2009 April 24

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?

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Diane Kruger in Chanel Diane Kruger in Chanel
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(NEW YORK) "I haven't worn a lot of Chanel, but every time I do, it leaves a big impression," said Debra Messing at last night's Chanel dinner to celebrate the Tribeca Film Festival. "I never feel more like a lady!" She wasn't the only dame in sight at the Odeon, which drew the most beauties New York has seen ensemble in months, from starlets like Alexis Bledel to campaign faces Angela Lindvall and Heidi Mount. "I just came from work," said Poppy Delevigne, eschewing the step-and-repeat to be greeted by anxious photogs lingering in the entryway. "I'm tired, but a cocktail will help!"

Many of the actors on hand--like Adrien Brody, Melissa Leo and Molly Shannon--had been so publicity blitzed that a cozy meal among chicsters was essentially required. "I have three movies coming out this year," explained a resplendent Kerry Washington. "But it's all good!"

And after the Doubt frenzy that governed awards season, Viola Davis' star continues to rise. "You know, I was in an alternate reality this season, a reality that I'd never visited. And now I feel like I've crash-landed back to earth. I'm now an actor again--and Viola. It was like I was just caught up in the land of Oz! But I feel like I kept my dignity in tact. I'm falling in love with acting again." But she did confess to a bit of post-Oscars celebration. "I've thrown a couple of parties--like 40, 50 people with a couple of DJs, dancing. And a magician." A magician? "Well, he did some things that were incredible."

Diane Kruger was enjoying her first event of the festival. "We were selected for Cannes this morning!" she said. "It's all been a rush--we literally stopped shooting two months ago. And now we're moving--Josh [Jackson's] show is moving to Vancouver, so we have to find a place to live. But we're making a quick trip to L.A. and then we're back here for the Costume Institute."

The dinner celebrated the 6th annual Artist Awards, which invites New York-ased artists to contribute works to the festival's 13 winning directors. The Daily wondered: If you could hang any work in your living room, what would it be? "I'd buy a Rothko," said Messing. "I can see it in my head, but I don't know the name of it!" Kruger described herself as a "classic art-lover." I'd love to own a Basquiat. A Picasso would be nice, or a Monet!"

Danielle Steele, who arrived in New York an hour and a half before the dinner and is flying back to Paris this morning, opted for equally classic artists: "Mary Cassat or Chagall," she confessed, flanked by daughters Victoria and Vanessa Traina. "I am pretty partial to my father's work," said Robert De Niro. "That's all I care about."

But leave it to Washington to think creatively. "I've always wanted to own an Ed Harris Pollock. Meaning, when Ed Harris played Pollock, he learned to paint like him, and he actually became an incredible painter. To me, it's a testament to true acting that he got inside Pollock's painting technique. I'm hoping to actually buy one someday!"

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