Snipes sports makeover for ‘Demolition’

GOOD MORNING: Wesley Snipes has gone blond and will sport one blue (contact lens) eye for his “heavy” role in “Demolition Man” with Sylvester Stallone and Lori Petty for producer Joel Silver at WB … Snipes and Sean Connery had just completed looping “Rising Sun” for Phil Kaufman at the latter’s SanFran HQ … After “Man,” Snipes takes three months off. He has not signed for anything — you can imagine the offers! …”It’s the best material I’ve ever had,” Martin Bregman said of “The Ruth Etting Story,” scripted by Judith Roscoe. “It’s not a remake,” Bregman said. The Universal release is to star Al Pacino as Moe “The Gimp” Snyder, a Chicago mobster who wed and whipped Etting. She will hopefully be played by Winona Ryder. In the 1955 MGM version, “Love Me or Leave Me,” James Cagney and Doris Day co-starred for producer Joe Pasternak and director Charles Vidor. Pacino first films “Carlito’s Way” also for Bregman/Baer with Brian de Palma directing the Universal movie. Then the busy Bregman/Baer combo starts “The Shadow,” with Alec Baldwin in the ’30s-set drama directed by Russell Mulcahy, scripted by David Koepp (who ditto’s “Carlito’s”) … While waiting to start “BevHills Cop III,” director John Landis has returned to the small screen to direct a seg of his banner’s “Dream On” with Donna Mills guestarring. He may also direct a sitcom pilot for his St. Clair Ent. while awaiting the big screen Par “BevHills Cop” script rewrite to be completed by Steve De Souza. Eddie Murphy has strong feelings about what the next “Cop” should be. I can’t imagine what wild action will be concocted for the next “BevHills Cop”–but Landis, awaiting its start, went to see Jean-Claude Van Damme’s “Nowhere to Run.” So be forewarned–there could be no holds–or laughs–barred.

WHATTA WINNER! Dick Van Patten won the Pick Six at Santa Anita–for $ 70,000! Van Patten joins Mel Brooks’s “Robin Hood: Men in Tights” playing the Abbot, who weds Maid Marian and Robin Hood. Throughout the movie, Van Patten’s paged “He-e-e-y-y Abbot!” As in Abbott and Costello movies. Van Patten played Friar Tuck in the short-lived ABC series “When Things Were Rotten.” Brooks plays Rabbi Tuck in his movie … Pat and Dick Van P. will be grandparents in March thanks to son Vincent Van Patten and his wife, Betsy, who are expecting their first, a boy. Vinnie has also completed a screenplay, “The Break,” which has financing to start shooting … Jennifer Edwards and Mark Schneider welcomed daughter Hannah Gabrielle S. The proud grandpa is Blake Edwards … Pauline and Jay Robinson celebrate their 33rd wedding anni tomorrow. “Beyond Bizarre,” hosted by Jay for Bill Burrud Prods., has an order for six one-hour spex. Robinson will talk about his “Bizarre” career on Tom Snyder’s CNBC show Thursday … Preceding the three-hour CBS Grammy show produced by Pierre Cossette on Feb. 24, a 90-minute non-aired show produced by Tim Swift will handle the awarding of 66 categories. Fourteen other winners will be on the CBS portion (with some clips of the pre-festivities). The presentations start at 2:30 p.m. … Swift also produces the NARAS Music Cares awards Feb. 20 honoring Natalie Cole at the BevHilton … The late Douglas Edwards had been preparing a tribute to Johnny Green for tomorrow’s salute at the Academy. Now, Edwards too will be given a nod for his contributions to the Academy. Michael Feinstein hosts, Hal Kanter scripts; among those participating are Esther Williams, George Sidney, Gene Kelly, Saul Chaplin , Elmer Bernstein and Shirley Horn. Joe Williams was to have sung with Horn, but his wife was hospitalized this week.

THE AARON SPELLING Foundation for Performing Arts is established at the Hebrew University in Israel in honor of Aaron, who was honored last week as Scopus Laureate. Spelling recalled when he was a little boy, his mom saved money to plant trees in Israel. Now Spelling’s planted “a tree of knowledge.”… Cardinal Roger Mahony presented the Catholic Big Brothers first annual “Spirit Award” to Reginald VelJohnson, national celeb spokesperson for the Big Brothers/Big Sisters minority mentorship program … Holly Robinson’s car was drowned in a flooded street (La Cienega and Melrose) during Sunday’s deluge. Her mom, Dolores rescued Holly and her cousin Kelly, who abandoned their wheels in the “river”… Of course Roddy McDowall will be among those toasting Elizabeth Taylor at her AFI tribute. They were lunching at Cicada recently … Also there, Eleanor and Francis Coppola celebrating their 30th wedding anni … Gregory Peck , in N.Y., is satelliting interviews with daughter Cecilia and Lauren Bacall for their “The Portrait” airing Saturday on TNT. Peck and wife Veronique head to the Berlin Fest Feb. 16, where he’ll receive the Golden Bear lifetime achievement award. Peck hasn’t been in Berlin since 1954 … Faye Dunaway is pleased “Arizona Dream,” in which she co-stars with Johnny Depp, will be screened at Berlin. WB has it for the U.S. and they’re high on her performance in it.

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