Princes William and Harry go after the fox, and their dad gets hounded
England’s latest Hundred Years’ War—the battle over foxhunting, a sport memorably condemned by Oscar Wilde as “the unspeakable in pursuit of the inedible”—took another turn last week when bonny Prince William, dashing in a tweed jacket, jodhpurs and a riding cap, saddled up, leaped fences and galloped, headlong and smiling, into a deep political swamp.
The royal family has always been fond of the sport, in which hounds chase a fox and riders chase the hounds. Nowadays, less than half of the hunts end with the animal being killed by the dogs, but foxhunt opponents insist the animals are forever traumatized. Public opinion polls, show most Britons oppose foxhunting, and Parliament is in the midst of a long-running debate about whether hunts should be banned as inhumane. The timing of this foxhunt, a few miles from Charles’s Highgrove home in Gloucestershire, was viewed by some as a none-too-subtle attempt to influence royal-friendly MPs. “The boys are being used in a political game,” says Steve Rackett, press officer at the League Against Cruel Sports. “In our constitution the heir to the throne is not involved in political debate. It’s not something that’s supposed to happen.” In fact, Charles has brought his sons on hunts for years. At this particular hunt, William, 17, rode, and Harry, 15, followed on a motorbike.
Both boys seemed above, or at least outside, the fray. “They are very sociable and mix with everyone else at the hunt,” says fellow hunter and professional show-jumper Tony Pellett. Also escaping unscathed, at least for the day: the fox, which got away.
Close Call for Mercy
Glenn Close met Precious Bedell in 1991 when she was touring the Bedford Hills (N.Y.) Correctional Facility while researching a TV documentary about foster care. She was impressed. “Precious was so articulate and informed and passionate,” she later wrote to an attorney, “I thought she was one of the volunteers.” Actually, Bedell is serving 25 years to life for beating her 2-year-old daughter, Lashonda, to death in the bathroom of a Syracuse steakhouse in 1979. Appalling as the crime was, Close came to believe that Bedell, who earned a master’s degree in prison, had been rehabilitated—and had served enough time. Close’s letters led nowhere, however. But now, a new appeal citing deficiencies in the original trial has been filed, and a ruling is expected soon. “She showed complete remorse,” says Bedell’s lawyer, Nancy Hollander. Close, in her letter of support,-went further. “I would not have hesitated,” she wrote, “to leave my child with her.” Richard Hennessy, the D.A. who oversaw the prosecution, sees it differently. “A celebrity,” he says, “shouldn’t be able to redo what the criminal justice system has done.”
Martin: Bombs Away
Seems like Ricky Martin wants to live La Vida Diplomatica. The 27-year-old pop star says he’d like to press President Clinton about the Navy’s use of Vieques, a small island off the coast of his native Puerto Rico, as a practice bombing range. “I would say to him, ‘What are we going to do?’ Because it’s not possible that my land is under so much stress because of this,” he told the Puerto Rican newspaper El Mundo. Last April, after two bombs went astray and killed an island security guard, protesters built camps on land controlled by the Navy, and military exercises have been temporarily suspended since then.
Martin thought he would have the chance to share his feelings with Clinton at a meeting prior to a D.C. concert Nov. 2, but the President was in Norway at the Mideast peace conference. The hip-swiveler extraordinaire seems unlikely to rest his bon-bon until he takes his case to the top. “Puerto Rico is united in this cause,” he said of the protests, “and I’m part of it.”
Yankees Trade Bats for Club
Spring training—push-ups, wind sprints, curfews—doesn’t start until the next century. So the World Champion New York Yankees, fresh from trouncing the Atlanta Braves, can stay out as late as they want and party as hard as they played. After their parade in downtown Manhattan, Derek Jeter, Tino Martinez, Chuck Knoblauch, Allen Watson and Chili Davis headed to Veruka, the SoHo hot spot where, despite the presence of Michael J. Fox, Jon Voight and Kevin Spacey, the ballplayers held the spotlight. Knoblauch and Martinez danced—and hung out with—celeb fans such as Matthew Broderick and his wife, Sarah Jessica Parker (whose character dated a fictional Yankee during this past season’s Sex and the City). “I’ve watched the team since I was a little boy,” said Voight, a native of suburban Yonkers. “It’s a great way to bring in the millennium, with such a great team.” To some, that’s a team of just one player. “I, like every woman in America,” said Star Jones, of ABC’s The View, “am in love with Derek Jeter.”
An Angry Actor’s Fare Fight
He’s a movie star, so Danny Glover can always get a good table in Manhattan’s restaurants. But because he’s an African-American man, the city’s taxicabs can be a different story. After several cabbies ignored him one night last month, the Lethal Weapon star finally spotted one at a red light. The driver finally let Glover’s daughter Mandisa, 23, and her roommate in, but protested when the 6’4″ Glover tried to sit in the roomier front passenger seat. “I only wanted to go a few blocks,” Glover, 53, told PEOPLE. Once moving, Glover managed to flag down a cop, who suggested filing a complaint with the city’s Taxi & Limousine Commission, which Glover plans to do. “Here we are on the verge of the 21st century,” says Glover, “and we’re still fighting the same old problems.”
Derek: After 20, Still a 10
The braids. The bathing suit. The body. Twenty years ago it seemed that anyone who could count—or couldn’t—was talking about Bo Derek in the movie 10. In November 1979 alone her posters sold 500,000 copies; a few months later she’d sold 1.2 million. Scoop caught up with Derek, who turns 43 on Nov. 20 and is active in TV, at her Santa Barbara, Calif., home.
Do you remember posing for the poster?
Yes. John [her husband, John Derek, who died in 1998] and I just went down to the beach one night when the sun was going down and started taking pictures—not with the idea that it would be a poster. He was a great photographer.
Who picked out the suit?
It was a leather bathing suit, right? John made that suit. I loved it. It started a trend. So did the hairdo.
Did you ever wear your hair that way after the film?
No, no. It takes a good 10 hours to do it. But I did it again not long ago for an advertising campaign for Bijan perfume—the first time in like 18 years I’d done it.
How did the picture become a poster?
After 10 came out, people were coming at me from all over to endorse everything. Someone came to us with the idea of a poster; we liked him personally, and we went into business.
Did you expect the success?
No, except for the fact that posters were really hot then. Farrah Fawcett’s had just done really well, and when 10 came out there was obviously this fascination for Bo Derek.
Why do you think it did so well?
Partly because of the success of the film. And the photograph was very beautiful.
Did you keep the poster?
I have a couple rolled up in storage as a keepsake.
And what do you think now about how you looked then?
I think, God, I was so young.
ON THE BLOCK
THE HOUSE THAT ROCKY BUILT
In real estate, as in boxing, so much depends on the preparation. So before Sylvester Stallone sold his three-story, 24,000-sq.-ft. Florida mansion, purchased for $8 million in 1993, he spent another $10 million or so sprucing up the place. The bay-front estate in Miami’s Coconut Grove neighborhood, just down the street from Madonna‘s warm-weather retreat, features a movie theater, a 10,000-bottle-capacity wine cellar, an Olympic-size pool and a man-made ravine complete with cascading waterfalls. There’s a gym, of course—this was Rocky’s home—with a separate aerobics studio. Stallone put it on the market for $24.7 million and sold it to a Miami real estate developer for an undisclosed price. Stallone now lives in Los Angeles with wife Jennifer Flavin and daughters Sophia and Sistine.