Gregory Kirschling and Clarissa Cruz
September 03, 2004 AT 04:00 AM EDT

TELEVISION Joan Rivers has been perfectly cast on the Oct. 5 season finale of FX?s ”Nip/Tuck.” ”I’m playing myself,” says Rivers, no stranger to plastic surgery. ”That already is not so wonderful, but that?s the way it goes.” So why bother, Joan? ”I’m a fan of the show, that’s number one. It’s always fun to act, that?s number two. And number three, I get to go to California — free trip to see [daughter] Melissa and [cute grandson] Cooper. I hope I get a nice wardrobe out of it.” (Quick aside: In her stand-up act, Rivers says Cooper calls her ”Nana Newface.”) On the show, Rivers will mosey down to Miami — ”because it?s not as public” — for a hush-hush consultation with Drs. McNamara and Troy, and that?s all she can say. ”There?s a big letter in the front [of the script] from Ryan [Murphy], who is the exec producer, saying, ‘Do not tell the story to anyone! Love, Ryan.”’

MOVIES Sofia Coppola is ready to follow up her awesome ”Lost in Translation.” Suntory time! The movie is ”Marie Antoinette,” a biopic she?ll write and direct about the spoiled 18th-century queen of France who married a lug named Louis XVI — they were kind of the Charles and Diana of their day. Kirsten Dunst, a ”Virgin Suicides” vet, will play Marie; Jason Schwartzman is Louis. Hot!… It looks like they’re really gonna make that long-delayed ”Memoirs of a Geisha” movie — they’ve even got a cast: Zhang Ziyi — the ”Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” beauty who the Deal Report boldly predicts will be Hollywood’s next Julia Roberts — will play Sayuri, the villager-turned-city-geisha heroine of Arthur Golden?s 1997 blockbuster novel. Oscar nominee Ken Watanabe (so, was he the last samurai, or was Tom Cruise? Still not so sure) is her love interest. Rob Marshall (Chicago) directs…. What do Denzel Washington, Sean Penn, and Robert De Niro have in common? They’ve all held their own opposite the formidable Dakota Fanning, who’ll next be seen with De Niro in ”Hide and Seek.” Soon after that, the 10-year-old will add Kurt Russell to her list of bagged Sasquatch, going opposite the ”Miracle” star in ”Dreamer,” a feel-good horse-racing flick. Is she the next Julia Roberts?

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