If you're a celebrity who wants to get married away from the prying eyes of the press, do it in Santa Barbara. It worked for Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin, and it worked also for Mira Sorvino. The 36-year-old ''Mighty Aphrodite'' Oscar winner married 22-year-old Christopher Backus at the Santa Barbara courthouse on June 11, Sorvino's publicist announced on Monday, more than two weeks after the fact.
According to Us Weekly, Backus met Sorvino last fall when he waited on her at West Hollywood's Sur restaurant. Backus is also an aspiring actor whose biggest credit to date is an appearance on ''Will & Grace'' in February. (Sorvino had guest-starred on the show earlier in the season.) It's the first marriage for both. Before Backus, Sorvino's romantic history included a relationship with ''Unfaithful'' star Olivier Martinez, and before that, with Quentin Tarantino.
Last month, the New York Daily News reported that Sorvino and Backus planned to get married July 2 on the isle of Capri; it's not clear whether they still plan to hold a reception there, or whether that report was to throw paparazzi off the scent of the June 11 ceremony in California. At the time, future father-in-law Paul Sorvino described Backus as a minor-league pitcher whose prospective career with the Toronto Blue Jays ended with a shoulder injury. ''He has a 96 mph fastball,'' the former ''Law & Order'' star told the Daily News about his future son-in-law. ''He's a terrific guy.''