A few stray stars showed up for the Academy of Televison Arts and Sciences party to honor the Emmy nominees  at the Pacific Design Center Friday night.

"Rescue Me" star Denis Leary wandered in with his wife Ann. The couple looked around horrified and grabbed a quick nibble from the seafood bar. Cloris Leachman did a longer seated chow down and Jane Kaczmarek ran in and out at the last minute.

This made the highlight of the party the official Emmy sponsor Dove Chocolate display – spinning chocolate trays and a box that opened like a snapping treasure chest – complete with bags for guests to scoop up lotsa chocolate and take it home to stuff their faces.

The far more star-studded affair that night was the Gersh Agency’s annual Emmy nominee bash at the Sunset Towers, sponsored by the numero uno high-end tequila Grand Centenario.

Held out by the pool overlooking the twinkle lights of LA, the movers-and-shakers mixer honored Gersh’s big E nominees Debra Messing, Chris Meloni, Elizabeth Perkins, Kyra Sedgwick, Megan Mullally, Kelly MacDonald, and Jeffrey Tambor, along with several "Project Runway" designers such as Nick, Santino, and Raymundo.

Also enjoying the view:, Mary McCormack, Holland Taylor, James Vanderbeek, Balthazar Getty, Kevin Bacon, Jeff Goldblum, Kevin Nealon, Jonathan Silverman, Robin Tunney. Blythe Danner, who’s not even with the agency,  came by  to catch up with Messing. Which makes sense. Remember she played Will’s Mom on “Will and Grace” and they’ve both won Women in Film Lucy Awards.

Messing, chatting with Santino, introduced the fledging fashion force to Warren Littlefield, former head of NBC, saying, “And now I want you to meet the man who responsible for my entire career.” At which point, a grateful Santino hugged Littlefield.

Gosh, moments like those are just priceless.

"The Girl in the Cafe" nominee MacDonald ("Nanny McPhee") told me that her dress that night – a sweet, old-fashioned beige frock – cost just $9.99. Turns out it was purchased in a little clothing shop in New Mexico and reworked by costume designer Mary Zophres on MacDonald’s just-wrapped Cohen brothers film, “No Country for Old Men.”

The film, based on a Cormac McCarthy novel, stars Javier Bardem, Tommy Lee Jones and Woody Harrelson. “Yeah, I know,” Kelly said, with that adorable Scottish lilt. “What a bunch of no-talents.”

At the Emmys, Kelly will wear a slightly more upscale frock from Elsie Katz Couture. “They were so lovely and showed me two dresses. The first was kind of a white flapper dress and it was very pretty but the alternate was the one I really loved.”

And no, I’m not going to spoil the surprise and give away any more details. You’ll just have to watch the show to see it.

Photo Credits: Denis Leary and wife make a pit stop at the official Emmy nominee party Friday night.Apparently, no one told that that one goes to it.
WireImage/Mark Sullivan

Photo Credit: Kelly MacDonald – seen here at the London premiere of "Nanny McPhee" – will wear an Elsie Katz design to today’s Emmys.
WireImage/Ferdaus Shamim

Posted by:LATimes