OUR TOWN: The original Fergie – and I do mean Sarah Ferguson, Duchess Of York – joins screen sirens Miranda Richardson and Michelle Yeoh (she
of Crouching Tiger fame) at the first-ever Cinema Against AIDS Toronto gala tonight at The Carlu. Director Kevin Sullivan & producer Trudy Grant are presenting sponsors of the lavish evening, which features a special dinner designed by Jamie Kennedy with Sarah McLachlan and Deborah Cox served up for dessert … have you checked out the T.O. Tix Booth in Dundas Square lately? It’s sporting a brand new look – bright red! – and some hot discount tickets for the best shows in town. Ontario Minister of Tourism Monique
Smith, who gave such a great speech at TIFF’s opening night, presided at the official ribbon-cutting ceremony last month … and Layne Coleman, Lili Francks and Tara Hughes topline the new production of Michael Redhill’s searing genocide drama. Goodness, which opens tomorrow at The Theatre Centre before traveling to Rwanda to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the genocide there.
DYNAMIC DUO: New partners Tyler Perry and Oprah Winfrey worked so well as executive producers on TIFF smash hit Precious that they’re going to do it again. They’ll team up again to produce the screen version of the hit Broadway play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf with an all-star cast. Perry wants Maya Angelou, Angela Bassett, Halle Berry, Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Ruby Dee, Kimberly Elise, Alicia Keys, Thandie Newton and Cicely Tyson to co-star – six of them have already said yes, but he won’t say which six – and Mary J. Blige has already asked to be a part of the project. Sounds pretty fabulous so far.
EMMY LIEU: You loved him in New York but will you love him in L.A.? Yeah, probably. Neil Patrick Harris, so good hosting this year’s Tony Awards, is now set to host this weekend’s Emmys broadcast on CBS. And here’s something to look forward to: Hairspray tunesmiths Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, who composed that cheeky song Harris sang at the Tonys, are writing a special number for him for the Emmys. By the way, a number of Emmys have already been handed out. On Saturday Emmys for Outstanding Guest Actor and Actress in a Drama Series
and Comedy Series were presented to Michael J. Fox (Rescue Me), Ellen Burstyn (Law & Order: SVU), and Justin Timberlake and Tina Fey (Saturday Night Live.) But we’ll have to wait ‘til Sunday night to see who takes home the big ones.
FOOTLIGHTS: Friends and fans celebrated the life of Bea Arthur yesterday afternoon at the Majestic Theatre on Broadway. Angela Lansbury hosted the memorial tribute that featured remembrances and performances by Adrienne Barbeau, Zoe Caldwell, Norman Lear, Rue McClanhan, Anne Meara & Jerry Stiller, Rosie O’Donnell and Chita Rivera. Which says a lot, I think, both about the lady and the company she kept.
Rick’s new season, Norah’s new album, and more.