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PASSAGES: Reeve Checks Israeli Research

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TRAVELED: Former “Superman” star Christopher Reeve, 50, who remains paralyzed from the neck down after a 1995 horse-riding accident, is due to arrive in Israel Monday to study the country’s treatment of spinal injuries and further his campaign for stem-cell research, reports the Associated Press. During the five-day trip he will visit Israeli research institutions and meet Israelis paralyzed in terrorist attacks.

CAST: Winona Ryder and Robert Downey Jr., neither a stranger to the law, have both been set to star in Woody Allen’s latest picture, which does not yet have a title, reports Variety. While Downey, 38, is no longer on probation for his drug-related charges, Ryder, 31, still is for her shoplifting conviction. But it should not hinder her work schedule.

QUOTED: “Writing to me is free! What would it cost to see a therapist? It’s never one session. You’re in this relationship for years at $150 an hour.” — Advice columnist Amy Dickinson, 43, telling The New York Times why she’s a bigger bargain than a shrink

DIED: Oscar-winning “Midnight Cowboy” British director John Schlesinger, 77, died in a Palm Springs hospital Friday following a stroke. His other great films included “Billy Liar,” “Darling” (which made a star of Julie Christie) and “Sunday Bloody Sunday.” “Shakespeare said it best in Hamlet, ‘We will never see the likes of him again, ‘” Dustin Hoffman, who starred in Schlesinger’s “The Marathon Man,” told AP.

PLANNED: Writer-director John Waters, 57, whose cult film “Hairspray” is now a Broadway musical hit, will next see his 1990 “Crybaby,” which starred Johnny Depp (in his pre-“Pirates” days), turned into a tuner. “We have characters like an oversexed tease, a pregnant tough girl and the ugliest girl in the world, who’s proud of it. … In the movie, we rotted her teeth out and painted her face completely crooked. That’s the kind of makeup that can really work on a Broadway stage,” he tells USA Today. In related news, Buddy Deane, 78, the TV host who inspired the Corny Collins character in “Hairspray,” died from complications of a stroke on July 16, reports AP.