Powell sees memoirs, not politix, in his future

GOOD MORNING: Gen. Colin Powell, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has signed with Marvin Josephson, Chairman of ICM Holdings. Powell will write his memoirs after retiring from the Army Sept. 30. He joins Josephson’s other clients: Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and ex-Secy. of State Henry Kissinger. Schwarzkopf’s “It Doesn’t Take a Hero” is on the Bantam fall softcover sked (sold a million hard copies), and he appears with Dan Rather June 30 on their trek back to Vietnam. Thatcher’s “The Downing St. Memoirs” (HarperCollins) hits the stalls Oct. 18. And Kissinger’s writing his book on diplomacy for Simon & Schuster … Will Colin Powell run for president when he leaves the Army? He answers, “I have no political ambitions,” in July’s newly designed (and smaller) Life mag. There are those in Washington (Demos and GOPs alike) who would like Powell to change his mind. I met fellow Bronx-educated Powell in the White House last December at Barbara and George Bush’s reception for the Kennedy Center honorees and visiting celebs. Powell was equally at ease with the politico panjandrums and the Hollywood hotshots. He’s no stranger to showbiz: Daughter Linda’s in “Wilder3” at the Circle in the Square and daughter Annemarie is a production coordinator on “Larry King Live”… The smaller Life is a big hit. But howcum no movie or TV spots in the important inaugural issue? … With Fortune mag again listing the Sultan of Brunei atop the world’s wealthiest list ($ 37 billion), I wondered what’s happening with his BevHills hotel, shuttered since Dec. 30? Manager Kerman Beriker reports the city (BevHills) accepted the hotel’s proposals and next come permits to start construction –“Hopefully we will have groundbreaking in 30 to 40 days.” Some trees have to be relocated before the building begins. Meanwhile, the hotel’s been emptied of all interiors and offices are relocated to a few bungalows.

STEVEN SPIELBERG’S FIRST visit on return from the Polish location of “Schindler’s List” was the set of his (Amblin’s) NBC “seaQuest DSV” series, which is adding scenes to the already-completed first five segs of 22 set to bow Sept. 12. David Burke is now exec producer (taking over from Tommy Thompson). The company, including star Roy Scheider, headed to Sea World, Scripps and, next week, the sub base in San Diego for more research. More of the Spielberg movie magic will be evident in this TV’er via a talented dolphin, Darwin … Spielberg’s sister Sue helped raise funds for the 100-year-old Noyes Children’s Library in Kensington, Md., by requesting children’s books with autographed inscriptions from celebs. Steven Spielberg, of course, sent a “Jurassic Park” package. Kirk Douglas, “Charlotte’s Web” with this inscription: “My mother and father couldn’t read or write. As a child I spent a lot of time in the library, weaving dreams that got me in the mess I am in now. Read, read a lot and dream!” Elizabeth Taylor autographed a rare copy of “Nibbles and Me,” which she wrote at the age of 13. Others from Michael Douglas, Michael Jackson (“The Little Prince”), Glenn Close (“The Secret Garden”), Anthony Hopkins, Richard Gere, Morgan Freeman, Tom Cruise (“Huckleberry Finn”), Nicole Kidman (“David Copperfield”), Julia Roberts (“Higglety Pigglety Pop”) … If you haven’t had enough of “Jurassic Park,” the movie, there’s now Ballantine’s book, “The Making of Jurassic Park”… Red Buttons tells me he’s been set for the scariest movie of them all –“CENTRAL Park”… Harrison Ford underwent knee surgery Saturday for an injury sustained running (while wearing a brace) through the woods in “The Fugitive.” He’ll be on crutches six weeks and the start of “Clear and Present Danger” is delayed to Oct. 5 … Brian Dennehy, awarded the Florida Film Fest Acting Award and American TV Award, segues from BBC’s “Midnight Movie” to NBC’s “Lying in Wait” with JoBeth Williams.

REMAKE RIGHTS TO John Van Druten’s play “Bell Book and Candle” have been acquired by Jay Weston. The 1958 Col comedy starred Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak, and Weston’s pitching it to Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer. Jay and partners Joan Muss and Ron Linclau closed a deal with Saban Prods. and France’s TF-1 to miniseries “Madame Cleo’s Girls,” with Line Renaud hopefully the elegant madame … Dodi Fayed’s Allied Stars and 20th Fox will produce “Honey West” either as a feature or TV’er … Fox will also give a home to Martin Lawrence’s You Go Boy Prods. His “Martin” is back for a second year at Fox … A letter from President Clinton was read at opening ceremonies of UCLA’s Film/Theater Fest. Gil Cates presents Kathy Bates with the Bruins’ Acting Award Thursday. And James Earl Jones speaks at Commencement on the 19th … Richard Zanuck received an honorary Doctorate of Arts at Middlebury College, Vt., while son Harrison earned his bachelor’s degree same day … The Round Table celebrates its 16th anni Thursday at the BevWilshire with Roger Ebert (“Behind the Phantom’s Mask”) and Carl Reiner (“All Kinds of Love”) book soup’ing.