Entertainment Today: Showbiz news

By United Press International  |  Feb. 21, 2002 at 4:45 AM
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According to gossip columnist Liz Smith, Liza Minnelli will have not one but two maids of honor when she marries David Gest, and 15 bridesmaids -- most of them household names.

Elizabeth Taylor and Marisa Berenson ("Cabaret," "Barry Lyndon") are the maids of honor. The list of bridesmaids includes Mia Farrow, Claudia Cardinale, Janet Leigh, Esther Williams, Gina Lollobrigida, ABC News reporter Cynthia McFadden, singers Mya, Freda Payne, Chaka Khan and Petula Clark -- and even a New York gossip columnist, Cindy Adams.

The list also includes socialites and businesswomen Rosemarie Lieberman, Nabila Khashoggi and Arlene Lazare, and British musical star Martine McCutcheon.

Gest will have two best men to go with Minnelli's two maids of honor -- Michael Jackson and his brother, Tito. His roster of groomsmen is also star-studded -- including Jackie, Randy and Marlon Jackson, James Ingram, Tony Franciosa, Robert Wagner, Nasdaq's David Weild, Plax inventor Allan Lazare, Frankie Blue, Grammy winner Michael McDonald, sports agent Dennis Gilbert, American Airlines' Tom Gleason, actor Tristan Rogers and vineyard/entertainment manager Bruce Cohn. For balance, Gest also has a journalist among his attendants -- Hollywood reporter Robert Osborne.

Smith said the list of performers for the celebration following the March 16 wedding at New York's Regent Hotel is so lengthy that if every act does only one number, the show will go on for days. The lineup includes Whitney Houston, Tony Bennett, Robert Goulet, Little Anthony & the Imperials and the Doobie Brothers.


Kim Delaney, the star of the freshman ABC drama "Philly," was placed on two years' probation, fined $300 and ordered to complete a driving safety course Tuesday after she pleaded no contest to reckless driving.

The Emmy-winning actress was arrested at her home in Malibu, Calif., on Jan. 26 for investigation of drunk driving, after a motorist called 911 to report a vehicle weaving on the highway. Investigators said Delaney refused to take a blood-alcohol test, and prosecutors said in court Tuesday that there was "insufficient evidence" to prove a drunk-driving case.

Delaney, who won a supporting actress Emmy in 1997 for her portrayal of police Det. Diane Russell on ABC's "NYPD Blue," did not appear in court Tuesday. Her lawyer entered the plea on her behalf before Judge Lawrence Mira, the judge who sentenced actor Robert Downey Jr. to prison for violating probation in a drug and weapons possession case.

(The above two items thanks to UPI Hollywood Reporter Pat Nason)


Three well-known actors took to the airwaves this week to campaign for union votes.

A news show on the Los Angeles CBS radio affiliate KNX was followed by a commercial with Elliott Gould addressing members of the Screen Actors Guild. He advised them of the importance of voting for himself, actor Kent McCord and actress Valerie Harper in a re-vote of a recent guild election.

That election saw actress Melissa Gilbert elected president, Gould treasurer and McCord recording secretary.

But Gould and McCord, and Valerie Harper -- who lost to Gilbert -- protested that many New York guild members' votes were not counted because of a technicality. They demanded -- and got -- a new election based on more equitable balloting.

New ballots have been sent to guild members. They are to be marked, signed and returned to SAG headquarters in Hollywood next month.

Among the issues at stake are the major problems of runaway production of motion pictures and television to Canada, which offers tax advantages to producers and the cheaper exchange of the Canadian dollar, which saves studios and independent filmmakers millions of dollars.

It should be noted that Gould and McCord have nothing personally to gain if they are re-elected, and could lose their positions in the guild.

"This is a matter of principle," McCord said. "We are doing what we think is right ... what we believe is fair to everyone in the guild, not just the officers."

(Thanks to UPI's Vernon Scott in Los Angeles)

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