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Morning Report

October 25, 1994|ART BERMAN | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press

ART

Picassos Vanish: Seven paintings by Pablo Picasso were stolen from a Zurich, Switzerland, art gallery over the weekend by thieves who burrowed in from the cellar of a neighboring house. Two of the missing paintings were works that had been recovered in 1991 after being stolen from the same gallery, owned by Max K. Bollag. Eight people were arrested in the earlier theft. Police said the works taken this time were not insured. The two most valuable missing Picassos--"Seated Woman" and "Christ of Montmartre"--were said to be worth $40 million and the total value of the loot was placed at $44 million. However, the estimate released by police apparently came from Bollag, and other experts cast doubt on it.

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Moving to Sotheby's: Nora Halpern, founding director of Pepperdine University's Frederick R. Weisman Museum and a former curator of the late collector's art foundation, has been appointed director of fine arts at Sotheby's West Coast division in Beverly Hills. She succeeds Marc Selwyn, who resigned from the auction house to become director of PaceWildenstein's new gallery in Beverly Hills, slated to open in April. Halpern's appointment is effective on Nov. 1.

TELEVISION

Three's a Crowd: Here's the plot: Adam Louder (James Wilder) and his good friend Monique (Stephanie Romanov) are getting engaged. Well, why not? Adam's "hypnotizingly beautiful wife," as Fox TV describes her, hasn't been seen or heard from in two years. But look who shows up: Grayson Louder, the missing wife (played by Emma Samms, best-known for her role of Fallon Carrington on the dramas "Dynasty" and "The Colbys.") It all happens on "Models Inc." when Samms debuts Nov. 23. And you can bet that Grayson's appearance, as Fox puts it, casts "a dark shadow" on the happiness of Adam and Monique. Why can't things ever be simple?

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Comedy Shake-Up: Cable's Comedy Central will rejigger its schedule starting Monday. The emphasis will be on "theme nights." Mondays will focus on British comedies, Tuesdays will be "Saturday Night Live," Wednesdays will offer feature films, Thursdays will highlight five comedians, and Fridays will offer selections from "Mystery Science Theater 3000."

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On the Run: Oprah Winfrey proved she can do more than talk: She can run, as she demonstrated Sunday in Washington by completing a 26-mile marathon in just under 4 1/2 hours. "This is better than an Emmy," the 40-year-old talk-show star said after joining 13,000 people in the 19th annual Marine Corps Marathon. But she added, "This is my last marathon . . .I'm going to stick to half-marathons from here on out."

POP/ROCK

Beginning to Feel Like . . . : Latin music stars Tito Puente, Jose Feliciano, Luis Enrique and Celia Cruz are among those who will tape a "Navidad en las Americas" Christmas TV special live at Disneyland today. The show will air in English on a network to be determined and in Spanish on Univision in early December. It accompanies an album being released Nov. 8 by Walt Disney Records, also featuring performances by Placido Domingo, Juan Gabriel and Xuxa.

PEOPLE WATCH

Doing Good: Celebrities will don chef's hats today to launch the opening of Project Angel Food's new kitchen at 7574 Sunset Blvd. The project hopes to distribute more than 1,000 meals a day to people with AIDS. Among those expected at today's festivities: Marlee Matlin, Brendan Fraser, Ed McMahon, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Barbara Eden and Emma Samms (see, she's really nice).

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