. Lit in turquoise, magenta and gold, the Baroque interior of the Pantages never looked better. The party was held in a dramatic 23,000-square-foot white tent hung with muslin canopies and done in an Art Deco motif. Other touches included dozens of queen palms, strolling musicians, huge floral arrangements of lilies and gardenias, plus a 12-piece band playing Motown hits.

The Attitude: OK, so we're the

Rodney Dangerfield of award shows. We get no respect. Go ahead, make fun of us. We're taking over the world.

Dress Mode: Black tie, or rather a black tide, since most of the women wore black as well. A standout exception was Penelope Ann Miller in a silver, floor-length strapless Vera Wang gown partly done in sequins.

Joke Beaten Into the Ground: The information superhighway. Co-host Sinbad had the best line early in the evening: "We're all going to be road kill if we don't get hip to it."

Chow: Massive buffet from Along Came Mary of smoked salmon served on griddle cakes, black and white ravioli, rack of lamb and coq au vin .

Tag Line: Matthew Modine, presenter of the evening's final award: "I don't have any television in my life. The best reason not to is the advertising, which is so terribly insulting. And for my children, I want them to read books."

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