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An Out for Celebrities

February 26, 1996|JAMES BATES

Planet Hollywood is offering investors what may be the first bailout clause because of bad publicity.

The fast-growing restaurant chain, whose film and sports celebrity investors include Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis, Demi Moore, Whoopi Goldberg, Andre Agassi and Shaquille O'Neal, last week filed a stock offering prospectus with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company and some institutional shareholders are offering about $190 million in stock.

The documents say celebrities and other stockholders received 12.8 million shares of common stock after an earlier reorganization, with restrictions saying stars can't sell more than half of the shares until 1999.

However, the celebrities do have the right to force Planet Hollywood to buy back their shares at a fair market price under one unusual clause: When a "high-profile senior executive officer of the company is convicted of a felony, or for use of illegal drugs, or of a crime of moral turpitude," the documents say.

It's His Kind of Town

Having paid tribute to Palm Springs with a collection of songs on a compact disc titled "The Palm Strings," Ray Kelley is moving up in size.

Kelley, a cello player there who heads a company called Resort Music, will soon be releasing an album of instrumental jazz songs honoring Chicago called "Windy City." Included with the CD is a map of downtown Chicago.

If a jazz combo could interpret a Mobil Travel Guide, this would be it. Songs are named for Chicago landmarks, including "Grant Park," "The Loop," "Lake Shore Drive," "Water Tower," "Buckingham Fountain" and "Art Institute."

Kelley already has gotten a favorable plug from radio station WMAQ in Chicago, which said: "The Tempo of 'Windy City' is perfect for the Bulls, Bears & Blackhawks games."

Pricy Seating

The latest Smart Money magazine includes a list of "how much it costs to get started as a film director" in various cities, including New York and Los Angeles.

A box of Raisinettes is $2.17 in Los Angeles, the magazine says, significantly lower than the $3.01 in New York. But a directors chair is a bargain in New York at $40, compared with $53 in Los Angeles.

Briefly . . .

The upcoming Town and Country magazine proclaims that Los Angeles "has truly become the aesthetic-surgery capital of the world." . . . Pizza Hut, in a news release boasting of strong Latino business in Southern California, says: "In fact, their 'pizza-eating propensity' is 40% higher than the average of other demographic groups." . . . Brochures from Beverly Hills Kennels say: "Being brushed is a favorite of some guests, others look forward to cookie time or that soothing warm herbal bath and manicure." . . . In case friends drop by unexpectedly: An ad in Daily Variety for a Hidden Hills estate says it has garages that can accommodate "six stretch limos."

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