WHENCE MINNIE DRIVER? We were all expecting her Sat 5/29 at her historic comedy An Ideal Husband--but nooooo! Turns out Minnie D's in town this coming weekend, for her "quirky" comedy At Satchem Farm. Look for her Sat 6/5 at the Egyptian!

DEMI DISSES SIFF? Wow!! Über-Brat-Packer Demi Moore was in town Tues 5/25! So, did the glamorous star jet in from rural Idaho to see Wim Wenders' Buena Vista Social Club at the Egyptian... or was it the Argentinean bizzaro sex fable Divine at the Harvard Exit? The answer is no and hell no! Snooty Demi was livin' LARGE, and took in an educational IMAX double-feature at Pacific Science Center! When she was done scaling the heights of Everest, she stuck around for the 3-D undersea adventure Into the Deep. After that, do you suppose Demi scoped out tasty li'l Canadian Don McKellar's film Last Night? Well, that depends... was it playing at THE SPACE NEEDLE? Truth be told, Demi dissed SIFF to play Mother Hen to a brat pack of her own--a gaggle of fifth-graders, which presumably included her and ex Bruce Willis' progeny (probably called Trout or Humvee or Innuendo or whatever mortifying names stars are coming up with for their kids these days). TTS scouts report that Demi was quiet and well-behaved, for a diva--except at the Space Needle, where Ms. Moneybags could be heard carping about the outrageous cost of Sneedle souvenirs. Hmm--I wonder how Needle prices stack up next to merchandise at, say, Planet Hollywood, the tourist trap that Ms. Moore herself owns a piece of? Well, a Space Needle T-shirt costs anywhere from $11.95-$24.95. A Planet Hollywood T-shirt? $18-$20. Coffee mug? Sneedle: $2.89-$11.95. Phollywood: $7. Sounds like Demi's full of hot air!

BUT TO HELL WITH MS. SMALL CHANGE... there was a real player in town Tues 5/25: Chief geek and new dad Bill Gates took in the 5 pm showing of Japanese feature Ikinai at the Broadway Performance Hall. It's a little frightening to think about everyone's favorite money-grubbin' megalomaniac taking in a movie about "a 'suicide tour' scam to collect life insurance money." But more to the point: Little Rory, Bill's new baby boy, was born only two days earlier! Why wasn't he home tending to his family? Well, there's only one answer: Melinda kicked him out of the house! I can hear it now: "No, Bill!! No THANK YOU!! I don't need any more of your 'help.' No--just... oh Jesus, Bill! Why don't you call up one of your little friends and, oh, go to a movie or something?! Now SCRAM!!"

HAVE SOME MORE VODKA! Jet-lagged Russian hipster & party boy par excellence Alexander Bashirov--a star in his hometown of St. Petersburg--made a splash the moment he arrived in Seattle on Wed 5/26. Bashirov--director, co-producer, screenwriter, film editor, and star of The Iron Heel of the Oligarchy--apparently also fancies himself a diplomat! When Stranger writer Charles Mudede arrived to greet Bashirov at his guest house, Alex, fresh off the plane and 11 hours off his internal clock, encouraged Charles to "take a seat on the couch"--and then plopped down and made himself cozy on Mudede's lap! Stinking of vodka, the cuddly 42-year-old Bashirov squeezed Charles' breast (such as it is), saying, "Give me a kiss!" and scrubbed his stubbly cheek against Charles' face. Naturally, the affable Charles gave Alex a nice kiss--whereupon Alex crowed, "Now THAT'S a real man!" and poured himself another tumbler of vodka. Shockingly, Mr. Bashirov was drinking Absolut, and not Skyy Vodka--the hipster brand that sponsored the Iron Heel party!

You can enjoy even more of Mrs. Szyzmyjec's

baseless rumors and unfounded innuendoes

in her column TTS, on page 102--eds.

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