Short Takes

The recently recovered original score to Charlie Chaplin’s film “The Circus” will be performed by the National Symphony Orchestra during a screening of a new print of the pic at Wolf Trap Farm Park for the Performing Arts Aug. 7. The score was discovered in the Chaplin estate in Switzerland last year by Gillian Anderson, music specialist in the Library of Congress Music Division. Anderson will conduct the orchestra at the concert.

Principal photography begins today on a one-hour CBS Schoolbreak Special about a lesbian couple raising a 15-year-old boy, starring Meredith Baxter and Joanna Cassidy. The telefilm, written by Amy Dunkleberger, has been in development forthree years at Joseph Stern Prods. Joe Stern will produce it and Lee Shallat will direct. It concerns the story of a teenager who must cope with peer pressure and prejudice at high school over his home situation. The cast includes William Russ, Judith Ivey, Joe Regalbuto, Charlie Robinson, Jared Rushton and Justin Whalin.

A group of set decorators within IATSE Prop Local 44 have formed a new society, the Set Decorators Society of America. The new group was created to recognize achievements within the specific set decorator field and to increase job opportunities.

The L.A. Gay & Lesbian Film Festival has added a second closing-night screening of Richard Glatzer’s “Grief.” The dark comedy starring Craig Chester, Alexis Arquette, Paul Bartel, Jackie Beat, Johanna Went and John Fleck will unspool at 11:15 p.m. Sunday.

Warner Bros.’ “Free Willy” has received the Film Advisory Board’s award of excellence.

Greta Scacchi, Matthew Modine and newcomer Ben Silverstone have joined the cast of Paramount Pictures’ “The Browning Version,” which stars Albert Finney. The film, which is being directed by Mike Figgis from a screenplay by Ronald Harwood, began principal photography July 5 in Dorset, England. Ridley Scott and Mimi Polk are the producers and Garth Thomas is the co-producer.

Dodi Fayed’s Allied Stars and John Davis’ Davis Entertainment have optioned “Manhattan Transfer,” John E. Stith’s novel about the seizure of Manhattan by aliens. Fayed and Bettina Viviano will produce.

Talent agent Richard DeGrandcourt has segued to PR with formation of Pzazz Public Relations.

Saban Entertainment has concluded a homevid distribution deal with Polygram Video for its new live-action syndie strip “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.” Polygram will release five cassettes this year, the first coinciding with the fall series debut on the Fox Children’s Network.

Former FCC public affairs director Lorrie Secrest has been named VP of media relations at Ameritech, the Chicago-based regional Bell operating company.

The album “Music From the Films of Audrey Hepburn,”released Tuesday on Big Screen Records, includes a version of “Moon River” that features the late actress’s voice, according to album compiler Tim Sexton. Marni Nixon ghosted the song in the 1961 film “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” The album also features music from “Charade,””The Nun’s Story,””Wait Until Dark” and “Two For the Road,” but problems locating music tracks prevented “Roman Holiday,””Sabrina,””Love in the Afternoon” and “The Children’s Hour” from inclusion. Hepburn was 63 when she died of cancer in January.

E! Entertainment Television and Cogeco Radio-Television have concluded an agreement for the exclusive Canadian distribution rights to programming produced by E!. Cogeco plans E! distribution as part of a new Canadian specialty programming service featuring 24-hour entertainment news and variety programming. E! is seen in more than 75 nations, with 22 million homes in the U.S.

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