NBA ace Parker weds 'desperate housewife'

Desperate Housewives' actress Eva Longoria and Tony Parker, who was the most valuable player in this year's NBA finals in the United States, tie the knot in Paris.
AFP | By HT Correspondent, Paris
UPDATED ON JUL 07, 2007 06:45 PM IST

Desperate Housewives' actress Eva Longoria was set to tie the knot Saturday with basketball champion Tony Parker in a church ceremony in Paris ahead of star-studded celebrations at a 17th-century chateau.

The marriage, billed as the celebrity wedding of the year and leading the worldwide nuptial rush to cash in on the supposed good luck of the 7/7/7 date, comes a day after the couple married in a civil ceremony in Paris.

Longoria, 32, and San Antonio Spurs star Parker, 25, will at 16:15 pm (1415 GMT) exchange wedding vows in the Saint-Germain-l'Auxerrois church, across the road from the the Louvre museum in central Paris.

They will then host Hollywood friends for a lavish feast and party at Vaux-le-Vicomte, a 17th-century chateau southeast of the capital.

Longoria and Belgian-born Parker, who grew up playing basketball in France and was the most valuable player in this year's NBA finals in the United States, have kept their guest list secret.

But actors Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Jamie Foxx and pop singers Lionel Richie, Sting, and Spice Girl Victoria Beckham will reportedly be there.

A private jet carrying stars of the Desperate Housewives' television series -- Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman and Nicolette Sheridan -- arrived in Paris on Thursday.

Marcia Cross, who plays the conniving red-headed Bree Van de Kamp in the hit show and who recently gave birth to twins, was unable to attend.

Security at the chateau was expected to be tight, as it was on Friday when the pair were married by Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe at a city hall ceremony.

That event was attended by around 40 people, including several US basketball stars and French football international Thierry Henry.

More than 100 riot police manned metal barriers to keep the hundreds of onlookers at bay.

Disappointed fans booed when Parker and Longoria, who plays the adulterous Gabrielle Solis in the television show, left the building in two Mercedes saloons with tinted black windows.

Longoria, dressed in a short pink Chanel dress with black trim, had arrived for the ceremony in a stretch limousine while Parker showed up separately in a mini-van.

Parker told Le Parisien he had left all the wedding preparations to his fiancee -- "except for the food and the music" -- after she advised him to "keep his focus on the NBA playoffs."

"I'm the luckiest guy in the world," said the San Antonio Spurs guard.

According to the rumour mill, Beverly Hills wedding planner for the stars Mindy Weiss spotted Vaux-le-Vicomte after Longoria said she wanted a "fancy wedding" and said she loved the romance of France.

Longoria and Parker held hen and stag parties in the French Riviera resort of Saint Tropez earlier this week.

Born in Belgium to an African-American basketball professional and a Dutch model, Parker was brought up in Rouen, northwest of Paris, and started his sporting career in the United States in 2001.

He is the first European to be named Most Valuable Player in the NBA finals.

Longoria, a Texan, has long been a Spurs fan, and is a regular at his matches. They got engaged last November.

Rights to their wedding photographs have been negotiated by OK! magazine for a reported fee of two million dollars.

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