Spielberg adds joke to Japanese ‘World’

GOOD MORNING: There’ll be some changes made in the print of “The Lost World” going to Japan — well, at least one change, Steven Spielberg told me. In the scene in which the dino gets loose in San Diego and terrorizes a group of Japanese tourists, the version heading to Japan will feature a closeup on one, who will exclaim, “I came to America to get away from this.” It’s Spielberg’s joke on (as well as homage to) “Godzilla,” of course. Asked his reaction to the weekend’s box office, Spielberg said, “I couldn’t have dreamed it. When one of my pictures opens, I climb into a deep hole; I don’t read reviews or take phone calls. On Saturday, someone called my wife (Kate Capshaw). And she said to me, ‘I have a present for you.’ She passed me a little slip of paper and it said, ‘$2.2 million.’ My heart sunk. I always think the worst, but I couldn’t believe that this could happen. I shook the piece of paper and a speck (of cereal from one of the kids’ breakfast) fell off — and it really read $22 million!” Of course, over the four days it grew to $92.7 million. Will there be a third “Jurassic Park”? “It would give me a tremendous Advil headache just to think about it,” he said, as he’s in post-production on “Amistad” and readying a start to direct “Saving Pvt. Ryan” in Ireland with Tom Hanks. “But I am having such a good time — show me a stage and I want to get to work in it.” He admitted he, George Lucas and Harrison Ford are “tenacious” about a fourth “Indiana Jones.” “We are totally committed to one — if the story is right, of course.” One Spielberg film which will never be sequel’d, he says, is “E.T.” “We’d never take a chance of besmirching that wonderful memory. But in the year 2002, it will be re-released in theaters to celebrate its 20th anniversary”. … Spielberg is also devoting his energies and talents to the continued production of “Survivors of Shoah” documentaries on the holocaust. “We have now close to 31,000 documented witnesses of the holocaust who have testified and are continuing to testify. We conduct 450 interviews a week to give us their eyewitness accounts.” His goal is to get the docus into school systems to prevent racial hatred and teach tolerance. He says, “Mayor Riordan and Governor Wilson have been extremely constructive in getting access (to school programs in California), but there are 49 other states.” And countless other countries.

GERMAN ARCHIVES REVEAL that “Seven Years in Tibet” author Heinrich Harrer was a member of the Nazi SS, according to the issue of Stern Magazine appearing today. Stern cites original documents (80 pages) found in the Federal German Archives of Berlin saying that Harrer, who was an Austrian Tibet expert and teacher of the Dalai Lama in Berlin, had a Nazi past dating back to 1933. Stern reminds that the movie version of “Seven Years,” under the direction of Jean-Jacques Annaud and starring Brad Pitt, is readying for release this fall. Harrer has always publicly denied being a Nazi. … A print of “Nuremberg,” the monumental film by Pare Lorentz, mandated by orders from General Lucius Clay to chronicle the trials that began in 1945, will be shown once, June 2, at the Museum of Tolerance at the Simon Wiesenthal Center under the auspices of the Intl. Documentary Assn. and the Museum of Tolerance. A Q&A will follow, led by Dr. Erik Barnouw, professor emeritus of Columbia U. Reservations are required. Abby Mann, Oscar winner for his screenplay of Stanley Kramer’s 1961 multi-starred “Judgment at Nuremberg,” told me he did not know about the Lorentz film and he will be on hand to see it.

A CLOSEUP OF JENNY MCCARTHY’S tongue — with the Stars and Stripes painted on it — covers the July issue of George magazine. When McCarthy’s manager-best friend Ray Manzella suggested, during a touch-football game with John F. Kennedy Jr., that she cover an issue of George, no one dreamed what the patriotic Kennedy would launch for the 4th of July cover. … Other literary notes: PEN Center USA West Literary awards go to “Jerry Maguire” scripter Cameron Crowe, “Inside” (Showtime) writer Bima Stagg, and playwright (drama) Rita Nachtman for “How I Spent My Life’s Vacation”. … Big shoes to fill, but Mike Myers is being fitted to star in the remake of “The Court Jester” at MGM/UA (Danny Kaye starred in the original, you’ll recall). … Sara Gilbert, graduate magna cum laude from Yale, says she is definitely returning to showbiz. After nine years on “Roseanne,” etc., she says she wants to direct, well as act, and has completed directing one short film while still an undergrad. … Spike Lee and wife Tonya welcomed son Jackson Lewis L. May 23 at N.Y.’s Lenox Hill Hospital. They also have a 2-year-old daughter, Satchel. Lee, p.a.’ing his N.Y. Knicks book “Best Seat in the House” (Crown) and docu, “4 Little Girls,” about the ’63 church bombing, returns to feature production in August.

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