The Golden Gays!


By Jeffrey Epstein

After grabbing a cocktail at the large circular bar conveniently placed at the center of the room'easy access from any direction'we ran into Brokeback's Anne Hathaway, who was still glowing from all the excitement. 'How could you not have fun?' she asked us. What surprised her most? 'Everyone is so much thinner than I thought they'd be!' she cracked. 'I need to go to the gym tomorrow.' Hardly'the actress, who will next be seen in The Devil Wears Prada with Meryl Streep, looked just amazing'one of the many reasons we featured her in our December issue ('Seven Reasons Anne Hathaway Rocks'). 'Whenever I'm depressed,' she confided with a smile, 'I pull out that story and I say, 'Yes! That's why gay men love me! That's why I'm fabulous!'' And she is indeed!

We got to chat with McMurtry's cowriter, Diana Ossana, who looked stunning in her M Siamo gown. 'I felt my blood pressure rise 50 times,' she admitted when we asked how she felt when hearing Brokeback won Best Screenplay. 'My heart burst out of my chest. I had no idea when I read that short story in 1997' I thought if we did it right, it would make a wonderful film. But I never dreamed it would be embraced the way it's been.' Ossana told us she's had friends from all walks of life go see the movie and love it. 'I don't like being preached to, so I would never write a story that would do that.'

As we walked through the room, we spied'among others'Eric Bana, Reese Witherspoon, Ryan Phillippe, Nathan Lane, Michelle Williams, Heath Ledger, Ziyi Zhang, Peter Jackson, Dominic Monahan, Evangeline Lilly, Keira Knightley, Rachel Weisz, Zach Braff, Mandy Moore, Debra Messing, Colin Hanks, Jill Hennessey, Matt Dillon, Patrick Dempsey, Jane Seymour, Mel Brooks, and winner Steve Carrell, who graciously did interview after interview while his fellow Office castmates boogeyed on the dance floor. We learned Adrien Brody brought Simon Rex as his' well, we're not going to say it was a date. Rex stayed mostly to himself while Brody chatted with Lost castmates Lilly and Monahan. Hilariously, Britney Spears's first husband, Jason Alexander (you know, the one she married for five minutes), was there hoping someone would take his picture. Sorry, boy, we're not interested.

One person notably absent was Jake Gyllenhaal, who didn't attend the awards or the party. 'I think he's filming a movie,' one rep told me. 'Um' I don't know why he's not here,' another said uncomfortably. Hey, we know Jake (our October cover boy) has been incredibly supportive of Brokeback'we just wanted to see those dreamy eyes.

We headed outside, where smokers were huddled under heat lamps to keep warm in the chill night. It was there we were able to congratulate winner Ang Lee, as we interrupted his dinner. Ever gracious, he told us hearing his name 'was a great feeling. My mind was racing'so much adrenaline. I wanted to embrace everyone at the table.' We noted his speech, which acknowledged the many good films of the year, was refreshingly humble. 'I think it's very important to show appreciation for all the filmmakers.' A class act all the way. And with that, we let him get back to his sushi!

Before we headed out, we ran into our pal Jerry Penacoli, from Extra. We were curious who his favorite person on the red carpet was. 'George Clooney,' he told us. 'He's always so self-deprecating. I'm so happy he won tonight.' And Jerry was happy with the way things went all around. 'The fact that Brokeback swept the night, that's something to be excited about. Ang said, 'All I want is for more people to see this movie.' He was almost in shock, but then he told me, 'We're definitely expecting something Oscar morning.'' We're expecting it too!