NEWSMAKERS: Brosnan Crash Update

Pierce Brosnan SANTA MONICA, Calif., April 27, 2000 — The 19-year-old driver in the weekend car crash that seriously injured Pierce Brosnan‘s son was legally drunk at the time of the accident, the California Highway Patrol said today. Tests showed James P. Hall had a blood-alcohol level of .09, the CHP said. In California, the legal limit is .08.

On tonight’s “Extra,” a friend of Hall — and a passenger in the Chevy Blazer that went off the road in Malibu, Calif., — says the teen was not drinking, although others in the SUV were. Sean Brosnan, 13, sustained a broken pelvis, ruptured bladder and possible vertebrae fracture in the accident.

SHE WORKS HARD FOR THE MONEY: Playboy playboy Hugh Hefner confirmed today that he’s in talks to get “Who Wants to Marry a Multimillionaire?” ex-bride Darva Conger to take off her clothes for a tasteful spread in his mag. Reports say Conger could pocket as much as six figures from the deal.

HE FEELS LIKE A “MILLIONAIRE”: In-demand Regis Philbin, 67, underwent an angioplasty Monday to unclog a blocked heart artery, he revealed on today’s “Live With Regis & Kathie Lee.” Philbin underwent a similar procedure seven years ago.

WAR OF THE SOCK PUPPETS: Online pet store has filed a federal suit against a “Late Night With Conan O’Brien” writer, saying a sketch on the night-owl show (“Triumph the Insult Comic Dog”) is a crude rip-off of its doggie “spokespuppet.”

AIN’T NO SCARIN’ ERIN: In California, an ex-husband and ex-boyfriend of the real-life Erin Brockovich, the sassy legal investigator portrayed by Julia Roberts in the self-titled hit film, were arrested today on charges of trying to extort $310,000 from the crusader.

GA-GA, GOO-GOO: The legendary Olsen Twins are back! Not that they’ve really been away (they are the stars of a skein of straight-to-video kiddie flicks), but Mary-Kate and Ashley, now 14, have unveiled a self-titled line of kid’s clothing that will be sold in Wal-Mart stores beginning this fall.

THE FALL OF “SAIGON”: Broadway’s “Miss Saigon” will close Dec. 31 after 4,063 performances, it has been announced. The show — and its trademark helicopter — bowed in New York on April 11, 1991.