GOOD MORNING: Howard Stern wasn’t kidding when he told Jay Leno Friday night he has three film offers: Only a couple of hours earlier, Stern met with Par’s Sherry Lansing to talk the pic version of his “Private Parts.” David Picker wants to produce the biopic at Par — but there are other hefty offers around town. No wonder Stern could afford to gamble $ 10,000 when he bet Leno he’d knock him off the air in six months should he (Stern) decide to take a latenight talk’er offer. P.S.: Leno upped his sked a couple of hours Friday in order to get Stern on the show. Howard quickly ‘coptered from NBC to LAX for N.Y. with his agent, Don Buchwald. I spoke to them by phone on the plane en route to the Big Apple — then on to Newark, where Stern will do his New Year’s Eve pay-per-view live (mostly) show from the Opera House. He told me two of the movie offers are indeed for his biopic, the third is for an original story — which he says interests him … What about doing a nightly talkshow? He admits also having those offers — including network — but isn’t going to make a decision until after the holidays. Of all the pic and TV offers and book successes, he said modestly, “I feel blessed.” Honestly …”I’ve been canceled nine times — it’s not fatal,” Robert Urich advised Faye Dunaway, who is no longer a part of CBS’ “It Had to Be You” series. The new pilot tapes Wednesday. Dunaway is particularly concerned that people will think she was “dumped with the implication that I was a problem. That just isn’t true,” she tells me. “Things have changed. I’ve changed. We’re in the ’90s. I’m an actress — a good one — not a temperamental legend.” And she adds, “If the series comes back without me, I may even watch it. I still adore Bob Urich.” Urich tells me the new pilot will include Robin Bartlett, who was Dunaway’s assistant in the original series. “But there’s no romantic interest in the show at all,” he says. “There’s not even any dating. It’s going to be ‘My Three Sons’ of the ’90s.” Urich admits, “People were always trying to dig up some dirt on Faye during the making (of the eight shows). But there wasn’t any. I have the highest respect for her.” He says it was simply a matter of the research showing audiences didn’t want that kind of relationship — between him and Dunaway — on the show. “We were most supportive of her — she was extraordinary. I reminded her TV is what I do for a living. I don’t do features and no one is looking for me to do a movie. But she is a movie star who was doing her best in her first TV series”… She and Craig Anderson have an order from CBS for a script on “Countdown to a Massacre” to exec produce — and she’d star. And Faye’s also prepping the bigscreen Pearl Buck biopic.
ATTORNEY HOWARD WEITZMAN had some good news Friday for one of his clients, agent Merritt Blake. Weitzman told Blake that Blake won his yearlong case vs. Camden ITG, Intl. Talent Group and former partner David Wardlow. The judgment from a New York arbitration panel included all money owed Blake for Camden Artists and complete freedom to operate the Blake Agency in BevHills … Sid Luft has a Santa Monica Superior Court date, May 9, for his civil suit vs. Disney’s Hyperion Publishing Co. Luft filed a $ 25 million suit re David Shipman’s book “Judy Garland: The Secret Life ofan American Legend.” He claims “libel, invasion of privacy, infliction of emotional distress, impacting his life, health, privacy and reputation”… Grateful holocaust survivors who saw Steven Spielberg’s “Schindler’s List” gave him a ring replicating the one given Schindler by the actual survivors, inscribed, “You save one life, you save the world.” And a grateful Spielberg in turn gave similar copies of the ring to those who made the film possible: Sidney Sheinberg, who initiated the film project 11 years ago, Lew Wasserman, and others instrumental in the making of the movie. Spielberg celebrated his 46th birthday Saturday … Hard to believe, but today marks the 20th anni of the death of Bobby Darin at the age of 37. His ex-wife Sandra Dee birthday-partied son Dodd Darin on his 32nd birthday last Thursday. David Gershenson, Darin’s longtime friend/publicist/manager, is readying WB’s upcoming “Bobby Darin Story.” Gershenson and Dodd D. also optioned Gino Rancati’s “Ferrari, the Man” and plan it as a miniseries.
OLIVER STONE, WB, NEW REGENCY and the East Meets West Foundation hosted last Thursday’s screening of Stone’s “Heaven and Earth” to benefit the Foundation, which is the legacy of war as experienced by “Heaven” heroine Le Ly Hayslip. The movie’s Tommy Lee Jones, Joan Chen, Dr. Haing S. Ngor and Hiep Thi Le were on hand at the Acad, as well as producer Arnon Milchan, Robert Kline, A. Kitman Ho and Hayslip. The screening/fundraiser also featured Vietnamese hors d’oeuvres pre-screening and desserts afterward by Along Came Mary.