Meg Ryan Has Been in the Business for 2,000 Years “I’ve been in the business for like 2,000 years,” Meg Ryan said when we hunted her down her at the Hollywood Life House after-party for her Sundance movie The Deal. Ryan, notoriously reclusive these days, had skipped the red carpet, and to find her we had to slip into the house undetected, evade three bodyguards, several clipboard-toting publicists, and her co-star William H. Macy, and stand for 45 minutes behind a large Chinese urn clutching a giant bunch of flowers while we waited for the precise moment to slip unnoticed into the room she was in. And there we were, face to face with the sweetly smiling blonde we remembered from When Harry Met Sally and other nineties romcoms. She sounded like a crotchety old man. “It’s absurd,” Ryan said, of making movies. “It’s an absurd way to spend your time.” But, she said, it’s also rewarding. “There’s a lot of really great, creative people,” she said. “There’s a lot of maniacs, idiots, too.” Present company excluded, we’re sure. “I run into maniacs and idiots all the time,” she continued, looking at us warily. (We were only kidding about the urn part, by the way.) Ryan excused her exhaustion by saying she had just finished making four back-to-back movies. “After you extend yourself like that, you want to hibernate,” she said. We asked where she would be curling up for the rest of the winter. You know, just in case we needed to get in touch. “I’m not going to tell you,” she said. Then she walked away. —Darrell Hartman
in other news
Conan’s Stalker Loves Fellini, JesusWe learn today that Conan O’Brien has a stalker, which is no big news. David Letterman had one before Conan was even a twinkle in NBC’s eye. But what’s interesting here is that Conan’s stalker is a Catholic priest. A totally scary Catholic priest, in the awesomest way. In Father David Ajemian’s letters to Conan, some written on parish letterhead, he comes out with quotes like this:
“I’m told by some of those officious little usher people that you’re overbooked. Is this the way you treat your most dangerous fans? You owe me big-time, pal. I want a public confession before I even consider giving you absolution.”
Wow, we never before thought of confession and absolution in such a terrifying/erotic way. (There are other letters where he issues veiled threats at Conan’s life, which are, you know, less funny, like when he compares himself to the Virginia Tech killer.) Other fun facts about Ajemian? Well, when he was ordained, the Boston Herald said he was a “turned on to religion partly by Federicio Fellini’s 1960 film La Dolce Vita.” Oh, yeah, and he went to college with Conan. Yeah, that’s right. Harvard: just as unscrupulous with admission as the Catholic clergy.
Priest Jailed in Stalking of Conan O’Brien [NYT]
Paul Once Had a Girl, Or, Shall We Say, She Once Had HimWas Heather Mills — Paul McCartney’s one-legged ex-wife-to-be — once a high-priced hooker? She says no, an alleged client says yes. Ron Perelman and Tory Burch are dating, but not exclusively. Chris Cornell’s stalker may be British, which may be a problem if he goes to London for the new Bond movie premiere. Paris Hilton is also in London but, oddly enough, not staying at the Hilton. Calvin Klein’s daughter just sold an apartment for a lot of money; she bought a new one for slightly more. Katie Holmes declines a possible Oscar nod for her role in Thank You for Smoking, presumably because Tom told her to. By the way, they’re getting married soon, and not even Liz Smith is invited. Queen Latifah got into a tiff with Law & Order’s Billy Burns at an airport, unless she didn’t. Jude Law and Sienna Miller split yet again, but this time Jude did the dumping. Peter Cook and Christie Brinkley finally agree on visitation rights for their kids. Eddie Murphy’s sweetie, the artist formerly known as Scary Spice, is pregnant, and he’s still going out on dates with other women. Naomi Campbell (accidentally) hits someone with her purse. Oprah’s non-lesbian lover, Gayle King, told Will Smith she was married to a cheater. Sayeth Lindsay Lohan: “I feel like I’ve lived five lives and I’m only 20.”