GOOD MORNING: Frank Sinatra hasn’t skedded any performances for 1995 (with the exception of Feb. 25, when he and Willie Nelson entertain at the Sinatra celeb golf tourney). In ’94, Sinatra played 64 dates across the country and Japan. He now says he’s at a stage in his life when he wants to spend more time at home here (BevHills, Malibu, Palm Springs) with his wife, children — and six King Charles spaniel pups. He’ll be 80 Dec. 12 and preparations are already under way to note the occasion. All record companies for which he’s worked have plans to make note of it. And daughter Nancy is readying a biographical documentary with Jack Haley Jr. — with Frank’s cooperation. It’s in lieu of writing the book. You recall daughter Tina produced the successful 1992 five-hour “Sinatra” miniseries for CBS with Philip Casnoff playing Sinatra but, as Haley notes of negotiations for the bio-docu, discussions not only involve $ but how many hours it will run. “Tina’s show didn’t cover everything — f’rinstance, the Frank Sinatra Jr. kidnapping alone could be a miniseries on its own!” Among those bidding are Turner and A&E. But don’t make plans for a Sinatra retirement party yet — I recall only too well his “retirement” party and a tearful Rosalind Russell on the stage of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion — and that was back in 1971. Some retirement! And Tuesday, he was looping lines for Tina’s March 12 CBS special in which he’s onscreen in the finale. Formerly titled “Hoboken,” it’s now called “Young at Heart.””We lost ‘Hoboken,’ ” Tina told me. “The network said it (the title) didn’t test well.” Yes, Frank sings the song over the titles in the telepic — as he did for the Carolyn Leigh-Johnny Richards tune in the 1954 “Young at Heart” movie co-starring Doris Day and Ethel Barrymore. Tina also noted they had to get an OK from a syndie’d Chicago TV show –“for senior citizens”– with the same title to use the tag, she said. Next project for Tina is with Joel Silver — the bigscreen remake of John Frankenheimer’s 1962 “The Manchurian Candidate,” which also starred — Frank Sinatra.
NEWT GINGRICH AND REAGAN — Michael, that is. On Wednesday, Ronnie’s son was asked by Gingrich to be an adviser to the new Speaker of the House, who told him , “Talkshow hosts have the pulse and feel of the country.” That’s what Michael told me from D.C., where the night before he’d given the keynote speech at a Hyatt bash (for 3,000) welcoming the 73 congressional freshmen. His father, the former president, had spoken there 14 years earlier. Michael was made an “honorary congressman” of the 104th session — the only other honorary member being Rush Limbaugh. Heard on 95 stations including KSFO in San Francisco, Michael now broadcasts from Hollywood (formerly from San Diego), making visits to his father more frequently. Ronnie is “doing well,” he reports; played golf recently. The disease is, he admits, “rougher on Nancy” and Michael reminds that Ronnie’s mother also had Alzheimer’s … Next exec to join the Spielberg-Geffen-Katzenberg team will be Mo Ostin — to head, of course, the music division … Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum are engaged to wed. No date is set for the busy pair — his “Hideaway” is upcoming from TriStar, her “Down Came a Blackbird” for Showtime … Annie Gilbar will be editor-in-chief of Ticketmaster’s upcoming national entertainment and sports magazine. “It will be positive coverage, behind the scenes, no reviews,” promises Gilbar, alumna of In Style, L.A. Style and Los Angeles magazines … Agent Charles Stern conducts a monthly forum for America OnLine. First guest will be Dawn Steel during the last week of January. Steel’s current movie, “A Brief Moment in the Life of Angus Bethune,” stars George C. Scott, a client of Stern’s.
FIRST THE ALBUM, then the Broadway musical: Cy Coleman, readying “The Life” for the stage, has already set this list of stars for an album (BMG) to precede: George Burns, Liza Minnelli, Lou Rawls, Joe Williams, Peggy Lee, Jennifer Holliday, Bobby Short, Billy Stritch, etc. It’s Cy’s music, lyrics by Ira Gasman and the book by the duo and David Newman. Scott Ellis directs the legiter for producers Roger Berlind, Marty Richards and Cy. The story’s set in the ’70s on 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue. Song titles include “People Magazine,””A Piece of the Action” (Lou Rawls) and “Easy Money” (George Burns). He’ll record Liza, Lou and George in L.A. this month. Cast members set for B’way include Pam Isaacs, Lilias White and Chuck Cooper … For Elvis Presley’s 60th birthday, Sunday, Col. Tom Parker will be at the Vegas Hilton autographing a book of photos of Parker and Presley — proceeds to the Sun Camp Fund for underprivileged kids. The Colonel reminds us he’s sent 300 kids to the camp over the years. Parker says Priscilla is expected up there next month.