GOOD MORNING: A new/added look for/at the Emmys — and for yours truly. For the first time, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, in association with Excite@Home, will host the launch of Emmycast ’99 (emmys.excite.com), the official online Emmy event of the Academy. It will bring online users exclusive coverage of the 51st annual Primetime Emmy Awards, Sept. 12. It all starts outside the Shrine, where yours truly will again be hosting the arrivals; this time I’ll be on the Webcast, live to an international online audience. And there will be digital cameras trained on this action. After seeing our one-on-one interviews, the online audiences will be able to ask questions of the Emmy winners and presenters via Excite’s Chat Auditorium. Emmycast ’99 will also carry the Creative Arts Awards “live,” on the Internet, Aug. 28. We’ve all come a long way from standing outside a theater and shouting into a megaphone! … Fred Siegel, Excite@Home senior VP of marketing, says, “Working with the ATAS in this capacity establishes both companies as leaders in driving entertainment into the next millennium.” And the TV Acad’s prez Jim Chabin notes, “As we head into the millennium, it is becoming increasingly important to create ways of converging old media and new. This new alliance, we believe, will set the standard in this area” … For this year’s Emmy set inside the Shrine, production designer Roy Christopher has created a 20-foot Emmy statue revolving in a glass enclosure while billowing clouds of smoke and gold light play upon it, to give “futuristic elegance.” Christopher, winner of five Emmys and nominated for a 30th (!) Emmy this year for his work on the Oscars, is teamed for a sixth time with Emmy exec producer Don Mischer for the Fox TV show.
MEETINGS WITH CBS, CNN, ESPN and Fox are a few of the dates next week for Brandi Chastain of the U.S. World Cup-winning women’s soccer team. Since last month’s emotion-packed final game against China, with Chastain kicking the winning goal, she has been flooded with offers, including guest shots on TV shows such as “Beverly Hills, 90210,” “Sabrina” and “Dawson’s Creek.” “We’ve been so honored to have these requests” (which were nixed), says her rep, John Courtright of SFX Entertainment. She has also received four or five autobio book offers, but has said, “Let’s do it as a team.” However, since the game, she has made deals with Volvo, Nike, Power Bar, Gallery Furniture, etc. for all media and corporate appearances as well. After kicking the winning goal, she did not rip off her shirt displaying the Nike sports bra because of a Nike deal. As a matter of fact, Courtright said, at that time they were discussing ending the deal. Talk about great timing! Chastain, 31, married to Santa Clara U’s soccer coach Jerry Smith, is booked four days out of the week with appearances. TV will eventually be the avenue when she decides soccer is finito. But for now, concentration is on the Olympics of 2000. And while the commercial tie-ups are beyond their wildest dreams, it’s still to be remembered that, as soccer players, the team members only make about $15,000 a year — and it’s not easy to get a supplemental job when you’re on the field three to six months of the year. Further, Chastain remembers only too well having undergone dual knee surgeries which sidelined her — and being cut from the team as well … Tuesday, Billy Crystal pretaped his guestint for Martin Short’s initial (Sept. 13) talkshow. They reminisced about the days on “Saturday Night Live” and Short opened the seg singing to Billy: “You’re Just too MAH-velous” … The multitalented Brandon Bowlin, presenting his “Dark — One Man Comedy Fusion” at the Tiffany this week (winds tonight), has already been approached by Showtime for a special and Bernie Brillstein plans to star Bowlin in the Paul Robeson story.
WILLIAM SHATNER HAS ESTABLISHED the Nerine Shatner Memorial Fund, in honor of his wife who drowned in the pool of their home Aug. 9. Donations will be used to aid the Friendly House, a nonprofit org that helps women re-establish themselves in the community after suffering from alcoholism and drug addiction … Sid Caesar’s 50th anni in TV will be celebrated by his showbiz pals Oct. 29 at the BevHills Friars. Abbot Larry King emcees … Gene Barry is honored by the Pacific Pioneer B’casters Sept. 24 at the Sportsmen’s Lodge … Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller are honored at Sardi’s tonight. The ASCAP Foundation presents ’em the President’s Award for the many scholarships they’ve provided young people — and to note that “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” is now the longest-running musical revue in B’way history … Monica Mancini joins the Sept. 15 Hollywood Bowl program honoring the music of her dad, Henry, as well as that of Quincy Jones and Johnny Mandel. And if you like music and math: The number of Grammys won by this trio is 50 … Rodeo Drive’s Giorgio BevHills and Harper’s Bazaar host their third annual Designer Launch Sept. 1, debuting Brazil’s designer Fause Haten and intro’ing Giorgio’s fragrance, G. The celeb-heavy event benefits the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund in honor of the late Liz Tilberis.