Keeping Tabs

Beauty Before Age

Yesterday, Sir Paul’s wrinkles seemed so far away, and other news of “mature” celebs.

Keeping Tabs is always particularly touched when the tabloids get caught up in the spirit of the season. You may recall, for instance, that Valentine’s Day gave rise to lots of heartbreak stories, while at Christmastime, the tabs had everyone shopping (and having sex, but never mind that). But with spring in the air, fresh on the heels of Easter, the tabs have, quite appropriately, gotten into a rebirth/rejuvenation/renewal groove. Aside from the National Enquirer’s story about a dog who came back from the dead, the tabs seem less interested in literal rebirth than in the metaphorical variety—such as Chelsea Clinton “regain[ing] the sparkle that she lost” after a reported battle with anorexia. “Her skin is glowing again and her appetite has returned,” says the Globe. “She looks sexy, healthy and filled with energy.” Meanwhile, the tabs have paid relatively scant attention to the other big Easter story—the return of Elián González to his father—although the Star did thoughtfully cast the entire drama for us, from Jennifer Lopez as Marisleysis (natch!) and Andy Garcia as Juan Miguel González to Alec Baldwin as Al Gore and Antonio Banderas as Fidel Castro. (What? You didn’t like his work in Evita?)

The tabs seem especially fixated on the regeneration of Hollywood’s—how shall we say?—mature set. This week’s Star has an exclusive report called “Liz reborn!” about the renaissance of 68-year-old Elizabeth Taylor, who has gone from looking “old and dowdy” to appearing “completely rejuvenated” at a recent awards ceremony. “La Liz” is said to be a “ravishing brunette again” who “looks years younger,” having shed some 50 pounds. “I want to show the world that there’s life in the old girl yet,” she is quoted as telling a “pal.” True to tabloid form, Taylor’s transformation is accompanied by a reported spike in her love life: Although the story says that the relationship is all of “a few weeks” old, actor George Hamilton is said to have “fallen madly in love with the 68-year-old reborn beauty.” In other Liz news, the Globe reports that Taylor was not amused by a new book claiming that her two-time ex-husband, Richard Burton, was a closeted homosexual. “How dare someone accuse Richard of being gay,” Liz is said to have “fumed to a pal, her famed violet eyes blazing with rage.”

Also in the tabloid spotlight is the rebirth of 62-year-old Jane Fonda, whose “haggard” appearance at a function on March 16 had “pals” worried that she was ill, says the Globe. (Can you still be considered a concerned friend when you discuss said concern with the Globe?) One fabulous new haircut, makeup job, and—according to Palm Beach plastic surgeon Dr. Jerome Craft, after reviewing the Globe’s photos—possibly a collagen or fat injection or two later, Fonda “went from blah to beautiful in just 10 days!” “It was like a miracle,” says a friend. “I saw the years peel away.” The Star also calls upon Dr. Craft, by the way, to do an expert consultation-by-paparazzi-photo on 42-year-old Patricia Heaton of Everybody Loves Raymond, who is said to have been “determined to look sexy again” after having four children in five years. The esteemed Dr. Craft says Heaton “definitely” looks as though she’s had breast implants. For this he went to medical school?

The Enquirer devoted last week’s cover to the “miraculous” makeover of 46-year-old Kathie Lee Gifford, who has “gone from stuffy to sexy—adopting a sizzling new attitude, changing her hair, losing weight, and wearing revealing clothes.” The Star claims that Diane Sawyer has “turned back the clock” with hormone replacement therapy and that Susan Sarandon “isn’t getting older, she’s getting better.” Ditto Kathleen Turner, who the Globe says “is a middle-aged mom—but she sent the audience’s body heat soaring” when she recently appeared naked on a London stage. (Both the Enquirer and the Globe report that Hugh Grant sneaked binoculars into the theater to get a better look at Turner’s assets.)

The tabs go positively batty over photos of the over-40 crowd in bathing suits. The Star gives a thumbs-up to Melanie Griffith (“Sexy Melanie’s one hot Mexican mama!”) on vacation in Campeche, Mexico. “She looks sooooo good,” reports tourist Erika Braeuer. “It’s hard to believe she’s 42—she has the body of a 25-year-old.” But poolside photos of Camilla Parker-Bowles, 52, do not fare so well. The Globe has a sidebar featuring other 50-somethings “who REALLY look great” in bathing suits, while the Star goes with a side-by-side bathing-suit comparison of Camilla and Princess Diana titled “No Contest!” Parker-Bowles’ beau, Prince Charles, is reportedly livid that Camilla’s bodyguard was “lounging close by in skimpy trunks.” “They are both extremely sexy people and he gets jealous whenever there’s another guy around,” explains a source. Ah, yes. When you think of “extremely sexy people,” nobody comes to mind quite like Camilla and Charles.

The quest for the fountain of youth is hardly limited to the fairer sex. The National Enquirer has a two-page spread on Tom Jones, who is “still a stud at 60.” “You don’t have to be 25 to have that X-factor,” Jones is quoted as saying. That assertion notwithstanding, Jones is said to have had his teeth capped, “a few nips and tucks to get rid of the creases” on his face, a “major” nose job and, according to his former bodyguard, “five painful scalp reduction operations” and a face lift—performed by none other than the husband of Dallas star Victoria Principal.

This week’s Star reports that dating younger woman Heather Mills has made Paul McCartney, 57, “suddenly self-conscious about his age.” The former Beatle is “considering having some subtle nips and tucks on his face to give him a younger look.” And how appropriate! According to the Enquirer, Mills’ ex-husband Alfie Karmal claims that she “became obsessed with unneeded plastic surgery” and asked him for “two boob jobs, a nose bob and a tummy tuck.” Dr. Craft? Paging Dr. Jerome Craft …