An American playwright and director whose work often focuses on contemporary urban people trying to find equilibrium in a crazy world, Herb Gardner has enjoyed more success in the theater than in moti...
The morning after the Golden Globes, the Directors Guild of America heated up the awards competition by announcing its nominees for director of the year.
This year's DGA nods went to Globe winner Sam Mendes for "American Beauty,"Spike Jonze for "Being John Malkovich," Frank Darabont for "The Green Mile," Michael Mann for "The Insider" and M. Night Shyamalan for "The Sixth Sense."All are first-time feature-film nominees except for Darabont, who was nominated in 1994 for "The Shawshank Redemption."
The winner of the DGA is practically guaranteed a win for Best Director in the Academy Award race. In its 50-year history, only four winners have not gone on to win the Oscar; Anthony Harvey (in 1968 for "The Lion Winter"), Francis Ford Coppola (in 1972 for "The Godfather"), Steven Spielberg (in 1985 for "The Color Purple") and Ron Howard (in 1995 for "Apollo 13." The winner will be announced March11.
SMOKED 'LAMB': Anthony Hopkins' London house caught on fire Sunday, and 75 percent of the second floor was destroyed. Hopkins no longer lives in the residence; he actually gave it to his wife after they split in 1998, according to London's Sun. But she should not worry; firefighters still managed to save Hopkins' Academy Award for "The Silence of the Lambs."
ÜBERENGAGED: German supermodel Claudia Schiffer is officially off the market again; she's just become engaged to British boyfriend Tim Jeffries.
Jeffries, 37, proposed on one knee during a recent Caribbean holiday, and the model immediately accepted, newspapers reported Monday. The Sun said Schiffer, 29, was displaying her diamond engagement ring at a Golden Globes party over the weekend.
Schiffer was engaged for some six years to magician David Copperfield (they split in September), while Jeffries, an art-gallery owner, was married once to photographer Koo Stark, ex-girlfriend of Britain's Prince Andrew. They hope to marry later this year. No word whether Copperfield will make an appearance -- or disappearance.
THEIR TWO CENTS: The Golden Globes is always a good time to get some scoop, and the stars did some chatting at Hollywood honcho Mike Medavoy's annual pre-Globes party Friday in Los Angeles. According to the New York Daily News, winner Peter Fonda reportedly discussed sister Jane's separation from Ted Turner. "I see a very positive change in Jane now," he said. "When she told me she was separating, her entire face seemed to relax. I think she's going to be a much happier person as a result of this." He added that he hopes his sister will return to acting...
Nominee Kevin Spacey revealed that he had plans to see "Man on the Moon" and "The Hurricane" to catch Jim Carrey and Denzel Washington's respective performances so he'd be able to speak more intelligently to his fellow nominees at the awards.
"I screen-tested for 'Man on the Moon,'" The "American Beauty" star told the paper. "I'm one of the guys who went for it. Then Milos [Forman, the director] called and said he was going with . I understood completely. knew Andy Kaufman. I think he even channeled him, too. How could I competewith that?"
The party also brought a surprise late guest: President Clinton.
GOODBYE, DOLLY: At the Golden Globes on Sunday night, Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement award winner Barbra Streisand said she will no longer be doing concerts. The stage-shy Babs plans to do four scheduled concerts in Australia in March, "and maybe two more -- one in Los Angeles and one in New York before calling it quits on the concert stage."
"I just don't like it. I don't enjoy public performances being up on a stage,'' the 57-year-old star said. She also plans to concentrate on directing films, and has no current plans to act. Meanwhile, she and hubby James Brolin stay busy, taking road trips and walking into truck stops. How do the people react? Do they tell her she's like buttah? "They seem fine," Streisand responded.
QUICK TAKES: "American Beauty" picked up another accolade this morning, this time by the Broadcast Film Critics Association at its awards luncheon. The critics group had earlier named 10 top films but withheld its pick for the ceremony. The other contenders were "Being John Malkovich," "The Cider House Rules," "The Green Mile," "The Insider," "Magnolia," "Man on the Moon," "The Sixth Sense," "The Talented Mr. Ripley" and "Three Kings".
