GOOD MORNING: Is Bill Cosby still involved in the purchase of NBC (first revealed here)? “You’re damn right. I hope I can do it,” said Cos, now involved in yet another new venture in Baltimore with Ray Zimmerman’s Services Merchandising for which Bill is taping 14 commercials for both TV and radio. As for the NBC buy, Cos confirms, “Nothing is happening — but we are putting together meetings in order to make it happen.” The “meetings” are with the same group (Bob Wussler) as previously noted. His creative juices are flowing and he’s whetting his appetite for progressive, non-stereotypical programming. As for his outward silent attitude about the buying plans to others, he admitted, “Harassment is something I’m not doing but the press won’t accept ‘no comment.’ ” Meanwhile, he’s involved with both CBS and NBC on upcoming projects. He just wound Sheldon Leonard’s two-hour “I Spy” with Bob Culp for CBS in Vienna, directed by Jerry London. Cos followed with gourmet stops in Paris and the south of France. He now has to take off 15 pounds before starting an NBC mystery series — four two-hour shows, which would lead to an hourlong series with David Black and Bill Link, to tape in N.Y. and Philadelphia. “Don Ohlmeyer and Warren Littlefield will have time to say what they like and don’t like so when we start we’ll know exactly what we’re doing,” said the creatively methodical Cosby. “There is no rush”… He admits he misses “You Bet Your Life,” and believes it should not have “competed as a gameshow. It should have just been a show where people come to visit in Bill Cosby’s living room”… With the Las Vegas Hilton readying its main room for “Starlight Express,” Cosby’s now weighing offers from all the other hotels. “I’m enjoying myself,” he admitted.
WILL LONI ANDERSON ASK for sole custody of son Quinton following Burt Reynolds’ declaration of those intentions here? “Every day is a surprise to me,” Anderson said on the set of her “Nurses” series yesterday. “I just filed for divorce — and nothing more.” She says the news that Reynolds has been having an affair with waitress Pam Seals for two years “was a complete revelation and surprise — and mystery to me. Our marriage was functioning normally — and I mean in every sense of the word.” And Loni assures she has not and is not having any dates. “It’s not exactly where my head is right now.” She says her “Nurses” series “is the best medicine.” And she’s already started bicycling between her show and lead-in “Empty Nest,” starring Richard Mulligan, who has done two shows with her. Meanwhile, “Nurses” is shooting out of sequence as co-star Ada Maris is expecting a baby — and it’s been written into the script … The ailing Keith Carradine did not return to “The Will Rogers Follies” at the Pantages last night and it’s up in the air whether he will be well enough to be back by week’s end … Bettye McCartt set Brenda Vaccaro to play Paul Mazursky’s wife in Warren Beatty’s “Love Affair,” starting at WB today, with Glen Gordon Caron directing … And Kelsey Grammer starts work today on his “Frasier” series with his “Cheers” character moving from Boston to Seattle. But he’s shooting on the same “Cheers” stage and will air in the same “Cheers” Thursday 9:00 slot. Jimmy Burrows directs as Grammer plays a radio shrink … David Brown, brought in to produce “The Saint” with Bob Evans, who had been busy on his autobiog, says he’s read the book, “The Kid Stays In the Picture.” Brown’s reaction: “It would make a helluva miniseries”… Jay Leno inked with ICM … Catherine O’Hara gets time off her role in ‘Wyatt Earp” to play Calamity Jane in “Tall Tales” with Patrick Swayze and Scott Glenn.
DISNEYLAND IS EXPERIENCING an “extremely healthy summer.” The enormous crowd I viewed Monday night had waited as long as two hours for the first of the three nightly “Fantasmic” shows. It’s worth the wait. And the new Toontown addition is also a hit and will be expanded with the “Roger Rabbit Cartoon Spins” next year. The giant “Indiana Jones” attraction, a hit in Florida, will also play here. Disneyland is already revealing the line of products to boom forth in Oct. when the Mighty Ducks take to the ice — T-shirts, sweaters, caps, etc., are displayed (sold) along with the traditional Mickey Mouse lines … Michael Jackson visited Disneyland and bought a lot of souvenirs — he’s a Peter Pan fancier. You recall he’s got pic plans for Pan. Jackson’s adding two new songs to his ‘Greatest Hits Album” before taking off on the second leg of his “Dangerous” world tour starting in Bangkok, Aug. 24 … Wolfgang Puck goes around the world — as consulting chef to the Orient Lines. He’ll feature appropriate fare for the exotic ports with choice dishes from Spago and Chinois menus. Ports of call include China, Japan, Egypt, New Zealand and Antarctica … Nancy and Zubin Mehta hosted a party at their home for major donors of the American Friends of the Israel Philharmonic (at the Bowl Aug. 24-26). Max Zimmer , 100 years old, gave a $ 100,000 contribution at the party. Guests included the Henry Mancinis, Arthur Hillers, Monty Halls, Lalo Schifrins, Jay Livingstons, etc.