GOOD MORNING: Lauren Bacall, who received an honorary Cesar, will next star in the French-language movie, “The Day and the Night” for director Bernard Henri Levy. How’s her parlez-vous? Excellent: we had a lovely chat about this news en francais, s’il vous plait. They shoot in Mexico. Bacall, who admits, “I’m on a roll,” currently is playing a former first lady to former president Jack Lemmon in WB’s “My Fellow Americans,” co-starring Jim Garner as another ex-president. Bacall’s known a few first ladies — Eleanor Roosevelt, Bess Truman, Lady Bird Johnson, Roslyn Carter and Hillary Clinton. Although Ronnie Reagan was at WB with Bacall, she says she was never invited to the White House during his tenure. “I was the enemy, you recall,” she laughed … Bacall just wound (well, almost wound) Barbra Streisand’s “The Mirror Has Two Faces.” They go back and shoot a spring scene in N.Y. — hard to do now when it’s snowing! Bacall’s quick to come to the fore for Streisand. “It’s unfair to her,” she says of brickbats tossed at Barbra. “She wants to get the best movie she can get.” Bacall plays Streisand’s mother in the pic. “Yeah, she’s 12 and I’m 14,”she roared … The Wiesenthal Center’s Rabbi Marvin Hier phoned me Tuesday ayem to tell of his Monday night call from Marlon Brando, “expressing his remorse” over remarks made on Larry King’s show — and to set a visit to the Museum of Tolerance, at 10:30 a.m. Friday with a press briefing.
LIKE THE REPORTS ON MARK TWAIN, Gregory Peck says he is far from retired. In Paris for a low-key 80th birthday celebration with wife Veronique, Peck reminded he’s been saying for years (to me as well) that “I’m retired — unless a good role comes along. No actor retires totally. If a great role comes along, I’d come charging out of the barn, snorting!” Meanwhile, he continues on his lecture career: 20 a year in performing arts centers seating as many as 3,000 as well as college auds … In May, he heads to Calgary, Anchorage, Hartford, Atlanta. Cary Grant got Greg to follow in his enormously successful lecture footsteps. Peck’s CAA agent, Fred Specktor, continues to look for the role that would get Peck snorting again. Meanwhile, Paris in the spring makes it tough for any actor to think about 5 ayem makeup calls again, n’est ce pas? … Also in Paris, honeymooners Louis J. Horvitz and bride, actress-model Steffanee Jeen Leaming, who were married April 6 at the Palazzo Vechio in Florence. On their return from the honeymoon, Horvitz directs the Daytime Emmys, prepares for the Primetime Emmys and launches a series for King World as exec producer … Mandalay president Todd Black — readying to Paris-launch “The Double” along with producer Lili Zanuck, director Roman Polanski, John Travolta and Isabel Adjani — has just bought rights to screenwriter Jeremy Leven’s “The Gambler,” based on a Dostoevsky short story (as is his “The Double” script). “It’s a big romantic comedy,” says Black … Meanwhile, in Moscow, “The Saint” completed five days shooting in Red Square with as many as 3,000 extras, “with excellent cooperation ,” reports David Brown; he now heads to North Carolina locations for his other Par pic, “Kiss the Girls” with Morgan Freeman and Ashley Judd … Julie Hagerty, in London co-starring with Kelsey Grammer and Michael Richards in Robert Halmi’s CBS version of Neil Simon’s “London Suite,” signed with Ed Goldstone as personal manager and Innovative Artists Agency … The prognosis is excellent for Nicky Blair, in Cedars-Sinai for bladder transplant surgery. He’s in great spirits and assured he’ll be well enough to bow his Las Vegas Nicky Blair’s eatery in three weeks.
SHEPPERTON STUDIOS CONTINUES to expand: with the purchase of 22 acres plus, the company plans to build a stage as big as the famed “Bond” stage at Pinewood, reports Tony Scott, who just wrapped “The Fan.” He and brother Ridley, who bought the lot along with Candover Bank, met here with studio director Dennis Carrigan, setting up deals for Shepperton, which boasts some of the all-time great pix — plus the recent “Hamlet,” “101 Dalmatians,” “In Love and War” and where each Scott frere did his first movie … Michael Gaines secured rights to the biopic of drummer Buddy Rich with Rich’s widow Marie’s and daughter Cathy’s cooperation …”The Addams Family” returns to TV with a two-year firm deal at Nickelodeon, marking 32 years on the air for the series, happily reports creator David Levy … The 43rd SHARE show, May 4, returns to Western motif; Naomi Judd receives the Shining Spirit Award and Randy Travis, Billy Ray Cyrus and Mac Davis headline. The ladies turned over $1 million to local children’s charities last week … Pat Corley, Phil the bartender on “Murphy Brown,” departs the series after this season … California AIDS Ride benefits from the April 15-16 perfs of “Ruthless” with Bernadette Peters at the Canon. Producer Joan Stein’s planning a national and international tour. And now, I’m off to ogle showbiz in other parts of the globe — see you in May.