NEW YORK – James Franco gets very hot and heavy with Sean Penn in the highly-anticipated drama "Milk," but the 30-year-old actor insisted that his steamy scenes with the actor playing gay and civil rights activist Harvey Milk were in no way awkward.
"I've known Sean for a while and he's just like a great actor to work with, he's really kind of giving," Franco told Tarts. "He can be a really intense guy, but on set he's a team player, he's very dedicated but he just makes every body feel very comfortable."
Although we don’t exactly know how comfortable co-star Emilie Hirsch felt working alongside Penn as an actor after having worked so closely with him when he directed "Into the Wild."
"I had a few trepidations going into it — I was the actor, he's the director and we got along very well in that format. So changing it up to actor actor it's kind of like playing a sports game with your coach, but your coach happens to be one of the best players around," Hirsch admitted. "So there was a little bit of nervousness, but we ran a couple of scenes and the sparks kind of flew and we knew we were on to something."
And here’s a note to studio big-wigs out there: Hirsch is looking to play a screen hero of his own …
"Leonardo Da Vinci - I'm surprised no one's made a picture about that man's life. He's got a pretty extraordinary life of accomplishment and achievement so maybe that’s good idea," he added.
Taylor Swift Snubbed, Jonas Brothers Virginity Satirized Again
The likes of Lil' Wayne, Jennifer Hudson, John Mayer and Coldplay have every reason to rejoice given their multiple Grammy nominations, but the biggest surprise was Taylor Swift's exclusion from the line-up.
Swift represented the genre of country and co-hosted the first-ever live nominations concert with LL Cool J at the L.A Live Theater on Wednesday night. Although she was expected to walk away with at least a nomination or two, the "Teardrops On My Guitar" gal wasn't given a single nod even despite her hosting, performing and promoting duties leading up to the star-studded event.
PHOTOS: The Top 2008 Grammy Award Nominees.
Taylor's current chart-topping album "Fearless" wasn't eligible, but several of her earlier hits were thought to be shoo-ins.
And while we don't tend to associate Kathy Griffin with the Grammys, the starlet was nominated for Best Comedy Album. Griffin couldn't help herself but follow in the footsteps of VMA's host Russell Brand by having a dig at fellow nominees the Jonas Brothers and their pledge of purity.
"Like them, I'm not ready to lose my virginity," she said backstage. "I'm waiting for the right girl."
Even though Joe Jonas's ex Taylor Swift obviously wasn't the right one, the country crooner got some soulful revenge on that young man she claimed dumped her over the phone recently. Swift belted out Brenda Lee's hit song "I'm Sorry" with extra conviction during the show while the Joe and his brotherhood band were forced to stay put front and center.
But back to Griffin, the usually outspoken actress was actually at a loss for words when Ne-Yo nearly sent her sprawling prior to the show. Kathy was stopped on the red carpet when the "Closer" sensation suddenly stole her spotlight and was so busy waving to the cameras that he crashed right into the comedian. But being the "Gentleman" Ne-Yo is, Griffin at least scored a great big apologetic kiss and hug.
On a high note for Ne-Yo, it seems he has his heart set on scoring more than just the six Grammys he was nominated for come the awards show in February.
"I just want to win best dressed," he told Tarts. "That's the goal."
But Ne-Yo's Kathy crash wasn't the only hiccup on the carpet — it seems John Mayer's presence stirred quite the cake fight (literally) between Extra and its rival entertainment network E! News. We're told the Extra host, Carlos Diaz, brought a cake with him to the carpet in hopes of stirring some conversation about home-cooking for the holiday season with the music mogul but accidentally fed the entire delight to the E! camera beside him.
"Luckily we had a spare camera that could be used," an E! worker told Tarts. Hmmm, not so sweet.
Anna Wintour Will Remain a Devil in Prada, Victoria Beckham Hangs From Doors
Rumors have been running rampant that after a decade in the most powerful position in fashion, Anna Wintour might be sent strutting out of her position as the Editor-in-Chief of Vogue Magazine and replaced by the mag’s French ed, Carine Roitfeld.
But according to a rep for Conde Nast, Wintour is still sitting pretty in the top job.
In more fashionista news, Victoria Beckham has just launched her new (less then size-16) dress collection and is promoting the high-end line with an odd commercial that features the former Spice Girl ah, hanging from a door …
Those dresses must be pretty Posh, as they cost around $1000-$3000.
Britney & Heidi Exchange Hot Comments
Britney Spears celebrated her 27th Birthday with quite the bash at NYC's Tenjune on Tuesday night, and supermodel Heidi Klum was there to help blow out the candles on the pop princess's outlandish Ron Ben-Israel -designed birthday cake.
We're told Klum rushed right up to Spears as she strutted inside and the two hugged and chatted after the decadent dessert was presented. (Although the suddenly slender Spears reportedly took just a few spoonfuls while her supermodel pal skipped out on the naughty treat).
"Heidi told Britney how great she looked and gushed that she has always been a big fan," said our inside source. "Britney then told her that she loves her and she too is sweet and gorgeous." Awww.
Jesse McCartney’s "Relationship" with Paris Hilton
Jesse McCartney must have been one of the few young guys in the world who didn’t really know who Paris Hilton was — well, that was until they were romantically linked.
"The first day I moved to Los Angeles from New York I went into a restaurant which I now know is a very Hollywood-like spot with some friends and apparently Paris Hilton was inside," McCartney told Tarts. "I had just moved to L.A and I hardly knew who she was or what she did but we ended up leaving at the same time by accident. I walked out right behind her and the cameras went crazy and the next day it was all over the news that Jesse McCartney and Paris Hilton are dating and it was one of those ‘Welcome to Hollywood’ moments."
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Hollie McKay has been a FoxNews.com staff reporter since 2007. She has reported extensively from the Middle East on the rise and fall of terrorist groups such as ISIS in Iraq. Follow her on twitter at @holliesmckay