There were vultures everywhere at the glitzy premiere of "Ishtar" on Wednesday night. On screen, there were the rent-a-birds in the hilarious desert scene, already touted as a celluloid classic. And then there were the lobby vultures, who despite howls from the 800-plus in the audience, kept asking, "Yes, but is it $47 million worth of funny?"
Warren Beatty and Dustin Hoffman broke recent cinema precedent and actually showed up for the premiere, which netted more than $100,000 for Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times. Beatty might have lost his presidential candidate when his close buddy Gary Hart bowed out last week, but he was the evening's winner, according to the bunches of beauties who lined up to say "just-how-much-I-loved-your-film."
Pepper Edmiston, the camp founder and director, said the money raised will allow "cancer patients like my son David to have as much fun as healthy kids" and will let them "sparkle in an atmosphere of hopefulness."
The camp is a favorite charity of Hoffman and his wife, Lisa. And, again unlike a lot of premieres, a bunch of trendy types showed up for this one at the Cineplex Odeon Century Plaza Theatres in Century City. In line for pre-screening popcorn was Mimi Rogers, the pretty-in-a-spangled-dress new bride of Tom Cruise, who took the opportunity to introduce her to Carol Kane and then chat it up with Emilio Estevez. Afterward, there was a Moroccan bazaar, cleverly set up nearby in the Entertainment Center--and with all the standard North African goodies done up by Ambrosia.
Making a quick stop at the party were Christina Ferrera and hubby Tony Thomopoulos--who indeed had noticed that the elderly couple in the film sported the same last name. There were a couple of in-jokes--like the stars' names, Rogers and Clarke being close to the entertainment P.R. firm, Rogers and Cowan. And, of course, the Emir asking the CIA agent if he'd like some refreshment, "some Pepsi-Cola?" must have struck a wonderful chord with Coca-Cola Co., which owns Columbia and bankrolled the film.
As an exec from another studio put it: "I bet that line wasn't in the original script." That was a safe bet--but then so were Hoffman and Beatty in a movie.
JUST HOW OLD-- . . . Bob Hope had his old friend, President Reagan, before the cameras Sunday--kidding about just how old they both were. Hope's birthday is well known--he celebrates it yearly with yet another TV special. This week, for an interview that runs right before the May 25 birthday special, the other Ron Reagan interviewed Hope for "Good Morning, America." . . . Phyllis Diller did the foreword for Jim and Henny Backus' fourth book, "Up the Golden Years."
DOWNTOWN DOINGS--Stephen Gavin gets the City of Angels Award from the Central City Assn. on June 4, honored for his work on Metro Rail and other civic and community service. He'll receive it from David Carpenter, the chairman and CEO of Transamerica Life Companies, and Mayor Tom Bradley. Carpenter takes over that day as chairman of the association. Also to be honored: The Downtown News' Sue Laris, Stuart Ketchum for his contribution to building the downtown YMCA, and Arco's Lodwrick Cook, everybody's favorite hero this year, since he raised $10 million for the Save the Books Campaign. Columnist George Will will speak on the future of the city.
FOR A RAINY DAY--Photographer Peter Borsari rarely throws anything away. So when the story broke about presidential candidate Gary Hart and model Donna Rice, Borsari knew the lady from somewhere. According to the photojournalist, whose pictures are prominent in People magazine this week, he shot Rice when she came to France in 1981, and several months later took black-and-whites of her in his studio. Borsari said that Rice told him she had flown over to France with Adnan Khashoggi. "I have large files of pictures of beautiful girls," said Borsari, who refused to say how much the sale to People and overseas news services would net him, only that it was in the double digits of thousands of dollars.
FAR AWAY--Few stars in Hollywood because of Cannes, but New York managed a turnout last week for the opening of the Scuola Romano exhibit at the Philippe Daverio Gallery. Our buddy told us that Keiffer Sutherland, who's in the Big Apple filming "Bright Lights, Big City" turned up, as did the film's new director, James Bridges. "L.A. Law's" Corbin Bernsen was there, but refused to confirm strong rumors that the whole first week of "Hello Again," his film with Shelley Long, had to be reshot because she was unhappy with the way she looked. A very pregnant Tatum O'Neal and mother-in-law Kay McEnroe were there, as were Vincent Spano, Tammy Grimes, and producer and former "Baby" Jane Holtzer, whose Island Films is getting ready to "Knockout" with Paul Morrissey directing.