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Morning Report

Arts And Entertainment Reports From The Times, News Services And The Nation's Press.

November 26, 1998|SHAUNA SNOW

TV & MOVIES

Michael J. Fox Battling Parkinson's: Michael J. Fox, 37, reveals in the Dec. 7 issue of People magazine that he has Parkinson's disease. The "Spin City" star said he was diagnosed with the degenerative neurological disorder in 1991 after noticing a "twitch" in his left pinkie. Fox, who plans to talk about his disease during a Barbara Walters interview scheduled to air Dec. 4, said his entire left side has suffered from stiffness and tremors. "And I mean big tremors," said Fox, who joked that the shaking of his left arm was once so violent, "I could mix a margarita in five seconds." In March, he underwent a thalamotomy, a form of brain surgery. Former boxer Muhammad Ali and U.S. Atty. Gen. Janet Reno also suffer from the disease.

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Kaye Signs 'X' Lawsuit: Director Tony Kaye has escalated his feud with New Line Cinema over the editing of "American History X," filing a $200-million lawsuit against the studio and the Directors Guild of America, which he claims failed to support him. Kaye alleges he wasn't allowed to remove his name from the movie's credits after the film's star, Edward Norton, made several changes in the film. Kaye also claims he has not been reimbursed for more than $718,000 he personally spent on the film. Both Norton and New Line have said that the changes from Kaye's version were minimal, and New Line has contended that it intervened only after Kaye spent more than a year in the editing room. Meanwhile, Directors Guild President Jack Shea said: "The DGA has always fought vigilantly for all of a director's creative rights. Any suggestion otherwise is simply not true."

DANCE

Birthday Barre: New York City Ballet celebrated its 50th anniversary Tuesday night by re-creating its first program from 1948. At the end of the performance at New York State Theater, 250 former dancers took the stage, including Maria Tallchief, who danced in the 1948 opening. The evening also honored Tanaquil LeClercq, another dancer from the 1948 premiere--she watched the program from the wheelchair she has occupied since contracting polio during the company's 1956 European tour. Other company alums on hand included Jacques d'Amboise, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Suzanne Farrell, Merrill Ashley and Arthur Mitchell.

QUICK TAKES

"NYPD Blue's" sad farewell to Jimmy Smits on Tuesday drew the show's highest ratings in three years, with 22 million viewers. . . . PBS' "NewsHour With Jim Lehrer" has set up an online forum to discuss "60 Minutes' " broadcast Sunday of tape from a Jack Kevorkian-assisted suicide. "60 Minutes" correspondent Mike Wallace will answer select questions posted to the forum (at http://www.pbs.org/newshour).

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