GOOD MORNING: Look for George W. Bush to spend more time in California and for Jerry Weintraub to continue campaigning for him as he did for his father. Weintraub is just back from visiting with the Bush clan, pere et fils, in Kennebunkport, Maine, and smilingly reports about his presidential candidate campaigning, “It’s deja vu.” Barbara Bush will be in So. Cal Oct. 11 when Weintraub plans a fund-raiser for her son. And Weintraub’s also planning a Jan. or Feb. Bush event before the primaries. Today, Weintraub will be on hand as George W. makes his appearance in the important Latino community of So. Cal. Terry Semel has already hosted a cocktailer for Geo. W. to which Weintraub had invited some interesting faces — like Warren Beatty and Sherry Lansing. (But don’t read anything more political into their appearance). Weintraub has a meeting this week with another president, WB’s Alan Horn, to set in motion these Weintraub projects: “33 Liberty Street,” to star Robert De Niro; “The Bob Marley Story”; a remake of “Ocean’s 11” which starred the Rat Pack in 1960; and a remake of “Oh, God,” this time with Billy Crystal (it is hoped) in the role originated in 1977 by George Burns … Vice president Al Gore is on the Paramount lot Sept. 16 for a VIP pre-reception of Earth Communications Office’s (ECO) 10th anni and the preem of “A Perfect Balance.” Patrick Stewart and Linda Hunt narrate. It’s the start of ECO’s newest communications campaign — to raise awareness of global warming. Gore is also on a campaign, you may have noticed. Mexican-American Nobel Prize winner Mario Molina delivers the keynote address at the ECO event. He’s a leader in the field of environmental sciences. How’s all this for equal timing — and space.
I WASN’T EXAGGERATING about Garth Brooks’ determination to prove he is (also) pop-rock singer Chris Gaines — both on the Capitol album “Garth Brooks — In the life of Chris Gaines” and the Sept. 29 NBC special — plus the dramatic Par pic, “The Lamb.” Garth himself conducted VH1 interviews with Joe Smith, Billy Joel and Don Was for their “Behind the Music” series in which each of the interviewed trio told their “experiences” with Gaines! Of course, they had to conjure it all up — as Brooks asked them serious questions about the life and career of the fictitious Gaines. Smith mentored the careers of James Taylor, the Grateful Dead, Linda Ronstadt, the Eagles, Peter, Paul and Mary, Bonnie Raitt and — Garth Brooks. Says Smith, “I don’t know of anyone else who could pull it off — Garth Brooks could be the only one to have two (successful) careers — as two people!” … “‘Star Trek: Deep Space 9’ made it all happen,” says Jimmy Darren of his role as 1960s Rat Pack-style singer, Vic Fontaine, on the series. And Darren credits exec producer Ira Steven Behr with the idea for Darren to play the role — his single guestint expanded to 10 segs and now resulted in a CD, “This One’s From the Heart” (Concord Jazz) plus singing dates at Claridges, A.C. and symphony stints across the country. Darren, who has four grandchildren, warbles songs made famous by you-know-who and include: “I’ve Got the World on a String,” “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” — and “That Old Black Magic” … And Tony Danza takes his “Song and Dance” show to the Desert Inn over Labor Day weekend, having gone SRO at the Westbury Music Fair where the reaction was so great, he says, “I felt like Elvis!” He’s come a long way with the song and dance act since we saw him debut it at a charity event a few years back at the BevHilton. “I must be doing something right,” he laughs, “to play the D.I. in Vegas on Labor Day weekend.” Danza, Emmy-nominated (he didn’t win) for his guestint in “The Practice” and his dramatic stints on B’way in “The Iceman Cometh” and “A View From The Bridge,” says he’d return to B’way — in a musical like “Pal Joey.” And the already proven-versatile Danza is also developing another series at TriStar.
THE GUEST LINEUP FOR MARTIN SHORT’S King World syndie’d show boasts this imposing starting guest list: Billy Crystal and Rebecca Romijn-Stamos on the debut show Sept. 13, Steve Martin Sept. 14, Tom Hanks, Sept. 16, Kelly Preston, Sept. 17 and, later, Ted Danson, who costars with Short in Lawrence Kasdan’s “Mumford” … Joe Bologna and son Gabe play father-and-son on a “Martial Law” seg with Joe as a con artist and Gabe, his straight-as-an-arrow sprig. Joe wings to N.Y. Sept. 24 for the bow of his indie pic, “The Story of the Leisure Class.” which shows at the IFFM at the Angelika. It stars Brad Renfro and Chris McDonald. Joe and wife Renee Taylor return to the Canon in BevHills on Sept. 26 in their hilarious “If You Ever Leave Me, I’m Going With You” … Johnny Grant, back from a handshake tour with U.S. troops in Kosovo and Macedonia to coordinate future USO tours, says Shania Twain and Michael Jordan were the two-most requested celeb visitors. Ruth Pointer’s already set for a Sept. 5-12 USO tour … Daily Variety’s Michael Fleming’s book, “The Three Stooges — From Amalgamated Morons to American Icons” (Doubleday), out in Nov., includes a forward from fan Mel Gibson who admits he started watching ’em when he was 5 or 6 years old in N.Y. before moving to Australia. Gibson allows, “I’m careful to demand my kids not to try those (Stooges’) moves at home.”