BACK TALK

A lady who lunches—and writes, draws, dances and reads

SHANDA DEZIEL October 25 2004
BACK TALK

A lady who lunches—and writes, draws, dances and reads

SHANDA DEZIEL October 25 2004

A lady who lunches—and writes, draws, dances and reads

BACK TALK

John Intini’s Sentences 70 I Bestsellers List 70 I Money’s Worth 79

Claire Danes is currently unemployed. Sure, she’s promoting Stage Beautyan entertaining, gender-bending period piece set in the 17th-century British theatre-but there are no other projects on the horizon. “I am going to take fictionwriting and life-drawing classes and ballroom-dancing lessons,” says the 25year-old New Yorker. “It’s so silly, I feel like a hobbyist-a lady who lunches.” She also mentions she’s in a book club of two. But when asked who the other member is, Danes evades: “My friend, I can’t say.” Oh, but we know.

She’s referring to her Stage Beauty costar and boyfriend Billy Crudup (Almost Famous). Neither will talk about their romance since they both broke off longterm relationships to be together. (Crudup’s former girlfriend, actress Mary-Louise Parker, was seven months pregnant with their baby at the time.)

The pair’s onscreen affair is also fraught with complications-Crudup plays a gay stage actor, and Danes’s character is his dresser. But in art, as in life, their attraction could not be denied. SHANDA DEZIEL

SHANDA DEZIEL

'Ever since I sawyou/On My So-Called Life/I’ve been writing you these letters/ Asking you to be my wife.’ -lyrics for Danes in the 1998 song My So-Called Life by punk group the Ataris