Pair of shues? Now that Elisabeth Shue is making a splash with her graphic performance as a hooker in Leaving Las Vegas, there are rumors that she's headed for a naughtier address, brother Andrew's Melrose Place. But Shue says she's keeping her distance: ''There was talk about me coming on as his sister for an episode, like, 'They're brother and sister in real life! They're brother and sister on TV!' It seemed contrived.'' That doesn't mean she isn't involved in the nighttime soap, though. ''You watch a few episodes and you're hooked,'' she says, and not just on her brother's character. ''You gotta wonder, What's the deal with Kimberly?''
-- Cindy Pearlman
In like Flynt: If nothing else, the life of controversial Hustler publisher Larry Flynt has enough drama in it to be a movie. So it comes as no surprise that the wheelchair-bound pornographer and First Amendment crusader will get his two hours on the big screen next year, with Woody Harrelson portraying him. But it's the part of Althea Leasure, Flynt's wife and business partner, that's attracting attention. Fierce young actresses like Patricia Arquette, Mira Sorvino, and everyone's favorite force of nature, Courtney Love, are eager to play Leasure, who died of AIDS in 1987. What's her appeal? ''It's a flashy part,'' says co-screenwriter Scott Alexander (Ed Wood). ''She's a strong character, a stripper, and then she gets sick and dies. It's kind of like the Bela Lugosi role in Ed Wood.''
-- Casey Davidson
First night: Playing a mafioso in A Bronx Tale and Bullets Over Broadway was one thing, but a sex scene with siren Linda Fiorentino in Jade completely unnerved Chazz Palminteri. ''I'd only just had my first screen kiss with Anjelica Huston [in The Perez Family],'' says the actor, who worked out daily for eight weeks and lost 14 pounds to prepare for his Jade role. Having Fiorentino as a costar did make it easier. ''Linda's totally uninhibited,'' he says. ''She arrives, throws off her dress, and says, 'Let's go!' '' Fiorentino, meanwhile, was surprised to hear of Palminteri's innocence. ''He didn't tell me it was his first time,'' she says. ''I would have been more gentle.''
-- Stephen Schaefer
Hot stuff: The thriller Heat (due out Dec. 8) pits tough cop Al Pacino against tough convict Robert De Niro. With such intense actors, were there any lighthearted moments during filming? ''We're intense?'' says Pacino, laughing. ''No, we're not intense. On the set, we used to bang each other around.'' Pause. ''With anvils.'' Pause. ''Just kidding.'' Pacino admits reuniting with his Godfather Part II costar was ''a real pleasure.'' Despite the Hollywood roll (he's in February's political drama City Hall), the actor plans a return to the theater : He is scheduled to appear in Hughie at New York City's Circle in the Square in June. ''[Stage acting] is a physical thing,'' says Pacino. ''It's as if you were a tightrope walker and need to be on the wire. Your body wants to put itself in that kind of trouble.''