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By DENNIS DAILY, United Press International   |   April 4, 2003 at 6:00 PM   |   Comments

VAL KILMER NOT THE TIMID TYPE

During a fitting session with a movie costume design crew, actor Val Kilmer apparently walked around naked. The New York Post says Kilmer had forgotten to wear underwear that day and didn't think the designers would mind. It seems, though, they did have a problem with Kilmer wearing "only a smile." They asked an assistant to go to a nearby Los Angeles store and buy Kilmer something to wear. It seems Kilmer has as little a problem with modesty as did an entertainer he once played in a movie, Jim Morrison of the Doors. The movie project on which Kilmer was working was "Mindhunters." The film is an FBI-themed thriller that also stars LL Cool and Christian Slater. The incident begs the question: "Shouldn't a movie prop and costume department have some underwear around?"


RECORD-MAKING TV NEWS DIRECTOR RETIRING

For four decades Lee Giles set the standard for TV news in Indianapolis; now he's about to retire. The Indianapolis Star says Giles, who has spent the past 35 years at WISH-TV, leaves the station and sets a record as the longest-serving television news director in the country. Over the years he outlasted 14 bosses. When Giles started in television most stations were doing only about an hour of news a day. Today in Indianapolis there are more than four hours of news on most stations and some hourly updates. When he joined WISH the station had a six-person news department; now there are more than 70. The 66-year-old journalist will have a lot of stories to tell about his 40 years in the newsroom and at the anchor desk. Among his achievements was hiring a young reporter who eventually would go on to bigger and better things -- Jane Pauley.


BILL GAITHER THE 'UNKNOWN' MEGA-STAR

Although they may be the idols of some music lovers, many of the nation's major niche stars work with little recognition. Many are in the world of gospel and Christian music. Ed Will of the Denver Post pays tribute to these hard-working musicians in an article that profiles several major names, some who work behind the scenes. Foremost among these is composer-singer Bill Gaither. Over the years Gaither and his vocal bands have not only thrilled millions with their songs of inspiration, additional millions have heard his music performed in their local churches. Gaither is one of the nation's most prolific composers of cantatas and theme-oriented religious works for churches --many come complete with pre-recorded musical background and sheet music so local singers can add their voices in their own sanctuaries. Don't say "Bill ... Who?" to the people who book him into concert halls, however, as his musical aggregations in recent years have managed to pack 'em in like Bruce Springsteen. The Post says Gaither's most recent national tour sold over a half-million tickets.


KATE MULGREW TAKES ON ANOTHER KATE

Award-winning actress Kate Mulgrew is earning rave reviews for her portrayal of Kate Hepburn in the new one-woman show "Tea at Five." It's not easy work. Ask any actor or actress who has had to carry a "one-person" show and they will tell you it's not an easy task. To the credit of some really fine thespians, however, it's the kind of performance that when done properly can be spellbinding. Consider at Elaine Stritch's one-woman performance in "Elaine Stritch At Liberty" that has had several successful runs, both on and off Broadway in recent years. Actor Patrick Stewart of "Star Trek" fame has found a great following with his one-man telling of "A Christmas Carol," following in the footsteps of Mr. Dickens himself. Not that many years ago Hal Holbrook mesmerized audiences with "Mark Twain Tonight." The consummate actor James Whitmore, seen most recently in Miracle-Gro commercials, performed both as President Harry Truman in "Give 'em hell, Harry" and on-stage as the personification of Teddy Roosevelt in "Bully."


UPI DAILY SURVEY QUESTION NO. 560

Today we ask: "What product have you purchased recently solely on the strength of its advertising?" Put UPI-BUY in the subject line and send to comments@upi.com via the Internet.


RESULTS OF QUESTION NO. 555 (BUS10)

Last week we asked: "If you had to spend a week sitting on a cross-country bus with a single seat-mate, which of these two would you chose -- Dick Van Dyke or Andy Griffith?" Our very random dip into the e-mail inbox revealed the following: Dick Van Dyke, 55 percent, and Andy Griffith, 45 percent.

NEXT: Movie memorabilia. GBA

© 2003 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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