Catherine Zeta-Jones won't star in the movie adaptation of Broadway musical Nine because the director wouldn't beef up her role. Eight staffers have left CBS' The Early Show because they can't stand working with hotheaded senior exec producer Shelley Ross. Paris Hilton thinks the guys in New York are "so much better" than the ones in L.A. Since divorcing his wife, George Soros has been hanging out with young girls in their twenties at his home in Southampton. Sportscaster Ahmad Rashad and ex-socialite (and ex-wife of Jets owner Woody Johnson) Sale Johnson may be getting married today. Anna Wintour controlled the seating arrangements at the $50,000-a-table 7th on Sale event at the Lexington Armory. (Speaking of Anna, Tim Burton says that Johnny Depp based the haircut of Willy Wonka in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on hers.)
Harvey Weinstein either physically removed a D.J. who was acting inappropriately with a lady at his table at Rose Bar or was punched in the face by him. (He's also getting married next month.) Denzel Washington had 30 bespoke suits made by an English tailor on East 53rd Street. Liz Smith speculates that the next Time person of the year will be the environment. Cindy Adams reports that a book on Heather Mills is in the works. The owner of Baraonda, the Italian eatery at 75th and Second, got a new lease on the space. PR guru Lara Shriftman has given into the pressure and revealed the daddy of her baby: rum heir Juan Bacardi.
Every year in early September, America's pop stars gather together in one place to promote their crappy albums and to try to make the terrorists hate us even more. And by that measure, last night's MTV Video Music Awards in Las Vegas were a huge success.
Marc Jacobs may have given a Cartier engagement ring to his on-again, off-again boyfriend, Jason Preston. Tyra Banks dropped her manager, either because he was a prima donna or because her investment-banker boyfriend told her to. Britney Spears backed out of recording a Timbaland-produced duet with Justin Timberlake. It's unclear why. No cameras or cars are allowed at the fund-raiser Oprah is throwing for Barack Obama at her California ranch, which is expected to draw George Clooney, Halle Berry, and Jamie Foxx. Harvey Weinstein is offering $100,000 to anyone who can identify the Upper East Side mom who inspired The Nanny Diaries. (Some speculate it's Preppy Handbook author Lisa Birnbach.) Marc Ecko's CEO threw $500 in cash around during a company-sponsored booze cruise. Norman Reedus, Helena Christensen's baby daddy, is making a movie in which Richard Nixon sleeps with a hooker and then kills her. U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon dined at Le Cirque with two tables' worth of security guards.
Hip-hop producer Timbaland called fellow producer and former friend Scott Storch "a bitch" at Marquee. Katie Couric was spotted flirting with a young guy who may or may not have been smoking weed at Peasant in Nolita. Manhattan Mini Storage is getting flack from Republicans and Paris Hilton alike for some of its ads around the city. Married Island Def Jam CEO L.A. Reid exchanged a number of rather flirty e-mails with a female co-worker in 2005, but she insists they were just kidding around. Former state comptroller Carl McCall is claiming he's Elliot Spitzer's choice to head up SUNY as either chancellor or chairman of the Board of Trustees, but a source close to Spitzer says no way. Jon Bon Jovi is doing charity construction work in Brooklyn.