GOOD MORNING: Christopher Reeve’s hourlong interview with Barbara Walters, skedded to air Oct. 13, is now shifted to this Friday, because Barbara believes Oct. 13 could well be the day the O.J. jury brings in the verdict. Barbara told me her interview with Reeve “is the most inspiring” she’s ever done, the reason for giving it a full hour. And today, Walters is skedded to tape O.J.’s secretary of 20 years, Cathy Randa, in what Barbara says is the only interview she’s given. Walters was in L.A. over the weekend, dined with Bob Shapiro and his wife at Matteo’s Sunday. Is Shapiro going to be a subject for “20/20”? “We’ll see what develops,” Walters said. Well, you be in touch and we’ll be in touch … When Judge Ito banned TV cameras after they lensed O.J.’s hands writing on a legal pad, Steven Brill, Court TV founder-CEO, issued this statement: “Everybody knows when we make a mistake, we are the first to admit it promptly and candidly. This time we did not make a mistake. The judge made a mistake and we hope he has the same attitude about his errors as we have shown we have about ours.” After a recess, Ito rescinded his order (head-and-shoulder coverage OK’d) and although Court TV was happy with his decision, they stood by their statement … Following fine reaction (and review here) of “The Grass Harp,” Fine Line decided to open the pic for a qualifying Oscar run here at Christmas, then going wide Jan. 26. Co-star Walter Matthau gets a Lifetime Achievement Award at ShowEast Oct. 19 and his son, “Harp” director Charlie Matthau, and co-star Piper Laurie appear with the film at opening night of the Mill Valley Fest Oct. 5. It also will be featured in the Hamptons and other fests. This is some happy ending for “The Grass Harp.”
A LEGAL STEP’S SETTLED in the “Jackson Family Honors” litigation by Smith-Hemion vs. Jackson Communications Inc. Smith-Hemion and Trans World Intl., a division of IMG, reached an amicable settlement in their litigation against members of the Jackson family and their outstanding debt (reportedly close to $2 million) resulting from the “Honors” special. Thus S-H and T-W “can now jointly pursue the recovery of moneys owed to us from the Jacksons and other parties,” says Gary Smith. IMG represented JCI when the show was originally skedded for Atlantic City, then canceled when Michael J. was involved in the child molestation charges; the show eventually went to Vegas. Court dates are now skedded in L.A. Superior Court next March and in L.A. federal court in June … IMG’s Mark McCormack’s next book, “On Negotiating” (Dove), will be published in November, when he and client Monica Seles are in New York for the WTA Tour Championships. McCormack also met here with producers about a possible telefilm about Seles’ dramatic return. And McCormack’s twice-daily “Management” segs on CNBC-TV have expanded to include travel tips for execs … The final day of lensing on “Kazaam,” the Shaquille O’Neal starrer, was an emotional one, reports producer Scott Kroopf. First, Paul Michael Glaser, who directed (and produced), told the cast and crew of his feelings returning to work, and thanked them for the understanding and cooperation they all gave him. Secondly, young (12) Francis Capra was teary departing the movie and the close association (everyone had) with Shaq on the movie. After the basketball season, O’Neal is skedded to reteam with Kroopf on “Shaq Fu,” the movie … A James Dean film festival will be held at Farmers Market Sept. 30 — the 40th anni of the death of the thesp. One legend has it Dean had his last breakfast at the Market that day … La Veranda’s talented chef and genial owner David Slay is branching into showbiz with several production ventures — plus management of clever, fast-rhyming rapper Casanova Ace, who has sitcom guestings and a pilot perking.
PRAYING WITH SHOWBIZ: During Rosh Hashana services for the Temple for the Arts at the (SRO) Wilshire Theater, Rabbi David Baron informed the congregation of a Yom Kippur (Oct. 4) feature. During the break in the services, around 2 p.m., “The Story of Abraham” will be screened. It’s part of the A&E “Mysteries of the Bible” series, narrated by Richard Kiley and produced by Bram Roos, who is the Torah reader of Shalom temple. “He (Roos) is moonlighting as a producer,” joked Baron. Among readers at the Kol Nidre services: Suzanne Pleshette and Sela Ward … Despite the surprise snowstorm and power outage in Denver, the Starcon crowd lingered to cheer the midnight screening of Triumph Films’ “Screamers” … Colin Powell reunion’d with Hollywood pals A.C. Lyles and Johnny Grant between book bookings in L.A. … Entertainment Radio Networks prez and AIDS Project L.A. board chairman Dana Miller donated $ 200,000 to the Elton John AIDS Foundation … Dr. Mark Friedman, head of angiography at Cedars-Sinai, and son of AMC’s Robert F., married fashion designer Kimberly Rucker Sept. 9 … Showtime praiser Steve Rubin and wife Elisa welcomed their first child, daughter Jaymie Elana, Aug. 31 at Cedars-Sinai.