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City of Angles

A 'Sweetheart' Deal

July 19, 2001|ANN O'NEILL

At Tuesday night's premiere of "America's Sweethearts" in Westwood, nobody missed the point that they've all been junketing for a film about movie junkets. "This is like something out of the film," said Stanley Tucci. "There's a whole lot of love in the room," chimed in MTV's Chris Connelly, as Eddie Van Halen and Valerie Bertinelli interrupted an interview to congratulate John Cusack.

As usual, Cusack was cooler than cool in his own goofy way. "That's a really good question," he said with a straight face when somebody asked how he would describe the inanity of a press junket to a space alien. "Pompeii comes to mind, I don't know why." Then, beholding the throng of screaming fans and scheming scribes, Cusack added, "You know, like about to be covered in lava?"

As for the all-time lamest junket question, Cusack offered up: "Are you really competitive with your sister?" (No.) Catherine Zeta-Jones said she once was asked, "Was your baby a mistake?" (No.)

Billy Crystal, who plays a publicist in the movie, told us it takes equal shots at everyone in the film industry and the entertainment media: "I think we all have it coming, you know? No one should be above it."

Speaking of junketeers, watch for cameos by KTTV's Lisa Joyner and Jeff Michael, PBS' Patrick Stoner and celebrity interviewer Byron Allen. And don't miss KTLA morning muffin Sam Rubin playing a journalist, just like he does on TV.

Closure

Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid have officially gone their own ways in civilized fashion. They've agreed to share custody of their 9-year-old son, Jack Henry, and not quibble over spousal support. They're even sharing the Jeep Cherokee. And Ryan gets to keep her jewelry and other "objects of personal adornment." We assume that includes the hair gel?

Quaid filed for divorce about a year ago after Ryan took up with "Proof of Life" co-star Russell Crowe. The movie and the relationship tanked. Everybody moved on. The divorce became final on May 31.

In August's issue of W magazine, Quaid says he and Ryan talk nearly every day and take their role as parents seriously enough not to carry any grudges. "Marriages and relationships get stuck, you know? Sometimes you can crack out of it and sometimes you can't," Quaid says.

"I got through shock. Depression. Anger. All the rest of that stuff. You can't stop talking to each other and pretend it never happened," Quaid says. "We do have a child together. You have to sort of swallow it and go on."

Cigars Behind Bars?

Some dads dare to go into the birthing room. Others pace in the waiting room. Environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. awaited the birth of his sixth child on Friday in a federal detention center in Puerto Rico. Kennedy's wife, Mary Richardson, kept in touch from the hospital. Kennedy, who is serving a 30-day sentence for trespassing while protesting Navy bombing exercises on Vieques Island, announced the baby boy's birth through his staff at the Waterkeeper Alliance in White Plains, N.Y. The youngest addition to the clan weighed in at 7 pounds, 12 ounces, and Kennedy joked that the name "Vieques Libre Kennedy" is under consideration.

Talking Turkey

Frances Kazan, the British-born wife of director Elia Kazan, recently published her third book, "Halide's Gift." She phoned last week from New York to chat about her life, her marriage and her new novel, published by Random House.

In 1986, her husband took her to his birthplace, Istanbul, and "introduced me to Turkey, and its layered history," said Kazan, who was immediately hooked. She completed her master's thesis on Halide Edib Adivar, a pioneering female author from the turn of the last century. Kazan's research provided the grist for the fictional account that became "Halide's Gift."

Supermen in Blue

It's a bird. It's a plane. It's the Dodgers.

On the pages of "Blue Power!"--a custom comic book made for the Dodgers--Tommy Lasorda leads a team of superhero baseball players on a mission to thwart an evil child genius from destroying the sun. He even guides them to a "secret passage" to beat rush-hour traffic.

Too bad real Dodgers aren't so indestructible. Five of the team's 28 players are benched with injuries and Lasorda was whomped last week by a flying bat at the All-Star game.

First baseman Eric Karros told us he was impressed by his comic book character's buff physique and superpowers. "I thought, 'Boy! I wish I looked like that!' It was pretty flattering."

Santa Monica sports agent Rick Licht already has created comic books for the Mets, Yankees, Angels and Texas Rangers. The Dodger comics will be handed out to 25,000 kids under 14 at today's game against the Brewers.

*

Times staff writers Gina Piccalo and Louise Roug contributed to this column. E-mail: angles@latimes.com.

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