GOOD MORNING: Roman Polanski is a very happy man — and a very busy director, I can report after we spent a most enjoyable evening in Paris with him, his beautiful wife Emmanuelle Seigner and their two adorable children, Morgana, 8, and Elvis, 2. The children are endearingly attached to both parents and alternately played with them and affectionately climbed into Roman’s lap. It was Emmanuelle who decided to name their son Elvis; Roman chose Morgana for their firstborn daughter. She is beautiful. Elvis’ fluffy mop of curly hair frames a cherubic face … Roman said Morgana is already on her way to being a director: She brings her little friends into her room and directs them in plays. They are amazed at her savvy. But she comes by her showbiz instincts legitimately. In addition to her parents, her great-grandfather (Emmanuelle’s grandfather) was a lead actor in the Comedie Francaise, and Emmanuelle’s sisters are a singer and an actress. As for little Elvis, he’d rather watch the “Snow White” video — over and over. It was hard for us all to leave for dinner as the children hugged us all, yes, even us newcomers who were also recipients of a farewell kiss on the cheek as well … Emmanuelle had arrived home after a first reading for a play called “Krapp Sent Me a Letter” in which she will star this fall in Paris. She said it is “very emotional.” She had recently been in L.A. for her latest film, “Buddy Boy.” The low-budgeter directed by Mark Hanlon bowed at last year’s Venice and Toronto film fests. Daily Variety‘s David Stratton noted she “radiates sexuality.” She was seen earlier in Roman’s “The Ninth Gate” for Artisan co-starring with Johnny Depp, Frank Langella and Lena Olin. Polanski convincingly re-created New York in European cities for his film. (With CGI, anybody can create anything anywhere.) The multi-talented Polanski was recently chosen to join the elite (one of only 55) in the Academie of Beaux Arts. But his status with L.A.’s gendarmerie remains unchanged — while O.J. Simpson roams freely … The Polanski-directed play “Vampires,” after a 2-1/2-year run in Vienna, continues to be a hit in Stuttgart with a company expected to come to N.Y., but unfortunately not with Polanski on hand. He is busily readying a film based on “The Pianist” by Wladislov Szpielman. The true story is set in Krakow when it was destroyed by the Nazis. The story switches keys in the finale. Polanski says he’s searching an unknown … Lately he has been happily doing interviews for the DVD versions of his “Rosemary’s Baby” and “Chinatown.” And for “The Ninth Gate,” which is opening in England. He enjoyed adding his input to the discs and is a fan of the new outlet for directors. Polanski’s enthusiasm for the biz remains like that of a film school grad and he has long-range plans which, it is hoped, one day will see fruition back in Hollywood.
MY OVERSEAS LOOKSEE, which brought me to Paris, also gave me an opportunity to renew friendship with France’s gift to cabaret, theater, films, TV and humanitarian works beyond description. I am talking about Line Renaud, of course, who honored us by unveiling her newest project, Line Renaud Champagne, at Yvan’s superb restaurant off Le Rond Point. Dining with us was Line’s godchild, gorgeous Michelle Hrushowy, principal dancer at the Moulin Rouge. She is from Las Vegas where her parents had appeared with Line years ago. Renaud’s champagne is magnificent and gets its official launching on July 14 (you know what that is) at the French Consulate in SanFran. That will be followed by a party at the Regent Club in L.A. on the 17th, on the 18th at the Paris hotel in Vegas, and finally in September at the Pavilion de L’Elysees, Gaston LeNotre’s restaurant where Yvan (Zaplatiler) vice president of the Young Chefs of Europe, will introduce the champagne to the French … In Paris, we stayed at the Plaza Athenee, which is getting a magnificent rebirth and will also boast the arrival of Alain Ducasse, not only as chef, but he’ll be in charge of all foods, restaurants, including room service at the hotel! More on other places and people Friday.
BACK IN L.A., SHOWBIZ IS, as usual, lending all its talents to community efforts. Wednesday night “Earth to LA” at UCLA’s Royce Hall raised over $1 million for the Natural Resources Defense Council, with appearances from Jewel, Carole King, Larry David, Al Franken, Rob Reiner, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Pierce Brosnan — and a keynote speech by Robert Kennedy Jr. WB’s Alan Horn, a longtime supporter of NRDC, had accompanied Brosnan to Baja Calif.’s gulf where they stopped Mitsubishi’s plans for a salt plant in the whales’ birthing waters. Horn said Wednesday night’s event was to get the L.A. community further involved in issues of global warming — and destruction. WB’s “Green Mile” preem benefited the NRDC and the studio’s “Proof of Life” preem at Xmas will ditto. Horn said Leonardo DiCaprio’s involvement with Earth Day and now with this org is important for the younger generation’s participation. DiCaprio met with Al Gore, and the Horns are hefty supporters of Gore, a “true-blue environmentalist” and they will host an evening for him at their home … Tonight Cindra and Alan Ladd Jr. open their home for the Children’s Health Environmental Coalition with a concert starring Olivia-Newton John, Kenny Loggins, Clint Black and Jim Brickman. John Ritter emcees and Erin Brockovich gets the Citizenship Award from Kelly Preston. CHEC, founded by Nancy and Jim Chuda, is dedicated to mobilize grassroots support for the environmental protection of children.