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MORNING REPORT

March 28, 1994|BETH KLEID | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press

TELEVISION

KCET Pledge Drive Falls Short: KCET-TV Channel 28 racked up $1.45 million in pledges during the 23-day on-air fund-raising campaign that ended last week. This year's intake continued a decline that saw the public-TV station's March pledge drive fall from $1.9 million in 1992 to $1.6 million in 1993. About 3,800 fewer pledges were made this year than last. KCET officials attributed the decrease to Southern California's continuing economic problems but added that KCET is making up the shortfall in other areas and remains on budget for the fiscal year.

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Play Ball: Acclaimed "Civil War" producer Ken Burns' long-awaited "Baseball" documentary series will play at least two hours each over nine nights--each episode is dubbed an "inning"--on PBS on Sept. 18-22 and Sept. 25-28. Burns says the story of baseball is the story of America, and among the subjects the nine innings will cover are the clash of labor and management, the search for heroes, the rise of popular culture and the quest for racial justice. The exact length of each inning will be known only after the series' final editing is completed this summer.

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New on Fox: While the three other major broadcast networks are evaluating what new series will be on their fall lineups, Fox is already announcing one of its series orders. "Mantis" is a one-hour action-adventure show about an African American hero with a disability who devises technology to battle evil-doers. Carl Lumbly, who was a regular on CBS' 1982-88 police series "Cagney & Lacey," stars. And Fox has disclosed plans for another summer series, an hourlong suspense anthology produced by Joel Schumacher, Aaron Spelling and E. Duke Vincent.

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Hey, Sports Fans: Good news for cable TV: ESPN topped the field with 22 nominations for the Sports Emmy Awards. It was the first time the all-sports cable network has had the most nominations. NBC was second with 19, ABC and NBC each had 14, followed by HBO with 12. Perennial winner John Madden, who recently moved to Fox from CBS, was again nominated in the analyst category, where he will face three other former coaches--Hubie Brown, Mike Ditka and Billy Packer--and former baseball catcher Tim McCarver. Winners in all categories will be announced April 16 in New York City.

MOVIES

Wild Jeff: Jeff Bridges will play the legendary Wild Bill Hickock in the upcoming Western adventure "Wild Bill." The movie about the exploits of the colorful James Butler Hickock, better known as Bill, will be produced by Academy Award-winners Richard D. Zanuck and Lili Fini Zanuck for United Artists. Walter Hill ("48 HRS.") will direct. Production begins in May.

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An About Face: Steven Spielberg's film has received yet another positive review. Croatia's President Franjo Tudjman, who once questioned the number of Jews killed in the Holocaust in his book "Wastelands of History," watched the premiere of "Schindler's List" in Croatia on Friday and called it "the most convincing testimony" on the Holocaust and "the strongest work of art" on evil.

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So You Wanna Be in Pictures: About 4,000 residents of South-Central Los Angeles gave their resumes to entertainment industry representatives Saturday at the daylong Job Fair Expo '94 held in the parking lot of the First AME Church. "This event will provide our community access to employment opportunities within the entertainment industry," said Rev. Cecil L. Murray, the church's senior minister. He said the fair was one step toward solving problems in the community, which is plagued by drug- and gang-related violence. The American Film Institute, MCA/Universal, MGM, Paramount, TicketMaster, Walt Disney Studios and Warner Bros. talked to prospective employees who were vying for 800 jobs ranging from $100,000-a-year professional positions to $7-an-hour clerical spots.

MUSIC

The Secret's Out: After months of rumor and speculation, the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington is expected to name Leonard Slatkin, the conductor of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, to succeed Mstislav Rostropovich as music director, sources said. The Kennedy Center is offering no comment about the new director's identity until a news conference called for today. Slatkin's appointment has been anticipated for months.

POP/ROCK

Beastie Boy Charged: Adam Horovitz, a member of the Beastie Boys rap group, was charged with felony grand theft and misdemeanor battery for allegedly swiping a "Hard Copy" video cameraman's tape outside a memorial for actor River Phoenix in November. Initially, both charges were misdemeanors, but Horovitz's attorney, Howard Price, demanded the theft charge be filed as a felony. Horovitz, 27, will be arraigned April 20.

QUICK TAKES

John McEnroe has a new racket. The tennis star's latest venture is his own two-month-old art gallery in New York City's Soho. Eventually, McEnroe wants to handle contemporary artists. For now, he's dealing only in previously sold art until he learns the business better. . . . Pop singer Pat Benatar gave birth to a new daughter, Hana Juliana Giraldo, on March 12. Benatar and her husband (who is also her guitarist and producer), Neil Giraldo, also have a 9-year-old daughter, Haley.

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