Celebrity Grapevine

Natalie Portman was given the red carpet treatment at the opening of the Cannes film festival in France.

natalie portman 88 298 (photo credit: AP)
natalie portman 88 298
(photo credit: AP)
TWO ISRAELIS were given the red carpet treatment at the opening of the Cannes film festival in France last week; Jerusalem-born actress Natalie Portman was there as a judge and supermodel Bar Rafaeli was there to model a gown for charity. Chopard, one of the corporate sponsors of this year's festival, chose her to show off a $700,000 jewel-encrusted dress that was subsequently auctioned off to benefit the war against AIDS. Portman wore a strapless gown in a deep shade of violet, while Rafaeli's intricately pleated gown was pale lilac. NOT EVERY star is a prima donna. Popular Greek singer Glikeria, who comes to Israel at least twice a year, wanted to be treated like a regular tourist when she and her mother spent a night at the Sheraton Hotel in Tiberias recently. She didn't ask for any perks: She was perfectly happy with coffee and a cigarette. WHILE NOT exactly a new face, veteran broadcaster Yael Dan may not have looked familiar when she took the stage to emcee the opening ceremony of the Facing Tomorrow conference in Jerusalem last week. She is more often heard than seen presenting Army Radio's current affairs programs. A more familiar emcee with a much smoother delivery - and an American accent to boot - was at the microphone the following evening for the Salute to the United States: Former CNN reporter Michael Greenspan, who is married to actress Gilat Ankori, is a broadcast journalist, filmmaker and writer who has often added a professional touch to Israel's mega events. He obviously impressed US President George W. Bush, who made a point of shaking Greenspan's hand before taking the stage. Looking out at the crowd, Bush commented on the distinguished personalities in attendance, especially the former presidents and prime ministers. He quipped that he would soon become a member of the ex-officials club. SOMEWHAT DIFFERENT from her sidesplitting roles in Eretz Nehederet (Wonderful Country) is Alma Zak's role alongside her significant other, Alon Neuman, in a new Strauss ice cream commercial. The NIS 3 million campaign for Carissimo went on air last Thursday and, befitting its name, the ice cream is portrayed as the food of love. LAID-BACK radio and television presenter Rafi Reshef last week broadcasted what he claimed to be his final program on Army Radio. Reshef said he was giving up one of the most popular morning shows on the airwaves because he was simply tired of getting up before dawn to prepare his material. Israel Radio's Aryeh Golan, who also presents an early-morning news program, recently told colleagues that he, too, was still not accustomed to getting up while it was dark. FOR MORE than a year, Channel 2 franchisees Reshet and Keshet argued over who would succeed Shalom Kital as head of the channel's news corporation. Keshet wanted Avi Weiss, who had been installed as interim manager, whereas Reshet wanted veteran broadcaster Nissim Mishal, who was a major force at Channel 2 when it was still in its experimental stage. Although Mishal has an extremely impressive CV and contacts in high places, the job eventually went to Weiss. Last week it was announced that Weiss's interim position had become permanent.