Attenborough wants money from ‘Gandhi’

GOOD MORNING: Richard Attenborough claims Columbia still owes him around $ 4 million from “Gandhi.” He winged in from London, met here with his lawyers, etc. Among the problems: There’s no one at the studio who was there when his deal was made for the 1982 Oscar-winning epic. While here, Attenborough also met with writers working on his “Sailmaker” and “Grey Owl” projects for Shimon Arama and Jake Eberts, respectively. And talked to potential players. En route to L.A., Attenborough stopped in Philly, where Terry Gilliam’s directing “Twelve Monkeys” with cinematographer Roger Pratt, who lensed Attenborough’s “Shadowlands” and would likely shoot “Owls” with him. Philly would also be a site for Attenborough’s in-the-distant-future epic, “Thomas Paine,” to be both France and U.S.-set …”Outbreak” is still being fine-tuned despite Thursday night’s screening and another set for Monday. Donald Sutherland told me he was called back for a re-shoot — had to shave off his beard to reprise his general’s role. He was happy with the re-shoot and the pic in general. And hopes to work again with Wolfgang Petersen, Dustin Hoffman and Morgan Freeman. Sutherland is also a general in HBO’s “Citizen X”– this time, a Russian. He’s busy p.a.’ing both pix following a busy year in “Six Degrees of Separation” and “Disclosure.” He’s now off to Paris to meet with writers to film John Maynard Keynes’ “Economic Consequences of the Peace”– a property Sutherland sez he’s had for 20 years … Hugh Grant goes from ICM to CAA, following his g.f. Elizabeth Hurley. She’ll be seen March 7 on United Par Net’s “The Shamrock Conspiracy” as Edward Woodward’s daughter. Woodward, meanwhile, wings from London to Japan to begin NBC’s mini, “Gai Jin,” the followup to “Shogun.”

“CONTINUING THE MARY AND IRVING LAZAR legacy,” the invite will read, “Wolfgang Puck and Barbara Lazaroff invite you to a Dom Perignon Academy Awards Night”– at Spago. Dom Perignon is also establishing a scholarship in honor of the Lazars for young writers … Ellen Barkin and husband Gabriel Byrne, from whom she’s separated, were lunching Thursday at Chaya … Jerry Seinfeld, spokesman for American Express, was surprised after dining at Orso’s to be told they don’t accept the AE card! Sounds like a great idea for an upcoming seg of the show. Seinfeld’s company is now “hopeful” of signing for another season — after one meeting with Castle Rock … There’s a three-page color spread in Sunday’s N.Y. Times for B’way-bound “Victor/Victoria” (previews begin Oct. 3). Bob Loggia, who pulled out of the Robert Preston role (Tony Roberts replaces), admits, “It was ticklish”– after all, Blake Edwards was best man at the Loggias’ wedding, Julie Andrews matron of honor. Loggia sez he had too many pix waiting, just wound “Man With a Gun” in Vancouver, starts “The Painted Word” in Toronto next … Ginny Mancini’s planning a benefit for the Society of Singers at one of the “V/V” previews — Hank wrote the music, you remember, with Leslie Bricusse on lyrics … Carol Channing receives Philadelphia’s Liberty Bell Award at the historic Charlotte Cushman Club on “Hello, Dolly!” opening night, Feb. 28. She continues on the road until her B’way return Oct. 10 … The Westwood Playhouse’s “Picasso at the Lapin Agile’s” Nate Davis (Gaston) is daylighting — in the bigscreen “Steal Big, Steal Little,” directed by his son, Andrew Davis … Writer-director Chris Gerolmo presents his HBO “Citizen X” Feb. 28 at Harvard, his alma mater, where he studied film 15 years ago.

DEBBIE REYNOLDS PREVIEWS her Hollywood Motion Picture Museum at her Las Vegas hotel Saturday — for stockholders. A grand, gala, celeb-studded opening’s skedded for Debbie’s birthday (63) April 1 … Improv audiences this week are getting a preview of the Grammys: Paul Reiser’s working out his hostint at the Hollywood boite. Sure, he kids the strange components of some categories … BMG Entertainment, which has Grammy nominations in more than 30 categories, throws an “Old Hollywood” post-awards bash at the Colonnade. Chasen’s caters — one of its last big parties … Art Linkletter (82) welcomes supporters of the UCLA Center on Aging at Monday’s (27) Avco Westwood screening of Hollywood Pictures’ “Roommates,” in which Peter Falk stars amazingly as a feisty 107-year-old grandfather to D.B. Sweeney, whom he’s raised. Dr. Audrey Stein, vice chair of the UCLA Center on Aging, calls Falk’s performance “a valentine to our supporters.” Peter Yates directed … Today’s the one year anni of the passing of everyone’s friend, Dinah Shore … After Saturday’s Frank Sinatra Golf Tourney gala at the Marriott Palm Desert, Frank and Barbara host a private party at the house for Platinum Contributors ($10,000) to the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center. Bob Wagner and wife Jill are houseguesting with the Sinatras. Now that Frank hasn’t agreed to any future work dates, Frank Sinatra Jr. returns to the stage with his own show, bringing his big band to the new Vegas Boulder Station, April 10-16, continuing on to N.Y., A.C., etc.