By People Staff
November 10, 1980 12:00 PM

Gary’s diff’rent

Danielle (Archie Bunker’s Place) Brisebois, 11, fell right in step with Gary (Diff’rent Strokes) Coleman, 12, when he asked for the first dance at the Youth in Films Awards dinner in L.A. But Coleman soon buzzed off to give a dozen other girls a whirl. By the time he was summoned to accept his trophy for Best Comedian, Gary was so charged up he delivered a cocky put-down: “Omigosh, another award.”

Pecking Van Patten

What’s this, Erik Estrada passing up two lovelies to buss Dick Van Patten? The macho star was simply being nonpartisan, which was only appropriate for a performer at an L.A. concert to raise funds for voter education. Included in the chorus at the affair were Van Patten and wife Patti (right) and Estrada’s current squeeze, Beverly Sassoon. Though it may cost Erik $1 million to divorce his wife, Joyce, Beverly is in the chips. She picked up $5 million shedding hairdresser hubby Vidal.

Round the Horne

Serenaders Harry Belafonte and Sammy Davis Jr. converged on Lena Horne after she received a Goofy, the traditional trophy of the Hollywood Thalians. The charity group, which raises money for mental health, had named Lena Ms. Wonderful 1980. “It’s so nice to get flowers while you can still smell the fragrance,” quipped Horne. That’s a joke, folks: At 63 Lena still dazzles, and after a London gig this month she will begin rehearsing for a one-woman Broadway show.

Heeeere’s Jimmy

In his first major movie, Momma’s Boy, Jimmy McNichol, 19, plays a student suspected of brutally killing a TV repairman. So sister Kristy (who has just signed with CBS to make five films for $1 million) brought along a hatchet inscribed “For use in your new trade” when she visited him on location near L.A. The 18-year-old actress noted that Jimmy, who was dripping with fake blood, might need the weapon “in case the critics get out of hand.” They might—the grisly film is targeted for young audiences.

Barnard’s law of life

“I work, I live, and I love thoroughly—I am against half measures,” says Dr. Christiaan Barnard, 58, the South African who pioneered the first heart transplant operation in 1967. With his 29-year-old second wife, Barbara, the surgeon, who grows Riesling and Cabernet grapes outside Cape Town, visited the vineyards of Châteauneuf du Pape in the Rhone Valley. As concerned with la bonne mort as la bonne vie, he will soon visit the U.S. to advocate euthanasia for those patients with no hope.

Liberating Caan

“If I don’t make this film now, I’ll never make it,” says Claude Lelouche, 42, of his current project, The Ins and the Outs. A $10 million, two-and-a-half-hour musical (with a six-hour TV version), it is a far cry from his low-budget 1966 hit A Man and a Woman. The plot follows four families—American, French, Russian and German—from 1937 to the present and has 50 featured parts. James Caan plays two of them: a jazz-loving Army captain at the liberation of Paris in 1945 (right) and then the man’s grown son years later in the U.S.