We did a triple double-take when we learned that the National Enquirer has bought first serial rights to the upcoming (unauthorized) bio on . . . Carol Burnett!
Inquiring minds may recall that Burnett successfully sued the Enquirer for libel over a 1976 column item that made it appear as if Burnett had been drunk in a Washington, D.C., restaurant.
Burnett's longtime press rep sputtered when we told him about the Enquirer's purchase: "You have \o7 got \f7 to be kidding!"
It's no joke: "Laughing 'Til It Hurts, The Complete Life and Career of Carol Burnett," by J. Randy Taraborrelli, due in September from William Morrow, will be excerpted in four July and August Enquirer installments. Taraborrelli told us that the Enquirer sale "was as much of a surprise to me as to anyone!"
The Enquirer outbid Good Housekeeping for a reported high five-figures for the tome which includes interviews with many Burnett friends. Among the "bombshells," said one source, is the first extensive interview with Burnett's first hubby, Don Saroyan, now an executive with an L.A. tennis club.
Enquirer book editor Curtis Kelly expressed the hope that by excerpting the book--which she called "candid and revealing but also positive"--"there might be a patching up of differences."