HAPPILY EVER AFTER, WEEK 3: Julia Roberts is out promoting her new movie, Full Frontal, except nobody wants to talk about it. The preferred topic is her kind-of-surprise July 4 wedding to movie cameraman Danny Moder.
Interestingly, Roberts has been more than happy to talk about Moder, and the wedding, and how happy she is, and how it was destiny, and yeah, Moder being married most of the time they were, uh, dating proved to be a bit of a problem:
+ "I was born to love and to be the wife of this man. . . . He is formidable. He is a man among men, unselfish and all-encompassing." (On Good Morning America)
+ Marrying Moder two months after his divorce became final made the situation "terribly complicated" at times. (GMA)
+ Friends really didn't know they were being invited to a wedding when they got invitations to Roberts' annual July Fourth barbecue. "When we walked out in front of our friends and family in our wedding garb, (their "elated gasps") will forever be my inner comfort." (Entertainment Tonight).
+ The couple didn't try to be secretive and clever about how they pulled off the ceremony. Their only goal was to do something that would make them very happy and "fulfilled." And they did that because they were "levitating" with happiness. (Access Hollywood)
+ Us magazine's coverage of the wedding was "about, I'd say, 87 percent wrong." (ET)
+ Roberts and Moder honeymooned in Santorini, Greece. (ET)
IT ALL DEPENDS UPON YOUR APPETITE: Unlike Roberts, Billy Joel is having a little trouble opening up about recent developments in his personal life _ like why he put himself in rehab last month.
But he's beginning to give hints _ big hints. He tells the Chicago Sun-Times that his "red wine diet" led to his stay at the Silver Hill clinic in Connecticut.
Joel says though the clinic has a reputation as a posh refuge for the rich and famous, it was a "dump" and the food was "terrible."
AMERICAN IDOL VOTING STRATEGY TIPS: No. 1: With A.J. Gil voted out by viewers Wednesday night, imagine the seven contestants left singing a bombastic ballad along the lines of Whitney Houston's One Moment in Time. That's the kind of song judge Simon Cowell says will be the first single released by the winner, within three weeks after the show's Sept. 4 finale. Cowell tells the Dallas Morning News the song will be written by an associate of Swedish hitmaker Max Martin, who has written for Britney Spears (. . . Baby One More Time, Oops! . . . I Did It Again), the Backstreet Boys (As Long As You Love Me and 19 other songs) and Celine Dion (That's the Way It Is).
No. 2: Yes, the winner gets a recording contract. But, as in the show's British version, the runnerup also will get a contract, Variety says, and a compilation CD from the 10 finalists is planned. So everybody gets at least a piece of recording posterity. For better (in some cases) or worse (in others).
Footnote: Every time judge Paula Abdul tells contestants the don't have to take Cowell's blunt criticisms, someone needs to remind them that yes, they do. The label Cowell works for, BMG, is the one giving out the contracts.
Christina Christian, 21, Gainesville; Kelly Clarkson, 20, Burleson, Texas; A.J. Gil, 17, San Diego; Tamyra Gray, 22, Atlanta; Justin Guarini, 23, Philadelphia; RJ Helton, 21, Cumming, Ga.; Nikki McKibbin, 23, Grand Prairie, Texas; Ryan Starr, 19, Sunland, Calif.