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Kate’s Wedded Bliss * Rod’s Life Set to Music * A Royal Birthday in Monte Carlo

Of course you’ve heard that Kate Winslet and director Sam Mendes quietly married in the West Indies in an intimate ceremony attended by only three close friends and Kate’s daughter from a former marriage, two-year-old Mia. The loving couple is honeymooning in Europe at the moment and planning to extend the romantic interlude for as long as they possibly can. They would like to travel around the world for a year and come back with a baby brother or a sister for little Mia — but is there really time for that sort of thing? Kate is supposed to start filming “Romance and Cigarettes,” written and directed by John Turturro and co-starring James Gandolfini and Susan Sarandon, sometime in early autumn. Mendes has commitments, too. “We’re very happy, unbelievably happy,” says Kate. “It’s one of those unexplainable things that we’re together.” All they need now is that slow boat to China.

This story first appeared in the June 13, 2003 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Those 63 pairs of Jimmy Choo shoes perky Reese Witherspoon wears in “Legally Blonde 2” were specially made and designed out of materials other than leather. You see, in this movie the pink-outfit-loving blonde who looks dumb but isn’t goes to Washington as an animal rights lobbyist. And she takes it all the way, even matching her dog’s costume to her own. Reese will wear the pretty shoes in real life and has practically had to build a closet in her house just for them. It’s a hard life. But somebody’s got to wear Jimmy Choos.

Rod Stewart is coming to town this weekend to sing at a private party in Southampton. The rocker is excited because he is to be the subject of a new musical opening in London in October and possibly heading to Broadway a year later. It’s called “Tonight’s the Night” and includes 22 of his greatest hits, like “Maggie May” and “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy?” The theme revolves around Rod’s notorious love life. Remember Alana Hamilton Stewart, Britt Ekland, Caprice Bourret, Kelly Ember and his latest estranged wife, Rachel Hunter?

Rachel herself has just nabbed a hot part in “Denial,” a new British television series. She will play Georgi, a sexy, stylish London socialite — but aren’t they all? The show also will star that fine actress, Emily Lloyd. You will be thrilled to hear that after four years, Rachel and Rod have finally reached a divorce settlement, which means lots of money for her and her two young children. It also frees Rod to marry his longtime girlfriend, model Penny Lancaster. Maybe. Rod has said he’s had enough of marriage —joining half the other people in the country.

The culturati the glitterati and the socialrati from all over have converged on Venice for the great Venitian Heritage festival this weekend. They have been primping and preening and dress rehearsing for weeks getting ready for the big show. Ann Nitze of New York and Washington, for instance, stopped in London perchance to purchase a new frock for the elegant Ballo in Agua party tomorrow night, given by the international hostess and fashion figure, Dodie Rosekrans, of San Francisco, Paris and Venice, where she entertains in grand style at her magnificent Palazzo Brandolini.

You know that 10 years ago, the fabulous designer, Zandra Rhodes, hung it up, so to speak, and anyone not lucky enough to have saved one or two or three of her creations like no other from the days when Zandra was active has been having a hard time trying to find one since. Ann was invited to Zandra Rhodes’ new museum, which opened in May in London, where you may look at her collections — but can’t touch and can’t buy. That’s where she was inspired to find one of those dream dresses for the ball. What do you know, but somewhere in south London she came across a shimmering vintage Zandra Rhodes embroidered all over in seed pearls with big ones outlining the neck and hem and beaded aqua streamers floating everywhere, so that when you walk, the pearls move, the streamers flow and the dress undulates like high tide in a Venitian canal. Heaven.

Prince Rainier celebrated his 80th birthday at a festive lunch surrounded by his three children and seven grandchildren in the Pink Palace in Monte Carlo. Toasting his long reign and singing happy birthday, were his son and heir Prince Albert; Princess Caroline, with her husband Prince Ernst of Hanover and their little daughter Alexandra, and her children by her marriage to the late Stefano Casiraghi, Andrea, Charlotte and Pierre, and Princess Stephanie and her children, Louis, Pauline and Camille.

Later in the day, he was cheered by his countrymen and friends, including, if you care, everywhere-you-look models Heidi Klum and Elle MacPherson, as he handed the Grand Prix trophy to Columbian race car driver Juan Pablo Montoya. Princess Stephanie, 38, did not bring her latest conquest, 29-year-old circus acrobat Adans Peres, to lunch, which is probably a good thing, as her marital and extramarital adventures are supposed to have upset her father over the years.

Prince Rainier’s 19-year-old grandson, Andrea Casiraghi, who is almost as good looking as his sister, Charlotte, left his girlfriend, the beautiful aristocrat, Caroline von Stauffenberg, behind as well, although it is said that mother Caroline likes her very much, as does grandfather Rainier. The young couple have been on vacations together in Kenya and Switzerland chaperoned by his parents, and are so very much in the throes of puppy love you could put them in a doggie show.

Adrien Brody wants to add music producer to his list of credits and is at work on his first album. This might be because he won an Oscar playing a character whose musical talent changed his life in “The Pianist.” Or because he is dating Michelle Dupont, who fancies herself a 21st-century “Penny Lane,” the famous rock groupie Kate Hudson played in “Almost Famous.” Brody thinks it’s easier for a musician to be taken seriously as an actor than an actor to be taken seriously as a musician. “I’m not a rapper,” he says. “I’m a music producer. I compose and I want my album to be heard not just because it’s music from Adrien Brody.” I can wait if you can.

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