GOOD MORNING: John Kerry, who winged to L.A. to pay his respects to former President Reagan at the Reagan Library viewing, lingered for a happier occasion Wednesday. Kerry was on hand at the AFI commencement ceremonies where daughter Alexandra graduated. (She recently made an appearance with her film in Cannes). Added a-political note at the AFI graduation: Troy Garrity, son of Jane Fonda and Tom Hayden, made the presentation of an honorary degree to Frank Pierson, who directed Troy in “A Soldier’s Girl.” Honorary degrees went to critic Roger Ebert and technology pioneer John Warnock … Ebert told me he was unable (because of timing) to add a Ronald Reagan seg to this week’s “Ebert & Roeper” show, but hopes at a future time to talk about his favorite Reagan pic, “The Killers.” … The concerts benefiting Kerry and the Demo National Committee in L.A. and N.Y., postponed because of Reagan’s death, are now reskedded: June 24 in L.A. at the Disney Concert Hall, and July 8 at Radio City Music Hall. The list of talent stays intact — including Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond duetting on “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers,” Willie Nelson, Billy Crystal and intros by stars such as Ben Affleck, Warren Beatty, Leonardo DiCaprio, Annette Bening, Ted Danson, Mary Steenburgen, Larry David, Benicio del Toro, Robert De Niro, Danny DeVito and Rhea Perlman, Kirsten Dunst, Dustin Hoffman, Ben Stiller, Laurence Fishburne and Gina Torres.
THE ACADEMY WILL EXHIBIT one-sheets from a dozen Ronald Reagan pix from Saturday to July 2. They’re on loan from Irv Letofsky and wife Brian Ann Zoccola whose Reagan poster collection is in the hundreds. Those at the Acad will include: “Bedtime for Bonzo,” “Kings Row,” “Knute Rockne, All American” “That Hagen Girl” and “Hellcats of the Navy.” The Letofskys have also contributed 50 Reagan posters to be part of a permanent exhibit in the USS Ronald Reagan’s (CVN76) mess room, which seats 5,000. The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier is currently in port at Rio de Janeiro as part of her transit around South America en route to her home port of San Diego. She will arrive for the first time July 23. A special homecoming ceremony has been planned and the ship’s sponsor, Mrs. Nancy Reagan, is expected to attend. She christened the ship last year. Mrs. Reagan invited the commanding officer of the USS Reagan, Capt. James Symons, to attend the private burial service at the Reagan Library. He will lead a detachment from the ship who will present Mrs. Reagan with the flag that was flying over the ship when the president died.
JIM BROLIN, who starred as Ronald Reagan in Showtime’s (ne CBS) “The Reagans,” next stars in “The Alibi” with Rebecca Romijn-Stamos … Following the services at the Reagan Library, A.C. Lyles wings to Houston Saturday for the 80th birthday bar-b-q party of George Bush, pere, and Sunday , Lyles trains to Bryan, Texas, to the Bush Library with them where the former president takes his annual sky-dive. The Reagans and the Jimmy Cagneys stood up for Lyles and wife Martha at their wedding at the Little Brown Church in the Valley on May 5, 1955. … Vincent Sherman, who directed Ronald Reagan, Patricia Neal and Richard Todd in “The Hasty Heart” in 1949, will be 98 — and going strong — July 10. He will be toasted that night at the L.A. County Museum with a special showing of “Mr. Skeffington” starring Bette Davis … Gayle and Chuck Pick celebrate their 25th wedding anni today … Tyne Daly receives the ArchAngel Award today by People Assisting the Homeless (PATH) at its 20th anni in the BevHills Hotel … Ron Edwards receives Syracuse U’s Distinguished Alumnus Award Saturday at the Four Seasons … Also Saturday, Victoria Principal receives a doctor of humane letters at Drexel U.’s commencement … Tommy Chong is released today from Taft Correctional Facility. And daughter Precious (Chong) performs her show, “The Porcelain Penelope Freak Show,” Tuesday, June 22 and 29 at the Zephyr Theater in West Hollywood. The newest version of her show documents a daughter’s struggle to step out of her father’s shadow … The growing MGM-On-Stage program has set a creative team to bring “Legally Blonde” live. Jerry Mitchell (“Hairspray”) will direct, Heather Hach (“Freaky Friday”) scripts, Larry O’Keefe, music, Nell Benjamin, lyrics.
I CAUGHT UP WITH the “Ocean’s 12” company having dinner in George Clooney’s villa on Italy’s Lake Como as they wound filming a scene Wednesday at dusk. The cast was toasting the arrival of mother-of-twins-to-be Julia Roberts when Jerry Weintraub came to the phone. All the principals are living at the Clooney villa for the Como location. They return to Rome Sunday for more shoots there and then on to Sicily, having already done Paris … I met up with Tony Danza in Beverly Hills as he told he’s readying to wing out today for Sicily, taking along five members of his family to see some relatives he has never met. He starts his live talker Sept. 13 … The first contingent of searchers for the “Gilligan’s Island Survivors” TBS show heads out today with exec producer Lloyd Schwartz and Dawn Wells (Mary Ann) to Kansas and Russell Johnson (The Professor) to Boston. The campaign’s in full swing with ads and posters inviting would-be real counterparts for the TBS “real” version. Wells is also busy readying the fifth year of her Spud Drive-In Family Film and Music Festival in Driggs, Idaho. The Bacon Bros. will headline. Wells, who was brought up on a ranch there, (“I’m a real good fly fisherman”) has also established a Spud Film Institute. Natch, the Idaho Potato Commission co-sponsors … Pierre Cossette (did you read the excerpt about Ronnie Reagan in Las Vegas from his book in Wednesday’s Daily Variety — a must!) is off to Greece to cruise with Ethel Kennedy, and 11 longtime friends. Cossette produced a fundraiser for the Robert F. Kennedy Foundation earlier this month when Ted Kennedy and Orin Hatch duetted on “Together”!