- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Two Kates

When asked why she was chosen to play the late Katharine Hepburn in the one-woman play “Tea at Five,” actress Kate Mulgrew, of “Star Trek: Voyage” and “Ryan’s Hope” TV fame, didn’t blush.

They’re similar in many ways, Miss Mulgrew told Cox News Service.

“The most startling [similarities] are the parallels in our private lives. They’re very stunning,” she said in an interview in West Palm Beach, Fla.

“She felt the repercussions of her brother’s death early in her life, and I had two sisters die when I was young. That absolutely does shape us. I’d say you make up your mind, when your heart’s broken like that, what you’re going to do with your life…

“If I can put it in a nutshell,” Miss Mulgrew continued, “I would say [Miss Hepburn and I] grew up very fast. We had to. We then replace our missing childhood every night. It saves on therapy bills.”

Two Julias

Don’t call it a chick flick. No, sir…or ma’am.

Julia Roberts and Julia Stiles, who star in the inspirational drama “Mona Lisa Smile,” which opens in the Washington area tomorrow, bristle at the phrase.

“I don’t think we made a chick flick. We just made a movie,” Miss Roberts told Reuters News Agency. In “Smile,” the 36-year-old Oscar winner plays a maverick art history professor on the campus of Wellesley College in the mid-1950s.

Miss Stiles added: “What is a chick flick? It’s weird, because ‘Master and Commander’ is not ‘a guy flick,’ is it?” she said, referring to the Russell Crowe seafaring war picture.

Yoko strikes

Just when you thought Paul McCartney and Yoko Ono have bid a farewell to arms, one or the other strikes again.

This time, it was Miss Ono’s turn. Reigniting last year’s controversy over Mr. McCartney’s putting his name first in the songwriting credits of the Beatles songs on his most recent live album, “Back in the U.S.,” Miss Ono eliminated Macca’s name altogether on “Give Peace a Chance,” as credited on the “Lennon Legend” DVD.

Rolling Stone magazine reports on its Web site that the song, originally released by the Plastic Ono Band in 1969, appeared as a Lennon/McCartney track on the late Beatle’s “Shaved Fish” compilation CD in 1975.

The McCartney credit on the song first came up missing on 1997’s “Legend” CD and again on 1998’s “Lennon Anthology” box set.

“When Paul did his own things with Wings and when he flipped the credit on that solo album recently, I’m sure Yoko felt the same rules applied to John’s solo material,” Bruce Spizer, author of “The Beatles on Apple Records,” told Rolling Stone.

“Paul had nothing to do with the song, so perhaps her feeling was that he got a free ride all these years and it was no longer required to list it as Lennon/McCartney. That might be why you haven’t heard anything from him on this.”

Leary on ice

Denis Leary is not coming to a rink near you, but he is getting the chance of lifetime: a one-time contract to lace up his skates and play with real pros for a day.

E! Online reports that the United Hockey League offered the foulmouthed comedian and star of movies such as “The Ref” $300 — the standard salary for a one-game stint — to play with the Columbus Stars, a UHL team based in the Ohio capital.

A percentage of the game’s proceeds will go toward Mr. Leary’s Firefighters Foundation, which he established after six firefighters died in a warehouse blaze in his hometown of Worcester, Mass., the Web site notes.

It also points out that this isn’t the first time a celebrity has suited up with the pros. R&B; superstar R. Kelly and late-night TV host Craig Kilborn have tested their skills on the basketball court in recent years, and country star Garth Brooks struck out, literally, in his for-fun-only tryout for the San Diego Padres.

Papal green light

Mel Gibson may not accept his authority over the Catholic Church, but Pope John Paul II has viewed and reportedly approves of “The Passion of Christ.”

“The Holy Father watched and enjoyed the film,” an anonymous Vatican official told the National Catholic Reporter. “His comment afterward was, ‘It is as it was,’” meaning, the official said, that the movie faithfully depicts the suffering and death of Christ.

Of course, it may have helped that the pope understands Latin.

Compiled by Scott Galupo from wire and Web reports.

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