Making like the Beatles and their 1968 LP The White Album, Prince planned to call his new release The Black Album. Only problem is that Prince’s production has gone into a black hole at Warner Bros., which has destroyed the record’s 3,500 already pressed copies and canceled production. A Warner spokesperson says, “We’ve been told to say it never existed.” Warner scrapped the project because executives felt Prince has too much out now, with his hot Sign o’ the Times album and documentary movie; the release of the questionably marketable, aggressively funk Black Album would cut into Sign’s sales. Prince isn’t talking.
Diane Keaton segues from trying to check her child with the coat check attendant in Baby Boom to being The Good Mother. Leonard Nimoy will direct Keaton for Disney, starting this spring, in the movie version of Sue Miller’s best-selling 1986 novel.
Heartbeat beat: Sylvester Stallone, back from Israel and now shooting the final scenes for Rambo III, is dating deb-of-the-decade Cornelia Guest, who has left behind New York club-hopping for life as a wannabe actress in L.A. Says a Stallone staffer, “He likes blonds but wants to uplift his image, so he’s not dating any more bimbos or gold diggers. He loves to see her in Wand all the society magazines.” All of which may come as a surprise to another blond, Alana Hamilton Stewart (as in George and Rod), who had been linked to Sly last fall.
As the Fox network’s Wilton North Report gasped its last breath, an inside source says, “They were talking about offering Arsenio Hall $2 million to resurrect The Late Show, but he turned them down.” Per Hall’s manager, Bob Wachs, “[Hall] would love to do a talk show some time in the future, but not right now.” The timing was bad, he said, since Hall, an Eddie Murphy protégé, just signed a multi-picture deal with Paramount and is spending the next four months co-starring with Murphy in director John Landis’ new movie.
Between power parties at Aspen during the New Year’s break, TV’s first ladies—Oprah Winfrey, Maria Shriver and Barbara Walters—all wooed the vacationing Lee Hart to appear on their shows, to no avail. A Hart aide says, “Mrs. Hart has no interviews scheduled.”
Girls, it’s time to practice shaking your hair while holding a gun. Aaron Spelling plans a national talent search for four beautiful, bouncy women to star in a new Fox network series about four beautiful, bouncy women who run a detective agency. It’s tentatively called Angels ’88. Spelling, of course, produced Charlie’s Angels back in 1976…. More blasts from TV’s past: Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno next month start filming a two-hour Incredible Hulk reunion movie for NBC, to air in May. Bixby’s directing.
After reading Armand Hammer’s autobiography, Hammer, Bill Cosby called the octogenarian industrialist-philanthropist and offered to help with one of Hammer’s many causes. Not wanting to lose the opportunity to reach 40 million viewers, Hammer asked Cosby to do an episode on raising funds for cancer research. “Bill said he’d do it if I played a part in it. So that’s how I got a new career,” says Hammer, who in this week’s show plays a man whose grandson, a patient of Dr. Huxtable’s, is dying of cancer. Hammer says he kept blowing his lines, calling the star Bill instead of Dr. Huxtable. But Cosby, he says, reassured him, “Don’t worry. Bob Hope sometimes does it wrong 13 times.’ ”