Hiatus, that jargon of the television industry, is in full swing. The word, for the uninitiated, is for the period when a TV series stops filming and cast and crew take a break before uniting again to film a new season. In other words, a vacation. Vacation for TV stars, alas, does not mean the same thing as it does for the rest of us. Here are how some actors of television's most popular programs are spending their summer vacation.
Angela Lansbury took a vacation from solving mysteries on "Murder, She Wrote" to star in a made-for-TV movie, "A Green Journey," in Ireland. NBC will air it in the upcoming season.
"60 Minutes" correspondents Mike Wallace and Meredith Vieira are enjoying their new homes. Wallace bought a new house in Martha's Vineyard and Vieira purchased one in upstate New York.
Michele Lee left the cul-de-sac of "Knots Landing" and flew to Paris to star in the CBS movie "Strangers" for the upcoming season. Neighbor Joan Van Ark did a cameo in the CBS 1990-91 comedy thriller "Murder at the PTA Luncheon" and vacationed in Europe, as did co-star Ted Shackelford.
Candice "Murphy Brown" Bergen is summering in France, the home of her husband, film director Louis Malle, and their young daughter, Chloe.
Larry Hagman took an early break in March from the dirty dealings of Southfork and jetted to Europe for vacation.
"Designing Woman" Jean Smart hit the boards during her break, appearing with playwright and sometimes actor Christopher Durang at the Tiffany Theatre in West Hollywood in Durang's comedy "Laughing Wild." In mid-July, Grant Shaud, who plays the high-strung Miles on "Murphy Brown," took over for Durang.
Dixie Carter of "Designing Women" performed her cabaret act at the Cafe Carlyle in New York.
Bill Cosby made concert appearances and promoted his Universal comedy feature "Ghost Dad," which opened June 29.
Corbin Bernsen of "L.A. Law" shed his slick image as divorce attorney Arnie Becker to play Morris Dees, the Alabama lawyer who took on the Ku Klux Klan, in the NBC movie "Triumph Over Hate: The Morris Dees Story," airing next fall.
Bernsen's "L.A. Law" co-star, Jimmy Smits, made Blake Edwards' new feature comedy "Switch," set for release next year.
Ted Danson's break from "Cheers" includes a reunion with Steven Guttenberg and Tom Selleck for "Three Men and a Little Lady," set to open this Christmas, a sequel to their 1987 hit, "Three Men and a Baby."
Kirstie Alley of "Cheers" is making two feature comedies, "Sibling Rivalry," scheduled to open in November, which also stars Fox's "Married With I Children" star Ed O'Neill, and "Look Who's Talking Too," a sequel to last year's hit, tentatively set to open at Christmas.
Gary Cole of "Midnight Caller" left San Francisco for the plains of Montana to play the controversial Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer in ABC's miniseries "Son of the Morning Star," which will air during the upcoming season.
Bear, the Saint Bernard and golden retriever who plays Dreyfuss on "Empty Nest," went to Provo, Utah, to be top dog in the new video, "The Hollywood Dog Training Program," which is in stores.
The dog is resting up before he returns this week for his third season on the sitcom.
Bronson Pinchot of "Perfect Strangers" went to Broadway to appear in the Circle in the Square's production of the Russian comedy "Zoyy's Apartment." It received mostly negative reviews and closed June 17.
Neil Patrick Harris may play a 16-year-old doctor on "Doogie Howser, M.D.," but in real life he's still in high school. He returned to school and completed his junior year.
Kyle McLachlan, who plays everyone's favorite FBI agent, Dale Cooper, on "Twin Peaks" spent the summer playing musician Ray Manzarek in Oliver Stone's "The Doors," set to open sometime next year.
Judith Light of "Who's the Boss?" flew to Toronto to make the ABC movie "In Defense of a Married Man," opposite Michael Ontkean, Sheriff Harry Truman of "Twin Peaks." It will air during the upcoming season.
Ken Olin of "thirtysomething" filmed "The Charles Stuart Story" for CBS, which will air during the 1990-91 season. He is currently directing wife and "thirtysomething" co-star, Patricia Wetting in the play "Mother Said I Never Should," at the Powerhouse Playhouse at Vassar College. Wetting also just completed a feature film with Robert DeNiro.
The ever-busy John Goodman of "Roseanne" spent the past three months in England starring in his first romantic lead, Universal's "King Ralph I," opening either late this year or early 1991. Last week he reported to work on "Barton Fink," a 1940s murder-mystery set to wrap in late August.
Nancy Cartwright, the voice of Bart Simpson on "The Simpsons," was in post-production on a documentary she has produced on home birth, "It's a Nice Sunny Day to Be Born," which she has entered in the Sixth Annual Women in Film Festival. She is also in the midst of writing a one-woman stage show for herself, entitled "In Search of Fellini."
Keenen Ivory Wayans is renovating his new home and is traveling to Puerto Rico with brother and "In Living Color" co-star, Damon, to participate in the Rene Enriquez International Children's Fund, which raises money for orphans.
Katey Sagal, Peg Bundy of "Married I With Children," performed at L.A.'s Cafe Largo and has spent most of the summer composing music.