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BOY OH BOY: Cuddling with your boyfriend is fast becoming a front-row rite of passage chez Donatella Versace. Last March at the Versace ready-to-wear show in Milan, Chelsea Clinton did a little smooching and parked her hand on Ian Klause’s thigh. On Monday night, it was George Michael and Kenny Goss putting on a show of affection. At a raucous party later at the Ritz Club, Versace held court with Elizabeth Hurley, Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, Shaggy, Michael and Chloë Sevigny, who was in a dress as brief and glitzy as a figure-skating costume. Having just wrapped up “Men In Black II” and her second Spike Lee film, Rosaria Dawson, along with actor Joshua Jackson and dancehall sensation Shaggy, is en route to Spain for the running of the bulls. “I want to stay longer,” lamented Dawson, agog at all the model and celebrity action. “The only time I’ve ever seen anything like this is on fashion TV!” After paying his respects to Versace, Combs moved on to the Milliardaire club for his pal Tony Deniro’s party, reporting to the dance floor with Ashanti, Gwen Stefani and model Karen Mulder. Tonight, he’s holding court at his own bash at Les Bains.
WEAVING A SPELL: An errant truckload of construction materials may have delayed the opening of the Bottega Veneta Paris flagship by a day or two, and the banisters may not yet fit just right. But the cocktail party Monday night to inaugurate the boutique went off without a hitch. Gucci Group creative director Tom Ford came to give the site a look-see and pose for photos with that other Tom, Bottega’s creative director Tomas Maier.
NO SHOW: It looks like the rumored Azzedine Alaïa show won’t go on after all. The designer said Tuesday he’s showing some of his latest designs to retailers in town for the couture, but he likely won’t invite the press until fall at the earliest.
NO PARKING: If you think couture week is packed with parties, wait until the ready-to-wear shows in Paris this fall. Christophe Girard, head of fashion strategy at LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton and a deputy mayor of Paris, is plotting a major all-night arts event Oct. 5 that will feature musicians, authors and other performers at 40 venues throughout the city. “A lot of people say Paris can be sad at night,” he said. “I think the fashion crowd will enjoy being in a festive Paris.” Girard said he doesn’t expect the event will interfere with fashion week — the notable exception being Louis Vuitton. One of the venues for his “White Night” is the greenhouse at the park where Marc Jacobs has shown his Louis Vuitton collections since the brand launched rtw four years ago. Girard said the group is zeroing in on an alternative location.
SWELLTERING: Cynthia Rowley and Ilene Rosenzweig are putting their Swell project on the air. After the publication of their second “Girls’ Guide to the Good Life,” based on home decorating, the authors are set to act as hosts for a weekly series of films on Showtime, beginning Aug. 11. Rowley and Rosenzweig will introduce several of their favorite films, such as “Waiting for Guffman” and “Dirty Dancing,” the latter selected for Rosenzweig’s uncanny resemblance to the film’s lead character, Baby. “I wouldn’t tell anyone to watch it, though,” Rowley said. “We’re pretty bad in the first few episodes. Wait until September, when the acting lessons start to kick in.”
Her company was equally cagey about market rumors that the duo might be pitching a “Swell” line of home products for Target Stores, considering that several designers have practically been beating down the retailer’s doors hoping to replicate the success of recent high-profile product launches with Stephen Sprouse and Philippe Starck. A spokeswoman for Rowley had no comment.
WALK THE WALK: Isaac Mizrahi is coming back to Seventh Avenue — at least for a day. Mizrahi, who once worked for Perry Ellis, is expected to turn out for the Fashion Center Business Improvement District’s Fashion Walk of Fame unveiling on July 17, to present a plaque honoring the late designer. In addition to the previously reported presenters, the FCBID has also signed up Kal Ruttenstein to present Norma Kamali’s plaque, Lulu Johnson for Betsey Johnson, Suzanne Daché for the late Lilly Daché and Toukie Smith for the late Willi Smith.
TOBY’S TRIBULATIONS: The New York Post’s reiteration Tuesday of an item that ran back in April in WWD concerning the dream cast for the fictional film version of Toby Young’s “How to Lose Friends and Alienate People” left out one minor detail — that Film Four, the British production company that optioned Young’s screenplay, is going out of business. (Variety reported Tuesday that an official announcement of Film Four’s demise is forthcoming.) As a result, Young will have to look elsewhere for his film deal. “I only learned about Film Four’s situation yesterday,” he told WWD Tuesday night, “and, frankly, I’m shocked. Film Four was an amazing company. I’m going to hold off from calling them right now — the last thing you want to hear at this time is some guy calling and asking ‘what about my deal.’” Young is sanguine, however, about other possibilities. “Originally I received six different offers, so if the American version of my book really takes off it’s conceivable that I might get an even better deal,” Young said.
Meanwhile, Toby’s book party next Monday is not without its own surprises. The venue for the Condé Nast-bashing book is Serena, on 23rd Street in Manhattan, owned by none other than Sam Shaffer — Anna Wintour’s stepson. Guests expected for the party, which is being co-hosted by Playboy magazine and Da Capo Press, include Sophie Dahl, Kurt Andersen, Candace Bushnell, Brett Easton Ellis, Christopher Hitchens, Lucy Sykes, Chris Napolitano, Cristina Greeven and Chris Cuomo.