October 24, 1995
From Correspondent Dennis Michael
Birthday greetings to the retired, undefeated late-night champ. Johnny Carson turns 70 this week ... but no special observations are planned. Former bandleader Doc Severinson is quoted by the Hollywood Reporter trade paper as saying the birthday will be just another day for Carson.
Clint Eastwood will get one of Hollywood's ultimate accolades. Already possessor of best actor and best picture Oscars, the filmmaker and actor will be the recipient of the American Film Institute's lifetime achievement award in 1996. He's the 24th Hollywood figure to receive the award.
Casting news: Hugh Grant is considering the role of Nick Leeson in a future film. Leeson faces charges of fraud and forgery in the collapse of Barings Bank. The Hollywood Reporter notes that the film of the case is in development. Sir David Frost is hoping to produce.
Paula Poundstone is back before the cameras. The standup comic is performing at Harvard this week, shooting a special for HBO. Look for "Paula Poundstone Goes to Harvard" to air in 1996.
Debbie Gibson is looking at prime time. Daily Variety reports the actress has received the green light to star in a pilot for an ABC series. She'd play a teacher at a New York girls' boarding school in "Queens of the Bigtime," for Warner Brothers.
Debi Mazar is prepping a situation comedy. Daily Variety reports 20th century Fox TV is working up "Temporarily Yours," which would feature Mazar as a temp worker in a series of strange jobs. CBS, ABC and Fox are considering the show.
Greg Kinnear is reported close to signing on to play a lead role -- but not the title role -- in "Dear God." Daily Variety reports the comic is in talks with Paramount to head up the offbeat comedy. Tom Hanks was originally attached.
Jimmy Page and Robert Plant are sticking with the elevator or the escalator -- no "Stairways." The former "Led Zeppelin" stalwarts say there's no truth to the rumor that they'll start including the hit "Stairway to Heaven" in their touring set. A spokesperson for the band says it will be "a cold day in hell when they play that song again."
A high-level gig for Gloria Estefan. The singer is getting ready to perform at the Vatican at a gathering to honor priests around the world. Estefan will sing with a 62-piece orchestra, but she's not the headliner. Pope John Paul II tops the bill.
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