Byline: Aileen Mehle

Sharon Stone leaves no stone unturned when it comes to casting hot, hunky new talent. (You do remember that for “The Quick and the Dead,” as co-producer and star, she signed then “newcomers” Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crowe. The flick died but Sharon, Leonardo and Russell lived on to burn up the screen.) Now she is supposed to have set her sights on Fine Line’s “Before Night Falls” award-winning star Javier Bardem, who is called “the Tom Cruise of Spain,” but they still haven’t met. Sharon missed him somehow when he was in San Francisco, where she lives, for the “Before Night Falls” opening, but she can always catch him Jan. 21 at the Golden Globes, where he’s been nominated for Best Actor. She’d better be quick if she’s looking for a bargain because Javier doesn’t have an agent in this country yet — yet being the key word.

Shirley MacLaine wore her bright red St. John pantsuit to Pauline Boardman Pitt’s party in Palm Beach. There were 199 others there besides Shirley, eating shepherd’s pie and macaroni and cheese, but you know how bright red stands out at a party, or you should. Pauline’s daughters, Serena and Samantha Boardman were there along with Jamie Niven, parked at Pauline’s side. Also in the crowd: Jackie and Nicky Drexel, Aerin Lauder Zinterhofer and Eric Zinterhofer, party planner Polly Onet, Barton Gubelmann, Terry Allen Kramer, Annie Van Durand and others of that ilk. It was a cold night in Palm Beach and at one point when the circuit breakers broke, candlelight gave everyone a rosy glow. And not a moment too soon.

Princess Michael of Kent, Marie Christine to those who love her, is coming to town, and the Versailles Foundation Inc. Claude Monet-Giverny is giving her a luncheon at Le Cirque on April 25. It’s at noon, and there will be a receiving line, and an usher will announce each patron of the Foundation to Her Royal Highness, and how about them royal apples? Then, Princess Michael, a superb lecturer, will speak for 15 minutes on that naughty girl “Catherine de Medici: Machiavellian Queen and Regent.” You can count on Princess Michael to give you the real inside stuff mit schlag.
Thanks to the patrons of the Versailles Foundation, Marie-Antoinette’s writing table by Riesener was given to the chateau of Versailles, and during the past two years, they were able to buy back Marie-Antoinette’s jewel case by Carlin and Louis XVI’s commode by Riener. Pas mal.

On the other side of the world, sleigh bells are ringing and snowbirds are singing in Stockholm, all because adorable 21-year-old Prince Carl Philip is engaged to marry his love, Emma Pernaid, a 21-year-old publicist. (Is all the world a publicist?) King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia are thrilled as is the Prince’s sister Crown Princess Victoria, who thinks Emma is such a sweetie.
Carl Philip and Emma spent the summer together in Saint-Tropez, but now the prince is off at naval school learning to become an officer in the Swedish navy. No wedding date has been set. Carl Philip will not succeed to the throne because when his older sister, Victoria was born, the Swedish Parliament changed the laws allowing a royal daughter to reign — before it was “male monarchs only.” The royal doctors — and actually all of Sweden — were surprised when Carl Philip, not to mention a younger sister, Princess Madeleine, came along, but that’s what love had to do with it. The princesses Victoria, the future queen, and Madeleine are absolutely delectable. It will be fascinating to see who gets their hands, along with the rest of them, in marriage. Prince William? Victoria already has a boyfriend, but Madeleine? Lookswise, she and William are made in heaven.

American Ballet Theatre’s 2001 season opens at the Metropolitan Opera House on April 30 and runs through June 23. Every star in the company will get a chance to show off, and we all know how brilliant they are. The world premiere of David Parsons’s “The Pied Piper” is set for May 18 with the dazzling Angel Corella in the title role. The ballet, an hour long, is adapted from Robert Browning’s poem, “The Pied Piper of Hamelin,” and the parts of the rats will probably be danced by elaborate puppets, because who really wants to dance the part of a rat, especially when you’re just one rat among many, don’t you agree?
All ABT’s principal dancers will appear during the Met engagement including such famous glitterers as Paloma Herrera, Ethan Stiefel, Susan Jaffe, Julie Kent, Nina Ananiashvili, Julio Bocca, Irina Dvorovenko, Vladimir Malakhov, Jose Manuel Carreno, Alessandra Ferri, Amanda McKerrow, Ashley Tuttle and Robert Hill, dancing in such legendary ballets as “Cinderella,” “Don Quixote,” “Giselle,” “The Merry Widow,” “Eugene Onegin” and “Swan Lake.” Even off them, this group has never been more on its toes.

Last night at Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall, Sanford I. Weill, the chairman and ceo of Citigroup, and Peter K. Scaturro, the ceo of the Citibank Private Bank, cordially invited their friends to “An Evening With Yo-Yo Ma,” the famous cellist, for a private concert and dinner. When last heard from, Dan Rather and Averell Mortimer said they’d be there and of course Mrs. Sanford (Joan) Weill, a philanthropist of note, along with Sanford.

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