Mind Over Matter
Holt, Rinehart and Winston won’t tell exactly how much dough they handed over to Raquel Welch in exchange for the pleasure of publishing her upcoming beauty book. You can only be sure it’s a lot more than the $275,000 she turned down elsewhere. Asked by Publisher’s Weekly why Holt wanted the book, Editor in Chief John Macrae replied without smiling, “It’s her mind we’re after.” Beautiful.
Dear Old Dad
Though Canadians Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas spoof Canadian backwoodsers as Bob and Doug McKenzie in their new flick, Strange Brew, they really love their land and its people, eh? Asked to name their favorite Canadian hero, Rick looked blank, but Dave slipped right into character. “Our hero is Lome Greene,” he announced. “He was the father on Bonanza and he’s the great Canadian father of all time. We wish he was our father. Also, he loves dogs, so we think he’d love us.”
Wacky weatherman Willard Scott was accused of turning news into showbiz when, to raise $1,000 for the USO, he dressed as Carmen Miranda on the Today show and chiquitaed the early morning crowd out of bed. Willard’s retort: “I’m not in show business: anchors get million-dollar contracts. When they pay me that kind of money, I’ll be in show business.” Will Willard offer a repeat performance? “Some wealthy Brazilians offered me $5,000 not to dress up like Carmen again,” he joked, then revealed his next project: “Around November, I’m going to mud-wrestle Jane Pauley.” And that’s the way it is—when you’re not in showbiz?
Blowing Her Own Horn
Some folks may remember that Phyllis Diller plays a mean classical piano, but few know of another hidden talent: playing the saxophone. Says Phyllis, “When I was in high school I was hot as a pistol. I mean, you want hot sax, you got me. My lower lip hung clear to the floor. I used to trip on it. Ha!” A lucky audience almost witnessed Phyllis’ skill the other night, when she performed at Virginia’s outdoor Wolf Trap theater. Pianist Marian McPartland, who entertained on the same bill with Phyllis, convinced the comedienne to take out her horn and join the jazz trio for a few closing numbers. But Phyllis, who says she hasn’t had sax in about 40 years, called it quits at the dress rehearsal. “Honey, it was murder,” she recalls. “I knew deep in my heart that I was just going to be rotten. Being a woman of great pride, I didn’t want to blow the whole forest away.” By the way, Phyllis has two silver saxophones for sale. They date back to her childhood so they must be antiques. Right, Phyllis?
Whose name is it anyway?
When Paul, Duane and Dennis Sinatra opened a Las Vegas nightclub called Sinatra’s last month, they meant business. And so did a singer of the same last name who isn’t related to the brotherly trio. Apparently, Ol’ Blue Eyes wants to hold a patent on his last name so he filed a $10 million suit against the owners, claiming that the new club’s name implied his involvement in it. Paul Sinatra, who worked in Las Vegas for more than a decade to raise money for his own place, disagrees. “Sinatra is the name I was born with and my father was born with,” he says. “What name am I supposed to put on the wall, Salami’s? This is a small town. I know everybody. They won’t know it’s my joint if I call it Salami’s.” Well, at least it’s safer than calling it Oscar Mayer’s.
After hugging stunning Melissa Manchester following her concert at L.A.’s Greek Theatre, Pittsburgh Steeler turned ABC commentator Lynn Swann had to call for a time out. “There were only three times that my legs have felt that jellied,” he said. “After my first concussion, my second concussion and my third concussion.” Hope Melissa didn’t mess with his head.