Michael Small
March 26, 1984 12:00 PM

Slapstick Legacy

A lot of people are glad that Moe Howard, the one with the straight hair on the Three Stooges, rarely paid for anything with cash. In the last year and a half Moe’s daughter, Joan Maurer, has donated more than $41,000 to the City of Hope medical center in L.A. by selling some 4,000—15 years’ worth—of her late father’s canceled checks. Fans scrambled to pay $10 apiece for the mementos. Moe wrote one of the checks for $1.39 to the post office. “He needed a record since stamps were a business expense,” explains Joan. Another, for $2,500, was written to Moe’s barber as a loan to keep the shop open. Describing the barber’s value to her dad, Joan says, “He gave my father a special haircut—he could throw it forward, and have the Stooge look, or comb it back and look perfectly normal in seconds.”

Life After M*A*S*H

CBS’ decision to pull After MASH off the air for awhile brought some unexpected relief to at least one cast member. “I miss the old gang. I miss the sense of mischief,” Harry Morgan, alias Colonel Potter, moaned to the Toronto Star. “We’re in the same soundstage, and everything reminds me of the other show. In M*A*S*H we had a war to play off. But here we’ve only got the Eisenhower era. And that was the most boring time, believe me. I had to live through it.”

Nervous Service

A dream come true isn’t always a pleasant experience. Kyohei Fujie, 35, an amateur tennis player, won a Tokyo TV-show prize: the chance to do net battle against Jimmy Connors. Arriving at Turn-berry Isle Yacht Club in Miami, where Jimmy lives, Fujie survived the introductions, then excused himself. Some 200 spectators waited quite some time for him to reappear. Someone finally found him in the men’s room and, with coaxing, steered him back out to the court. “Mr. Fujie was extremely nervous, to say the least,” Turnberry pro Jeff Snelling says. “He couldn’t legitimately win a point, although we did give him 30 points at the start of each game and called his balls in when they were easily a foot out.” Unlike Connors on some occasions, Fujie didn’t argue one call.

Don’t Cry for Me, Debra Winger

If you found it tough to leave Terms of Endearment without dripping tears on the candy counter, you should take a tip from one of its stars, Debra Winger. She devised a foolproof method to keep from getting choked up when the plot line turned treacly. Says she: “At the end, if I thought it was getting too heavy, I’d start to sing the theme from Love Story like Ethel Merman.” That did it every time.

No Mann Is an Island

Manfred Mann has a top 40 hit with his single, Runner, Luther Vandross got into the same league with his album Busy Body, and both of them have complaints. Asked at a concert what it felt like to become a romantic figure like pop star Julio Iglesias, the rather portly Vandross replied, “I’d settle for his 31-inch waist.” On the subject of his musical success, Mann grumbled, “I like to get up in the morning and walk the dog in the park and ride my bicycle. If this thing is a hit, we’re going to have to tour and do interviews. It’s going to ruin everything.” Aw, too bad.

No Piker

Nick Apollo Forte, who plays an over-the-hill club singer in Woody Allen’s Broadway Danny Rose, bought himself a fishing boat with part of his salary from the movie. He should have checked first to make sure there were fish in the lake near his Waterbury, Conn. home. There weren’t. Luckily, Nick just signed to star in an NBC pilot, Mr. Success. As the show’s producer Howard Gewirtz puts it, “Nick will make enough on this deal to rent his own fish.”

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