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Hollywood Digest

By PAT NASON, UPI Hollywood Reporter   |   June 27, 2002 at 4:08 PM   |   Comments

ROSEMARY CLOONEY RELAPSE

A publicist for Rosemary Clooney confirmed that the 74-year-old singer-actress was briefly hospitalized earlier this month and is now being treated at home for a recurrence of lung cancer.

Spokeswoman Linda Dozoretz said Clooney was "comfortable" and "surrounded by her family." Clooney's best-known relative is her nephew, actor George Clooney.

Rosemary Clooney underwent surgery at the Mayo Clinic in January to have part of her left lung removed.

She is best known for a string of hits records that includes "This Ole House," "Hey There" and "Come On-A My House."


WHY FORD PASSED ON 'SUM'

It turns out the reason Harrison Ford did not play Jack Ryan for a third time in "The Sum of All Fears" was the screenplay.

"I hated the script," said the normally taciturn Ford in an interview for the August issue of Playboy. "Paramount said, commit to the development of this and we'll write another script for you. I had never made that kind of long-term commitment, and I said, 'Bye-bye.'"

Ford said the story was "dated and unworkable." He had a real problem with the main set-piece -- the terrorist slaughter of thousands of football fans and participants at the Super Bowl.

"How do you ... recover from that?" he said. "Emotionally, how do you care about one character when thousands have been killed?"

Ford didn't know for sure if the script he turned down is the same one that was filmed with Ben Affleck.

"I'm sure they changed it and made a good movie," he said, "but I just didn't want to go through that."


EDIE AND STANLEY

Emmy-winners Edie Falco ("The Sopranos") and Stanley Tucci ("Winchell") are set to begin work this weekend on a Broadway revival of Terrence McNally's 1987 hit "Frankie and Johnny in the Claire de Lune."

Kathy Bates ("Misery," "Titanic") was nominated for a Tony for her performance in the original production as Frankie, a plain waitress who has an unlikely love affair with Johnny, a recently released convict who takes a job as a short order cook in the eatery where Frankie works. Michelle Pfeiffer and Al Pacino starred in Garry Marshall's 1991 movie adaptation.

Conventional wisdom holds that the characters are supposed to be unattractive, but Tucci says that's not the deal.

"Not necessarily unattractive," he said. "They're not pretty, just average people."

Falco was nominated in 1999, 2000 and 2001 for best actress in a drama series, winning in '99 and '01, for her performance as Carmela Soprano in the hit HBO series.

Tucci won the Emmy for best actor in a miniseries or movie in 1999 for his portrayal of Walter Winchell. He was nominated for supporting actor in a drama series in 1996 for "Murder One," and for supporting actor in a miniseries or movie in 2001 for his performance as Nazi war criminal Adolph Eichmann in the HBO movie "Conspiracy."

"Frankie and Johnny in the Claire de Lune," directed by Joe Mantello ("The Vagina Monologues," "Love! Valour! Compassion!), is scheduled to open a 22-week run at the Belasco Theatre on Aug. 8.


FAMILY TELEVISION AWARDS SET

The Family Friendly Programming Forum has announced that its 4th Annual Family Television Awards ceremony will be held on July 31 in Beverly Hills, Calif. -- with Emmy-winning "Hollywood Squares" host Tom Bergeron serving as emcee.

The awards were established by advertisers to recognize "outstanding programming for family viewing," after a group of more than 40 major advertisers formed the Family Friendly Programming Forum to promote the development of family programming by TV networks, studios, writers and producers.

Forum founder and co-chair Andrea Alstrup -- a vice president at Johnson & Johnson -- said in a statement that the awards have helped make TV a more family-friendly place.

"Since we created these Awards four years ago," said Alstrup, "the television community has become increasingly responsive to the need for more programs that appeal to the whole family."

The July 31 ceremony will be taped for broadcast by ABC-TV on Aug. 9.


COMEBACK PLAYER OF THE YEAR?

According to a report in Daily Variety, the success of the Disney baseball movie "The Rookie" has put Dennis Quaid back on top in Hollywood, to the point where he has lined up starring roles in two upcoming features.

The paper said Quaid will star in "Cold Creek Manor" as a dad who movies his family from the city to a quiet small town, only to be discover that the previous owner -- just out of prison -- wants his property back.

Quaid is also said to be ready to go on "The Day After Tomorrow" with director Roland Emmerich ("Independence Day," "The Patriot"), as a climatologist looking for a way to save the world from sudden and severe global warming -- even as he tries desperately to reach his young son in New York, which is being frozen in a new ice age.

© 2002 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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