By Kim Devore/ Entertainment Writer

    Actors, insiders and devotees of the small screen dialed into Bev Hills to help kick off the 20th annual William S. Paley Television Festival. The Museum of Television and Radio was jumping with the likes of Christine Lahti, Bonnie Hunt and Hector Elizondo. They munched away on Asian-Mexican specialties including kung pao pork, Chinese chicken salad, and black bean and guacamole tostadas. Lemon drops, cosmopolitans and Monte Cristos were served at the upstairs martini bar, where an adventurous piano player made the theme to “Gilligan’s Island” sound like Gershwin.

    The Oscar season may be upon us, but here, the talk was all TV. Entertainment aficionados put aside “American Idol,” “Joe Millionaire” and other contenders in the recent reality craze to reminisce about TV’s Golden Age.

    One of the festival’s hottest tickets was a sock-it-to-me blast-to-the-past showcasing of Rowan and Martin’s “Laugh In.” Here, flower-power fans could not only revisit those famed “one ringy dingy” moments, they could re-live them with many of the original cast members including Ruth Buzzy, Tim Conway, Gary Owens, Dick Martin, Lily Tomlin and Jo Anne Worley.

    Other see-worthy evenings included a salute to TV drama with an all-star line-up that included Steven Bochco of “Hill Street Blues” fame, “The West Wing’s” Aaron Sorkin and “Law and Order’s” Dick Wolf. From cop shows to comedy, it was all ver-r-ry interesting, and you can bet your sweet bippy that the William S. Paley Television Festival is here to stay.


    For Malibu’s Stacy Keach, the play’s the thing. The acclaimed actor has been making the theater rounds of late, including a stop at The Globe Playhouse for the opening night performance of “These Are the Good Old Days.” Not one to just rest on his legendary laurels, Mister K will be stepping on stage at the Mark Taper Forum, where he’ll star in the upcoming production of “Ten Unknowns.” The play makes its West Coast premiere on March 27 and runs through May 4.


    Speaking of putting on a show, Hollywood’s biggest is upon us and once again, Granita will be wining and dining the locals in style. Chef Jennifer Naylor is preparing an Oscar-worthy spread with her famed favorites like pumpkin squash soup and smoked salmon galette. If you don’t want to make the long trek into Tinseltown, this local bash is the place to be.