L.A. looks to mend image via Cup

GOOD MORNING: “This could be the turnaround for L.A. — if we look as good as we did during the Olympics,” says Joe Smith, the 1994 World Cup executive producer for all entertainment events. “If we can show there are no problems here, no shootings, no riots — that L.A. is a safe place, then the city can make its turnaround. And Mayor Riordan is determined that will happen. Security will be enormously tight. No hooligans will come off any planes. They are identified (from their exploits abroad).” And don’t forget, still in the race for the final 24 teams are Iraq, Iran and North Korea. I attended a World Cup game in Milan when Italy was host four years ago and can attest to the tight security at those games. Everyone entered through a metal detector — every purse and carried-on item was searched … The excitement globally for a World Cup tops a Super Bowl or World Series game. It’s expected a billion will view just the “final draw” in Las Vegas Dec. 19, six months ahead of the games. Dick Clark’s show from the Vegas convention center will include such international stars as Julio Iglesias, Eros Ramazzotti, Luis Miguel, etc. Two billion worldwide will view the games themselves. Smith is the perfect man for the job — his enthusiasm as an ex-sports commentator and d.j., plus his showbiz acumen, suit him to a “t” for the World Cup. He’s working on tying up the Hollywood Bowl for an entire week prior to the closing game at the Rose Bowl July 17. Dodger Stadium, as reported here, is already set for the trio of tenors concert on the 16th. Pavarotti, Domingo and Carreras, who ditto’d before the Rome game in 1990, are hefty soccer (football) fans … Smith is talking to producers for entertainment shows on the eve of games at other soccer sites: N.Y., Chicago, Detroit, Boston, SanFran, Boston, Dallas, Orlando and D.C. … It’s expected that L.A. will make $ 350 million during the games here. Among the sponsors who’ll pour in dough at these events: Coke, McDonald’s, JVC, American Airlines, Nestle’s, Fuji, etc. “It’s enormous,” enthused Smith, “for all kinds of music and talent — from jazz to opera, country — everything.”

SHOW BIZ COMES TO THE RESCUE. “Children Under Siege: An Evening of Music for the Children of Bosnia-Herzegovina” is skedded for Oct. 14 at the Greek to further raise public awareness of the tragedy. The show will also be globally radiocast with a toll-free number for contributions and a CD will be produced. The Gorbachev Foundation will manage-distrib funds collabbing with the U.N. High Commissioner on Refugees and the Intl. Rescue Committee. Michael Jensen produces. (818) 585-9575 … Charities will receive a portion of proceeds from the”Jackson Family Honors” concert. Dec. 11 in Atlantic City. All family members are expected to participate in both the live and televised (NBC) event. What about Michael? I’m told he will appear but not (necessarily) perform … Now en route to Singapore on his world tour, Michael J. (through his attorney Howard L. Weitzman) assures all his young fans that “there was no wrongdoing on my part” in the current L.A. investigation … Wolfgang Puck again heads a giant Meals On Wheels benefit on the Universal backlot Oct. 9. Further, patrons at his restaurants who use a Visa card are told that Visa makes a donation to local Meals-On-Wheels. So, Puck taped a commercial at his Granita eatery in Malibu for Visa. But it doesn’t sit well with — American Express! … Sorry to report that Joe Stellini, after 16 years, is shuttering his (excellent) restaurant. Saturday is the last supper … Judge Robert London and wife Ruthe renewed their wedding vows at the Bel Air hotel on their 30th wedding anni, Aug. 21 …”How’d They Do That?” co-host Dorothy Lucey and KCAL’s David Goldstein will wed Sept. 4 … Martha Raye is birthday’d by husband Mark Harris on her 77th (or 78th) Friday. Harris is back from confabs with the Producers Circle on the Raye legit musical “The Big Mouth”… Seymour Heller’s home recuping after quintuple bypass surgery at Cedars-Sinai.

PUBLISHING CIRCLES ARE REPORTING that Hearst is talking about selling Wm. Morrow — if they get the right price … Madeleine and Andrew Lloyd Webber welcomed their second child, son Richard William, Aug. 24 in England. Webber and director Trevor Nunn arrive in L.A. Thursday for a weekend of final auditions for “Sunset Blvd.”… The Rick Miramontez Co. celebrates its fifth anni moving into expanded quarters downtown … Danny Aiello returns to the stage for the first time since 1988 in Tom Dulack’s “‘Breaking Legs” bowing at the Curran in SanFran Sept. 7, moving to the Cerritos Center Oct.6-10. He’ll be seen on screen in Orion’s “Me And The Kid” opening Oct. 1 … Tyne Daly departed the United Talent Agency and re-signed with her longtime agent Merritt Blake, who’s negotiating an exclusive CBS series/MOW pact … Vicki Light, who gave up her talent agency when she discovered she had MS, opened an art gallery, the Village Studio, in Pacific Palisades … Adam Baldwin signed with the Gersh Agency … Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw crosses over from his regular slot as co-host of “NFL Today” to interview K.C. Chiefs QB and guaranteed Hall Of Famer Joe Montana for a two-part interview on “CBS This Morning” Sept. 2-3. Bradshaw’s four Super Bowl wins have been equaled only by Montana (during his tenure with the 49ers).

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