...Playwright Herb Gardner ("I'm Not Rappaport") has been named the recipient of the Writers Guild of America East's Ian McLellan Hunter Award, recognizing lifetime achievement in writing. The award is named in memory of WGAE Council member McLellan, who died in 1991. He will receive the prize at the guild's ceremony on March 5 ...
... Nicolas Cage's 1933 Ford hot rod sold for $77,500 at the Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction on Sunday. It was purchased by publishing magnate Robert E. Petersen for display at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. Elvis Presley's 1972 Lincoln Continental sold for $45,000, and Richard Carpenter, half the 1970s singing duo the Carpenters, got $70,000 for his 1957 DeSoto convertible ...
... Rosie O'Donnell will be back for this year's Grammys. The talk-show host will repeat her stint, which earned the awards their second-highest rating in six years, on Feb. 23 in Los Angeles.
Wrote and directed "The Goodbye People" on Broadway; show lasted one performance
Had Broadway hit with "Conversations With My Father", starring Hirsch
Reunited with King as writer of "Word of Mouth", a segment of the ABC special "Love, Life, Liberty & Lunch"
Feature directorial debut, "The Goodbye People"; also adapted screenplay from stage play
Premiered "I'm Not Rappaport", starring Judd Hirsch and Cleavon Little in Seattle; show moved to Broadway where it won the 1986 Tony Award as Best Play
Worked as commercial artist; wrote comic strip "The Nebbishes" for eight years
Wrote, directed and executive produced feature adaptation of "I'm Not Rappaport"
Penned the "I'm With Ya, Duke" segment (starring Alan King) of the ABC special "Happy Endings"
Adapted "Thieves" to film; Marlo Thomas recreated her stage role
Made cameo appearance in "Ishtar"
Wrote and co-produced feature film "Who Is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying All Those Terrible Things About Me?", starring Dustin Hoffman and Barbara Harris
Debut as musical book writer with the ill-fated "One Night Stand"; also penned lyrics
Scripted the stage comedy "Thieves"; original star Valerie Harper left show in Boston and was replaced by Marlo Thomas
Penned screenplay adaptation of "A Thousand Clowns"; also served as associate producer; received an Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay
Wrote "A Thousand Clowns" for Broadway stage
An American playwright and director whose work often focuses on contemporary urban people trying to find equilibrium in a crazy world, Herb Gardner has enjoyed more success in the theater than in motion pictures. Only his first work, "A Thousand Clowns", about a TV writer who drops out to care for his nephew, has proven successful on both Broadway (in 1962) and film (1965). For his seamless adaptation of his original comedy, Gardner earned an Academy Award nomination. Like many who enjoy an early success, he struggled for much of the next two decades in an effort to recapture that early glory.<p>The Brooklyn native began his career as a commercial artist and also created and wrote a comic strip called "The Nebbishes" for eight years. Following the success of "A Thousand Clowns", Gardner wrote and directed "The Goodbye People", a notorious 1968 flop that focused on a man who wants to open a tropical drink stand on a beach boardwalk. It took nearly seven years before his next play, the uneven "Thieves" hit the boards and a troubled out-of-town tryout (the original leading lady quit) did not help word of mouth when it hit Broadway. Gardner's one attempt at a musical, as both lyricist and book writer for "One Night Stand" did not even officially open on Broadway although it played several preview performances in 1980. He finally hit his stride with "I'm Not Rappaport" (1984), a comedy centered on two oldsters that found its audience in NYC and went on to win the Tony Award as Best Play. His richer, autobiographical "Conversations With My Father" (1992) was also a Broadway success, fueled partly by Judd Hirsch's lead performance.<p>For the big screen, Gardner produced and wrote the cult hit "Who Is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying All Those Terrible Things About Me?" (1971) in which Dustin Hoffman played a rock composer and singer who discovers that money doesn't buy answers to all of the mysteries of life. The feature film version of "Thieves" (1977) proved a disappointment with only Bob Fosse standing out in a cameo appearance. Gardner made his feature directorial debut with the screen version of "The Goodbye People" (1984) but while the material was clearly special to the author, audiences did not feel the same way. Only slightly more successful was his film version of "I'm Not Rappaport" (1996), which like all of Gardner's efforts had a sentimental core. In this case, though, the strong leading performances of Walter Matthau and Ossie Davis elevated the material.