GOOD MORNING: Kevin Spacey says he wants to play Bobby Darin in the upcoming WB feature. However, he sadly tells me, “They say I’m too old.” If you have a question about Kevin’s ability to sing Darin-esque, he reminds us he sings “That Old Black Magic” on the “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” album “as a tribute to Bobby Darin.” Clint Eastwood asked Spacey to sing it after catching him warbling on his “Saturday Night Live” hostint. He admits he was a bit intimidated singing on a disc along with Tony Bennett and Rosemary Clooney — and Clint Spacey’s now costarring in “Hurlyburly” with Sean Penn, Robin Wright Penn, Chazz Palminteri, Meg Ryan, Anna Paquin and Garry Shandling, with David Rabe scripting from his play, They’re doing it, says Spacey, on a budget of $6 million, which he says means everyone’s working for scale. “But we get great sandwiches,” adds Spacey from the Oakland (for Laurel Canyon) location. The pic has an emotional tug for him, as well as for Sean: Kevin understudied his role for the B’way version and Sean played it in L.A. They’ve known each other since 1982. Spacey next heads to London for ‘The Iceman Cometh” from March to May, then films “Ordinary Decent Criminal” for his banner and Icon (Mel Gibson’s). Afterwards, Spacey produces “a guerrilla film”: a 10-day, 16 mm, feature, “Hospitality Suite” by Roger Rueff, directed by John Swandeck. Then Spacey will return to star in a big studio-budgeted pic like “L.A. Confidential,” he says, adding, “Thank goodness for Arnon Milchan.”
GEN. COLIN POWELL was my inspiration,” said a very proud Lynn Redgrave as she called to say she had just become an American citizen. It was Powell’s speech in declining to run for office that moved her desire to be able to vote. Redgrave admitted this to Powell as she sat next to him at the State Dept. Dinner Dec. 6, in advance of the Kennedy Center Honors. Last week in ceremonies at Ellis Island, Redgrave and others participated in allegiance ceremonies featuring Ray Charles singing “America the Beautiful” and Darlene Love on the National Anthem. Redgrave followed with required ceremonies in L.A. (Calif. is her registered state.) Her husband John Clark has been a citizen since 1965. The versatile Redgrave is off to Sundance to appear with her pic “Gods & Monsters,” with Ian McKellen and Brendan Fraser. She plays a Hungarian housekeeper! She also appears in concert at Alice Tully Hall in N.Y. with “The Rescue of Penelope” and with the Chicago Symphony Orch, Placido Domingo, Renee Fleming and Daniel Barenboim, hosting and narrating PBS’ “Star-Crossed Lovers”. … The UCLA School of Theater, Film & TV has received a $2.5 million bequest from the trust of Gwen and Ray Bolger. Dean Gil Cates said the Bolgers’ attorney Wells Wohlwend, a UCLA alumnus, revealed Bolger always wanted a musical theater established at the school. And this will launch a Ray Bolger Program in Musical Theater beginning next Fall, making it the only one of its kind on the West Coast. The first musical production mounted under the new program will be staged on campus in 2001! Bolger died in 1987 at the age of 83 and his wife Gwen, who also was a dancer (Gwendolyn Rickard), died last year at the age of 87. … Cates makes the announcement of the Bolgers’ bequest Saturday in Palm Springs as Bolger’s name is added to that city’s Walk of Stars. … Ann Miller receives her star the same day and Donald O’Connor gets his star there Friday. … Robert Wagner reports that Natalie Wood’s mother Maria Gurdin died Tuesday here in L.A. She will be buried in San Francisco alongside husband Nicholas. Wagner and wife Jill St. John are heading out on a 10-city tour with A.R. Gurney’s “Love Letters,” in which they have been sensationally successful for a year and a half.
SHOW BUSY-NESS: After Walter C. Miller and Louis J. Horvitz respectively produce and direct Sunday’s “24th Annual People’s Choice Awards” on CBS, Miller will coproduce and direct (for the 19th time) the Feb. 25 Grammys; he’ll follow that by exec producing the Tonys (for the 12th year) and the Country Music Awards (for the 27th year). Meanwhile, Horvitz will direct the Oscars (for the second year) the Daytime Emmys (for the eighth year) as well as exec produce and direct the syndie’d “An Evening of Stars” Saturday and Christopher Reeve’s two-hour benefit “Circle of Friends” special on Feb. 1. … Nostalgia notes: Milton Berle will celebrate his 90th birthday July 12 and he heads out March 11 heading “A Tribute to a Legend” costarring Red Buttons, Norm Crosby, Sid Caesar and Dick Capri. Johnny Francis produces. They have dates coast to coast. … Among those attending services for Sonny Bono Friday in Palm Springs will be his former William Morris agent Tony Fantosi and TV show producers Chris Beard and Allan Blye. … Among the for-Oscar-viewing feature tapes now going out is the double cassette for “Titanic” Dodo and Stanley Meyer celebrate their 51st wedding anni next Wednesday.