Winters puts Brando gift to good use

GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ Studio days in N.Y. This week, Winters is turning over a terra cotta bust of Brando, as Marc Antony, to the Anti-Defamation League’s David Lehrer to be auctioned, with the proceeds to the ADL. She received the bust as a gift from Brando in 1953. “He gave it to me when I was pregnant with my daughter (now Dr. Vittoria Gassman). He told me to give it (the bust) — (it’s) only one of two — to her when she was 16. I never gave it to her,” laughs Winters. “But I kept it in a place of honor in my house. I told Vittoria what I’m going to do with it now and she approves,” said mama Winters. Lehrer confirmed he will pick up the bust Friday for auction at a later date.

WORKING TO A BLUE SCREEN in today’s highly computerized movies is not much different from doing Shakespeare on stage and talking about arriving hordes. The conversation: about the incredible computerized “Independence Day” scenes. The speaker: Robert Loggia, following the giant premiere Tuesday night in Westwood. Loggia, who plays a four-star general, and the rest of the cast act and react to enormous outer space objects (as well as to other things) that were absent. “For instance,” he said, “when we were escaping from the White House in a chopper and taken to Air Force One, we just walked up a ramp to Air Force One — but there was nothing there on the stage, nothing. I asked director Roland Emmerich, ‘Where is Air Force One?’ ‘Don’t worry, we’ll put it in later,’ he told me.” Added Loggia, “I hope we don’t get to the point were they can just computerize actors.” Ah, yes, but they have! Other cast members at the preem included Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, Randy Quaid, Margaret Colin and Mary McDonnell, as well as director Emmerich and producer Dean Devlin. Observing the total destruction of L.A. in the movie was Mayor Richard Riordan, who was there with Nancy Daly. Riordan has initiated emergency plans for the city in event of calamities such as earthquakes — but extra-terrestrial attacks? Nevada Governor Bob Miller was also on hand to see the film’s depiction of devastation and destruction in his state’s desert. Extreme interest in the movie was evident by the enormous turnout of stars — plus fans, via the KLOS promotion: in addition to the Village and Bruin theaters, the Mann Westwood, Regent and Plaza overflowed. And 2,000 turned out for the unique party on UCLA’s campus in front of the library and Royce Hall. The last time I stood in line on that site was for my graduation! Tuesday, the walls of those halls were illuminated by laser beams and projected extra-terrestrial scenes. Instead of teams of blue-and-gold-suited Bruins marching by, corps of silver-lame’d mimes (from outer space?) oozed past the arriving guests, who were bused over from the theaters. Arrivals passed a replica of the Washington monument — one that survived the destruction of D.C. in the movie, no doubt. And we “survivors” were lavishly fed by Bernard Erpicum’s Eclipse eatery specialties, plus those of Patina and La Cuisine. Party Planners West coordinated the decidedly different preem party.

MEANWHILE, ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER and wife Maria Shriver were at a different kind of party nearby in Holmby Hills. This one was for the Best Buddies program, headed by Maria’s brother Anthony Kennedy Shriver and founded in honor of their (retarded) aunt Rosemary Kennedy. The nationally successful program features college students helping the retarded in every way possible. At Tuesday night’s beautiful event at the home of Colleen and Bradley Bell, over $120,000 was raised: $50,000 via auction of items, including walk-ons on “Seinfeld” and “Bold and the Beautiful” that were bought by photog Herb Ritts. The Ivan Reitmans bought a Jim Dine silkscreen for $6,000. Among guests were UCLA and USC students who are Best Buddies and, from Stanford’s Best Buddy program, Fred Savage, alumnus of “The Wonder Years.” A late-arriving guest was Florence Henderson, who had stopped at a party down the street, having seen parking attendants and thinking it was for the Best Buddies party. She was greeted there warmly by guests including Cardinal Mahony, whose ring she kissed and with whom she had a long conversation. Suddenly, Henderson realized there was no one at this benefit party from showbiz, and “We slinked out, taking off the name tags they had written for us even though they said our names were not there!” P.S. The always-giving Henderson was equally welcomed as she arrived at the Best Buddies … Richard Zanuck, in post-production on “Chain Reaction,” spends the July 4th break winging to Paris to cheer up wife Lili Z., who will return to L.A. in a couple of weeks while regrouping for “The Double’s” rebirth.

More Voices

  • Janet Mock Pose

    'Pose' Writer Janet Mock on Making History With Trans Storytelling (Guest Column)

    GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ […]

  • Tony Awards Sightlines Column

    How to Produce the Tony Awards: 5 Unsolicited Tips

    GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ […]

  • Under the Silver Lake

    Cannes 2018's Hidden Thrill: The Opportunity to Find New Voices

    GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ […]

  • Kathryn Bigelow Kathryn Bigelow poses backstage

    It's Time for Action, Not Promises, to Get More Women in Filmmaking (Guest Column)

    GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ […]

  • Netflix Cannes

    Cannes vs. Netflix Defines Fight for Cinema’s Future

    GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ […]

  • Love Never Dies - Utica, NY

    Could 'Love Never Dies' Live Again on Broadway?

    GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ […]

  • Every Act of Life

    Tribeca Film Festival: 5 Titles to Watch for Theater Fans

    GOOD MORNING: Marlon Brando’s inflammatory (and erroneous) remarks during Larry King’s April 5 TV show, about Jews in the industry, have not been forgotten or ignored by one of Brando’s oldest friends, Shelley Winters. “I was stunned; I couldn’t believe what came out of his mouth,” says Winters, who has known him since their Actors’ […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content