BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — They didn't kick off their Sunday shoes and break into dance, but Zac Efron did come toe to toe with Kevin Bacon for the first time on the red carpet at Sunday's Golden Globes.

Efron is slated to reprise the role of top-tapping rebel Ren McCormack in an upcoming remake of "Footloose." Bacon shot to fame when he originated the role nearly 25 years ago in the original 1984 film.

"Finally, I meet you," Efron, accompanied by his girlfriend and "High School Musical" co-star Vanessa Hudgens, exclaimed as he intercepted Bacon on the carpet.

The pair chitchatted for several minutes while Bacon's wife, Kyra Sedgwick, who was nominated for a Globe for best TV actress for "The Closer," conducted red carpet interviews.

"I was always a really big fan," Efron told Bacon.

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Tom Cruise must have gotten comfortable in that fat suit.

Cruise, nominated for a supporting actor Golden Globe for his nearly unrecognizable performance as fat, balding, foul-mouthed movie executive Les Grossman in the Ben Stiller comedy "Tropic Thunder," said he and Stiller are considering bringing the character back in some other format.

"More is Les? I don't know. We'll see. We keep talking about maybe doing something for the Internet," Cruise said on the red carpet before Sunday's Golden Globes.

"We really haven't had a moment to talk about it thoroughly but it would be fun," Cruise added. "It's a fun character to play."

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Recalling co-star Heath Ledger's tragic death still chokes up Maggie Gyllenhaal, even during the excitement of the Golden Globes.

"It's so hard to really feel how sad it is with the lights and the television and everybody screaming, but you know it's also very sad," Gyllenhaal, her voice choking, said on the red carpet before the Golden Globes.

Ledger, who died last January of an accidental drug overdose, won the Golden Globe on Sunday as supporting actor in a motion picture for his performance as Batman's nemesis The Joker.

"Our movie I think is great, actually. But I think he elevated it to a completely different place," Gyllenhaal said of Ledger's performance. "It's hard to be that good in a movie that big."

A subdued "Dark Knight" director Chris Nolan accepted Ledger's award.

"For any of us lucky enough to work with him. ... for any of us lucky enough to enjoy his performances, he will be eternally missed but he will never be forgotten," Nolan said.

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At the Golden Globes, it's not just about who wins but who you get to say hello to.

The event is noted for being more a far more laid back affair than its big brother, the Oscars, and Sunday's 66th annual edition was no exception. So many people stopped Steven Spielberg to say hello that the director barely made it to his seat before the televised awards show's director started the cameras rolling.

With two minutes to show time, numerous nominees and awards presenters continued to mingle, ignoring the voice that came over the loudspeaker urging them to take their seats. Beyonce was escorted through the crowd to her seat by her publicist, Alan Nierob. Clint Eastwood stopped to shake hands with movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and Brad Pitt took Angelina Jolie by the hand and escorted her to their table.

As awards were presented, celebrities continued to schmooze. Mickey Rourke held court on the smoking patio, collecting accolades for his Golden Globe-nominated performance in 'The Wrestler." He posed for photos with fans as he puffed on a Marlboro Red.

Tom Hanks chatted with Robert Downey Jr., Laurence Fishburne greeted Sacha Baron Cohen and Kate Winslet passed around the Golden Globe she won for supporting actress in a motion picture for "The Reader."

"It's heavy," one of her tablemates said.

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Less than a month after abruptly leaving a hit Broadway show over health problems, Jeremy Piven showed up on the red carpet outside the Golden Globes alongside Mark Wahlberg.

Piven, who also plays Ari Gold on the HBO show "Entourage," left the critically acclaimed production of "Speed the Plow" last month. The show business trade paper Variety reported the 43-year-old actor had been suffering from high levels of mercury, which caused fatigue and other problems.

Piven spoke briefly with former football player Tiki Barber, who worked as a reporter during NBC's red carpet preview.

Piven likened his abrupt departure from the show to a team doctor telling Barber that he had to leave a game.

Barber joked that he often ignored such orders.

Wahlberg ran interference, saying a healthy Piven was needed for HBO's "Entourage," which Wahlberg executive produces.

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Clint Eastwood's wife, Dina, was a TV news reporter when she met her future husband, and she put some of those reporter skills to work at the Golden Globes, pulling out her video camera and recording her husband as he took part in the show.

Eastwood, who has two Academy Awards for best director, was nominated for a Golden Globe this year for the song he sang, "Gran Torino," at the conclusion of the movie of the same name. He lost out, however, to rocker Bruce Springsteen, who won for his song "The Wrestler," from the movie "The Wrestler."

"This is the only time I'm going to be in competition with Clint Eastwood. And it felt pretty good, too," Springsteen laughed as he accepted the award.

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Associated Press writers Derrik J. Lang, Anthony McCartney and John Rogers contributed to this story.

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