Though Ben (Gandhi) Kingsley walked off with this year’s Academy Award for Best Actor, rival Oscar contender Paul (The Verdict) Newman displayed no hard feelings when he showed up with wife Joanne Woodward for Ben’s Broadway bow in Edmund Kean. Never mind the fact that Newman didn’t jump to his feet for Kingsley’s first curtain call. When Ben appeared a second time, Paul got up (after Joanne nudged him) and stood in the aisle clapping and waving until he got an appreciative nod from Kingsley. Paul and Joanne then promptly left the theater, skipping the perfunctory backstage backslapping.
When U.S. publishers were given a sneak peak at the outline and sample chapters of Mick Jagger’s upcoming autobiography, due out next fall, they were required to sign an oath of confidentiality not to discuss the book’s contents or the terms of their negotiations. But after Bantam Books acquired U.S. publication rights for an undisclosed sum (the book sold in Britain for $3 million), lips quickly came unglued in publishing circles. According to insiders at two houses who saw the manuscript, text points include Mick’s claim that he doesn’t do drugs and his contention that he and ex-wife Bianca split because she was too caught up with the jet set.
San Francisco, which prides itself on its dearth of celebrities, is in a tizzy over the arrival of Yoko Ono and her son, Sean. John Lennon’s widow wants to buy an apartment in the center of town. Though she will keep her digs at the Dakota in Manhattan, Yoko said she and Sean were moving because living in New York has been too hard on her son, who is a third grader at a San Francisco private school. But the City by the Bay may prove hard on Yoko as well. One columnist wrote: “I can no more imagine her living here than George Steinbrenner, Andy Warhol, Norman Mailer or Mario Cuomo. It jars the sensibilities.”
“Hot off the mold,” says Natalie Wood in Brainstorm, as she presents co-star Christopher Walken (who portrays her estranged husband) with the final prototype of a headpiece that records brain waves and thoughts. Without that pivotal scene, which Natalie shot the week of her tragic death in 1981, the movie could not have been finished. Or so says director Douglas Trumbull, who spent $3 million more than his $15 million budget to complete the project after Wood drowned. Several scenes were changed because of the way Natalie died. In one, Jason Lively (who plays Wood and Walken’s son) imagines his father is torturing him. As originally scripted, the boy fantasizes that he drowns. Trumbull cut another scene that showed Walken and Wood in a canoe.
The Queen of Yuks, Joan Rivers, is introducing 36 Can We Talk? greeting cards (at $1 each) this fall that will feature messages she penned herself. Sample: “There’s one good thing about being your age…you don’t have to worry about Roman Polanski asking you out.” Or, “I want to give you something you like on your birthday…but for that I need a prescription.” Produced by the Thought Factory, the card line will be expanded next year to include note pads, buttons, calendars and coffee mugs. Can we wait?